As our youngest begins her senior year of high school this fall, there are many school day memories flooding my mind. Things like the first day of school, parent-teacher conferences, and school award programs seem like they started the day before yesterday.

Prayer is one family tradition we practiced every school day morning. It wasn’t just any prayer. It will be a prayer I pray every day my children are in school. The venue has changed, but the prayer has not. What was once prayed on the drive to school is now prayed wherever I awaken each morning. It goes like this:

  • Lord, help our children represent your grace and truth. May they be shining examples of your love toward all they meet. If there are some along the way who do not know you and what you stand for, may our kids introduce all to the love that is above all loves and the truth that is above all truths.
  • Lord, help our children be godly friends. Friendship to all goes along with the prayer for representing grace and truth. Imagine the delight and godly pride Mindy and I had when a teacher told us that our child chose to eat lunch every day with someone who had to eat in isolation due to a peanut allergy.
  • Lord, give our children godly friends. Friends shape thoughts and behaviors. As a parent, one quickly realizes that the foundations established at home can quickly crumble if an influential negative influence lands on the scene. We didn’t just pray for our children to be godly friends; we asked the Lord to provide godly friends for them.
  • Lord, give our children godly teachers. We continue to pray for our children’s teachers and professors every day. When school days arrive, teachers often spend more time with our children than we do. With few exceptions, our children’s teachers have been wonderful influences in our children’s lives and education. When I pastored, I had many teachers and school administrators in my congregation. I also served as pastor to the president of the home school association for that particular state. Pray that the leaders of your children have a godly impact on them.
  • Lord, set our children in a large place for your namesake. My parents prayed this for my siblings and me when we were growing up. I still pray it for my own children. The key is that they would be in a place of great impact for Jesus Christ all their days. I prayed it over a kindergartner or two. I will pray it over our daughter as she enters her senior year of high school, as well as our son, a sophomore in college.

School day prayers. View these as important blessings in the lives of your biological or spiritual children.

Jim Dunn is executive director of Church Multiplication and Discipleship for The Wesleyan Church.