As you spend time in private prayer preparing for this lesson, use the following prayer to help you talk to God about your own need to grow in showing compassion to others.
If you prefer to personalize your prayer, read through the additional verses provided under “Scripture-guided prayer” for direction and inspiration.
God of mercy, who is a God like You, who forgives my sins? You do not stay angry forever but delight to show mercy (Micah 7:18). Thank you for the sacrificial blood of Jesus, the richness of Your grace and free pardon for my sins (Ephesians 1:7). I humbly come before You, knowing that it is not because of my righteousness that I can make requests of You – it is because of Your great mercy (Daniel 9:18). Your compassion never ends. With the coming of each new day, I experience Your faithfulness, love and kindness (Lamentations 3:22-23). Thank you for being a God of endless grace and tender mercy (Nehemiah 9:31, Luke 1:78).
I ask You to help me see and love others as You do. I want to have a compassionate and merciful heart. My prayer is that You would fill me with Your wisdom so that I can be pure, then peace loving, considerate, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. Please give me gentle sensitivity and a humble willingness to do the things You ask me to do. I’d like my children to see in me an eagerness to open my arms to those who are poor and needy (James 3:13,17, Proverbs 31:20). Please teach me how to live and parent as You do, with a perfect blend of grace, compassion and justice.
Thank you for the caring hearts that You have given my children. Please pour Your love into ________ and ________, filling them with a Jesus-like tenderness and compassion. Let them recognize the mercy You extend to them daily and, in turn, remind them to be quick to offer grace and forgiveness to others. My prayer is that ________ and ________ will live peaceably with everyone because they are sympathetic, compassionate and humble (1 Peter 3:8).
Please help ________ and ________ to appreciate how blessed they are and be willing to make sacrifices in order to bless others. My prayer is that their worldviews would be such that they can comprehend the needs of those living beyond our comfortable community. As ________ and ________ care for others, I ask that they will experience true joy – the joy of knowing that, whatever they did for one of the least of these brothers, they did it for You (Matthew 5:7).
Lord Jesus, I know that You secure justice for the poor and uphold the cause of the needy (Psalm 140:12). As a family, we want to be available to be used as an avenue of Your generosity and mercy. Please show us where we lack concern and increase our awareness of the suffering of others. Help us to be quick to do what You ask of us, to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with You, our God (Micah 6:8). May we count it our privilege to share what You have given us, and to serve those less fortunate in our community and around the world. Amen.
Scripture-guided prayer for parents
Read and pray through one or more of the selected Scriptures under each heading. Focus on listening to God and allowing His Spirit to direct you as you pray.
Begin by thanking God for His mercy.
Nehemiah 9:30-32 | Psalm 103:9-14 | Isaiah 54:10 | Micah 7:18-19 | 1 Peter 1:3-5
Acknowledge areas in your life where you are lacking in compassion.
Isaiah 55:6-9 | Daniel 9:4-5,17-19 | Hosea 6:6 | Luke 6:32-37 | James 2:12-13
Thank God for ways you have seen family members display compassion and mercy to others.
Ask God to help you and your children be compassionate, as He is.
Proverbs 22:9 | Proverbs 14:31 | Ephesians 4:32 | Colssians 3:12-14 | James 3:17