But Our Eyes Are on You
By Karen C. Seddon
Here’s an understatement: there has never been a start of the school year like this! With all the trials and troubles of 2020, we begin the school year with more unknowns than anyone could list. Yet, this is going to be an incredibly significant time to be a Christian in education. What an opportunity for us to serve our students and colleagues. I love the story of Jehoshaphat, the King of Judah in 2 Chronicles 20, as he faced overwhelming odds he cried out, “We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on You.”
Ravi Zacharias once spoke of this passage and recognized three questions that preceded the king’s cry for help, “Are you not?… Did you not?… and Will you not?” In prayer, King Jehoshaphat asked, “Are you not God in heaven?…Did you not, our God, drive out the inhabitants of this land?… and Will you not execute judgment…?” (on the multitude of enemies against Israel). Christian! Our God is the same yesterday, today and forevermore! Jehoshaphat was afraid and set his face to seek the LORD and proclaimed a fast.
In the spirit of Jehoshaphat, let’s seek the LORD for this school year more than ever before. I would like to proclaim a fast on August 1, 2020 and pray the three questions that he asked on behalf of Israel: “Are you not?” “Did you not?” and “Will you not?” For the state of education, “Are You not the God of all knowledge and power?” “Did You not bless this nation with our school system?” “Will You not hear from heaven and heal our land when Your people in the public schools pray and seek Your face and turn from our wicked ways?”
In Jehoshaphat’s time the people prayed, fasted, rejoiced, and gave praise because the steadfast love of the LORD endures forever. Dear Christian educator, that’s who we must be in the public schools. More than any other year, we must stand on 2 Timothy 1:7: ”For God gave us not a spirit of fear but of power and love and self-control.” This year we must be ready to give a defense to anyone who asks you for the reason for the hope that is in you and to do it with gentleness and respect (1 Peter 3:15).
When school begins and the students and staff gather, you will be different because of the Lord. People will notice you as you shine your light and love your neighbor. In times of trouble, Christians look to the Lord for power, love and self-control.
Here are three practical ways to be a gift to your school.
- Pray daily on campus for the needs of your school community.
- Find two other Christians willing to pray and form a Prayer Triplet (Matt.18:20 – Where two or three are gathered in My name, there I am among them.)
For more information, www.aw180days.com >Prayer Triplets
- Subscribe to our new 180 days of Praying Scripture YouTube channel for a short (1.5 min.) daily prayer designed for the busy educator. Link coming soon!
- Purposefully find ways to serve others on campus.
- Look for the colleagues that are most afraid and ask to pray for them.
- Seek out the children who are disconnected or disengaged and show them you care.
- Join us on the Around the Word in 180 Days podcast for 180 ways to care for others at school.
- Educate yourself. Know the religious freedom guidelines afforded to you as an American. Be sure you represent the Lord well and know what you can and cannot do.
- Dare to live out your faith in the public schools legally and gracefully.
- Join Christian Educators Association International (CEAI) to be connected to your tribe!
- Listen to the Around the Word podcast or visit www.aw180days.com for 180 tips and guidelines to be an effective servant of the Lord in the public schools.
2020 will never be forgotten. People will continue to worry, but leaning on the Word of God for hope, love, mercy and peace will give the Christian educator the opportunity to bless their school communities across this great nation of ours.
Karen C. Seddon is presently a retired educator serving in ministry through CEAI, Christian Educators Association International, to her public school brothers and sisters. Karen’s 44 years in education include 25 classrooms (3rd-8th) and 19 years coaching teachers and students to integrate creative technologies. Her passion is to encourage, equip and empower educators to live out their faith in the public schools legally and gracefully. She is the voice of the Around the Word in 180 Days blog/podcast, author of two devotionals for educators and a prayer advocate for Christian Educators Association International.