When our girls were old enough to read on their own, I made each of them a prayer card that doubled as a bookmark in her Bible. This simple tool helped our daughters develop their own prayer life. You can make this card on a computer, but these directions are for doing it the old-fashioned way, by hand. Be sure to write clearly and print unless your child can read cursive. Here’s how to make a prayer card for your child:
- Choose a 3×5 card, with or without lines. Look for one in your child’s favorite color or use a white card and make it colorful with markers or stickers.
- Begin on a side with no lines. Hold the card in a vertical position with the longest side going from top to bottom. Begin by listing names of your family, one name per line: Ex. Dad, Mom, brothers, sisters, grandparents, other close family members.
- Next, (on the same side) list pastors, missionaries, teachers, or others in authority.
- Lastly, include things that are important to your child, like a friend who is ill. My oldest daughter included the country of China because she felt called to missions at a very young age.
- The opposite side is for your child. Choose one or two character traits that your child needs to work on. (ex. honesty, diligence, contentment) List the positive trait and a Bible verse about that trait. For example, if you need to work on truthfulness, then you may want to copy Psalm 34:13. If your child is struggling with diligence, you could copy Proverbs 10:4. Each day your child can read the verse and pray that God would change his or her heart. If your child reads the scripture each day for several weeks, he or she may even memorize it without any trouble.
Of course, the card will not be accurate forever and will have to be updated every 3-6 months. Involve your older child as you make changes. Update the names of the authorities and ask your child what requests he or she might want to pray about. Pray together and talk about which trait(s) your child needs to focus on in prayer. Most of all, give encouragement when you see growth in character and highlight the answers to prayer that your child may not have recognized. A Prayer Bookmark is a small tool, but I believe that it can plant many "prayer seeds" in the hearts of children.