how to deal with a bully at school, my child is afraid to go to school, elementary school prayer

Prayers For a Troubled Child

Dealing with a Bully

One night before school, when my oldest son, Grayson, was in kindergarten, he told me about a student who was bullying him and other kids. My son confided in me that he was scared to go to school because he felt sought after by this boy.

The next day was See You at the Pole school prayer. I made a plan to drop Grayson off at the playground and I stayed by the pole in case other parents wanted to pray together. As I was waiting at the flag pole, I heard a scream coming from the playground that sounded like Grayson. It WAS Grayson! I ran over to him to find that this boy he was concerned about had punched him in the back.

As a mom, you go through a lot of emotions when your baby gets hurt by another person. My God-instincts kicked in and I gave Grayson a hug and checked to see if he was physically ok. I knew his heart hurt, but he would be alright.

My main concern at this point was this boy. He knew he was in trouble and he looked ashamed and sad.

I said to him, “It’s ok to be angry, but it’s not ok to hurt people. We will figure this out together.” I walked with him and the teacher aid down to the office. When we got there I said, “Your day is probably going to be hard, but I want you to know I forgive you and Grayson forgives you. Can I give you a hug?” And he fell into my arms. I can imagine he had a rough day.

Every morning before school, I pray over my sons and give them a challenge. It sounds something like, “I challenge you to show kindness to someone new” or “I challenge you to demonstrate self-control today.”

The day after all this happened, I said to Grayson, “I am going to challenge you pretty hard today. I challenge you to either be kind to the boy or ask him to play.”

I sent him off to school with so many emotions. I prayed hard for Grayson and for this other child. My heart was heavy and yet, at peace.

Later that day I got a phone call from the principal. She explained to me that this boy had ‘extra eyes’ on him at recess and he wasn’t allowed to go near Grayson. She went on to tell me that Grayson approached HIM and asked HIM to play. She said “you would have thought this kid won the lottery. He was so excited to play with Grayson.”

After my son asked him to play, it completely changed this boy. He no longer punched other students, he was no longer a bully, and he was no longer isolated. I fully believe because Grayson demonstrated what a relationship with Christ is like, it changed the trajectory of this boy’s life.

Afraid to Go to School

Myla started out her second grade year like many other kids, excited to be meeting new friends and reconnecting with old friends. She loved school and loved to go to school. She enjoyed everything about second grade.

However, in the middle of the school year, she became sick with a terrible stomach flu. She was violently throwing up and the whole thing was very traumatic for her. Myla had decided that she NEVER wanted to get sick like that again. Since a classmate had the stomach flu prior to her, Myla was convinced she became sick from being at school.

She did a complete flip almost overnight, became extremely anxious, and hated going to school.

Things became so difficult that her weekends were ruined, because on Saturday she would already start thinking about Monday.

This happy go lucky, go with the flow, joy-filled, and friend-to-all little girl became withdrawn and quiet. Missy, Myla’s mom, told me how her daughter would start crying every night after dinner off and on, then when bedtime came, she would sob and cry herself to sleep. When Myla woke up in the morning, the cycle would start over. By the time she left for the school day, she was sobbing. Also, Myla would hardly eat and was losing her hair from how disheartened she was internally.

Missy told me, “It was the most heartbreaking thing to watch and as her mom, I felt helpless. I couldn’t convince her that she would be ok at school and I couldn’t make her stop crying.” She would cry through her school day and when her mom picked her up after school, Myla had red-rimmed eyes and red-stained cheeks. Once she returned home, it would start all over again.

During this time, Missy started coming to our Moms in Prayer group, praying for our kids and their elementary school. She shared during prayer time what Myla was going through and how difficult it was for everyone in her family. The moms joined together and prayed weekly for Myla and Missy. The group even prayed for the situation outside of our group time as well.

During our prayer meetings, there were times Missy couldn’t speak and the praying moms would just step in and cover her hurting daughter with words of healing, strength, and encouragement.

Soon Myla and Missy started reading Bible verses together every night.

Myla’s favorite was and still is 1 Peter 5:7, “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”
and Psalm 56:3: “When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.” Missy would ask Myla to repeat these verses out loud, even through her tears. Then she would lay hands on Myla to pray many of the same words from the women at our Moms in Prayer group.

Missy says, “I fully believe that God directed me to start going to Moms in Prayer because He knew I was going to need those powerful prayers that are prayed for our children there. He knew I would need those other moms to rally around me and my daughter and simply pray for the healing power that only God can bring.”

Flash ahead to the following year. Myla entered third grade and she flourished! She hasn’t looked back into the face of anxiety, depression, or fear since then. Through the power of Jesus, she has broken these chains! She loves her classroom and her friends. Myla is so thankful that she doesn’t have those feelings anymore and that she can enjoy school again.

How has this encouraged you as a mom?
How have you prayed for a situation your child has faced at school?
Let us know by commenting below.


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Moms supporting each other through prayerStacey Zeerip is a dedicated wife, mother, and passionate advocate for prayer. In 2019, she became a group leader for Moms in Prayer International, driven by her love for her two children, Grayson (10) and Drake (7). Recently, Stacey has taken on the role of Area Coordinator in West Michigan, a position she wholeheartedly embraces. Through her involvement with Moms in Prayer, Stacey’s prayer life has been challenged and transformed, leading to a profound sense of joy and peace. When she’s not engaged in prayer, Stacey enjoys spending time outdoors and boating with her family during the summer.