In last week’s Thoughtful Thursday’s post, I mentioned how I wanted to share some of the things I feel burdened to pray for my kids.
Every child is different and struggles with different issues. Also as they go through different stages of life, they struggle with different things. Since people who know my family read some of my posts, I will try not to get too specific so that I do not embarrass any of my children; however, one or two of my children have been struggling with being happy with the situation of life our family is in right now.
My husband is a pastor, and we moved from a large ministry and a large school to a smaller ministry and very small school. In fact, my oldest daughter homeschools by herself. This has been a hard adjustment. Then the few friends they made have moved. So they feel isolated. We have done our best to put them on sports teams or volunteer jobs or even real jobs as well as a co-op to try to find good friends, and it just has not happened yet.
Even though this is a huge struggle for teenagers, God has allowed this; and in His sovereignty, He has placed us here. He also knows what my children need. Not only are these truths real, He has said that we can be content in any situation He has placed us.
So as I get the brunt of the dissatisfaction, I have felt burdened for God to work in their hearts. I cannot change their hearts. Maybe I can handle the situation better. Maybe I could have said something differently; but only God can change their heart to be satisfied in Him and in Him alone.
When I thought, “What should I pray for them?”, I first thought I would pray for them to be joyful in God; to be filled with the joy of the Lord. I thought of verses such as:
- for the joy of the Lord is your strength. (Nehemiah 8:10)
- A man hath joy by the answer of his mouth: and a word spoken in due season, how good is it! Proverbs 15:23
- These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full. John 15:11
- But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Galatians 5:22
As I thought of these verses, I contemplated the fact that joy was a product of righteous living.
John 15:11 above says that John wrote these things that our joy would be full. What things? Verses 1-10 talks about us abiding in Him, obeying His commandments, and bearing fruit. Joy doesn’t come unless we do these things! Galatians 5:22 shares that joy comes as a fruit of the Spirit. The Spirit first of all must reside in us (so we must be truly saved), and then we must be living a right life so that the Spirit is not quenched. As we live a right life and abide, one of the fruit that will be demonstrated in our lives is joy.
If joy is a fruit or result of right living, I then thought that maybe I should pray that my children will live righteous lives, that they will have a desire to seek God. Next week, I will share more prayers we can pray in this regard.
As I was searching verses on joy, here were some more of the verses I found:
- And my soul shall be joyful in the Lord: it shall rejoice in his salvation. Psalm 35:9
- I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels. Isaiah 61:10
- Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation. Habakkuk 3:18 (God gives us joy when we rejoice in Him.)
- Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full. John 16:24
- Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart: for I am called by thy name, O Lord God of hosts. Jeremiah 15:16 (We will have joy when we love and get into God’s Word.)
- But let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice: let them ever shout for joy, because thou defendest them: let them also that love thy name be joyful in thee. Psalm 5:11
- Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore. Psalm 16:11 (Joy comes when we spend time in His presence.)
- Be glad in the Lord, and rejoice, ye righteous: and shout for joy, all ye that are upright in heart. Psalm 32:11 (The upright in heart/righteous will be joyful.)
- Blessed is the people that know the joyful sound: they shall walk, O Lord, in the light of thy countenance. Psalm 89:15
- And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement. Romans 5:11 (The salvation we have received from God should bring us joy.)
I found these verses of joy especially interesting as it showed that joy can be had even when trials, persecutions, and afflictions are in your life. So praying that my children experience God’s joy in the middle of their trials is Biblical and attainable!
- How that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality. 2 Corinthians 8:2
- Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness; Colossians 1:11
- And ye became followers of us, and of the Lord, having received the word in much affliction, with joy of the Holy Ghost. I Thessalonians 1:6
Some of my favorite posts from last week’s party:
- Habits that Rob Us of God’s Blessings from Soul Survival
- Bible Devotion Worksheets from The Inspired Prairie
- Joy Abounds? Seriously? from Being Woven
- Eight Grocery Shopping Tips to Save the Most Money from Heidi Naturally
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