Why talk about self-confidence in our kids? Why am I so focused on this right now? Why do I want to commit a whole series on this topic? Why do I want to look into this so much?…
Time to fess up- because of one of my biggest fears….my deepest fears…is that my children will struggle with self-confidence/esteem, whatever you want to call it…as much as I did. I am afraid. Yes I am. It is an area of such strong vulnerability for me. It is one of those wounds that is still fresh enough that at times it still stings. I know I am healed and whole in Christ and my own sufferings have served to help me be a better counselor with the individuals I work with on my job and in other situations. And I am not ashamed or angry or regretful about my past hurts- but I also do not want to see anything repeated in my kiddos. I know God does not want me to be afraid for my kids, I need to trust Him, so I am working on that or rather, HE is working on that in me. But I am someone who likes to learn, grow and plan so if this is my battle right now I am fighting it on all fronts. I want to attack it at all angles.
I’m excited to be writing about building self-confidence in my kiddos. In thinking about self-confidence with my kiddos I am trying to consider many things…I am certain that a wide variety of things impact my son’s and their self-confidence (ages 4 and 8). I think of course about their age, developmental stage, the environments they are in during the day, their relationships, their understanding of the world around them, what they know and believe about God, etc…
I want to cover many specifics and practical ideas in this series of posts because I like practical tips and ideas and things that I can put into place. An example- one thing I recently read about is emphasizing self-care with boys; cleanliness, taking pride in their appearance, etc.. okay- so my son may be challenging on this front, but I’m gonna try to apply a practical tip- make a little checklist for my 8 year old to comb hair, brush teeth, make sure clothes are clean, etc.. I see this as something tangible and simple that will get him thinking about his appearance- no pressure but might wind up being good for him. So- I want to address several things- I have so many ideas-such as friendships, faith, activities like sports, school, responsibilities at home, influence around them, body image etc…
BUT I don’t feel I should move forward without focusing on first things first.
Nothing and I mean NOTHING can trump the impact of a mother’s prayers for her children. There are many things the professionals may tell us, many books to read and many ideas out there, but the first thing I want to remember is that ABOVE ALL ELSE- my boys need me to pray for them! I have not always been diligent in my prayers…and then I had kids.
It’s like something switched on in me- probably fear, anxiety worry! But- nevertheless, my prayer life changed when I had children. My prayers have become more specific and are on the scale of “all day long, sporadic and sometimes panic-induced!” Being a mother who works outside of the home full-time has been a huge reason why my prayers for my kids have increased. Leaving them has always been hard, although I have amazing care for them. And as we all know, when we are away from our kids, we think about them all the time, not even realizing it! So I turned this into a string of prayers, all day long. Not only that but because I drive a lot to and from various places for work- my car has turned into my “war room”, my prayer- central. I have definitely seen God answer these prayers and it is encouraging…
A few things God has given me from His Word about prayer that I want to share and emphasize with my you all- my sweet Mama friends…
- God has given us the ability to pray because He wants to use our prayer to accomplish His will. He has also given power to our prayers. A mother’s prayers are powerful and effective.
16 “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.”
- God knows every detail about our children- He is their expert. A mother can be certain that she is praying to a God who knows her children inside and out. God sees every detail; why even the very hairs on my son’s sweet heads are numbered!
7″ And the very hairs on your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows.”
- God knows what our children need. A mother can be certain that she is praying to a God who already knows the needs of her children before she prays.
“8 Don’t be like them, for your Father knows exactly what you need even before you ask him!”
So leaning on God in prayer is a HUGE foundation for helping my boys grow in their self-confidence! Right?! Are we praying for our children on a regular basis? Is this a discipline that we have cultivated and maintained? If not, before we look at anything else, we need to do this.
There are so many amazing resources available on praying for your children but let’s try to keep it simple right now. We want our children to be confident and sure of themselves. Let’s talk to the God who made them in the first place. Instead of asking for certain things, i.e.- more self-confidence, for our kids to be “happier”, to be more willing to try new things, etc…- let’s ask about our kids. One question I am going to be asking in prayer this week that I will challenge all of you to join with me in asking the Lord…
“Who is my child? God- tell me more about this child that YOU have made.”
Pray this with me:
“Lord, God, Psalm 139 says that my child is fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14). You formed his inmost being in my womb (Psalm 139:13). You know his words before they come out of his mouth (Psalm 139:4). His days have already been numbered (Psalm 139:16) and your thoughts about him outnumber the grains of sand (Psalm 139:17-18). Teach me about this precious child you have made. May I be his student. Help me to see his strengths, needs, unique gifts, challenges, fears, and joys.”
Pray this prayer and share what God is teaching you about your child! I can’t wait to hear!
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