by Jared Talbot
Dear Lord, please be with the graduate students and postdocs who are coming to campus this year; those sojourning on and those who are wrapping up. As they discover their passions in research and thought, help them to find balance and not be consumed by the work. Help them to sense the zest that inspired their work in the first place when faced with the doubt that makes it even sharper. Give them the ability to mix passionate perseverance with the capacity to let go and change course when the time is right.
Help them to find community and support in the midst of what can be a very isolating career. As graduate students, most have left friends and family; as post-docs they did so again. You promised that anyone who left homes and fields for your sake would find a hundred-fold again. Please bring your presence and care to the students and post-docs on campus. As they build relationships and families, help them to be filled with the same grace that you offered to them.
Please guide these students and post-docs as they contemplate their uncertain futures. Help them to follow a course that will lead to wholeness, even when it is not the one that they set out on originally. Help them to remember that even if nothing goes the way they had hoped- they will never be alone; please, help them to find you through these struggles.
All this we ask in the name of your Son, who could find peace inside raging storms, and through the power of the spirit who offers counsel to those who need it most. Amen.