Praying blessings over your family. I've become a big believer in this. I pray daily for my "house" and my "line." My house being my current family and my line being those who are yet to come, yet to be born. Those who will live after my time, who will carry on our family line.
I am a big believer in prayer. Not prayers of desperation, as the plane plummets out of the sky - although I would certainly be praying pretty hard if that were the case! But I mean prayers for Godly direction for our family. Prayers that we would hold close to the Lord, regardless of what life brings our way.
I pray for men who will love and care for their families, treasure their wives, have patience with their children and work hard to provide for them to the best of their ability. That they will be honest in their business dealings and an example younger men. I pray for women who will delight in the care of their families, not be prone to gossip or idleness, who will be blessed with healthy children who will come to know the Lord at an early age and love and serve Him all their lives. Women who will be an example and a blessing to those younger than themselves.
I pray back to God what He's just taught me in my daily bible reading. I pray about God and His character, thanking and praising Him for who He is and that He loves me.
If I'm honest, I'd have to admit prayer doesn't always come easily. It's most certainly a discipline. Although I find the more I pray, the more I find myself praying. It becomes habit, I look forward to that time alone with the Lord.
For years I found it difficult to pray for any length of time, I'm very easily distracted. Squirrel! But now I type my prayers and I find it keeps me on track. I rarely go back and re-read them, but when I do, I'm blessed by my own words, and it makes me happy to think that God was blessed while I prayed them.
When I was growing up I had a miserable old maiden Aunt. She was as mean as the day is long. As children we would run away when we heard her coming. But as I got older, and saw her very rarely, which who are we kidding helped in my affection for her! I came to value her, because each and every time I talked with her on the phone she told me she had prayed for me, each of my cousins, my parents and all my aunts and uncles by name that and every other morning. And it made me feel wonderful to know that I had been held up before the Lord that day.
As I've gotten older and more intensional with my prayer life I've found that I very rarely pray for tangible things or try to manipulate a situation through divine intervention. I pray over our family as a whole, for the things that the Lord promises to bless us with if we follow Him faithfully. Faith, character, babies, leadership, selfless love. The things that last far longer than a possible lucrative business contract or good weather for a special day.
My prayer life has become much richer this past year, now that I have more time, particularly in the morning. Now that I'm an empty nester it doesn't matter if my mornings go on for 3 hours, which they often do by the time I've worked out and showered, in addition to breakfast and time with the Lord. It's become my very favourite thing about empty nest. The relaxed mornings.
I feel that it's also our responsibility as we age, as we enter new phases of life and have more time to pray over those younger than us. Who are busier than us. Who are in the midst of new marriages and young or teenaged children. Those who, although their faith is there, often don't get the time they'd like to spend with the Lord. At least not formally, like I have time for now.
Ladies, whether you're a young mom or an empty nester don't under value prayer. Try to find the time. Drive to pick up the kids a little earlier and while you're parked outside the school waiting, carve out those few minutes alone with the Lord. As you enter the phase of empty nest and begin to look for your new passions, your new daily schedules, choose to create a time of structured daily prayer. It will bless you, it will bless your family and you're called to it.
If you're looking for direction, regardless of your phase of life, look no further than Titus 2. It outlines the kind of older woman I strive to be and the kind of younger women I pray my daughters will be.
And as I post this, I've prayed that each of you who read it will find it useful and valuable.