A Word of Blessing

According to John Trent in his book, The Blessing, encouraging and loving words are also an important component of blessing.  The Bible speaks over and over about the importance of our words:

“A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver.”  Proverbs 25:11

“if we put bits into the mouths of horses so that they obey us, we guide their whole bodies as well.  Look at ships also;  though they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are guided by a very small rudder wherever the will of the pilot directs.  So also, the tongue is a small member, yet it boasts of great things.”  James 3:3-5

“Death and life are in the power of the tongue …” Proverbs 18:21a

The Blessing: Giving the Gift of Unconditional Love and Acceptance by [Trent, John, Smalley, Gary]

Words can help or hurt;  they can guide;  they can change the course of a life.  Yet often, we say the wrong words, or even no words to the people we love and others around us.  Why?  There are many excuses:  We’re busy, we’re tired, we don’t want them to become vain or puffed up, or they already know we appreciate and value them.

How much effort does it take to say, “Good job!”  or “I love you” or “Thank you for all that you do.”  Don’t make excuses;  speak a word of blessing to someone today.

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A Touch of Blessing

I started reading a book by John Trent titled The Blessing.  In it, the author talks about the Biblical tradition of blessing, especially blessing one’s children, what it includes and what it means.  Touch is definitely part of the picture, as you will see below

“Joseph said to his father, ‘They are my sons, whom God has given me in this place.’ And he said, ‘Please bring them to me, and I will bless them.’  Now the eyes of Israel were dim with age, so that he could not see.  Then Joseph brought them near to him, and he kissed them and embraced them …”Genesis 48:9-10

In the New Testament, Jesus also blessed people with a meaningful touch:

“Then they brought little children to Him, that He might touch them;  but the disciples rebuked those who brought them.  But when Jesus saw it, He was greatly displeased and said to them, ‘Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them;  for of such is the kingdom of God …’  And He took them up in His arms, laid His hands on them, and blessed them.”  Mark 10:13-14, 16

In our church this tradition continues in our practice of Holy Communion:  children too young to receive come forward with their family during the distribution and receive a blessing from the Pastor, who places his hand on their head.

Not surprisingly, touching others — hugging, embracing, giving a pat on the back or the shoulder– is good for us.  From lowering blood pressure and heart rate to increasing immune function and relieving pain, getting touched or doing some touching makes you healthier — not to mention happier and less anxious.

There are many people out there who are not being blessed in this way, but you and I can change that.  It’s a simple way to bless someone.  Give a hug, shake a hand, pat a back.  It’s a blessing.