Back-to-School Prayers: Day 7

I was hopelessly lost. I had planned on calling for directions to our rental cabin once we got to Wears Valley, TN, but we lost cell service.

I hadn’t planned on that.
I had no map to refer to, only an address.
I was alone, except for my three tiny babies.

The car behind us had an accident on the only highway, blocking us from going back to Gatlinburg to find a phone. So I drove on the twisting mountain roads, trying to find the cabin, in vain.

The babies began to cry, and eventually, so did I.

A lack of guidance is a scary thing. We can’t go where we need to go. We can’t accomplish what we want to do. We can’t aim when we lack a target. Without guidance we drift, like a ship (or a car full of crying children), headed nowhere.

Thankfully, the Lord promises to guide us:
I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you.” Ps. 32:8 NLT

That day, when I was so lost, God gave me guidance.

I saw a lady snapping green beans on her front porch, so I pulled over and asked her for directions. She drew a map on a brown paper sack and then, with an encouraging smile, she said, “Why, you’re only 5 minutes away.” She was right. A few minutes later, we arrived to find Mawmaw (my mother-in-law) waiting with open arms.

It’s amazing how close we were and yet, we would have never found the cabin without guidance. I had to ask for guidance and then be willing to follow it.

Our children need guidance, too. As we pray today, let’s ask God to guide our kids and to help them follow His lead this school year.

Specifically, let’s ask God to guide our children:
Away from harm: the wrong crowd, abusive adults, school shootings and false leading.
Away from sin: drugs, violence, hatred, fits of rage, pride, disrespect and sexual immorality.
To God’s unique path for them in: sports, activities, classes, friends, dating and careers.
To paths of righteousness: to faith in Christ, peace, patience, good works, respect, joy and love.

Here are some verses to encourage you as you pray:

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.
Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.” Prov. 3:5-6 NLT

“The Lord directs the steps of the godly. He delights in every detail of their lives. Though they stumble, they will never fall, for the Lord holds them by the hand.” Ps. 37:23-24

Dear Lord,

Thank you for your great promise of guidance, for without it, we would be lost. Please guide our children in paths of righteousness during this school year. Help them to follow your lead away from sin and harm. Thank you for being our good and loving guide. Amen.

Thank you for joining me for 7 days of Back-to-School Prayers! It’s been such a privilege to guide you in prayer. Please comment below to share what this week of prayer has meant to you.


About the Author:

May Patterson, author of "Seeking a Familiar Face," began writing in response to God’s grace. And by this grace, she has written, taught the Bible and spoken at a variety of events. Her ministry focus is to help people draw closer to God and each other. May is married to her dear friend Mike, and they have three grown children. She has a great love for her family, the great outdoors and travel.


  1. Charlotte Hardeman Bailes August 12, 2018 at 10:31 am - Reply

    Thank you for this week’s back to school prayer guide. I have one grandchild entering college next week and two grand children that started high school as freshmen this past week. This guide has helped me focus on my prayers for them. I would appreciate your prayers for them also. Thank you, Charlotte Hardeman Bailes

    • maypatterson August 12, 2018 at 11:41 am - Reply

      Hi Charlotte, I am so glad this series helped you pray. I wanted to do something to serve parents and grandparents as they send off their children. I’ll be happy to pray for your grandchildren! Thanks for commenting.

  2. Kathy Struck September 18, 2018 at 12:06 am - Reply

    Thank you for this prayer guide. My youngest just left for college about a month ago. I have this lingering question, what now? I cry every day and yearn for the days when my children were young. I hope that one day I am able to let go and move forward.
    Kathy Struck

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