Prayers for Family

Prayers for Family

Saying prayers for family and friends is one way we can grow in faith, open our lives to our Heavenly Father and allow Him to work in us and our loved ones.

It’s wonderful to cover all our family members with the love of God, the strength of Jesus Christ, and the power of the Holy Spirit. We know that God loves to say “Amen!” when we bring him our prayers for family and friends, and for families all around the world.

Prayers For My Family

Prayers for my family

By bringing our loved ones before God in prayer, we remember all that God can do and how much he loves us.

Here are some short prayers for family members. Use them on their own, or as starters for your own time of daily prayer:

Father God, I pray for my family and friends, remembering each by name. Thank you that you already know them and love them completely. I pray, too, for people I know who do not have a family or have been hurt by their family. Thank you that as Christians, we can all be a part of your family. Amen.

Heavenly Father, we thank you for the good times we enjoy with our families; for the fun and the friendship; for the moments we feel deeply known and loved by each other. Help us cherish each member of our family. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Dear Christ Jesus, I pray that my children will have hearts that long after you. Help them grow in faith, wisdom and character. Please help them know you are always with them, especially in times of trouble. Thank you Lord, Amen.

Prayers for Family Guidance

Prayers for family guidance

Families can be fun, not to mention a bit chaotic. As families, we share both everyday events and life-defining moments. Families bring both joy and frustration. Here are some prayers for seeking God’s guidance as we live and learn together.

Father Almighty, Thank you for families all around the world. Thank you for the examples of family relationships that we read in the Bible, and for the model you offer for right relationship, with your Son, Jesus Christ. Help us learn to love each other with grace and patience. Amen.

Dear Lord, please bless my family. Help us stick together, during good times and bad. Help us to see the tapestry you are weaving in our daily lives – in the ordinary and mundane and in the precious and unforgettable. Help us grow in practising unconditional love, forgiveness and patience towards each other. Amen.

Dear God, when I feel frustrated with my family – misunderstood, rejected, or angry – please be present. When things feel messy and chaotic, bring your peace. When we are short-tempered or self-absorbed, remind us of your perfect love. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Praying with Children

Praying with children

It’s so encouraging to pray as a family. Devotional time as a family builds up our faith and helps us learn to trust God even in difficult times. You’ll find more wonderful encouragement in these Bible verses about peace.

Dear Father God, we thank you for giving us your peace. Help us be peacemakers at home and in the world around us. Help us to love and care for one another. Help us to be good listeners, even when we don’t agree. Amen.

Dear Lord, help us to share with those who are lonely and who need a friend. Help us be generous and willing to share.

Dear Lord Jesus, we pray for peace for our family. Please give our family healing when we have arguments. Help us to be quick to forgive and kind in how we speak to each other. Amen

Use our free printable Gratitude Journal and prompts to come up with more ideas for praying as a family.

Prayers for Family Protection

Be encouraged by the power of prayer! In God’s word, we read that it’s his will for us to live fulfilled lives in the name of Jesus. When we pray prayers for family protection, and prayers for family peace, let’s remember that we’re bringing our requests to God who is faithful to his promises.

Lord Jesus Christ, strengthen my family to overcome the challenges we face. I thank you for your love for each one of us. Please, Father God, protect my family, and may your kingdom come. Heavenly Father, God bless my family. In the name of your Son, Jesus, Amen

Lord Almighty, please keep my family close to you. Keep us in the palm of your hand, all our days. Help us to know you are always near y your Holy Spirit. Thank you that you promise never to leave us nor forsake us and thank you that you’re continuing your good work in us until its completion. Amen

This night-time prayer comes from the 18th century:

Now I lay me down to sleep; I pray the Lord my soul to keep. Thy love guard me through the night and wake me with the morning light. Amen

Praying for Family Unity

Prayers for family unity

Desmond Tutu once described raising children as like ‘training for a forgiveness marathon’ but the truth is, all members of families need prayers for strength and guidance, and we all need to practise forgiveness. All families face difficulties, and it’s good to remember there are no perfect ones.

Try these prayers for family unity as you start the day and invite God to bring peace to family life.

God Almighty, I bring to you the challenging parts of family life. Where there are conflicts or difficulties, I ask that you bring peace. Keep us on the right path and hold our family close. When we are dealing with past hurts and troubles, help us to forgive as you do. When we are grappling with future uncertainties, be with us Lord God, by your Holy Spirit. When we face challenges, and when our circumstances threaten to divide us, be the bridge that connects us. Amen

Family morning prayers are a wonderful way to encourage unity and to set our hearts on Jesus at the beginning of each day. Strengthening family bonds through love and intercession for one another reminds us that God goes before us in all that we do each day.

Dear Father God, Thank you that your mercies are new every morning. Thank you for this day. Thank you that you promise to be with us in everything we face. Give us your courage and grace, o Lord, that we might trust in you with all our heart. In your mighty name we pray, Amen.

Praying for the Family as an Institution

Families are foundational to identity, growth, and society. We need to pray for families around the world, that all families would be places of nurture and safety.

God of the lonely, the left-behind and lost; thank you for families. Thank you that you put orphans and widows in families, and that Love and Community are part of your design. Help us to see beyond ourselves, to build strong relationships with those around us, and offer a welcome to those who need it. Amen.

Heavenly Father, we thank you for all kinds of families, immediate and extended, nuclear or blended, whether related by blood or decision. Thank you for singleness, for the institution of marriage and for parenthood. We thank you for those who foster, sheltering children in need. We thank you for the precious gift of adoption, and for those who model the love of God that embraces the stranger. Amen.

Almighty God, help us to build a society that supports families, and understands the value of family relationships. We thank you that, in our adoption into your family, we can know eternal bonds that go deeper than biology. May we experience your perfect love, and, by your grace, share your love with others. Amen.

Sponsoring a child empowers their whole family

When you sponsor a child, you enable local churches to reach out and encourage their whole family with the love of Jesus.

Prayers for a family transformed by Jesus

Like many children, at first Daniel and Daniela mainly liked going to the project for all snacks and meals. But it wasn’t long before the project became a second home for the twins—they received not just food, but clothes, medicine, and care for all their needs. And as they interacted with the staff and volunteers, they began to see a different way of life could be theirs through faith in Jesus Christ.

After seeing the change in his children’s lives, dad Jose began going to church. Jose had endured a difficult life, struggling to find work and spiralling into addictive behaviours. But gradually Jose’s life began to be transformed.

“We realised that our dad had accepted Jesus one Sunday when he came home smiling after church. He looked so different, so happy! We never thought that going to the project would change our lives this much.” says Daniel.

Daniela agrees, “We’re very grateful to God and the project for all the help they’ve given us throughout our lives. But the greatest and most beautiful gift we’ve ever received has been Jesus and our dad.”

Sponsor a Child

Questions about praying as a family

What is a good family prayer?

The Lord’s prayer is a powerful prayer and a wonderful prayer to share as a family.

Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Lead us not into temptation
but deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power,
and the glory are yours
now and forever.

How do you pray for family problems?

Pray often! And have confidence that God hears our prayers. We can open our hearts and be honest with God, knowing that he listens and cares. Tough as they might be, family difficulties can increase our reliance on God, deepening our relationship with him in wonderful ways.

Why should we pray for our families?

Prayer changes us. In prayer, we take a step away from the conveyor belt of everyday routine, to pause and remember who we are in Christ Jesus. Prayer also strengthens relationships, deepening our connection with God and with each other, especially when we pray together. So, invite the Holy Spirit into the every day, the logistical, the mundane, the hard, and the glories of family life. As Julian of Norwich wrote in the Middle Ages “…the goodness of God is the highest object of prayer and it reaches down to our lowest need.”

What is a good Bible verse for a family?

Colossians 3:12-15 (NIV version)

“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.”

Why is the family important to God?

God Himself exists in relationship (the Trinity) and sent His own Son, Jesus Christ, to die for us and redeem our relationship with him. Family is often the vehicle through which he reveals himself to us. God designed families to be a safe and nurturing environment. Families aren’t limited to those who are related by blood – there are also many examples of the family as a unit in which those who are lonely, abandoned, or rejected might find welcome. For many of us, living in family invites us to put love into action, and commit to long-term, deepening relationships. The church is also described as God’s family and is a wonderful place of community and mutual support.

What does God say about family unity?

It’s clear from Scriptures that God desires that we live together in peace and unity. Romans 12:16 reminds us to ‘live in harmony’ and Ephesians 3 4:3 reads ‘make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.’ At the same time, the Bible also describe family conflicts, both serious and banal. Perhaps a good example of how to navigate family life is offered in the Gospels, where we read of how Jesus’ disciples argued, and often jostled for attention and favour. In these instances, Jesus can be seen to look beyond the immediacy of their complaints into the posture of their hearts. We can follow this example and practise the fruits of the Spirit as we bear with one another, working towards a deeper relationship with each other and with God.

Tips for praying for my family

  • Take the time to name each family member individually and bring them to the Lord.
  • Prayers can be quick, sometimes called ‘arrow prayers’ that fire our thoughts up to God; they can also be part of a longer time that might involve music, or journalling or other tools that help each person pray.
  • Pray family prayers as a family – it’s a special thing to share with children. Teach children short prayers they can use themselves and start from an early age.
  • Don’t underestimate the prayers of children and invite them to pray for things they care about.
  • It’s okay to talk about prayer, as well as pray for the family. Where it’s easy to fall into chat about everyday things like food and homework, take time to chat about prayer, and talk about what happens when we pray. As Rick Warren says, “if you’re not having critical conversations with your kids about real issues, you’re missing opportunities to help them grow.”
  • Family prayers needn’t be too long or elaborate. Make praying a normal part of everyday life and lead by example.
  • High, Lows, and Heroes – why not structure family prayers around a time of sharing? Each person takes time to share what has gone well (high), what hasn’t (low) and a moment that was particularly special or a person who has showed kindness (hero). Then pray around these experiences as a way of bringing the day to God.

Lastly, remember Bible verses in your prayers – there are some great verses to remind us of the value of families and how God works in families. Try these:

Proverbs 22:6 “Train up a child in the way he should go, even when he is old he will not depart from it.”

Exodus 20:12 “Honour your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.”

Ephesians 6:4 “Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.”

Psalm 68:6 “God sets the lonely in families, he leads out the prisoners with singing; but the rebellious live in a sun-scorched land.”

Psalm 127:3 “Children are a heritage from the Lord, offspring a reward from him.”

Psalm 27:10 “Though my mother and father forsake me, the Lord will receive me.”

Genesis 2:24 “That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.”

Sources: Bible Gateway

If you’ve enjoyed these, you might like our Prayers for Children, where you’ll find more ideas about simple prayers for children to use, as well as prayers from across the Compassion family.

We also have some wonderful Bible verses that remind us of all God’s promises.

Compassion UK

Words by Compassion UK


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Compassion UK Christian Child Development, registered charity in England and Wales (1077216) and Scotland (SC045059). A company limited by guarantee, Registered in England and Wales company number 03719092. Registered address: Compassion House, Barley Way, Fleet, Hampshire, GU51 2UT.