Praying for Your Child From Head to Toe

by Sharon Jaynes August 25, 2023
“One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, 'Lord, teach us to pray …'” Luke 11:1 (NIV)

Before I had my first child, my husband, Steve, and I took a six-week class on child care at the local Red Cross. But when my son was born, the minute the nurse placed that little human on my chest, I knew motherhood was going to be very different from what I experienced with that plastic doll.

My son Steven was not made of durable plastic but delicate skin and breakable bones. He did not lie still when we tried to change his diaper but squirmed right out of those sticky tabs. I could not leave him on the counter for a 15-minute coffee break but had to give him constant attention. And the poop was real. And so was the love.

From the very beginning, I wanted to be a praying mamma, but honestly, I wasn’t sure I could. I’d sit down to pray, and my mind would wander to errands I needed to run, meals I needed to cook … and oh yeah, I should call so-and-so when I finished.

Then I’d rein my thoughts back in, feeling guilty that I couldn’t stay focused. What’s wrong with me? Why can’t I pray for 10 minutes without getting distracted? I’m a terrible mother! Has that ever happened to you when you sat down to pray?

Did you know Jesus' first disciples also had trouble praying? They asked Jesus for help one day: “Lord, teach us to pray” (Luke 11:1). Jesus responded by giving them what we’ve come to call the Lord’s Prayer.

While many of us may be familiar with reciting the Lord's Prayer from memory, we can also see it as a pattern for prayers of our own: Acknowledge God as Father, holy and sovereign. Ask for His will to be done, for our needs to be met, and for our sins to be forgiven. Ask for deliverance from temptation and protection from evil (Matthew 6:9-13).

Using similar ideas, I created a pattern to keep me focused and faithful when praying for my child from head to toe. I started at the top with his mind (the thoughts he thinks), then his eyes (what he looks at), his ears (what he listens to), and so on all the way down to his feet (the path he takes). Sixteen areas in all.

Then I began searching the Bible and finding scriptures to pray over each of those 16 areas. We can rest assured that when we pray the Word of God, we pray the will of God. What a relief!

Rather than having just one prayer at the end of this devotion, let’s pray four scriptures over our children right now. If you’re a mom, feel free to pray for your own children — or consider using these verses to pray over a person you love or their children.

The Mind: What My Child Thinks About
“Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart … and with all your mind’” (Matthew 22:37, NIV).

Heavenly Father, I pray my child will love You completely — with heart, soul and mind. I pray intellectual knowledge of You will lead to an emotional affection for You.

The Eyes: What My Child Looks At
“Turn my eyes from worthless things, and give me life through your word” (Psalm 119:37, NLT).

I pray my child will turn their eyes away from worthless things. I pray they will divert their eyes from anything or anyone that would cause them to stumble, trip or fall into sinful thoughts or actions.

The Ears: Who and What My Child Listens To
“Then [Jesus] added, 'Pay close attention to what you hear. The closer you listen, the more understanding you will be given—and you will receive even more’” (Mark 4:24, NLT).

I pray my child will pay close attention to the truth they hear about godly living and godly principles, knowing that the closer they listen, the more understanding they will receive.

The Back: Physical and Spiritual Protection
“… The LORD your God moves around in your camp to protect you and to defeat your enemies” (Deuteronomy 23:14a, NLT).

Almighty God, I ask that You move about in my child’s camp — home, school and everywhere in between. Protect and deliver them from anyone who would seek to do harm physically, mentally, emotionally or spiritually. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

No one will be a perfect parent, but we can all be praying parents who confidently pray for God’s protection of and provision for our families in the physical and spiritual realms.


We are so excited to be offering Sharon Jaynes’ new book, Praying for Your Child from Head to Toe: A 30-Day Guide to Powerful and Effective Scripture-Based Prayers. This is a prayer guide you will use again and again, from your child’s birth to when your nest is empty, as you confidently and effectively pray for God’s protection and provision over the ones you love most.

We’re taking the month of August to focus on the topic of prayer on YouTube! Join us as we talk about the power of prayer, how to navigate being disappointed and still show up to pray, and how prayer can help us work through anxiety. Click here to listen to the first episode, and make sure you are subscribed so you don’t miss the rest of the series!



It’s time for back to school and back to prayer! Click here for a FREE download from Sharon Jaynes: “Praying Scripture over Your Child’s or Grandchild’s Teacher from Head to Toe.”


Matthew 7:7-8, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened” (NIV).

James 4:2, “… You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God” (NIV).

What do the above verses teach you about the importance of prayer? Leave a comment, and share a prayer request for a child in your life!

© 2023 by Sharon Jaynes. All rights reserved.

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