“But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.” –Jeremiah 17:7-8, NIV
What’s the longest length of time you’ve had a song stuck in your head? I’ve had the same song stuck in my head for months now. Ever since ACSI decided on “flourish” as the theme for this year’s fourth-annual Day of Prayer today, February 23, I’ve been humming “Thrive” by Casting Crowns to myself. Only recently, though, did I realize how the lyrics in the first verse (“Like a tree planted by the water, we never will run dry”) echo Jeremiah 17:7-8—our theme verse for today’s Day of Prayer. The chorus declares, “We know we were made for so much more than ordinary lives. It’s time for us to more than just survive. We were made to thrive.” We were made to flourish, rooted in Christ Jesus.
Made to Flourish
In John 10:10b, Jesus tells us why He came: “I have come that [my followers] may have life, and have it to the full.” The very reason why He came was so that we might flourish. Throughout the ages and all sorts of struggles and “unprecedented” times, God’s plan has been for His people to flourish. Even today. Even in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, when life and school look so different from what we’ve come to know, God’s plan is still for us to flourish.
The ACSI Day of Prayer is an opportunity to remember and celebrate God’s promise that He has “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11); that when we call on Him, He will hear us, and that when we seek Him with our whole hearts, we will find Him (Jeremiah 29:12-13).
Last year, we prayed for hope. Today, our prayer is that our schools, students, teachers, administrators, parents, families, and communities would put their hope and trust in the Lord and be like trees planted with their roots in the Living Water, so that they might flourish as they were created to do.
Join With Us!
We know you pray every day, but what a privilege it is to take this day and unite as a global community to pray specifically for Christian education to flourish. Will you join us?
Visit this year’s Day of Prayer webpage—available in both English and Spanish for the first time. Read, share, and pray for requests on our interactive Prayer Map. Download the 2021 Prayer Guide and other resources for suggestions of ways you can pray and activities you can use to help focus your prayers. Use the hashtag #SchoolsThatPray on social media to share how you and your school are participating and follow along to see what others are doing as well. Most of all, know we are praying for you and with you.
About the Author
Becki Rust is the Thought Leadership project coordinator at ACSI, where she leads project management for a wide variety of innovative and timely initiatives, programs, and events. She holds a bachelor’s degree in politics, philosophy, and economics from The King’s College in New York City. Becki can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.