When the evening comes, and it’s time for our little ones to go to bed, many children struggle with fears and anxieties. At times like these, we can give them peace and comfort by reading God’s words over them. The Bible’s truth has the power to destroy the lies of the enemy who whispers scary thoughts in our children’s innocent heads.
One of the most important ways to help our children feel safe is to teach them to pray. Reading relevant verses and Bible stories to them at bedtime will help them relax and sleep better. Psalms are especially powerful as they were written mostly by King David, who was facing many fears and anxieties and still found refuge in God’s love, strength, and promises.
When our children have anxious thoughts, we want them to shift their thoughts to “whatever things are true, whatever things are honorable, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report; if there is any virtue, and if there is any praise, think about these things.” (Phil 4:8) To do this, we can help our children turn their attention to their Heavenly Father and focus on who He is and what He promises to do. We can also teach them about the fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5:22-23), and slowly walk them through each attribute/virtue that will shape their minds and hearts.
- 5 Psalms about God’s Omnipresence, Omniscience and Omnipotence
- 5 Psalms about Protection
- 5 Psalms about Peace and Rest
- 5 Psalms about Freedom from Fear and Anxiety
- 5 Psalms about God’s Lovingkindness
- 5 Psalms about God’s Faithfulness
- 5 Psalms about Patience & Self-Control
- 5 Psalms about God’s Wisdom
- 5 Psalms about God’s Justice and Mercy
- 5 Psalms about Forgiveness
1. GOD’S OMNISCIENCE, OMNIPOTENCE & OMINPRESENCE
It is hard for us, let alone our children, to fathom the vastness of the universe and the greatness of our God. We can see God’s omnipotence and omniscience in the creation and the nature that surround us. As Psalm 139:8 says, “If I ascend up into heaven, you are there. If I make my bed in Sheol, behold, you are there!” We can explain to our children that no matter whether it’s day or night, and no matter where they go, God’s presence will always be with them. Even at times when we are not physically near them, such as being in a different room, our children can rest assured that God is watching over them when they are awake and asleep. After all, He is our creator, and no one knows us better than He does. Our worries and fears may seem small and insignificant, but they are never too small for God who cares for His children.
Psalm 42:8 “Yahweh will command his lovingkindness in the daytime. In the night his song shall be with me: A prayer to the God of my life.”
Psalm 66:4-7 “All the earth will worship you, And will sing to you; They will sing to your name.” Selah. Come, and see God’s deeds — Awesome work on behalf of the children of men. He turned the sea into dry land. They went through the river on foot. There, we rejoiced in him. He rules by his might forever. His eyes watch the nations.”
Psalm 119:89-90 “Yahweh, your word is settled in heaven forever. Your faithfulness is to all generations. You have established the earth, and it remains.”
Psalm 139:12-14 “Even the darkness doesn’t hide from you, But the night shines as the day. The darkness is like light to you. For you formed my inmost being. You knit me together in my mother’s womb. I will give thanks to you, For I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Your works are wonderful. My soul knows that very well.”
Psalm 147:4-5 “He counts the number of the stars. He calls them all by their names. Great is our Lord, and mighty in power. His understanding is infinite.”
These psalms reassure us that God is our protector, always watching over us no matter where we are. He has placed his angels around us to protect us against spiritual harm. Our children may be scared of monsters, ghosts, and imaginary beings, so they can be comforted by knowing that these are no match for the angels who guard them and God Almighty.
Psalm 91:1-2 “He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High Will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of Yahweh, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in whom I trust.”
Psalm 34:7 “The angel of Yahweh encamps round about those who fear him, And delivers them.”
Psalm 121: 2-4 “My help comes from Yahweh, Who made heaven and earth. He will not allow your foot to be moved. He who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, he who keeps Israel Will neither slumber nor sleep.”
Psalm 121:5-6 “Yahweh is your keeper. Yahweh is your shade on your right hand. The sun will not harm you by day, Nor the moon by night.”
Psalm 55:16-17 “As for me, I will call on God. Yahweh will save me. Evening, morning, and at noon, I will cry out in distress. He will hear my voice.”
3. PEACE AND REST
These psalms remind us that we can rely on God to give us peace when we face difficult emotions and circumstances. “The peace of God, which passes all understanding, will guard your hearts and your thoughts in Christ Jesus.” (Phil 4:7) Our children can put their trust in God and experience His grace and peace as they sleep.
Psalm 23:1-2 “Yahweh is my shepherd: I shall lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters.”
Psalm 4:8 “In peace I will both lay myself down and sleep, For you, Yahweh alone, make me live in safety.”
Psalm 3:3-5 “But you, Yahweh, are a shield around me, My glory, and the one who lifts up my head. I cry to Yahweh with my voice, And he answers me out of his holy hill. Selah. I laid myself down and slept. I awakened; for Yahweh sustains me.”
Psalm 116:7 “Return to your rest, my soul, For Yahweh has dealt bountifully with you.”
Psalm 29:11 “Yahweh will give strength to his people. Yahweh will bless his people with peace.”
4. FREEDOM FROM FEAR AND ANXIETY
In the face of trouble, uncertainty, disasters, and diseases, we have the assurance that God will be by our side. Jesus said: “I have told you these things, that in me you may have peace. In the world you have oppression; but cheer up! I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)
Psalm 46:1-2 “God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble. Therefore will we not be afraid, though the earth changes, Though the mountains are shaken into the heart of the seas.”
Psalm 56:3 “When I am afraid, I will put my trust in you.”
Psalm 34:4 “I sought Yahweh, and he answered me, And delivered me from all my fears.”
Psalm 94:19 “In the multitude of my thoughts within me, Your comforts delight my soul.”
Psalm 27:1 “Yahweh is my light and my salvation. Whom shall I fear? Yahweh is the strength of my life. Of whom shall I be afraid?”
5. GOD’S LOVINGKINDNESS
Psalm 136 talks about giving thanks to the God of heaven for His love endures forever. We can teach our children to meditate on unconditional love and salvation. The Bible teaches us to love God and to love others. This is the basis of our faith and a solid foundation for our children.
Psalm 92:1-2 “It is a good thing to give thanks to Yahweh, To sing praises to your name, Most High; To proclaim your lovingkindness in the morning, And your faithfulness every night.”
Psalm 63:3, 6-7 “Because your lovingkindness is better than life, My lips shall praise you…When I remember you on my bed, And think about you in the night watches. For you have been my help. I will rejoice in the shadow of your wings.”
Psalm 94:18 “When I said, “My foot is slipping!” Your lovingkindness, Yahweh, held me up.”
Psalm 116:1-2 “I love Yahweh, because he listens to my voice, And my cries for mercy. Because he has turned his ear to me, Therefore I will call on him as long as I live.”
Psalm 130:7 “Israel, hope in Yahweh, For with Yahweh there is lovingkindness. With him is abundant redemption.”
We can see God’s unwavering, unchanging faithfulness towards humankind since the beginning. Although we fall short of Him and make mistakes, God remains faithful to His promises and covenants. He even gave us a way out in the person of Jesus Christ, who bore our sins on the cross. These psalms assure us that we can trust Him with confident expectation and firmly believe in His promises, for God abounds in steadfast love and faithfulness.
Psalm 36:5 “Your lovingkindness, Yahweh, is in the heavens. Your faithfulness reaches to the skies.”
Psalm 89:1-2 “I will sing of the lovingkindness of Yahweh forever. With my mouth, I will make known your faithfulness to all generations. I indeed declare, “Love stands firm forever. You established the heavens. Your faithfulness is in them.””
Psalm 91:4 “He will cover you with his pinions. Under his wings you will take refuge. His truth is a shield and a buckler.”
Psalm 100:5 “For Yahweh is good. His lovingkindness endures forever, His faithfulness to all generations.”
Psalm 143:1 “Hear my prayer, Yahweh. Listen to my petitions. In your faithfulness and righteousness, relieve me.”
7. PATIENCE & SELF-CONTROL
Children often struggle with patience and self-control. In today’s want-it-now culture and things being obtainable easily, it takes some effort to teach our children to wait. This can lead to frustrations and tantrums that affect their sleep. When they don’t get what they want and obsess over it, it’s hard for them to settle. We can teach them about the benefits of being patient and dealing with their emotions.
Psalm 27:14 “Wait for Yahweh. Be strong, and let your heart take courage. Yes, wait for Yahweh.”
Psalm 40:1 “I waited patiently for Yahweh. He turned to me, and heard my cry.”
Psalm 130:5-6 “I wait for Yahweh. My soul waits. I hope in his word. My soul longs for the Lord more than watchmen long for the morning.”
Psalm 141:3 “Set a watch, Yahweh, before my mouth. Keep the door of my lips.”
Psalm 17:3 “You have proved my heart; you have visited me in the night; You have tried me, and found nothing; I have resolved that my mouth shall not disobey.”
When things are scary and don’t make sense, children need to be reassured that someone who is wise and in control can guide and protect them. James 1:5 tells us that if we ask for wisdom, God will give it to us. God, whose “understanding is infinite” (Ps 147:5), knows the best solutions that will give the best outcomes for His glory and our good.
Psalm 1:3 “He shall be like a tree planted by the streams of water, That brings forth its fruit in its season, Whose leaf also does not wither. Whatever he does shall prosper.”
Psalm 37:16 “Better is a little that the righteous has, Than the abundance of many wicked.”
Psalm 37: 30 “The mouth of the righteous talks of wisdom. His tongue speaks justice.”
Psalm 127:1 “Unless Yahweh builds the house, They labor in vain who build it. Unless Yahweh watches over the city, The watchman guards it in vain.”
Psalm 128:1-2 “Blessed is everyone who fears Yahweh, Who walks in his ways. For you will eat the labor of your hands. You will be happy, and it will be well with you.”
9. JUSTICE & MERCY
In a young child’s eyes, some things may seem unfair and wrong. As parents, our responsibility is to teach them to have discernment from a godly perspective and not from a worldly standpoint. No matter what situation they face, children need to understand that our God is a fair and merciful judge. He protects the oppressed and administers justice. He is merciful (saving us from damnation) and gracious (giving us eternal life).
Psalm 85:11 “Truth springs out of the earth. Righteousness has looked down from heaven.”
Psalm 103:6 “Yahweh executes righteous acts, And justice for all who are oppressed.”
Psalm 112:4-6 “Light dawns in the darkness for the upright, Gracious, merciful, and righteous. It is well with the man who deals graciously and lends. He will maintain his cause in judgment. For he will never be shaken. The righteous will be remembered forever.”
Psalm 103:8 “Yahweh is merciful and gracious, Slow to anger, and abundant in lovingkindness.”
Psalm 72:2-4 “He will judge your people with righteousness, And your poor with justice. The mountains shall bring prosperity to the people; The hills bring the fruit of righteousness. He will judge the poor of the people. He will save the children of the needy, And will break the oppressor in pieces.”
Last but not least, it is good to end the day, making sure that our little ones do not harbor any grudge or ill-feeling in their hearts. Sin eats away at the soul and makes one sin further. As we come before God and lay down all our worries at His feet, we want to ask God for forgiveness for any wrong we did during the day. As we ask God for forgiveness, we also forgive others who have wronged us. 1 John 1:9 says, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and righteous to forgive us the sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
Psalm 51:9-11 “Hide your face from my sins, And blot out all of my iniquities. Create in me a clean heart, O God. Renew a right spirit within me. Don’t throw me from your presence, And don’t take your holy Spirit from me.”
Psalm 32:1-2 “Blessed is he whose disobedience is forgiven, Whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man to whom Yahweh doesn’t impute iniquity, In whose spirit there is no deceit.”
Psalm 103:8-13 “Yahweh is merciful and gracious, Slow to anger, and abundant in lovingkindness. He will not always accuse; Neither will he stay angry forever. He has not dealt with us according to our sins, Nor rewarded us for our iniquities. For as the heavens are high above the earth, So great is his lovingkindness toward those who fear him. As far as the east is from the west, So far has he removed our transgressions from us. Like a father has compassion on his children, So Yahweh has compassion on those who fear him.”
Psalm 32:5 “I acknowledged my sin to you. I didn’t hide my iniquity. I said, I will confess my transgressions to Yahweh, And you forgave the iniquity of my sin. Selah.”
Psalm 51:16-17 “For you don’t delight in sacrifice, or else I would give it. You have no pleasure in burnt offering. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit. A broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.”
We hope that these 50 psalms will help you and your child meditate on God’s truth as you spend quality time in scripture-reading and prayer before sleeping. There is power in God’s words and we can see changes happening in our children as they commit these verses to memory. May God’s words of life be planted deep in our children’s hearts and give them peaceful sleep every night.
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