LORD! Please forgive us for rearing children who do not know You!!!!

By Dr. Jacquelyn Simmons

Scripture: …The LORD our God is one LORD: And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets (headbands) between thine eyes. And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house and on thy gates (Deut. (6:5-9 KJV).

Dear LORD Our Heavenly Father,

In the text for this message, You had commissioned your servant Moses to speak to Your children, Israel, as thy were poised to enter the promised land. You were instructing them as to how You wanted them to make Your future generations to conduct themselves toward serving You in order to continue receiving Your blessings and guidance. We, Your children, also, would do well to follow the same patterns by basically returning prayers and other Holy Spirit led activities to all of our present school activities. It was one of the greatest mistakes our so-called leaders and citizens of this country to allow that decision to go into effect.

During my school attendance and teaching years, most of us had student conducted prayers before we began any school-day activities such as student led prayers each morning over the school’s intercom, prayers led by students before attending regular school classes. Before assemblies, we sometimes invited ministers from our communities to pray. Many students and teachers bowed their heads and prayed in the classroom or in the schools’ cafeterias before partaking of their lunches. We prayed before ball games, club activities, and sports teams prayed before entering and after entering sports arenas. As co-majorite instructor for sixteen years at Monroe Colored High and Carroll High Schools, we formed a circle, held hands and prayed under the goal post before entering the football field asking God to bless our performances.

I will always remember during my early childhood days, an elderly lady whose name was Mrs. Eliza Horn who walked with a stick in what is still called New Town here in Monroe, Louisiana. During that time, New Town extended from the Missouri Pacific railroad tracks on the North, Texas Ave. on the South (present Texas Ave. projects area was a cotton field), the intersection of Louisiana Anne Ave., Texas Ave. on the West, and South 14th Street on the East.

During those times, cars were almost as limited as hen’s teeth. We had unpaved, uneven sidewalks, muddy ditches and streets filled with holes and scores of mosquitoes, also. But yet, Mrs. Horn hobbled throughout New Town “gathering up” children to take us to church in order to rehearse us as choir members, practice our speeches for Christmas, Easter, Mother and Father’s days, Thanksgiving skits, etc. All of my aunts were school educators and their dad was the pastor of the church. Soooo, when it was near time for our presentations of the Holidays performances, they appeared with written speeches, costumes and conducted rehearsals.

We very seldom had disciplinary problems because during those times, if a child had to be chastised, anyone had the liberty to do so…