Time for a Prayer Harvest? A Lesson from Bees.
My husband and I have just become beekeepers—what amazing creatures. One of the questions I get most often is “When will you have honey?”
It depends. First year keepers are blessed to get a small late summer harvest. The new colony works so hard the first season to build their new home, that the nectar and pollen they collect and convert to honey may be only enough to feed them over the winter—let alone us humans. A beekeeper’s first duty is exercising the patience to harvest, and if that means waiting until the next season, then wait we must.
So, what does this have to do with the end of the academic year in one of the craziest, most unexpected, unprecedented turn of events we have ever seen? When I wrote the March/April prayer points we were celebrating for the second year in a row (2019 and 2020) that all 4,323 campuses in America were prayed for on the Collegiate Day of Prayer (CDOP). We were approaching more than 75% of all campuses being prayer walked through the Every Campus Initiative and shifting the focus to identifying and establishing gospel-centered ministries on all campuses. Unprecedented partnerships and unity were being celebrated between campus related efforts. Then…
In the blink of an eye, we went from covering our schools in prayer to covering our faces with masks. Now, students have ‘left the building’ and are taking classes from their homes. While this new normal gives us additional need for prayer, it has also left me wondering–what of “the campus?”
And that’s where our beekeeping analogy can be instructive. Imagine how desolate and quiet the campuses must be right now when usually there is so much buzz about them (sorry; I couldn’t resist). Think of the prayers that were “walked” on those campuses; the ones directed toward the campus from homes and churches on the CDOP; the prayers students in campus ministries prayed on campus during meetings and Bibles studies. Think of all the prayers of the Moms in Prayer moms from all over the country that for two semesters have been prayed over our campuses weekly.
In the quiet of campus, what if:
• All those prayers are settling over the dorms, classrooms, and administrative buildings just like pollen settles on every inch of our cars and patio furniture this time of year.
• This is as much a time for spiritual cleansing as for the physical disinfecting the building custodians are conducting.
• The spiritual forces of darkness have left the campus for a while and God’s angel army, like foraging bees, are going out and collecting the nectar of the prayers that have been prayed over the campuses this year and bringing them to the ‘hive.’
We can pray, that at the right time, given the right climate and conditions, the honey of all those prayers will be ready to harvest. When God decides the time is right, He will bring the harvest.
Will we be patient, even in this challenging season, and continue to pray? What if when students and professors, administrators and staff, and campus ministers return to campus, the harvest is ready?
Lord, we ask that when students and professors return to campus, they will walk into a land overflowing with the sweet honey of answered prayer, harvested at just the right time.
Prayer Points for May & June 2020
May 1-2: (Listed on the email for March/April): Library Science, Chemistry, Economics Departments. 1) That through the work of Christian scholars, Jesus will not be sequestered from academic pursuits and others will see that Christianity is a rational explanation for the universe. 2) For students to exercise discipline and finish their semesters strong.
May 3-9: Departments—pray for any departments/majors you feel need to be covered at your campus or for your child’s major and department. Use the school website to find the names of the department chair and decision makers. 1) Professors and students as they wrap up teaching and course work for the semester. 2) Technology availability and proper use for instruction, submitting papers, and finals. 3) Wisdom for how to handle grading, flexibility, understanding, patience. 4) Campus ministries’ work to flourish during this time and more students drawn to Bible Study.
May 10-16: Pray for all administrative positions (chancellors, trustees, deans, department heads) in major decision-making areas during this trying and unprecedented time. 1) College administration–wisdom in handling any refunds for this past semester; decision making for the summer and fall semesters. 2) Seniors who do not get to have graduation ceremonies or finish internships or don’t have jobs lined up. 3) Families as they adjust to extended time home with students. 4) Campus ministries–creative ways to have their summer retreats and mission trips and for the gospel to flourish.
Prayer Ideas For Summer:
1) Ask the Lord that all the prayers for the campus this past year come to fruition and that He will prepare the campus for harvest when students and professors return.
2) Prayer walk virtually for campuses through the Every Campus website. Find your state and the campuses without prayer walks, and help get the total to zero before the fall so every campus has been covered in prayer either by an in-person or virtual prayer walk. Have your student pray with you and model the four-steps for them using this prayer sheet.
3) Stay engaged on our College Praying Moms Facebook page for encouragement, news, and ways to pray over the summer. Be looking for a College Prayer Sheet concerning the special needs that have arisen due to the Coronavirus.
4) We will resume weekly prayer points in the September/October email which will be sent to you in late August.
Thank you for praying this year. BEE Blessed!