September is right around the corner which means sending our kids to school full time. Our family felt led to enroll our children in public school. Even though we have had good experiences, I am always afraid of what my children will be exposed to and what may happen while they are at school. Instead of worrying about what may happen, I have put together these 12 short back-to-school prayers.
12 Short Back to School Prayers
I love my children very much, but I know I can’t provide them with everything they need. That is why I pray for my children, my marriage, my work and everything in between.
One of my biggest fears is getting a phone call from the school letting me know my child has gotten hurt.
I don’t like the idea that my child is at school crying and I’m not there to comfort them. So, I turn to God and ask Him to protect them and watch over them.
Lord, I ask that you keep my child safe while they are at school. I request you to protect them from unkind words and cruel people.
I pray you would protect them from any danger they might face at school and that they would remember they can turn to you for safety.
Psalm 32:7 You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance.
John 17:15 My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one.
The world is full of crazy ideas and ideologies. When I send my kids to school, I worry they will pick up on some of this “wisdom” and walk away from what The Lord says. When I worry about this, I say a short back to school prayer about my kids receiving wisdom from the right source.
As I send my kids to school, I fear the world will influence them. I ask that they seek council from people who love you and who would guide them in your truth.
I pray that as situations come up at school that they would ask you for wisdom regarding how to handle what’s going on and to trust your guidance in their lives.
Seek Godly Counsel: Psalm 37:30 The godly offer good counsel; they teach right from wrong.
Proverbs 3:7 Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD and shun evil. (NIV)
Proverbs 4:6-7 Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you; love her, and she will watch over you. Wisdom is supreme; therefore get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding. (NIV)
James 1:5 If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him. (NIV)
James 3:17 But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. (NIV)
3. Gentle and kind
I don’t have great memories of being in school. Kids would make fun of me or ignore me completely. Kids can be so mean. As I send my kids back to school, I pray they are kind to others.
Lord, I pray my children would treat others as they would want to be treated. I ask that you help them be kind to those around them- even if they are not being treated well.
Ephesians 4:32 Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.
John 13:34-35 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
4. Witness to those around them
One of my biggest regrets in school is not being a great witness for Christ. I was shy to share my faith. My friends knew I was a Christian, but that’s it. My prayer is for my children to be better witnesses than I was.
Lord, we know that even a small light in the darkness shines bright. I pray my child would be that light in their class and in their school. That you would give the courage to share their beliefs to those around them and that you would protect them from any negative repercussions.
1 Peter 3:15 ESV But in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect,
Mark 16:15 ESV And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.
The world is full of sin and tragedy. All these news stories can bring anxiety to kids (certainly mine). My prayer is that regardless of what is going on- my kids would feel the Peace of God in their lives.
As my child goes to school, I pray you would fill them with your peace. I pray that no matter what is going on around them, they would feel your presence with them. I also pray that if they are feeling troubled at school, that they would remember to not be afraid and to trust in you.
John 16:33 I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
John 14:27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
6. Guard their minds
When people look at my life, it seems like there are no struggles- because most of my struggles go on inside. The Devil is a master of attacking my thoughts and has a way of leading me to second guess my faith and steps of obedience. One of my short back to school prayers is for my children to guard their minds. I know they can’t do it alone- but that God can give them the ability to do so.
Lord, when I send my child off to school I worry about what they may learn and what they may hear. I know the school is filled with worldly wisdom and influence for evil. I pray you would guard their minds. That they would forget the bad things they hear and would remember who you are and meditate on your word.
Philippians 4:8 Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things
Romans 12:2 Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
7. They would look to The Lord
My oldest daughter is going into grade 7. Jr. High is the time in life when small decisions can affect the rest of your life. I worry my children will want to follow the crowd and look to their friends for advice and direction. Even though my children have great friends, my prayer is that they would first seek The Lord in all things.
One thing that scares me the most about sending my kids to school is not being with them if they get hurt. I hate the idea that they would cry and not be able to be comforted by me. In those moments, I pray they would look towards you and remember you love them and are with them.
Psalm 55:22 Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you;
he will never let the righteous be shaken.
Amos 5:14-15 ESV Seek good, and not evil, that you may live; and so the Lord, the God of hosts, will be with you, as you have said. Hate evil, and love good, and establish justice in the gate; it may be that the Lord, the God of hosts, will be gracious to the remnant of Joseph.
8. Hold their tongues
I have a tendency to say what I’m thinking. In the past, that tendency has led me to conflict with others. The Bible is clear about how powerful our tongues are. We know how much weight words can hold. One of my short back to school prayers is for my children to watch what they say and hold their tongues when they don’t know what to say.
Lord, I know that it’s easy for children to say things they don’t mean or to say things to impress others. I pray you would help them hold their tongue. That the words that come from their mouths would honour you and would point to you.
Proverbs 13:3; “Whoever guards his mouth preserves his life; he who opens wide his lips comes to ruin.”
Ephesians 4:29; “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.”
9. Good friends
If you want to know someone, you just have to look at the people they spend time with. Usually, those people reflect a person’s beliefs and so on. Not only do I want my children to find good friends, but they would be good friends to others.
Lord, I know that the people who surround you are the biggest influence in your life. I pray you would bring good friends to my child. I also pray that my child would be a good friend towards others. I pray they are kind, and loving towards one another and their character would reflect who you are.
Colossians 3:12-14 Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.
Hebrews 13:2 ESV Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.
10. That they would try their best
I was so bored in school, and I never tried my best. I passed with mostly B. I always wonder what my grades would look like had I tried. I want better for my kids. We don’t focus on grades but on effort. We tell our children we want them to try their best. When we focus on efforts on pleasing The Lord, I find I’m more focused and have better outcomes. I want my children to learn to work for The Lord at an early age.
It’s not about the grade, or what you have done, but who you have done it for.
Lord, I pray that in everything my child does, that would do it in your name and for Your glory. I pray they don’t get discouraged in their work and you would remind them to continue the good work they are doing.
Colossians 3:17 ESV And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
Galatians 6:9-10 And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. So then, as we have the opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.
My children lie to me regularly and it drives me nuts. Just this week my kids were at day camp. My youngest (5) came home and told me a girl had punched and kicked him. I knew there was more to the story, so I heard his side of the story and made a plan to talk to the staff about it. At drop off the next day, I asked the supervisor about the incident. As I was talking, my son said: I was joking about that.
I was shocked!! The child my son was talking about could have gotten a consequence for what he had said.
I talked to my child about telling the truth, and how his lie could have affected other children.
With this lie fresh in my mind, I continually pray that my children will tell the truth and they will feel safe to tell me when they have lied or made a mistake.
Lord, I pray my child would be honest to me about what they are learning, who they are friends with and what is going on in their life. I pray that if they have lies, you would convict them to share the truth with me. Lord, give me the grace and wisdom to talk to my child and provide them an environment they feel safe in and feel comfortable sharing with me what they are thinking about and the concerns they may have.
Colossians 3:9 Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices
Ephesians 4:25 Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another.
If there was a way to earn my children’s salvation- I would do whatever it takes. But, we can’t save our children. It’s up to each of our children to decide to follow the Lord and ask for forgiveness of their sins. I pray for my children’s salvation regularly. Even though all 3 have made professions of faith0 I still pray they will desire to follow The Lord and obey His will.
Lord, I pray for my child’s salvation. My greatest desire for my child to be saved. I pray you would open their eyes and ears so that they may see and taste who you are. I pray they chose to seek forgiveness from you and that they would desire to live a life that would bring you glory.
John 17:3 And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.
John 14:6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
When my oldest daughter was born, I struggled with what school she would go to and what that would look like. My husband and I prayed over the options and found The Lord leading us to send our children to public school.
As I prayed to understand why The Lord wanted us to send our children to camp, an answer came back. God was asking me to give Him my children every day. As my children walk away from me into the school- I can’t follow.
But, I know the one who is with them. He goes before them; He is with them and He leaves behind them. He is the only one who can protect them and lead them according to His will.
If my kids were home, I don’t think I would pray for them as much, or I wouldn’t bring them to The Lord as often as I should. But sending my kids to school every day drives me to my knees and I depend on Him every single day.
When I shared my reason with a homeschool mom- she said her reasons were the same. She felt The Lord calling her to homeschool for the same reasons. She feels she depends more on The Lord with her kids at home than she would if she sent them to school.
Each family makes the choice they feel The Lord leads them in. No matter what learning environment your child is in, they need your prayers.
In the comments below, share your favourite short back-to-school prayers.