Wednesday, July 31, 2013
Republic resident publishes book of school prayers
Article in Republic Monitor Newspaper, Republic, Mo.
7-31-13 * By Katie Barton
When students and teachers return to the classroom this August, there will be a few prayers said for them—or at least read for them.
Republic resident David Burton’s new 57-page book, “Prayers for my Public School” is a collection of 195 written prayers focused on public education.
The idea for the book began about two years ago when Burton attended a global leadership summit at Remington’s in Springfield.
"I just heard speaker after speaker talking about how God can take kind of small actions, small things and turn it into big things for a big impact,” Burton said. “And that was also the same year Republic was in the news quite a bit for things that you'd rather not be in the news for."
At the summit, Burton was inspired to begin sharing the prayers he said with his two children each morning before school.
So, he created a Facebook page, “Pray for the Republic School District,” and each morning he would post a short prayer after his morning Bible study time.
Initially, the Facebook page was just followed by Burton’s friends and family members. He said that as things happened along the way, the page began picking up more followers.
In March 2013 when a car crash killed one Republic High School student and seriously injured another, the number of likes and shares on the Facebook page grew. Burton said some of the prayers posted reached about 15,000 people.
“So I thought, OK, well maybe this is serving a purpose ... maybe people are getting something out of this,” Burton said.
About a year ago, Burton’s wife began encouraging him to begin collecting the prayers he was posting. Burton said when he began collecting the prayers, he began developing the idea for a book that could reach people who aren’t on Facebook.
Many of the prayers published in “Prayers for my Public Schools” have been posted to the Facebook page, but Burton said there are a few exceptions.
With 195 prayers, there are enough prayers to cover the entire school year and a few extras for the week before school begins and Christmas break.
Burton said he doesn’t see the book as a money-making venture, but rather a way to get individuals praying for the overall health of schools in a supportive way.
“The prayers in there are not magical sayings or anything like that,” Burton said. “I've always wanted the focus to be on God and what he can do through prayer. Whether that be just me, or whether it be 600 people on Facebook or another 100 with a book at their nightstand. God's really the hero in all this, he's the one that can make things happen—not me."
And as for the Facebook page, Burton said fans will continue to see prayers posted every morning.
“I don’t have any plans to stop the Facebook page, Burton said. “I’m going to continue doing that.”
"Prayers for my Public School" is available on Amazon.com.