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Hillary Ibarra shares her favorite short Scripture passages for moms to pray in 2021.

At Mass we listen to and pray Scripture continually, even when we do not recognize the Scriptures we pray. Many prayers from the Bible are familiar, of course. We pray and sing the Psalms. The priest prays Christ’s own words from the Last Supper. We pray the Our Father and later the words of the Roman centurion, whose faith astounded Jesus, when the priest holds up the Blessed Sacrament, changing only the centurion’s “servant” in our own declaration of faith before Jesus.

Lord, I am not worthy
That You should enter under my roof
But only say the word
And my [soul] shall be healed. (Matthew 8:5-13)

We recognize the great value in repeating the words of one who displayed such amazing faith when he encountered Christ.

Just as Scripture is woven throughout the Mass, we can weave short Scripture prayers throughout our day, reliant not on our own words – for we do not know how to pray as we ought – but on the wisdom of God’s Word to provide more faith, peace, hope, love, and joy in 2021 for our families and for ourselves. These short prayers are ideal as part of a morning prayer or in periods of worry, distress, discouragement, uncertainty, and confusion; they are succinct but profound.

These are some of my favorite Scripture prayer suggestions for our children, for our vocation as wives and mothers, for more mercy in our world, and for divine guidance.


For Our Children

Each of my four children has wrestled with doubts and fears; we all do to some extent. As my sons and daughters grow, and the time when they will leave our home draws nearer, I trust their Heavenly Father to keep them near to Him - throughout college, while in pursuit of their careers, and as they choose whom to marry and start their own families.

May my children be mindful of You, Lord God, in all their ways. Make their paths straight. (Proverbs 3:6)

Lord, increase their faith. (Luke 17:5)

Lord, guide my children to rejoice in hope, endure in affliction, and persevere in prayer with your help. (Romans 12:12)

I pray my children will hold faith as a shield, wear the helmet of salvation, and wield the sword of the Spirit. (Ephesians 6:16-17)


For More Joy and Peace as a Wife and Mother

This year, like last year, we need joy and peace no matter what the world throws at us. Circumstances will often feel chaotic; we will weather change with our families; and we will ache over the disappointments our children face. Peace and joy in life’s storms are anchored by gratitude and ultimate trust in God. When frustrations rise, when uncertainty buffets us, when we are tossed about by our own shortcomings and failures, we can look to God’s Word to calm the storm in our hearts and minds.

This is the day the Lord has made. I will rejoice and be glad in it. (Psalm 118:24)

Grant me your peace that surpasses all understanding, and guard my heart and mind, Lord Jesus. (Philippians 4: 7)

Your grace is sufficient for me, Father, for power is made perfect in weakness. (2 Corinthians 12:9)


For a Greater Understanding of Mercy in Our Lives

The world needs reconciliation and the mercy of God. We must show mercy to others. We must be merciful to ourselves, too, and trust in God’s mercy for us (a personal struggle of mine), for “Merciful and gracious is the Lord, slow to anger, abounding in mercy.” (Psalm 103:8)  

Jesus, help me to forgive from my heart, seventy-seven times. (Matthew 18: 35, 21-22)

As far as the east is from the west, Lord, remove my sins from me. (Psalms 103:12)

Lord, teach me to be a peacemaker. (Matthew 5:9)

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God, have mercy on me, a sinner. (a version of The Jesus Prayer based on Luke 18: 13)


For Discernment and Divine Guidance

I wonder often if I am striving for something that is not backed by God’s will. Do you ever feel the same? These are the prayers for those times when you struggle to discern the best path, to know where to direct and invest your talents for God’s glory.

My God, do not let me labor in vain. Show me the house you wish me to build. (Psalm 127:1)

Lord, relieve me of my anxiety and worry. Help me to choose the better part: listening to You. (Luke 10: 41-42)

Father, make my paths straight. (Proverbs 3:6)  

Not my will, but Your will be done. (called by many the perfect prayer and based on Luke 22:42)


Discover favorite Scripture passages to pray for more faith, hope, peace, joy, and love in your family and in our world. #catholicmom

May God bless you and your family this New Year, and I hope you discover favorite Scripture passages to pray for more faith, hope, peace, joy, and love in your family and in our world!    

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Copyright 2021 Hillary Ibarra
Image: Pixabay (2019)