“And I will pour out my Spirit on your descendants, and my blessing on your children.”

Isaiah 44:3

I prayed a dedication over each of my children, that they would know God and that He would always guide and protect them throughout life.

From then on, my role as a mama was to hold on loosely, even when I wanted to squeeze tight. Long ago I promised all four of them (and eventually my two sons-in-law as well) that by the time they awakened each morning, I would have already prayed for them by name.

My mother-heart gift to them forever.

Sometimes friends comment on how spread out my children are now, doing amazing things all over the world. I reply, “Well, if you raise your children to become adventurous, don’t be surprised if they live an adventure!”

I love that God promised “my blessing on your children.” But what is a comfort to me might be a great puzzle for those whose children are far from God right now.

Are you thirsty for the salvation of your family members?

Monica’s heart was broken as only a Christian mother’s heart can be. When her son reached adolescence, he began to follow in the footsteps of his pagan, lustful, violent father. She wanted to see him settling down with a godly wife, but instead he moved in with a mistress and they had a son. Monica begged her son to join the church and take hold of the life-changing truths of Christ, but instead he fell in with a cult and dabbled in dark heresies.

The young man moved to Rome, and when his mother tried to follow him, he tricked her into missing the boat. He thought he could escape her, but he didn’t realize the power of her prayers and perseverance. This mother prayed for fifteen years, and every day she went to church to pour out her heart to God.

Monica never lost confidence that her prayers for her son would be answered.

Finally the young man repented and gave his life to Christ. Augustine’s faithful mother, Monica, lived from AD 331 to AD 387, and her son is known today as Saint Augustine.

Because of a mother’s prayers, this brilliant theologian’s passion for God and profound spiritual wisdom shaped the entire course of Western civilization. God provided Living Water to quench the thirst of this wayward young man.

Will you keep praying and trusting and persevering for your descendants – your children?

The story is not over yet.

Lucinda McDowell©2017 Lucinda McDowell in Ordinary Graces (Abingdon Press)

Lucinda Secrest McDowell , one of our THRIVE 2017 speakers,  is passionate about embracing life — both through deep soul care from drawing closer to God, as well as living courageously in order to touch a needy world. A storyteller who engages both heart and mind, she offers “Encouraging Words” to all on the journey. A graduate of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and Furman University, Lucinda is the author of thirteen books, including Ordinary Graces, Dwelling Places (awarded Christian Retailing Best Devotional 2017), Live These Words, Refresh!, Quilts from Heaven and Role of a Lifetime. Whether co-directing reNEW – retreat for New England Writing, mentoring young moms, or leading a restorative day of prayer, she is energized by investing in people of all ages. Lucinda’s favorites include tea parties, good books, laughing friends, ancient prayers, country music, cozy quilts, musical theatre, and especially her family scattered around the world doing amazing things. She writes from “Sunnyside” cottage in New England and blogs weekly at EncouragingWords.net