It’s a rainy morning here on the prairie.
I am thinking of any brave young brothers and sisters in Christ who may have crawled out of bed a bit earlier than usual so they could join up with youth group friends to pray over their school.
See You At the Pole has been around since at least our own three were enrolled in public school back in the day.
A student-led initiative, it was up to the kids to promote and invite and set it up with the administration. It was also up to them to put together any music, prayers, and event organization for the morning gathering.
Of course, my generation of parents were definitely hands on, and while we certainly did let them do their own programming and leading; we did have to drive in the early years and so we would form a circle around their circle and basically wipe tears as we listened to our young ones sing and offer prayers and operate whatever sound system they managed to come up with via a boom box…because it was, after all…the 90’s.
One year, I stood around that circle in front of the high school two of our kiddos attended.
As we were nearing the end of the small service, the other students began arriving for the day. With my back to the sidewalk and my head bowed, I wept a new kind of tears.
Jeering words and taunts began to flow from behind me as the circle of young believers in front of me continued to sing a worship song and close in prayer for their classmates, teachers and school.
Suddenly I got a fresh understanding of what we were asking our kiddos to do every day.
Go in there and be a light…share Jesus…invite your friends to church…be a world changer.
Easier said when your circle is mostly other Christian moms. Sure sharing Jesus with people who are at least mildly interested makes one think that it shouldn’t be that hard for young ones to do the same.
But what about when you are ridiculed?
What about when you are held to a standard of the caricature of a Christian by those who do not understand that you are well aware you fall short all the time? Because even those who are not believers (and often especially those) will call you out on what they know to be moral values and label you a hypocrite, even if they do not hold to those standards in the least.
How about the work place where you could be fired or at least severely reprimanded for sharing your faith openly? If you don’t think that’s a thing, you don’t know some sweet Christians who have had it happen. I do. It’s a thing.
As adults, we can be a bit more choosy about where we spend our time and who can have access to our faith life.
For our children to walk openly as Christians in a daily school setting is not an easy road. They have nowhere to go but the halls, lunch table, locker room and a desk sitting amidst 20 plus other desks.
Being a light on a hill sounds appealing until you feel quite alone shining forth.
So today a prayer for the ones who pray, sometimes alone, around unknown settings in their schools:
Heavenly Father, I lift up our young Christian students to you.
Lord, I know you see them in the midst of these difficult times of conflict, covid and culture shift.
For our kids who are trying to live for You, I pray for an added measure of knowing Your presence with them today.
I pray You would tangibly walk alongside them as they go from class to class.
I pray You would give them Your heart for the lost and broken.
I pray you give them the gift of wisdom and discernment and knowledge of You and Your ways.
I pray You would strengthen them in the face of temptations and You would pour Your spirit into them to know truth, to live truth, and to speak truth in love.
I pray You would daily remind them of who they are in You and that You would help them beyond their years and experience to be people of mercy, grace and love.
I pray for those who have somehow become isolated in a small group of believers and may have forgotten that You were a suffering servant.
I pray they would not become so insulated in belonging to a smaller group of like-minded people that they forget You came to seek and save the lost.
I pray they would remember that they are following YOU, not a YOUth group.
I pray that their sense of belonging comes, not from their current circle of Christian friends, but because they belong first and foremost to YOU through Your blood <3
I pray for youth leaders and parents to have wisdom as they give them love, encouragement and counsel.
I pray for the fulfillment of Your promise that in the last days You will pour Your Spirit out on our young people.
Thank You for Your love, care and protection over our children because in truth, they are Your children.
In Jesus’ Name
Amena prayer from my heart on this SYATP morning 2021 <3