At night, the last thing my wife and I do with our son is pray for, and with, him. One thing we always do is ask him who he’d like to pray for, because we want to get him in the habit of praying for people that he knows and loves. And he’s gotten pretty good at remembering people.
It’s a cool thing to be able to tell our friends and family, “Hey, Rex prayed for you by name last night.”
But lately, I think he’s picked up on the fact that the more names he suggests, the longer that “bedtime” is prolonged.
The more names he suggests, the longer mom and dad stay in my room.
The more names he suggest, the longer the light stays on.
He’s even begun naming, and praying for, things like his Mac Truck, the light (which he immediately reminds us that “Daddy” and “Poppy” fixed), his “Chloe” (a stuffed animal dog he likes to sleep with), his trains, and our family car. He’s prayed for fireworks, monkeys (jury’s still out on why he wants to pray for monkeys…), and lightning bugs. He’s prayed for his hat(s), his sucker, and himself. He’ll pray for my truck, “work,” and church.
And after a couple of these “extras,” I always say, “Ok, Rex, that’s enough. It’s time to go to sleep.” And I kiss him on the forehead, turn off the light, and close his door.
Faith like a child
But I wonder…is this really a ploy by my son to become more manipulative? Or is it a great example of the faith of a child? Faith that says, “God’s provided these people in our lives…hasn’t He also provided these ‘things’ for our enjoyment and benefit?”
It’s reminded me to slow down. Because I don’t pray for the things he’s praying for. When was the last time I thanked God for my truck? Or for the lights in our home? Or for the beauty and wonder of lightning bugs?
When did I thank him for the simple joys of fireworks and…ahem…monkeys?
Have I ever thanked God for fun things like toys?
I’ve got a lot of growing up to do. Never thought I’d learn that lesson from my 2 year old.
Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.” – Luke 18:17