Team Prayer in Action

I’ve discovered something stronger than any Olympic team.

Team prayer

Team Prayer in Action

She walked toward me, concentrating on a point over my left shoulder. “Did you find a book in the library?” I asked her.

She stared straight ahead.

“Did you find the book you wanted?” I asked again.

Still no response.

I increased the volume of my question when I noticed that she had ear buds in both ears—a big no-no at our school.

She slipped one ear bud out and answered me, “No. I didn’t find it.”

“I can take you inside and help you now,” I told her.

She walked right on past me and I noticed that her hands shook. She seemed distraught.

“Are you ok?” I asked.

She leaned over and grabbed her stomach, then dug her fingernails into her arms. “I’m going through withdrawal, I think,” she said. “It’s never happened to me before.”

“Can I get the counselor for you?” I offered.

“No, I don’t want to make a big scene.” She collapsed onto her knees and pulled at her hair and moaned. “I think I’m going to barf.”

They Don’t Teach This Stuff in College

I quickly texted the counselor and asked for advice and then noticed a faucet on the side of the building behind us. I rushed over and turned the water on. “Here, splash some cool water on your face, that might help.”

She did as I suggested. I felt helpless—on duty on the playground whilst the rest of the staff members attended a meeting. I scanned the commons area to make sure no one else needed my attention.

The counselor texted back. “Deep breaths.”

I wasn’t sure if he meant for me, or the student.

“You could try taking deep breaths,” I told her as I demonstrated how. We both felt calmer. I helped her to her feet, and tried to engage her in conversation. She couldn’t concentrate, but seemed to appreciate the effort I made to keep her mind off her physical symptoms.

I texted the other duty teacher and let him know about the situation, and glanced at my watch. Only a few more minutes until the meeting ended. I tried to help without hovering or intruding too much on her personal struggle. I shot prayers heavenward, wishing I could do more, offer more, be more.

The counselor arrived, and we quietly discussed the event and watched her as she shakily made her way to class.

I have so much more to learn, but one thing I do know. My team closed their meeting with prayer, and because of my text to the counselor, I knew they all prayed for us.

What about you? Do you work at a place where you can count on Team Prayer? Or do you have another Team Prayer community that supports you in times of need?

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Anita currently teaches English to 7th-12th graders. She describes herself as a 'recovering cancer caregiver' who gives thanks daily that her husband has been cancer-free for ten years.

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