a prayer to start school

Lord, it’s not news to you, but we’re going to name it:
it’s the beginning of the school year.

The beginning of the year signals all kinds of realities.

Many of us are anxious.
Whether first-year student, fourth-year senior, staff member, or professor,
we wonder, “What will this semester look like?  How will this all get done?
How will I learn Greek or Hebrew or English, or the strange language of theology?”
We’re still not sure if you have actually called us to this place.
We wake up earlier than we mean to, our hearts fluttering with stress.
Every time we think we may have it covered, something new arises.
But as the psalmist says, Lord, you are our keeper,
and you neither slumber nor sleep.
Keep us, calm us, give us rest.

Others of us have our minds elsewhere.
We’re celebrating births, enjoying the first months of marriage, mourning deaths.
We’re applying for jobs or hoping our spouses are hired.
We’ve got our sights set on graduation and a call.
Keep these parts, too, Lord,
our going out and our coming in,
the whole of our lives.

Do not let our feet be moved,
or the sun strike us,
or evil overcome us.



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