In case you missed it, you can read the thoughts of Yaroslav Hetman, Senior Director of Neighbor Innovation at Compassion International, as he remembers his family and friends in Ukraine.
How to Pray for Children During Times of Conflict
Every time there is suffering, babies, children and the poor pay the highest price. In addition to the obvious risk of lost lives, military conflict can also disrupt food and water distribution channels, interfere with access to medical care, eliminate jobs, destroy infrastructure, interrupt education and tear families apart for generations. We invite you to use this guide as you pray for the most vulnerable during times of conflict around the world.
Pray About The Conflict
He makes wars cease to the ends of the earth. He breaks the bow and shatters the spear; he burns the shields with fire. He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” (Psalm 46:9-10, NIV)
Lord, we ask for your intervention in this area of conflict. Would you break the bow and shatter the spear that threaten children and their families? We boldly pray for peace in Jesus’ name. Amen.
- Ask God to provide stable homes for displaced people.
- Pray that God will quell violence and protect children from harm.
- Pray that the Holy Spirit will diminish hatred in the hearts of the aggressors.
- Pray for comfort for those on the aggressor’s side who do not support war.
Pray About Those in Authority
In the LORD’s hand the king’s heart is a stream of water that he channels toward all who please him. (Proverbs 21:1, NIV)
You are the Lord of Lords. We know that the hearts of those in authority are in your hands, and you easily guide their intentions wherever you wish. We ask that you burden the hearts of those in power, that they would put an end to violence and destruction. Guide their hearts toward a desire to usher in peace and restoration, in Jesus’ name.
- Ask God to provide those in leadership with wisdom.
- Pray that God will give those in authority the courage to make the right decisions without fear of political implications.
- Pray for global leaders to be moved to help protect the innocent civilians in harm’s way
Pray About Access to Food and Water
You open your hand and satisfy the desires of every living thing. (Psalm 145:16, NIV)
Father in heaven, we come before you on behalf of those enduring unimaginable hardship. Please see their hunger, have mercy and open your hand to provide them with the nourishment they need. We remember how you have provided miraculously for people throughout Scripture, and we know you can do it again. Tear down the barriers that stand between families and their next meal. Please pour out your provision, comfort and love.
- Pray for the safe delivery of humanitarian aid.
- Pray that major water sources would be protected from contamination.
- Ask God to provide necessary food for malnourished children.
Pray About Interrupted Education
I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my loving eye on you. (Psalm 32:8, NIV)
God, you are the greatest counselor, the wisest teacher and most loving guide. During this time of difficulty, we pray that you would continue to nurture and grow the children who are without access to education. Surround them with opportunities to remember the lessons they have learned in the past and continue to shape them into the young men and women you desire them to be. Amen.
- Pray that children would continue to learn and grow from the example of adults around them.
- Ask God to provide a measure of stability and peace for those who previously found comfort in a school routine.
Pray About The Health of Children and Access to Medical Care
In his hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind. (Job 12:10, NIV)
Lord, we praise you because you are the giver and sustainer of all life. We ask that you will provide health and safety for children and their families during this time of conflict. Hold them in the palm of your hand and restore their lives to peace. Amen.
- Pray that children would be safe from the conflict.
- Pray that those with already compromised health would receive necessary medical care without interruption.
- Ask God to prevent the spread of disease while many children and families live in crowded conditions
Pray About Caregivers, Teachers, Medical Professionals, and Those Assisting Refugees
Blessed are those who have regard for the weak; the Lord delivers him in times of trouble. (Psalm 41:1, NIV)
Lord, we pray for the caregivers, teachers and medical professionals who have dedicated their lives to serving children during this time of conflict. We also ask that you be with neighboring countries who are sheltering refugees during this time. Bless them and keep your hand of protection over them. Sustain them with your strength and comfort as they patiently endure the conflict that surrounds them. Amen.
- Pray that those who serve children during this conflict would be sustained by God’s strength.
- Ask God to give those who serve children peace and comfort as they carry heavy burdens and concerns.
- Pray that God would resource them with all they need to serve children well.
- Pray that God would preserve their livelihoods.
Pray About the Local Church
And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. (Matthew 16:18, NIV)
God, thank you for establishing your church with a promise – the promise that it would endure! We pray for the local church in this time of conflict and ask that you would remind them that no matter what trials they face, even the gates of Hell cannot overcome. Please send peace, encouragement, and provision to pastors and staff trying to minister during such a tumultuous time.
- Pray for protection as pastors and volunteers minister in the most dangerous environments.
- Pray that God would strengthen the Church and equip pastors to continue to provide teaching and training for families in their community