Day 23: Favor with God and Man
Lord, may these children grow in grace and knowledge of the Lord Jesus, both now and throughout their lives. May they grow in wisdom and in stature and in favor with You and with man. II Peter 3:18; Luke 2:52 In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
I first found these verses to pray when my niece, Wesley, was born. She was the first baby of the family and we all were overwhelmed with love. I left soon after she was born to go do mission work in Costa Rica. In the months that I lived in Costa Rica, I missed my family so very much, especially my new niece Wesley. However, I knew enough about prayer to know that redeeming the time away through prayer was the most positive thing I could do when I missed them. So, every day as I rode the public bus to work, I prayed these prayers for Wesley. Now, 31 years later, I see how God abundantly answered my prayers for her, as well as the prayers of her parents. She is a beautiful, godly woman, who has indeed grown in the grace and knowledge of the Lord Jesus.
One point about these verses is the word “grow”. To grow means to develop, to progress, to cultivate. It means to “to become larger or greater over a period of time.” We need to realize that when we pray this prayer for our children, we are reaching into the future on their behalf. We won’t see it all at once, but over time we will realize the fruit of growth and maturity in their relationship with Christ.
It was said of Jesus, as well as of the prophet Samuel when he was a boy, that he grew in wisdom and stature and in favor with God and man. That is what I want for my kids, too. This prayer is the perfect combination. Favor with man alone is shallow. It can become a popularity contest. Favor with God and man means influence in godliness. It means friendships which glorify God, not those which rebel against him.