Like the days of Nehemiah, we must rebuild the walls of schools. Every year we end school a bit broken down: kids stream out and leave piles of broken pencils, notebooks, and binders; textbooks are worn out; carpets are dirty; teachers are, frankly, pooped! Then we have to face the inevitable: repairing the building, repainting walls, reordering supplies, and restocking shelves. Maybe we have relationships to mend as well--harsh words at PTO meetings, complaints that turned into gossip, friction between staff and parents.But the Lord is good. He gives us the summer to refresh attitudes. Grace upon grace! And we are ready to rebuild. Unlike the builders at Babel, we build for the Lord’s name and renown, not our own. Without question, this brings opposition so, like those in Nehemiah’s group, we must build with a weapon in one hand. What is our weapon? The Sword of the Spirit, of course.
Welcome to a Prayer Walk!
At a school prayer walk, we usually open with group prayer and then split into smaller groups with “weapons” (Bibles or printed Scripture verses) in hand. We freely move to any area of the school property, inside or out. If you are inclined to lay hands on something, by all means, do so. You can pray using Scripture, aloud or silently, as the Lord leads. For students, you might use Colossians 1:9b-10.
“We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and
understanding that the Spirit gives, so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God,”
For teachers you could use 1 Corinthians 15:58:
“Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.”
Pray-ers stop at the playground, at the lockers, in the bathrooms, in the lunchroom, as well as in the classroom to pray for things like safety, wholesome conversations, health, and good will among peers.
Prayer walks are not just for spiritual giants.
They are for anyone who has a child in an institution of education! Parents have many concerns once their children approach school age: Will my child fit in? Make friends? Resist peer pressure? (And there is peer pressure as early as kindergarten!) Will my child’s teacher truly love and appreciate the students? Where do I fit in as a parent?
Isn’t it logical to turn these concerns and fears over to the Lord? God hears the prayers of his people. He loves to act on behalf of them. Psalm 91:14-15a says, “Because he loves me,” says the Lord, “I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name. He will call on me, and I will answer him.”
What a relief! Why not start this school year organizing or attending a prayer walk? You can begin like this:
“May the Lord our God be with us as he was with our ancestors; may he never leave us nor forsake us. May he turn our hearts to him, to walk in obedience to him and keep the commands, decrees and laws he gave our ancestors. And may these words of mine, which I have prayed before the Lord, be near to the Lord our God day and night, that he may uphold the cause of his servant and the cause of his people Israel according to each day’s need, so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the Lord is God and that there is no other.” 1 Kings 8:57-60
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