In God’s Pocket – Praying for Children and Grandchildren

Posted on: April 25th, 2015 by Kay Swatkowski

little girl looking out window

In God’s Pocket

(Day 32 – A Grandmother’s Prayers: 60 Days of Devotions and Prayer)


When you cannot stand, He will bear you in His arms.

-Frances de Sales

Cast all your care upon Him because He cares for you.

- I Peter 5:7

            Jesus was right. “Every day has enough trouble of its own.”(Matthew 6:34 NIV) Even before we pry open our eyes, yawn ourselves awake or rummage for comfy slippers, the day’s troubles are patiently waiting and whistling on our doorsteps.

Life has countless concerns: sick children, adolescents who struggle in school, job loss, broken appliances and broken relationships, financial agony, accidents and natural catastrophes, rejection, disillusionment, grim illness, misunderstandings, uncertainty about the future, loneliness and grief.

Yes, “Every day has enough trouble of its own.”

More than twenty years ago, we met our Welsh friends, Linda and Hedley Dent, in a French Language School, Les Cedres, in a suburb of Paris.  They had two young children, Fiona (4) and John Mark (2). Fiona and our daughter, Joy, were in the same kindergarten class at L’Ecole Maternelle.

At least once a week, the Dents would invite Joy for teatime. Linda and Hedley were playful and loving. One day, at tea, they served Joy snake’s feet– radishes with butter.

The Dents worked in French Churches for many years before returning to Wales. A rare liver disorder drained all strength from the tall, sandy-haired Hedley. Linda, a registered nurse, became his affectionate caregiver.

In June of 2009, Hedley went to heaven, leaving Linda, Fiona and John Mark without the loving husband and father they cherished.

Hedley’s death brought many challenges for Linda. Some days the ache has been overpowering.  Over time, she has learned to honor and mourn the loss of Hedley while still enjoying the life she shares with her grown children

She sings in a well-known Welsh choir. The group has recently released a CD of hymns. She works part-time in a Christian bookstore and many summers works as a volunteer at a Christian Camp.

Together, Linda, Fiona and John Mark weather the economic strains that so many in Wales are bearing. Through prayer, practical help and laughter, they generously give one another love and support.

I recently asked Linda how she was doing. Hedley’s birthday was soon approaching. Without hesitation she replied, “I’m in God’s pocket.”

That is faith.

“Every day has enough trouble of its own.” Linda’s example has taught me that difficulties are not the only thing sitting on our doorstep.

Troubles may arrive before us, but so has Jesus. He knows our needs. He knows our sorrows. He is there to comfort us. We are in His pocket.

My temptation as a mother and grandmother is to save my children from pain, sadness, sickness, struggle, financial challenges.

In reality, I can’t save them. Even if I could, it would be wrong for me to inject myself into their lives as their savior from all suffering.

The troubles of life can draw them close to God and strengthen their faith. May they never be cheated of the sweet experience of nestling in God’s pocket.

Dear Heavenly Father,

Thank you that You go ahead of us and are completely aware of the troubles we face today as well as those we soon will be facing. When we arrive at a day of trouble, may we also look for your Presence – because we know that You are already there. Lord, I pray that as my children and grandchildren experience the countless difficulties of life, they will find their strength and comfort in you. May they make a conscious choice to stay close to you, to believe in you and to rest in your pocket. Thank you, Lord, for my friend who has been a living example of trusting you in the midst of loss. Bless all those who, like she, are enduring pain and loneliness today. May you be their eternal comfort and great joy.  I ask that You would be the comfort and joy of my children and grandchildren all the days of their lives.

 

Let Us Pray

+ that our grandchildren will understand that God can use trials to increase their faith  (James 1:2 NIV)

+ that our grandchildren will believe even the difficulties of life can work for their good (Romans 8:28)

+ that our grandchildren will know that God cares for them and that they can cast all their worries at His feet (I Peter 5:7)

+ that in the tragedies of life, our grandchildren will experience being carried close to the heart of God (Isaiah 40:11)

 

Think and Do

  1. “You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance.” (Psalm 32:7) What life experiences have you had when you knew that God was hiding you and protecting you? Can you write a short paragraph of that experience? Do your children and grandchildren know that piece of your story?
  2. Play hide and seek with your little children. Be sure to let them know that God always sees us because He loves us. Read one of the great picture books about pockets: A Pocket for Corduroy, A Pocket Full of Kisses or There’s a Wocket in My Pocket. Talk about things you can hide in a pocket. Then read Psalm 32:7 and tell the children that God can hide them and care for them.
  3. You may want to add two books about faith to your library. For younger children, you might enjoy reading God is With You: That is All You Need by Larry Libby. Corrie Ten Boom: The Watchmaker’s Daughter by Jean Watson is appropriate for older children and can stimulate some important conversations about faith.
  4. Many adults struggle with their faith when they face difficulties. They wonder where God has gone. Help your grandchildren internalize the great theological truth that God is ALWAYS with us, even in trouble. He never abandons His children to go through hard times without Him. Create a wall—hanging using a verse of Scripture that promises God is with us in tribulation. Allow your grandchildren to be part of this creation and refer to the verse often.

Copyright Kay Swatkowski, 2015 Discovery House Publishers. All rights reserved.

A Grandmother’s Prayers: 60 Days of Devotions and Prayer is available for delivery for Mother’s Day. 

www.dhp.org/grandma

http://tinyurl.com/mq9daux

from Miranda

 




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