Everyone in my community is affected and having to make major decisions about what school will look like this fall. The 2020 Pandemic has instilled more angst in more ways than many of my families have ever had to endure. We need prayer. The very morning of our scheduled service, the local school board decided to go 100% virtual and our community was reeling. I can’t even imagine the conversations our kids overheard that day.
Superhero Prayer Service – For all those who wear a cape for kids and education.
Thursday, June 16 8:30pm-9pm (immediately following the 8pm drive-in service)
Say: This is what I know about you. (me)
1. You want to make the best decision for you, your kids, your family. Yes?
2. The decisions you are being asked to make are not those you expected, yet here we are. Yes?
3. You are asking, “What is the wisest decision I can make for this season?” It’s just a season. Does that help? It’s just a season.
Say: This is what I know about prayer. (me)
1. Prayer is a gift given to us by our Creator to speak directly to our Creator.
2. “Where two or three come together in my name (in the name of Jesus), there am I with them.” Matthew 18:20
3. God answers prayer: Yes, No, Not now.
4. “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” James 1:5 (Jesus’ brother)
How do we know it is God’s will? (me)
1. Is this congruent with God’s character as revealed in the scriptures? (Whatever my decision, will it harm my relationship with God or my kids?)
2. Have I received reconfirmation? Am I clearly understanding my choices?
3. Have I received sound counsel? Am I listening to others who share my values and am I confident they are people who practice holy habits, not the church of social media/church of the loudest in the room/church of comparison/church of the unwise/church of the angry? If you are in God’s word, He will speak to you there. This communication is what sets our great God apart from any other god….He speaks to us!
Breathing (offered by a middle schooler/aged-up Ambassador)
Say: Take a long, deep breath and exhale it slowly while saying the name “Jesus” silently. Close your eyes. Let yourself take ten natural, easy breaths.
“Deep breathing increases the supply of oxygen to your brain and stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system, which promotes a state of calmness. Breathing techniques help you feel connected to your body—it brings your awareness away from the worries in your head and quiets your mind.” From the American Institute of Stress
Repeat after me prayers (offered by different parents, public school teachers, home-school parents)
Each reader reads slowly in sections/sentences so others can repeat the prayers or has time to prayerfully process.
Confidence Prayer: Father, I need wisdom that only your Spirit can give me. Help me to not lean solely on my own opinions, thoughts, or dreams — or what my society, culture, and circle have to say. I need godly — not earthly — wisdom, Lord. Please supply me in knowledge and truth as I battle these tough decisions and uncertainty. Father, open my eyes to the barriers holding me back from spiritual progress and help me to walk confidently as I discern the next steps I need to take. Amen.
Humility Prayer: Heavenly Father, I admit that in my sinfulness and brokenness, too often I desire my will above yours. Lord, forgive me for my selfishness and unbelief as I react to this unclear season of life. Jesus, as you yourself desired not your own will but the Father’s will (Matthew 26:39; Mark 14:36; Luke 22:42), so let me echo this prayer in boldness and humility. Equip me to truly believe that you are good, you are sovereign, and are a Father who desires only the best blessings for me — but that what you see as a blessing may not be mirrored in how I perceive it. Lord, by praying “your will be done,” I surrender in trust and obedience. Amen
Wisdom Prayer: Father God, your word says that if anyone lacks wisdom, they should ask, and you will give them generously. I am about to make a huge decision in my life, but I don’t know how to go about it, Father God. I come to you today to ask you for wisdom. Lead me in the way that I should go that I may be able to bring glory to your holy name. In the mighty name of Jesus. Amen.
Overcoming Fear and Anxiety Prayer: Dear Lord, my heart is full of anxiety. I don’t know how to go about school this year. The decision I make is going to affect my family and friends. I am scared of failing my loved ones. But your word says that you have not given us a spirit of fear but of power, love, and sound mind. Let your word come alive in me. Let me be filled with love and power so that I can make this decision boldly, then follow it with joy, and not second guess. Let me be content in whatever decision I make and express it with great joy with my kids and family. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Your Will, Not Mine Prayer: Loving Father, only you know my end from the beginning. Nothing I do or say catches you by surprise. You know what is in my heart, good or bad. Everyone around me is choosing to do things their way, and it is very tempting for me to do so too. But Father God, I want your will to be done in my life. If it is not your will for me to take this path, then Father, give me divine strength to accept and to follow your lead. May every decision I make be pleasing to you. In Jesus’ name, I believe and pray. Amen.
Peace of Mind Prayer: Lord Jesus, I am in despair. Everyone is looking at me to make the final decision. My heart is full of fear. But we walk by faith and not sight that is why today I am asking you to remove every doubt that is in my heart and replace it with peace. I refuse to let my heart be troubled or afraid. I know that you are with me till the end of time. Today I choose to walk in the same peace that Jesus has. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Gracious God, I am exhausted! Sometimes I feel like I’m failing every time I turn around. I feel like I don’t have enough time. Money is tight. I am worried about people I love. So many things are out of my control. This is so hard. God, remind me that my feelings are normal. Remind me that by your grace there is a way through this pandemic. Help me to do one thing at a time. Help me to let go of perfection. Give me curiosity. Give me trusted colleagues and friends. Give me strength, give me patience, give me hope, to plan for the year ahead. (adapted from Sheltered at Home: Family Prayers for Living and Loving, by Christine Hides)
Say: The word SILENT has the same letters as LISTEN. God speaks to us in His Word, in the counsel of His godly servants, AND in the silence.
Tell story of how God wakes us in the middle of the night because it’s quiet.
Say: Prayer is a conversation. We’ve done the talking, let’s take some time to listen.
Set the timer for 3 minutes to sit in silence after a few deep breaths.
GOD HAS CHOSEN YOU FOR SUCH A TIME AS THIS!
Write Jesus’ name in your hand. Rub it into your heart.
Say: I don’t know how people are navigating this entire season without Jesus. We love you too much to let you drive off this lot and back to your home without telling you the good news of Jesus. (INVITATION TO MAKE JESUS LORD OF YOUR LIFE. Families pray together.)
Pray…“God, there are so many voices flooding my senses. Like the boy Samuel, help me hear YOUR voice calling out to me. Help me to discern the right course to take. Then let me walk into that decision like an adventurer with contentment because eyes are watching me and hearts are trusting me.”
(Write Jesus’ name in your hand. Rub it into your heart.)
Song prayer/Repeat after me (Thank you, Mark Burrows)
Do not be afraid….do not be afraid.
God is with you….God is with you.
Everywhere you go….everywhere you go.
God is there….God is there.
Take aways: Equal packets and slap bracelets as visual prayer prompters (logistically this didn’t work out since folks were driving onto the lot throughout the last drive-in service).
There is no one equal to God to lead you.
There is no one equal to pray to Him on behalf of your family.
There is no one equal to pray for your kids, your vocation, your friends, your kid’s friends than YOU.
Ask the Lord to let you be content in your decision and in offering contentment in the decisions made by other families making decisions for themselves. Be their prayer champion and be ready to honor the decisions they’ve made for their family. Pray for your friends. Then walk into your decision with great joy and a sense of adventure. You were made for such as time as this. You’ve got this. Trust yourself. It’s just a season. And we’re here with and for you. You are a superhero!
“Now, my God, may your eyes be open and your ears attentive to the prayers offered in this place.” 2 Chronicles 6:40