For children: What kinds of things do you talk to God about? Did you know that every time you talk to God it’s a prayer? Prayer doesn’t have to be fancy words or at a special time, prayer is anytime you have something to say to God. Even when we might be so sad or upset that we don’t have any words, God still hears our hearts and knows what we need. Trace your hand with some crayons or colored pencils on a piece of paper and write or draw something you want to tell God or ask God about in each finger or in the palm of your traced hand. Keep that “prayer hand” where you can see it and pray to God every day.
For youth/adults: Sometimes we get tongue-tied and think that prayer has to be done in a certain manner or in a certain place. Jesus is using this story to remind the Pharisees and us that prayer is about honesty with our relationship with God. God sees to the core of who we are and trying to pretend that isn’t so, isn’t helpful. Do you have a favorite memorized prayer that you say when you don’t know what to pray to God? Have you ever had a time when you had a hard time praying to God-when words just wouldn’t come? God is most interested in the honest cries of our hearts. What would you pray knowing that God already knows our hearts?
This month focus on how our prayer connects to our daily actions. If you pray for a situation or a person/people, make a note of how you might reveal the love of God in that place or with that person/people.
Keep a prayer journal this week/month. Write or draw your prayers to God and notice what keeps coming up for you. Pray your joys, sorrows, thanksgivings, needs and fears. (For younger children see the “prayer hand activity above.)