One of my dear local friends just sent me the most beautiful prayer from the book “Making God Real In The Orthodox Home” by Fr. Anthony Coniaris (here is the Amazon link: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0937032077/ref=ox_sc_act_title_1?ie=UTF8&m=A6MHEJ10672MS) . Here is the beautiful prayer she shared with me:
O Heavenly Father, make me a better parent. Teach me to understand my children, to listen patiently to what they have to say, and to answer all their questions kindly. Keep me from interrupting them or contradicting them. Make me as courteous to them as I would have them be to me. Forbid that I should ever laugh at their mistakes or resort to shame or ridicule when they displease me. May I never punish them for my own selfish satisfaction or to show my power. Let me not tempt my children to lie or steal. And guide me hour by hour that I may demonstrate by all that I say and do that honesty produces happiness. Reduce, I pray, the meanness in me. And when I’m out of sorts, help me, O Lord, to hold my tongue. May I ever be mindful that my children are children and I should not expect of them the judgment of adults. Let me not rob them of the opportunity to wait on themselves and to make decisions. Bless me with the bigness to grant them all their reasonable requests and the courage to deny them privileges I know will do them harm. Make me fair and just and kind and fit, O Lord, to be loved and respected and imitated by my children. Amen.
So, let us parent just for today.
Help me to be a good listener just for today.
Help me to not interrupt my children.
Help me to be kind.
Help me to treat them respectfully. Help me to treat them the way I would my best friend’s child.
Help me to be patient.
Help me to be cheerful.
Help me to use my tongue as a gift of kindness and love; not of malice, hate, sarcasm or disrespect.
Help me to remember that children are small and precious. So tender and precious.
Help me to say “yes” more often.
Help us to have fun.
Help me to set boundaries in a loving and calm way.
Help me to consistently follow through with the boundaries I deem important for my children.
Help me to help them grow up to be wonderful adults.
Help me to be kind and good so I can show my children that the world is indeed a kind and good place.
Help me to continually turn to a Creator higher than myself to ask for help
Help me to enjoy my children and parenting
Help me to love them and help them to love me.
Many blessings, and much love,