Parenting: How to Plead to Jesus for Your Children

In our worship service yeserday at Calvary Baptist Church, we continued in our study of the Gospel of Mark. We were in Mark 7, which relates the story of the Syrophoenician woman. (Mark 7:24-30) The story relates that this woman had a demon-possessed child and sought after Christ to heal her daughter. What struck me was the question posed by our pastor, “How many of you have demon-possessed children?” Sure, it received it’s share of tittering through the congregation, and even a few raised hands in jest. But that question stopped me. This mother truly did have a demon-possessed child. And she was hurting and pleading with Christ for deliverance.

There are few things that wound a parent’s heart more deeply than a child gone away from the faith. It doesn’t matter the degree of separation – or I guess I should say I wouldn’t think that it does. When a child chooses unrighteousness over the taught and lived out faith of their parent’s Christianity, it breaks the parent’s heart. This woman in Mark 7 had a child given over completely to control by evil. Evil controlled her, it possessed her. Ask yourself this question, “If I were her, how would I come to Jesus?” Would you come? Ashamed? Embarrassed? Demanding? Agonizing? What can we learn from this Canaanite woman in Mark 7 about pleading to Jesus for our children?

Pleading to Jesus for Your Children

(v.25:..but after hearing of Him, a woman whose little daughter had an unclean spirit, immediately came and fell at His feet…)

  • Some quick observations:
    • The woman was identified by her daughter’s possession. Can you hear the community react when she walked by? “Oh. Her. She’sthat girl’s mother.”, “I wonder what shedid to have her daughter turn out like that.”
    • She did something when she heard of Christ. The news of Christ was spreading all over the Galilee region and beyond. Yet it seems that once this woman heard of Christ being close by that she had to act. It was her action that betrays her heart: “…[she] immediately came and fell at His feet…
  • How to plead to Jesus for your children?
    • Get Low: Humbly fall at the feet of Jesus.
      • Yes, people will desire to judge your parenting by how your children behave. Yes, your initial reaction will be one of defense: “…but I did all I could!…” Pride will desire to well up inside you to defend you, your parenting efforts, perhaps even the reputation of your child. When it comes to praying and pleading to Jesus for the spiritual life of your children, get low. Humbly fall at His feet.

(v.26…and she kept asking Him to cast the demon out of her daughter…)

  • Some quick observations:
    • This woman was determined. We see in this text that she “kept asking”; in other gospel accounts we find that she was even “shouting” after them (Jesus & the disciples). The dire circumstances the woman finds her child in motivated her to not only inquire about Jesus’ healing, but drove her to be very vocal for her child’s welfare.
  • How to plead to Jesus for your children?
    • Be Persistent: Keep asking with intensity.
      • These battles are not easy. The temptations for resignation and the desires to quit are all but overwhelming. The fainthearted do not enter this fray. There is everything to lose and a soul to be won. Fight with intensity for the soul of your child.

Matthew 15:23: “…but He did not answer her a word…”
Matthew 15:24:”…but He answered and said, ‘I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel‘…”
Matthew 15:26:”…It is not good to take the children’s bread and throw it to the dogs…

Matthew 15:25:”…she came and began to bow down before Him saying, ‘Lord, help me!'”
Matthew 15:27:”…she said, Yes, Lord; but even the dogs feed on the crumbs which fall from their master’s tables…”

  • Some quick observations:
    • Even when Jesus Christ remained silent, she worshiped. There are dark nights of the parenting soul when heaven seems shut up against our cries. It is at this point when your heart’s desire becomes the most clear. “Lord, help me!” is a packed desperate plea. Lord – my master, help me – no one else can do what You do! Keep Jesus on the throne of your heart when the desires of “fixed” child clamor for kingship. How easy it is to only seek the face of God to see our child culturally acceptable in our churches, to have them cease to be a point of embarrassment and shame for us!
    • Even when Jesus Christ tests her faith, she stays loyal. I’ve yet to find parents that enjoy affliction and suffering in their parenting. The testing of our faith may seem to drown us. The temptations to quit come quickly and often. Cling to Jesus through it all.
  • How to plead to Jesus for your children?
    • Worship intently: Reject the idols that seek to creep up on the throne of your heart. Affirm to yourself and others that Jesus is Lord and that He, alone, is the One who can rescue the soul of your child. Jesus is the source of help for your child. Jesus Christ is the power of God and the wisdom of God. Worship Him intently…even in severe times of testing.

How to Plead to Jesus for Your Children:

  1. Get Low
  2. Be Persistent
  3. Worship Intently

It is heart-rendering to see your children serve evil…in any degree. It is through the realization of the power of God, through the finished work of Jesus Christ, that we find our greatest hope. Jesus is Lord! He hears! He is deserving of worship! In your darkest hour turn to the Light. Cling to Him in the stark reality that we have nowhere else to turn.

Chance to Interact: What encouragement can you offer to parents that have children who have turned from the faith?


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