If I was disappointed at all about being removed from recess duty this year, it was because I’d no longer be present for the unfolding of human drama three times a day that provided so much fodder for blogging. But, never fear! A friend is there, and she fills me in just fine.
Three kids, a boy and two girls, she tells me, were recently huddled under one of the “big toys” during recess. Most kids will do that if it’s sunny and they want some shade, or if it’s rainy and they don’t want to get too wet, or if they are doing something kind of sneaky. These three sneakily had their heads bowed and their hands folded, and they were praying. Really praying.
They were praying for a safe school, they said.
Where do they go to church? They don’t, they said.
What did you pray for when you were a kid? I remember praying a few times at school for a test I was about to take, and maybe an occasional prayer to ask for some help for a friendship dilemma, but that was probably pretty expected of me. After all, I went to church throughout the year and church camp during the summer, and I was even one of those kids who “sneakily” read my Bible at night in my bed when I was supposed to be going to sleep.
But these kids? From non-church-going families in a non-church-going city? On a public-school playground, children huddled together, praying out loud? I never once even thought of doing anything remotely similar to that. Hearing about these kids under the big toy makes me wonder: Are all the school shooting incidents on the news making kids more afraid than they normally let on? Or could it be that the answer is closer to what the Beavers say in the Chronicles of Narnia: “Aslan is on the move”?
The Apostle Paul, speaking to the people of Athens, Greece, said this (as quoted in Acts 17:24-28):
The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by hands. And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything, because he himself gives all men life and breath and everything else. From one man he made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us. ‘For in him we live and move and have our being.’ As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’
May God move among us and answer the children’s prayer, for their school, and all the rest.
Posts on faith and friendship (themes from my children’s novel, Sophie’s Quest) are posted once a week on Sunday. Please click the “Follow” button if you’d like these to come directly to your email in box. Thank you, and may God bless your week!