When my son was two, he went through a stage where he was afraid to go to sleep. He could only tell us so much of what was going on (he was just two, after all), but from what I gathered, he was having bad dreams at night.
He would wake up crying, and my husband or I would go in there, hold him until he calmed down, and pray for peace for him. Some nights we had to stay in there, laying on the floor next to his toddler bed, until he fell back asleep. Every time I heard him cry it broke my heart.
Unfortunately, there is no way to nightmare-proof our kids’ minds (don’t you wish there was?). There is only so much we can do for our kids when it comes to nightmares – we can’t take them away. But can we help our kids think about good things at night and hope it helps them sleep better? We definitely can!
We’ve set up quite a bedtime routine with our kids (and of course, kids like routine), but our strategy has been to help them think about good things before it’s time to sleep. These are a few ideas for helping to put your kids minds on the right track.
Recap the day.
Read them a Bible story and devotional.
Sing a hymn or Bible song.
Pray with your kids (and encourage them to pray too).
Find that thing you say.
Then we will slip out of the room and whisper “Goodnight, I love you, sweet dreams, think about Jesus.”