Prayer is one of the greatest gifts God has given us. We can bring our needs to the God of the universe and be assured that He hears and cares! Prayer is a wonderful gift!
Each week during Group Time, Mission Friends leaders are encouraged to lead their preschoolers in prayertime. We may not be able to fully explain prayer, but we can demonstrate prayer for our preschoolers. Preschoolers can learn that God cares for us and wants to hear from us. Preschoolers can learn to talk to God by listening to us pray.
Keep these things in mind as you model prayer for preschoolers:
- Give preschoolers opportunities to pray, but do not pressure them to pray aloud.
- Use a simple salutation, such as, “Dear God.”
- Use simple vocabulary that preschoolers can understand.
- Remember the attention spans of your preschoolers. Use two or three sentences for each prayer.
- Explain that we usually keep our eyes closed during prayertime so we can focus better on God.
- Remind preschoolers that God can hear us wherever we are and no matter what we are doing. Take opportunities to pray with preschoolers throughout the session. For example, during a nature activity, you might pray, “Thank you, God, for the beautiful leaves we see.”
- Praying spontaneously and in conversational tones will help preschoolers understand that God is their friend and loves them.
Vary prayer experiences:
- Prayer prompts can help preschoolers begin to voice their own prayers. Invite preschoolers to finish a sentence prayer: Thank You, God, for _____. Please help _____. Help the missionaries _____.
- Sing a simple praise song, such as “God is So Good,” to show preschoolers that praise to God is part of prayer.
- Use Bible thoughts to reassure preschoolers that God hears our prayers. For example: Open the Bible and read: God hears me when I pray (see Psalm 66:19).
- Walk through your church building with your preschoolers and pray for church helpers and various ministries, such as the pastor, music minister, food pantry, library, or even the church office.
The examples we give and the ways we model prayer will help preschoolers know that God loves and cares for them and wants to hear from them. They will also learn about His concern for the people of the world. Pray with preschoolers and get ready to see God answer and bless His work in your church and around the world.
by Stacy Nall