People like to do things. We are seeing that with Covid more than ever. Many times it just takes someone stepping out and making plans for that to happen. Take little league baseball for example. Without the league office and parent volunteers, no 5 year old would have the opportunity to swing a bat. The same is true with getting believers together to pray.
There are 2 opportunities for community prayer that we encourage here at First Priority.
The first is gathering adults from area churches before school begins to pray together at the school. In Tennessee, the state government has taken the first step for us and declared the weekend before school starts each year to be the ‘Weekend of Prayer over Students’ (see graphic below). It is our excuse to promote this to church leaders in our cities, gather the Christian students, their parents, and all other prayer warriors to pray together for the school. Whatever your situation is in your community, make a declaration, call it something, create a graphic, and use that as an excuse to get people to pray for the students at school. This event is crucial every year, but there is so much more to pray about together this year than any recent years!
To give you the start of a plan for this, let me tell you that in Spring Hill we set different times throughout the weekend for each school so people can participate in more than one gathering. So for example, Spring Station Middle School is Saturday morning at 9, Summit High school is Saturday morning at 10, Heritage Middle is Sunday night at 6, and Independence High School is Sunday night at 7. I lead Spring Station and Summit’s prayer gathering. I simply invite everyone to gather at the front door (outside) and we pray what is on our hearts. That typically takes anywhere from 10-20 minutes with under 12 people praying. I then ask everyone to walk around the outside of the building one time in prayer. I usually have a mix of personalities; by this I mean that some walk in silence while others walk in groups and make prayer declarations out loud.
The second prayer opportunity is See You At the Pole. People usually fall into 2 camps with SYATP. You either have never heard of it, or remember it as something students did in the 90’s. it is a movement that began in Texas in the 90’s and spread around the world in a short period of time. For us at FP, we consider it another excuse to petition God on behalf of the students and school leadership. For 2020, the universal date is Wednesday, September 23. Prayer happens at the flag pole starting 30 minutes before school begins. This time typically allows for students who ride the bus, or get a parent’s ride, to at the very least catch the end of it. It is always cool to watch the crowd grow as the busses arrive and the prayer is happening. Of course the crowd size is usually dependent on how well you did in getting the student pastors and parents involved in getting the word out. You can check out more information at www.syatp.com. They typically have the current year resources up by mid July. Again, it is an excuse to give your students leadership of their faith at the public school.
Don’t miss the opportunity for 2020! Our students, parents, teachers, and school administration need us to pray for them this year more than ever.