As I walk through stores filled with back to school supplies there’s a bit of nostalgia that fills my heart. Not that I’d want to be back in school with the pressure of exams and all-nighters! But I’m reminded of that special season where the Lord did so much in my life. You see, I became a Christian my first week at the University of Florida after moving in next door to a bunch of Nav guys who were actively living out a personal relationship with Jesus and not shy about sharing Him with those around them.
So as I pass the school supplies, does it ever serve as a reminder to be lifting up those who are heading back to school, especially those heading to college for the first time! And I’m asking the Lord…
- Do it again!
Would you do in the lives of this next generation what you did in mine? Thank you so much for what you did in mine, and for the people who reached out to me in love and helped lead me to you!
- Prepare their hearts
Prepare the hearts of those who don’t yet know you so when they meet your children they will be hungry, curious, eager to hear about you and longing to know more. (Isaiah 40:3-5)
- Help Staff and Student Leaders Follow God’s Lead
May you help them be sensitive to your gentle leading to the exact places and people where you are at work and where you want them joining in with what you are doing. (Isaiah 40:11)
- Give Staff and Student Leaders Words and Creative Ideas for Reaching Out
Would you please give your children words and creative ideas for reaching out so that they will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel? (Ephesians 6:19)
- Open The Minds Of Those Who Are Lost
May you remove the blinders the enemy has placed on the eyes of the lost and open their minds and hearts so they can see your light shining through the lives of your children on campuses across the world and be able to understand your truth contained in your Word. (2 Corinthians 4:4)
- Help Those Who Know You Be Bold
Every day my next door neighbors took initiative to ask my roommates and I if there was something they could be praying for, prayed with us and then came back to ask how their prayers had been answered. They didn’t have to ask this. It took courage and perseverance! And as a result did we ever see the Lord in action answering those prayers – and realized He really was a personal God who cared about even the details in our lives. Oh Lord, please give your children the courage to reach out to those around them, courage to not just speak up but also to take the time to do this when there are so many other things they could be doing. (Ephesians 6:20)
- Bind the Enemy In Jesus’ Name from Interfering
There truly is a battle raging and the enemy does NOT want God’s kingdom advancing! May the enemy be bound in the name of Jesus from anyway he is trying to sidetrack or distract the lost or young believers, or bring harm to those who are reaching out in your name. (Ephesians 6:12)
- Bring Into Community New Students Who Already Know The Lord
It is so vital for new students who are already believers to get plugged into a community. May the Lord enable staff and students to connect with these young believers who are new to campus and facilitate them getting plugged in so they aren’t isolated and vulnerable to the enemy, but spurred on to keep seeking the Lord and growing closer to Him throughout their years in school and beyond! (Hebrews 10:24-25)
- May God Give Endurance and Provide Encouragement to those Reaching Out
The start of each school year provides a HUGE window of opportunity for advancing the gospel. Those first few weeks on campus, people will talk to anyone! But will that ever change as soon as people get comfortable and busy and ear buds are popped in. So the first few weeks of school are especially exhausting for staff and students reaching out. May the Lord give endurance and provide encouragement to all who are reaching out on campus! And may He give us as well as others ideas for ways to practically encourage and spur on those who are still on campus to keep persevering through this time! And may He protect the families of staff during this busy season and pour an extra measure of His grace on them.
- Grant All of God’s Children a Spirit of Unity
May the God of endurance and encouragement grant His children on campuses all over the world to live together in such harmony with one another in accord with Christ Jesus that together they may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. (Romans 15:5-6)
Even though I’m no longer on campus, what joy to realize through my prayers I too can play a key role in God’s Kingdom continuing to advance during this strategic time into the next generation and beyond for His glory!