• Beth Jones

A Prayer for Back to School

Giving thanks to the God who sees our vulnerable kids and our trembling hearts.

Oh, LORD, we beseech thee,

May our much-loved babies know that YOU are with them, that YOU will never forsake them, be it through algebra or through navigating the crocodile filled moats of playgrounds and cafeterias. Let them know that you hold them safe and beloved.


Help us to place our outsized hopes and fears in YOUR hands.


Give strength, grace, and courage to parents, students, teachers, and staff for doing the work with love and faithfulness. May we know the Spirit’s presence and power.


Thank you for all the adults who pour love and energy into your beloved children.

Thank you for being the God who loves, who knows, who SEES.


You see the packed backpacks, smelling of crayon wax & pencil wood. You see the ones who joyously chose new notebooks and the ones worrying about the cost.

Lord, have mercy.


You see the little, sticky ones with baby cheeks and wiggling toes and the full hearts of their mamas and daddies.

Lord, have mercy.


You see the teens, bodies grown and minds so vulnerable, agonizing over their outfit choices and lunch assignments.

Lord, have mercy.


You see the adult students, those fumbling through their first days away from home, those trying to do something new while holding down a job or changing diapers.

Lord, have mercy.


You even see the middle schoolers, bumbly and awkward and aching.

Lord, have mercy.

You see the ones for whom the cafeteria is a nightmare and the ones who are so glad to get back to friends and books.

Lord, have mercy.


You see the newcomers to this country, the parents who don’t speak the language at their kiddo’s schools.

Lord, have mercy.


You see the teachers carrying heavy loads, the new teachers, the longtime teachers, their hearts, and their struggles.

Lord, have mercy.


You see the parents who volunteer at schools and the parents who can’t because of juggling job schedules.

Lord, have mercy.


You see the ones the system works for and the ones who it fails.

Lord, have mercy.


You see the parents going to extraordinary lengths to make it work for their kids.

Lord, have mercy.


You see the kids who anticipate this day, and you see those who fear it.

Lord, have mercy.

We give you praise, oh God who SEES, who knows, who loves. Help us remember your presence with us through this new school year.


AMEN.

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