Exactly 10 years ago, Abby and I dropped our youngest off at kindergarten on the same day at the same school, in classrooms side by side. With a stomach full of all the feelings, we said goodbye, then drove straight to Bob’s Grill to cover up those feelings with the biggest plate of goodness you can imagine. It’s called a Cowboy and is basically all the best breakfast foods scrambled together with a biscuit and gravy on top. To. Die. For.
Or in our case, To. Cry. For.
Those babies are in high school now and even though they’re now at different school in different states, their moms still process and chew down the bittersweet flavor of school starts together.
From preschool to college, it seems like everyone is about the business of turning open a new school calendar.
Yesterday afternoon, I stopped in Wal-Mart along with half of our town. All the big feelings were obviously shopping too. From the college parent/student duos to the frazzled shoppers holding school lists, you could feel the tension of change in the air.
I just want to gather us all up with a plate of comfort food and coffee and hear all the stories. At this point, I’ve done all the stages and recognize the old familiar ache. Like a deep tissue bruise, it’s a tender time for all of us doing the sending. Because with every year a little more control slips predictably out of grasp.
As a parent, as a friend, as a community. This is the week to drop to our knees for all that is at stake with new beginnings.
To open up our hands, letting go of what is behind in order to receive what is ahead.
That is very hard prayer to come up with on my own, so I’ve learned to look to the Word and borrow from the best. It never fails to give me something practical, universal and consistent to pray over OUR children. Here is an example from two years ago. This year I was led me to Paul’s words of blessing in Ephesians 1:16-19. Here is my loose paraphrase.
God….I am so utterly grateful for __________ and I can’t stop giving thanks for them. I want so much for them in this new school year. God please give them a spirit of wisdom and discernment. Teach them to know you better. Give them a clear focus to see exactly what you are calling them to do. Help them to begin to understand the importance of following you and the rich way of life that will lead to. Guide them to a greater knowledge of the vast power available to those that trust you. Send them out and bring them home according to your glory…..In Christ and Amen
Whether you have littles or bigs or both. Whether you have no kids or have grandkids. We all should participate in the holy work of prayer and blessings for this new season. May this prayer bring you a fresh peace as our children go about writing their own stories in the world.