One of the hardest things in the world as a husband and father is to watch your wife struggle with the day-in and day-out demands on her life when it comes to her children in the home. Often we men are “fix-it” guys. We see a problem and we want to drive at a solution to fix it. There is certainly value in this, but we cannot always fix the difficulty of schedules that need to be kept, the needy children calling for help three times in a thirty second time span for 3 different things, and the hundred other needs that we may never know about. Men are at work… and that is a good thing. It is what God intended for us. Do we men need to be prepared to work our second shift jobs at the family home? Sure, but our wives need more than this. They need our daily prayers as well. This is part of our calling to wash her in the word (Ephesians 5:26), that Paul commanded the Ephesian church to do.
Today I want to offer a prayer that I believe we husbands should be praying over our wives frequently. Today, you ladies might pray this prayer as well to help you with those little vipers in diapers that we all love so much, yet can put so much stress on our lives.
A Prayer for Patience
It has been said that patience is a virtue. It is indeed a virtue, but it is not often one that we come by naturally. Just as it takes a lot of heat and pressure to fuse atoms and carbon together to make a diamond, it often takes heat and pressure time and time again for patience to be produced. Paul tells the church at Ephesus to walk properly as a Christian when he wrote, “I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love.” Dealing with the fourth spill of the day, and that sinful sassy attitude from your nine year old can be very trying. The flesh can often fall into a place of weakness. Yet, scripture encourages us to be patient and long-suffering. Today, pray for patience. Pray that the Lord will calm your anxiety and trust that He is doing something through these momentary situations for both you and your children.
A Prayer for Peace
Jeremiah instructed the exiles to pray for peace and prosperity for the city of Babylon in Jeremiah 29. He said, “Also, seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the LORD for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper.” The people of God had just been taken captive by a pagan people. They were the captives of a war. They were going to be in a foreign land for 70 years, but Jeremiah reminds them to pray for the peace of Babylon. Now, a young and tired mom may think that a 70 year exile sounds like a better alternative than her daily routine of dealing with a bunch of four and six year olds. The fact is, this mother is at war. She is often at war spiritually with her old self, the flesh, who wants her to give into a sinful tirade. Yet, her new man who is “created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness” (Ephesians 4:22-24) is to be the victor in this battle. The end result of war is peace for the victor. We know that for all those who are in Christ that the victory has already been won. Thus, today we pray to live within that victory. Even if your homes may feel like a warzone and you are constantly having to put out small skirmishes, rest in the fact that the Prince of Peace is with you. Pray that you will respond peacefully, and rest in the work that the Lord is doing. Flood your mind with the words of Jesus, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid” (John 14:27). Let this bring calm and comfort on those days of trials.
A Prayer for Perseverance
I once heard a pastor remark that it is easier to die as a martyr than to live as one. What a true statement. The reason it is true is because of one word: perseverance. Perseverance is hard work. It can be soul pounding work. When you are flush in the face and ready to scream… persevere. When you cannot handle another midnight call from child number three that they need to eat… persevere. When your child is in tears over not understanding their math, and you feel helpless to help them yourself… persevere. Your children are watching how you react when faced with opposition. What an opportunity to show them the gospel at work. How you react in times of pressure is an expression of the gospel to them. Paul writes these words of encouragement to a struggling church, “And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up” (Galatians 6:9). Stressed, sleep deprived, counselor mom, don’t give up and give in to the stresses of the day. Go to the Lord in prayer. Go to Him in His Word and be filled. He alone can give us the rest that we all need. Trust that He is doing something through the daily stresses and messes. Respond the way that He wants us to respond. Persevere to the glory of God.
Being a mother is no joke. It is a very high calling if the Lord calls you to it. There is no way to get though it without constant and consistent prayer. Mothers, pray these things today. Husbands, pray these things over your wife today. Go to the Lord on her behalf. Ask the Lord to grant her a respite. Ask the Lord to grant her an extra measure of patience to deal with your sons. Ask Him to give her a day of peace, but if there is no peace to have, pray that she may find peace in the storm. Ask him to give her endurance and perseverance. Dads, be prepared yourself to get busy as a second-shift dad in helping her when you arrive home. It is not only your duty, but your privilege as well. Pray for patience, peace, and perseverance. And may the Lord be honored in you, struggling mom.
Soli Deo Gloria,
Adam B. Burrell