A friend of mine once prepared spinach dip in a bread bowl on the way to a party! She quipped to her 16-year-old son while stirring in the sour cream, “Conner, remember to find a wife who can cook in the car.” Though she was only jesting, her comment points to a serious reality: We all hope our children will choose a compatible and godly mate. Prayer is essential in guiding them in that direction.
Naturally, a primary prayer for a future son- or daughter-in-law would be for him or her to enter into a personal relationship with God through Jesus Christ. Here is a list of 12 other things we can pray. I based these upon what I pray for my daughters. Any of these items can be prayed for children of either sex.
Help my child’s spouse to remain a virgin. Guard him from “outer-course” (petting experiences); abuse; harassment; and pornographic content in music, photographs, and movies (Col. 3:5).
Make my child’s spouse a man after God’s own heart, a maturing Christian who can take a spiritual leadership role that encourages my daughter toward deeper spiritual growth (Eph. 5:25-28).
Develop in my child’s mate a desire to seek and ask forgiveness when wrong from both God and man (1 Jn. 1:8-9).
Show my daughter’s spouse what you want him to do with his life. Help him to seek your purpose for his creation (1 Tim. 4:12).
Teach my child’s spouse the basics of spiritual warfare, how to flee temptation, how to take thoughts captive, and how to stand firm against the devil’s schemes (1 Pet. 5:8-9, 2 Cor. 10:3-5, Jas. 4:7-8).
Help my daughter’s spouse to become a master of good, uplifting communication. Protect him from foul language and angry response (Col. 3:8).
Give my child’s spouse deep, satisfying personal relationships that will prepare him for marriage without compromising his purity (1 Thess. 4:3-8).
Teach my daughter’s spouse to be a good parent. Give his parents good parenting skills, and, if not, provide him with a godly role model. Be the Father to the fatherless if he has no father (Ps. 68:5-6).
Give my child’s spouse a hunger for God through prayer and Bible study (Mt. 13:23).
Help my daughter’s spouse to make a commitment to the truth, to choose honesty in every situation, even when tempted to lie to lessen punishment or consequences (Eph. 4:25).
Give my daughter’s spouse a proper attitude toward money in giving, receiving, and working. Help him learn how to budget, save, and tithe (1 Tim. 6:6-11).
Make my child’s spouse considerate and sensitive, a giving, loving Christian man who can place others needs before his own without losing his personal identity (1 Jn. 3:16-18).
Our intent as praying parents is not to pray up the “perfect” spouse for our child-though that is certainly our own desire-but to see our child’s mate become all he or she can be for God.
Pamela F. Dowd, Marshall, TX (firstname.lastname@example.org) Used by permission of the author. First published in PRAY! Magazine – Issue 9, 1998.