Parents’ prayer

God knows the disappointment you experience when your children are disobedient: Adam and Eve’s first act of defiance toward God – their Creator – was to disobey His direct command.

Use this prayer to ask God to help you be patient as you strive to teach your children to be obedient. Alternatively, formulate your own prayer based on the verses suggested under “Scripture-guided prayer for parents.”

Sample prayer

Loving Father, Your Son Jesus was so obedient that He humbled Himself to death on the cross (Philippians 2:8). His prayer was, “Yet not as I will, but as You will” (Matthew 26:39). Jesus was so passionate about obedience that He said, “My food . . . is to do the will of Him who sent Me and to finish His work” (John 4:34). His time on earth provides a real-life example for us to follow.

I desire to be like Jesus, but so often fall short of my goal. Some days I imagine You are up in heaven, thinking, “How many times do I have to tell him/her?” Please forgive my lack of diligence in following Your directions.

I ask that You will give me a humble, obedient spirit that desires to wholeheartedly obey Your commands. I pray with David, “Oh that my ways were steadfast in obeying Your decrees! . . . Teach me, O Lord, to follow Your decrees; then I will keep them to the end. Give me understanding and I will keep Your law and obey it with all my heart” (Psalm 119:5, 33-34). I pray my children will see in me a passion for doing Your will that inspires them to follow You wholeheartedly.

Your heart is filled with pain over sin, yet You are gracious, slow to anger and abounding in love (Genesis 6:5-6, Exodus 34:6, Psalm 145:8). I find it grievous and frustrating when my children do not obey me. Please fill me with Your Spirit to enable me to provide correction as You would, in a gracious and loving way. After all, it is easier for my children to obey me when I give advice gently and patiently, than when I am in “drill sergeant mode.” When my children are disobedient, please give me Your wisdom so that I may “govern” them in a discerning way, distinguishing between right and wrong (1 Kings 3:9). Help me to notice and give them appropriate recognition when they do obey.

I pray for my children, ________ and ________. I don’t want them to do the right thing just because they have to. Rather, I ask that You will bless them with obedient hearts that desire to obey You and others in authority. Please help my children to keep their way pure by living according to Your Word. May they be diligent in seeking You with all of their hearts so that they will not stray from Your commands.

I pray that because ________ and ________ have hidden Your Word in their hearts, they will be kept from sinning against You (Psalm 119:9-11). As they grow up, I pray they will guard Your teachings as the apple of their eye. Bind them on their fingers, Lord, and write them on the tablet of their hearts (Proverbs 7:1-3).

We read in 1 John 2:5-6, “But if anyone obeys His word, God’s love is truly made complete in him. This is how we know we are in Him: Whoever claims to live in Him must walk as Jesus did.” This is my prayer for our family – that we will obey Your Word and walk as Jesus walked, in complete obedience to You. Amen.

Scripture-guided prayer for parents

Read and pray through one or more of the selected Scriptures under each heading. Focus on listening to God and allowing His Spirit to direct you as you pray.

Character focus

Begin by letting God know how much you appreciate His love and guidance.

Exodus 15:1, 11-13 | Psalm 73:23-26 | Psalm 139:7-10 | Isaiah 30:18-21 | John 16:12-15

Heart search

Acknowledge when and how you fall short of obeying God.

Deuteronomy 30:15-20 | 1 Samuel 15:22-23 | Proverbs 13:13 | Isaiah 1:18-20 | 1 John 2:3-4


Thank God for ways you have seen obedience exhibited in your family.

Family requests

Ask God to help you and your family to be obedient in all circumstances.

Deuteronomy 30:5-10 | Psalm 25:4-5 | Psalm 119:44-48 | John 14:23-26 | Proverbs 16:9,20