Praying for Back-to-School Joy

 Will COVID-19, a potential joy thief, rob families and educators of joy in 2020? Which safeguards are trustworthy? Do we have a responsibility in the current school year dilemma? Yes, I believe we do.

Let’s join together in prayer for each student and educator facing a year of uncertainty.

But first, let’s recall happy back-to-school days.

Do memories of a new school year make you smile? Do you recall the smell of new crayons and the joy of seeing friends again? Remembering my own school days and those of my children spark joy.

From the moment our son played on the playground and noticed the bright yellow doors, he was ready to start school. Chocolate brown eyes danced with excitement as he entered Mrs. Tippett’s kindergarten class.

Memories of his first second-grade homework assignment make me laugh. Not understanding that his teacher meant essay, he wrote a summary of his summer activities and titled the paper “My S. A.” (I didn’t say a word knowing it would give his teacher a smile.)

Our daughter, never one for the ordinary, chose either sparkly silver pencils or those with a Strawberry Shortcake motif for her school debut. Ponytail bouncing, she skipped in daily with enthusiasm as she chatted with friends.

My favorite school memory of her was the day she insisted on “taking” her brother for Show-and-Tell! (He obliged her.)

Will the happy back-to-school memory bank be filled this year? At the beginning of this 2020-2021 school year, we see more questions than answers:

  • Online school or in-person?
  • Can kindergarteners understand social distancing?
  • Will teachers get sick?
  • How will working parents manage?
  • What extracurricular activities?

We hear more doubt than certainty. We suspect more fear than joy will capture us. We wonder how effective online education will be.

Yes, this school year will be challenging at best, but I believe each of us can contribute to effective education for all children and joy in learning How?

Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving.               

Colossians 4:2

As a retired teacher, I remember the energy required for reopening school. Long hours. Little sleep. New requirements. Diverse needs. It’s hard, folks. A blessing—but HARD.  Educators and families need God’s blessings.

Here’s a suggested prayer guide. Please add your own requests.

A Prayer Guide for the 2020-2021 School Year

Pray as you ride by public and private schools and as you see school buses and children in your neighborhood.

Lift up home school students and parents.

Pray for wisdom for board members and advisors.

Ask God to equip educators with stamina, health, joy, and insight into students’ needs.

Pray for students and parents who are fearful as you pray for academic achievement. Pray for joy.

Pray for students with disabilities and for those learning English as a second language.  

Here are groups of people to lift in prayer:

  • students and families
  • teachers, including new teachers
  • paraprofessionals
  • counselors
  • clerical staff
  • bus drivers
  • custodians
  • administrators
  • substitute teachers
  • board members

Without setting foot in a school, we can impact student learning and our community through prayer. Did the start of a new school year bring you joy?

 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.

Romans 15:13

Image from Pixabay

12 thoughts on “Praying for Back-to-School Joy

  1. You have me visuals! Praying for our children especially. My grands brought their new school supplies here yesterday for us to see. Bo, who will be starting 3K at Tattnall, said he was so “asighted”. We pray for the safety of all workers in our educational system.
    Thank you for the Bible verses.

    • Post Author Jeannie Waters

      Lynn, thank you for making it personal and leaving encouraging words for me. I just prayed for your grandchildren as they start back to school. I hope they all stay “asighted”. 😉

  2. Yes, praying. Our 3 years old grandson would love to go back to preschool and see his teachers and friends. His parents have shared about the virus. He says, “Mimi, I don’t like that coronavirus!”

    • Post Author Jeannie Waters

      Aww, Melissa, it’s sad, isn’t it, that little ones have these concerns. I just prayed God would fill your little one’s heart with joy and that he’d have friends for safe playdates. Thank you for reading.

  3. Jeannie, I love this! Prayer is the answer to this upcoming school year! Thank you for the reminder that God is our joy and comfort, and with Him we can face this new school year with faith and not fear! God bless you!

    • Post Author Jeannie Waters

      Thank you, Dawn. I just prayed for you and your children as you begin a new year. God is indeed our joy and comfort.

  4. What an excellent and timely post. With all the uncertainties around us, one certain thing is that we can always pray and we are heard! You have given us ideas to pray for and about to make this coming school year less restless.

    • Post Author Jeannie Waters

      Marilyn, I prayed for your family as the new year begins. Right you are that we are heard when we pray. What comfort!

  5. Such a helpful post, Jeannie! Whether we have children or grandchildren in school or not, it’s a good opportunity to lift up these faithful servants to our community. Thank you!

  6. Cathy, I agree. Schools are integral parts of our communities, and educators need prayer. Thank you for sharing that perspective.

  7. Thank you Jeannie for that reminder, everyone who has a part in the schools operating needs prayer. Especially now! I added your list to my daily prayer list. I do pray everyone stays safe and all the children, no matter where or how they are learning get a good education. Thank you!

    • Post Author Jeannie Waters

      Doreen, I’m glad you found the post helpful. Thank you so much for sharing these comments.

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