Christmas is always a busy time, which is ironic, because it’s also the time when we most want to slow down and enjoy the blessings God’s given us. At least I know it is for my family. There’s nothing I enjoy more than a peaceful room filled to the brim with my loved ones and Christmas lights, and I’ve been known to sit and stare at the tree when no one else was looking.
We already have parties, and plays, and family gatherings enough on our list this December. I’m sure you do too, and while I know trying to prioritize prayer can seem like just one more thing to add to your to-do list, I really think you’ll find that prioritizing it during the Christmas season is such a blessing.
Here are some ideas we’ll be trying out this year!
from Brooke McGlothlin
1. Create a blessings list.
A great activity for the family…set aside some time to create a list of your blessings. If you are creative, make those into ornaments and add them to your tree one-by-one, thanking the Lord as a family for all He has provided this year.
2. Set your alarm to pray for someone special every day at the same time.
Is there a member of your family or community in serious need? One thing I love to do is set my alarm for 4:12 PM each day (a special time for Million Praying Moms) and devote that time to one person or family per week. It’s especially nice if you let them know you’re doing it.
3. Pray for someone on your church’s prayer list every day.
Most church’s have an extensive, ongoing prayer list. Ask for a copy, and use it during the Holiday season. Fold it inside your Bible, or hang it on the fridge. Maybe even tape it to your bathroom mirror…wherever you’re most likely to see it and be reminded to pray for a new person each day.
4. Make ornaments with the names of unsaved people on them.
My sons did this as a part of their youth Christmas presentation at church. We were handed small Christmas balls as we walked in the sanctuary. Each ornament had a name tag tied to it. As part of the service, we wrote the name of one unsaved person on our ornament and hung them on the Christmas tree at the front of the church Man, was it a powerful, deeply meaningful sight. It would be easy to replicate this in your own home, and you don’t have to be super creative to do it. Keep the ornaments with names on them in a box, and then as you decorate your tree, pray for each person to come to know Jesus as Lord and Savior. Maybe even devote an entire tree in your home for this purpose.
5. Pray the Names of Jesus.
Do a study on all of the Names of Jesus…a quick Google search will help you find them. Read about one Name each day of the week leading up to Christmas, and pray for for the meaning of that Name to be real and alive in your family’s life.
6. Pray using Christmas hymns as your guide.
We have an entire 5-day devotional set aside for this, written by our prayer mentor, Gina Smith. You can sign up to have a new email in this devotion sent to your inbox each day. Just click here to sign up!
7. Write names of people who need prayer on individual pieces of paper, and keep them in a bowl.
Each morning, or whenever your family gathers around a meal, take turns pulling out a name and covering that person in prayer. You could also use your church’s prayer list for this.
from Gina Smith
8. Pray for people as you scroll through Facebook and Instagram.
You know you’re on there, might as well make it a bit more holy 😉 There’s PLENTY of need!
9. Pray for the “Helpers.”
A friend shared this tip with me. Every time she and her family drive past a wreck, or police officer, or see a fire truck, they pause and pray for the Helpers. What a beautiful thing to do at Christmas as they are missing out on their own family events to serve families they’ve never met!
10. Put any Christmas cards you received in a basket and use them as prayer cards all year long.
11. While shopping, pray for the cashier or sales person helping your family.
This is a great thing to model for your children! Instead of getting agitated at the hustle and bustle in stores, make it a prayerful experience!
We sincerely hope you and your family will pick a few of these ideas for making prayer a priority over Christmas and try them on for size! Remember, don’t shoot for perfection. If things were perfect, we wouldn’t need to pray!