The following is a guest post on prayer boxes by Mary Kate Warner.
National Day of Prayer calls on all Americans of different faiths in the United States to pray for the nation and its leaders. It is held on the first Thursday of May each year. Events in various communities across the United States may include choirs and bands performing songs relating to prayer; community prayer breakfasts or luncheons; daytime prayer walks; and evening worship and prayer services or gatherings.
If you wish to bring National Day of Prayer into your classroom, these prayer boxes will remind children to link their prayer requests with millions of others!
Materials Needed for Prayer Boxes:
• Different colored construction paper
• Glue or paste
• Discarded tissue boxes
• Printer paper
Cut the printer paper into four squares each.
1. Cut six different pieces of colored construction paper to cover the six sides of the tissue box; each side a different color. Cut a slit in the top to match up with the slit in the tissue box.
2. Take 7 printer paper squares. You are going to write 7 prayer requests, one on each. Each prayer should start like this:
a. [Your name] has this prayer request: [On 5 papers, put down 5 things you would like for our nation, such as all troops brought home, the President to make wise choices, a charity to help lots of people, more people to be Christians. On the last two, write down something special just for you as rewards for praying all coming week!]
3. Put your 7 prayer requests in the middle of the table, turned upside down, with everyone else’s. (If you are teaching just one child, then you as the teacher can add your own prayers as well) Mix them all up. Pick 7 and put them in your prayer box. If you get one of your own, that’s fine!
4. Put the prayer box by your bed. When you say prayers before falling asleep, pick one out of the box every day. Say, “Father, I join this prayer with millions of other voices today. I know our combined prayers make each other stronger.” Then say the prayer you picked out—and put in a few of your own requests to God!
5. Don’t put the prayer request back in the box again. But keep it underneath or close by so you can reuse it if you run out of prayers during National Prayer Week.
It’s hard to understand how God can hear so many prayers at once. But things are different in heaven than they are down here. Not only does God hear all prayers, but when people pray together, their prayers get louder and stronger! That’s one reason for National Day of Prayer. It’s a chance to be joined with others so that your nation can remain strong and good.
Philippians 4:6-7 says, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Give the requests of your friends and family an extra boost this week by including them every night.