The other day I received an email from a friend who had a very sincere question to ask. This guy is a teacher, and therefore someone involved in serving his fellow man as I am doing in the military. Different jobs, yes, but we are both involved in seeing the next generation succeed. Here is his email:
I like your blog setup for supporting the military. I believe that's important and that churches (more importantly, Christians) should pray for military personnel.
I'm not trying to be overly critical but I can't help but wondering about other "noble" professions. Should they be prayed for as well, or are is there any other profession as "noble" as military? I realize your blog reflects what you are, and a good majority of that are your experiences you have had in the military. Anyway, just me thinking, that's all.
It got me thinking too. I want you to know that I value your profession as well. In fact, that's why I mentioned the church in San Diego that was reaching out to the local elementary school, and how much churches can and should affect education. I need to post again on that because the church that Alicia and I used to be with in San Diego is also reaching out to teachers and a local school.
So the short answer is that yes, there are many noble professions, and they can and should be prayed for. I think that everyone should be praying for schools, as I've mentioned. In fact, last year Alicia and I prayed specifically for Timothy's school year. Boy, was that necessary!
Are all professions as “noble?” Should we be praying for plumbers, electricians, businessmen, etc? Sure! If you know someone in that profession, whether they are believers or not, then yes, pray for them. If you are a plumber, then it makes absolutely perfect sense to pray for your fellow plumbers and to ask others to pray for them. Same thing goes with businessmen, doctors, electricians, teachers, and military personnel. Since that is the life I live, it makes sense for me to push that. Maybe Navy Christian needs a brother site called, “Christian Teacher” or something, eh? You start it and I'll link to it for sure!
Everyone has the opportunity to reach the world, starting with where they are. You and I now share many of the same realities. I have to be careful, just as you do, with talking spiritually around students. I have to maintain the staff/student protocol, just like you. You can really make a difference. I fervently believe that. So can our movers, that were here just a few days ago. Think about how many people a mover can influence, just by his/her character?
So the answer to your question is yes. Yes, by all means, pray for everyone! Pray for the professions that mean the most to you and encourage others to do so as well. Because I am in the military, and because I want to see military servicemen and women come to Christ, I ask…no…beg…for you to pray for them/us.
Thank you for your question and keep them coming! And start blogging!
Great post Dan. Sorry I haven't been around for a few days. Life has gotten very busy suddenly. August and September are always busy for us Baptist, as we start the new year September 1. (And let's not forget football gets thrown into that mix! haha)
I think the idea of praying for the military (and police, firefighters, etc) is because of the danger of their profession. I know that some teachers live in a virtual war zone. (Luckily Patty's school is very rural and has about 200 kids.) So the generic prayer for "the military" is one of asking God to protect those who protect us.
However, I don't believe that Believers should offer up bland, generic prayers, anyway. I tell our people to never pray, "God, bless me today." I picture the Father in heaven going, "Bless you what?" Specific prayers are important to a fruitful prayer life. As is redeeming the time that we have.
So...I'm not saying we shouldn't pray for teachers. Lord knows I love one and pray for her daily! Nor do I think that plumbers or doctors or office workers are not noble or worthy of prayers. But I would say that praying for "plumbers" would be a bit generic. If you know a plumber, pray for him. An office worker: pray for her. In-other-words, praying should be specific in its intent and detailed in its supplication.
By-the-way. When I pray for service men, I usually pray something like, "Protect our service men and women who are in harm's way, as they protect our freedom to lift these prayers to you."
I agree with you Dan. Pray for everyone. But pray with specificity.
I pray daily that this wretched city learns how to properly build roads and that the wretched folks who live here learn how to drive on them! :)
On a more serious note, I agree with the specificity of prayer. But I also don't think there's anything wrong with a more generic prayer if it truly heartfelt. I find myself praying for teachers more and more because they are horribly misunderstood, misrepresented, and grossly underpaid. I also pray that our government officials (who most of them are able to send their kids to rich preppy schools) will listen to testimonies of actual public school teachers and students before making laws that do more harm than good.
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