One major need we have found in our work with ESN: it’s often hard to find prayers and devotional material specifically addressed to the life of the Christian serving God in the university. This week we share a prayer for those studying the social sciences by PhD student Jessica Price. Do you want to write a prayer for a specific field area? Submit here to be considered for publication in our upcoming Winter/Spring 2020 series of prayers for those in various academic fields.
God, today we offer up the students of social sciences.
We pray for those starting new degrees. For practicalities in moving, the right places to live and for sufficient finances when they are needed. We pray that they would adjust quickly, find nourishing churches and make good friends.
We pray for those doing coursework. Help them to focus, and to understand what they are reading. We pray for loving and wise professors who invest in training their students well. We ask that you would bless classroom dynamics, that discussions would be productive and that everyone’s ideas would be heard. Form their minds, Lord, in ways that will help them perform research.
We pray for those who are researching. For those who are in the field, we pray that ample funding would be found for travel, and that they would be led to fruitful research sites. We pray for those who miss their family and friends, that they would be comforted. We ask that you would always provide these travellers with the spiritual resources to keep following you, wherever they are or however busy they become.
For those who conduct interviews or ethnographies, we ask for your blessing on the way they relate to their subjects. Help them to use just research methods, to love those whom they study, and want to represent them fairly. We ask that every researcher would be the hands and feet of Jesus for the people who they meet.
For those who use computer modelling and statistics in their research, we pray blessings on their equipment. May their data be safe, and the technology on which they rely always sturdy. Inspire the interpretation and modelling of the information, that you would bless them with creativity and wisdom. We pray against isolation for all those who have to spend long nights in the lab.
For those in the process of writing up, LORD, we pray for perseverance. Surround them with loving supporters who can stand by them as they work. We pray that the right references would be found, and that formatting would be easy. Provide those who need funding with the money that they need to continue. We also pray for those who feel family pressures, that you would bless them and help them to love the people around them while also attending to papers and dissertations.
And for those who are graduating, Lord, make their paths straight. Help them to reject the burdens of the world in favour of your yoke, God. Take them to the places and jobs they need to be to give you the most glory.
For all of us: may our work glorify you God, and may we never stop praising you. Amen.
-Jessica Price, PhD Student in Science and Technology Studies
Jessy Price is a PhD candidate in the department of Science and Technology Studies at Cornell University. Her dissertation, in the history of science, examines how merchants living in Bombay, navigated the debates of the Restoration around the relationship between the natural, preternatural and supernatural. She is writing up while living in England, where she also preaches and pastors at her local church. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org