Brooke McGlothlin is Co-founder of Raising Boys Media, where moms and dads come to discover delight in the chaos of raising boys. You can find her writing about fighting for the hearts of her sons at the MOB Society blog, or living a life in pursuit of Jesus at her personal blog www.brookemcglothlin.com. A normal day finds Brooke homeschooling her two boys, wrangling two large Labs, Toby and Siri, writing to bring hope to the messes of life (in the midst of her own messy life), and falling more and more in love with the man she’s had a crush on since the third grade (who just happens to be her husband).
What led you to write your book Praying For Boys?
My husband and I have two boys who were born just 23 months apart. I probably don’t need to say much more than that, do I?? That’s enough to keep any mama on her knees! Actually, I’ve done a lot of hard things that I’m very proud of in my life, but raising my boys ranks up there as THE hardest thing I’ve ever done. In the book, I talk about how I asked God to give me boys, and that’s true, but the reality of the day to day mothering of what I like to refer to as “those boys,” (you know, the ones who are 250% boy?) often leaves me completely worn out. I realized early on in our parenting journey that I had no power to change their hearts. And while everything in me wanted to be able to snap my fingers and produce good, godly men, the Bible just doesn’t give us that parenting formula. So in an effort to just do something, I started praying verses from the Bible for my sons…verses based on things I wanted to see the Lord develop in their hearts. It was my way of crying out to God to change them, but it ended up changing me, too. After a year or so of doing that, and of constantly hearing from moms on the MOB Society, my blog for mothers of boys, who wanted to raise godly men, but felt like they were losing the battle, I decided to create a resource that helped them learn how to pray for their sons. It seemed a simple answer to me at the time, but the longer I encourage moms to pray the more convinced I become that prayer is the most overlooked part of raising godly men.
Brooke, your book is a prayer guide with over 200 scriptural prayers. Can you share a sample or two of these?
One of my favorite verses to pray for my own boys, that shows up in the chapter on kindness, is Numbers 6:23-26. They call it my “special prayer” and I pray it over both of them every single night. If I forget, they remind me, and I love that it’s become such an important part of the way we end our days. I just pull my boys close to me and pray, “May the Lord bless you, and keep you, and make His face to shine upon you, and give you peace.” We’ve been doing it so long now that they actually pray it with me. My other favorite verse to pray for my boys, because they’re young and still learning appropriate behaviors, is Galatians 5:22. I put my own twist on the end that they just think is hilarious. “Lord, fill up my sweet boys with love, joy, peace, and patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control…lots and lots of self-control.”
What do you feel is the greatest obstacle moms must overcome in order to be women who make prayer for their boys a priority?
We give priority to the things we find most in important in life. For example, I’m pretty partial to eating. I get sick and grumpy very fast if I don’t eat when I’m hungry, so because of that, I tend to place a high priority on meal time. I make time for it. Some of my friends are dedicated to exercising, so they find time for it and let others things on their to-do list slide to a lesser priority status. So it is with prayer. When we know how powerful a praying life can be—not just because it allows us to join with God in shaping the hearts of our sons, but also because it keeps us connected to His heart, shaping us into the kind of parents HE wants us to be—we make time for it. So really, the greatest obstacle to overcome is how important, or unimportant, we believe prayer really is.