Last Monday – on the first day of school here in El Dorado – I posed this question:
How can I pray for my child’s school teacher?
An attempt to answer, with one specific request per day of the week, can be found here.
Now having one week down and a bunch to go, I have found myself wrestling with this question:
How can I pray for my child during the school year?
If there is one thing I have learned in the 8 years of being a parent, it is this: there are some things I have ZERO control over. (Okay, so I’ve also learned that I have NO IDEA what I am doing as a parent but . . . I hate to admit it. But it’s true. . . Please don’t tell my kids.)
The main thing I cannot control is each of my children’s souls. I can affect them to a degree. I can (and am supposed to!) do all I can to train, equip, rebuke, encourage, teach etc. But at the end of the day, I cannot make my children have a heart for God. I cannot sprinkle some pixy dust on top of their heads prompting an immediate desire to walk in His ways.
But God can.
We established last week that they will spend AT LEAST 150 days, 7 hours a day, being influenced by others. Teachers. Administrators. Friends. Other girls. Other boys. Bullies. Lunchroom ladies. It’s a bit frightening when you start to think about it. At least it is for me. But – and this is so freeing – I believe God loves my children (yours too!) infinitely more than I do.
So, how can we pray for our children every day of the week during the school year?
Monday – Courage
At 8 am on Mondays they will walk into the classroom after having been around their parents and church friends the previous two days. Ask the Lord to give them courage to do and say and act according to what is right and true and good. Ask Him to give them courage to do their best and work hard and be who He made them to be. Pray that they would have the courage to talk to you and tell the truth and come home eager to share what’s on their hearts.
Tuesday – Development
One of the main reasons they are in school is to develop academically. Pray to that end. Why? Because the more our children learn to read and develop and are able to put concepts together – the better they will be able to understand the Bible. The more they develop mentally and academically, the more they can process the deep things of God in their minds and hearts. Knowing God is the beginning of wisdom.
Wednesday – Joy
I love hump day, and I hate hump day. Why? Monday and Tuesday are gone and Friday is on the horizon. But MAN is it hard to wake my kids up on Wednesday! And usually – if you are a church person – Wednesdays are hard and very long. Pray for a spirit of joy in your house and in your heart and in the heart of your child. Ask God to help you provide an atmosphere of joy at home so they will go to school and church with joy in their hearts, rather than being rushed out of the car being yelled at (not that I would EVER do that!).
Thursday – Senses
Our children will see and hear things that we would probably be better off not knowing. It gives me the willies to think about. A lot of ‘stuff’ they bring home, I can help them process through a biblical lens. But I am sure there is also a lot of stuff I have no idea about. Ask God to help your child know those things that are right and good, as well as those things that are wrong and evil. Ask God to give them a fear of evil. Ask God to give them a holy filter. Ask God to help them forget and remove those things from their hearts that are damaging to their souls. Ask Him to protect them from the evil one. Pray that God would grant your children friends who encourage and challenge them spiritually, AND friends that need spiritual encouragement. Our children really need to know and see and hear the difference.
Friday – Recharge
Who doesn’t love Fridays? Thank God for Fridays. Seriously, do it. Let your children know how glad you are that they don’t have to go back for TWO MORE WHOLE DAYS! Ask the Lord to help them enjoy the last weekday at school. Ask the Lord to help their little hearts recharge on Saturday and Sunday. Recharge at home with your influence and recharge on Sunday by having their minds and hearts fed with God and His Word. Ask the Lord to use the weekend to grow them and prepare them – not only for the upcoming Monday – but for the rest of their lives.
Is there A LOT more to pray for? Sure there is. Make the above suggestion(s) into your own weekday prayer thingy. Whatever you do, however, don’t forget to ask the Lord of their souls to help them in these (and other areas) and to bring them to saving faith soon and very soon. Ultimately, we parents desperately need the Father to rush over them with a heart for Him. May it be.