About a year ago the Lord impressed upon my heart the need to pray more often with my boys. That’s when I got the idea to start a family tradition called The Prayer Road. When Jean or I drive the boys to their charter school in the morning, we follow a road that cuts through a somewhat rural neighborhood. That’s our “prayer road.” As we drive, we intentionally don’t turn on Adventures in Odyssey, the radio, or listen to music.
Instead, we pray together.
Sometimes the boys take turns praying aloud, sometime I do the praying. We’ll thank the Lord for His blessings and pray for the events of the day, for Jumana, Sak Seb, and Keshaba (the children we support through Mission of Mercy), for Bobby, our 30-year-old nephew who is dying of cancer, and for Ethan, their second cousin who has severe heart and pulmonary problems.
We’ll also pray about various happenings at their school and the current events in the world, such as the people in Haiti and Chile. I love the fact that The Prayer Road is an important part of our family life. It’s a great way to get focused on the Lord first thing in the morning. What’s more, Jean and I know it’s important for our boys to see us modeling prayer as a way of life. True, praying at meals is important. But integrating prayer into our daily routine reinforces the fact that we are dependent on God for guidance, healing, and provision.
The Prayer Road is a practical way of fulfilling the encouragement of Joel, one of the Old Testament prophets, who talked about reminding our children of the Lord’s blessings when he said, “Tell it to your children, and let your children tell it to their children, and their children to the next generation” (1:3). Praying in the car is all a part of passing the spiritual baton to the next generation.
Why not try something similar in your home. Start simple. Maybe just pray for one or two things at first. It’s okay if your children don’t jump in at first. In time, the more we model prayer, the more comfortable they’ll become praying spontaneously on their own.
And, yes, for the record I do keep my eyes open when praying while driving!