by Mari Hernandez-Tuten
It was after school and I was in my usual spot over by the playground talking to other moms while our children ran after each other on the field. But on this particular day, something unusual was unfolding on the school playground. A group of teachers stood by the monkey bars with a student. I thought it was odd and watched closely. A young student didn’t want to leave the playground and a group of teachers were with him by the monkey bars, trying to graciously talk him back to his mom’s car so he could go home.
What transpired in the next half hour was both hard and beautiful to watch. The child was dysregulated and screamed, kicked, and punched whoever came near. The staff gently and patiently spoke to him to coax him towards safety. With every scream that came from his little confused face, my heart tugged at me and I prayed for the child and for the staff.
Suddenly, the child’s hand swung up in the air and—with gusto!—smacked a teacher across the face. Despite the shock, she continued to gently and patiently talk to the child. I was in awe!
I saw the heart of Jesus out on the playground that day. Their patience, love, and grace toward this precious child were incredible. I thought of how often we are dysregulated and confused, and off the beaten path like that student. Yet Christ our Teacher gently and patiently comes alongside us in the midst of the tantrums to bring us back home.
That afternoon I came home resolute that I needed to do something kind for these teachers. Yes, a bag of homemade cookies sounded like a perfect gift idea, but on this day I prayed. Often I minimize the gift of prayer forgetting its impact and power as we go to the One who holds all things together.
Over the weeks and months, I’ve realized that giving the gift of prayer over our teachers is the bigger gift. Here are five prayers based on Scriptures that will encourage teachers:
Heavenly Father, I thank you for __________. I’m sure some days it can feel overwhelming to have so many students with different needs. I know that you’re all-knowing and wise so guide _________ as he/she plans and teaches. May they trust in you with all his/her heart and never rely on their own understanding. (Proverbs 3:5-6)
God, I come before you and ask that you would give ___________ strength, health, and protection. Your Word says that those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles, they will run and not grow weary, and they will walk and not be faint. So we pray that _________ will lean into you for strength because you are with us and never leave us. (Isaiah 40:31)
Lord, I thank you because you have uniquely made us with so many thoughts, abilities, and emotions. I lift up to you _________, Only you know what frustrates or saddens her/him. I ask that when ___________ is feeling downcast or disturbed they would put their hope in you. (Psalm 42:5)
Heavenly Father, I am thankful that in Christ and through Christ I can approach you with freedom and confidence. I pray __________ would be able to grasp how wide, long, high and deep is the love of Christ and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge. (Ephesians 3:12,18-19)
Lord, I pray for ____________ let his light shine before others so that others may see your good deeds and glorify you. (Matthew 5:16)
To download a beautiful, free printable with 5 Scriptures to Pray for Teachers, click here.
Mari Hernandez-Tuten has served as a Bible teacher, life coach, speaker, mentor of women, author, and writer. She encourages women to discover the influence God has given them by pointing them to His love and Truth. She does this through writing, mentoring and teaching at FamilyLife today, YouVersion App “Praying the Psalms for Your Children” devotional, local church ministry and her blog at http://www.inspiredbyfamilymag.com.