We need all the help we can get!
I believe people want blessings in this time of unprecedented grief and despair. But how do we remedy our broken hearts and minds?
By standing on the promises of God! The Bible has countless examples of blessings for all occasions. We have to believe the future is bright, not bleak. Otherwise, what is the point?
Believing for our future is part of the human experience. We were created to live in hope.
For instance, as children, we hope to be a firefighter or a nurse when we grow up. As adults, we hope for financial stability. As elders, we hope to leave a legacy for future generations.
Meanwhile, blessings work in conjunction with that hope. Maybe it is financial blessings, blessings for yourself, your children, your nation, or just a simple prayer for blessings.
The blessings below are promises of an exciting and inspiring journey of faith. I want to be blessed and so can you. Let’s dive in to uncover the words and acts of blessings.
“Worship the LORD your God, and his blessing will be on your food and water. I will take away sickness from among you,” Exodus 23:25, NIV
When Moses wrote Exodus, (circa 1300 BCE) the global economy was mostly agricultural. A person was considered blessed when they had a bountiful harvest which sometimes meant they had just enough food to eat. To sustain them and their families.
Also, their wealth was tied to the land. In our economy, real estate figures into our bottom line. Just like in Biblical times, if we own property we are considered blessed.
Second, in the Middle East, water was a scarce commodity, and often when water was available, it was undrinkable. To have your water blessed meant thirst was quenched — on your land and in your body.
The last part of this blessing talks about sickness. No one wants to be sick and to be productive in society, we have to be healthy. In the original Hebrew, the word for sickness (machalah) in this verse means infectious or epidemic sickness. Just like what we are experiencing today.
This verse is still as applicable now as it was 3300 years ago. I, for one, want to be blessed so I’m going to read this verse until it becomes a part of my belief system.
“Wherever you go and whatever you do, you will be blessed.” Deuteronomy 28:6, NLT
I love the New Living Translation of this verse. It tells me that as I go about my daily life; I am blessed.
Whether I am washing clothes, raising grandchildren, or writing this article, I am blessed. Everything I do and say is blessed. I put my trust in the power of the Word of God to bless me.
That gives my life an added depth of meaning and purpose. In my heart, this means that if I’m going about being blessed, I can pass along a little bit of blessing to others.
“And he took the children in his arms, placed his hands on them, and blessed them.” Mark 10:16, NIV
Many cultures the world over, have a tradition of blessing the children. This was especially true in the Middle-East during the time of Jesus. The father’s blessing designated a child’s entire inheritance or portion thereof.
Also, the Jewish priests passed on blessings to an infant when they were eight days old. The priest opens the ceremony with Baruch Ha-Ba. This means “blessed is the one who has arrived.”
In our verse, another seemingly insignificant point was that Jesus touched the children as He blessed them. The scribes and rabbis did not touch other people because that act would make them unclean. Jesus did so, to be a rabbi of the people.
“I will make you into a great nation, and I will bless you; I will make your name great, so that you will be a blessing.” Genesis 12:3, NIV
This verse is one of the first mentions of blessings in the Bible. Abram followed God’s voice to leave his country to go to an unknown land.
This was the first blessing to hold a promise. That Abram will be a blessing to other peoples. The term endorsed by the laypeople and one I’ve claimed many times myself; I am blessed to be a blessing.
Why would I want to withhold the favor God granted me? Blessing others makes me happy, and it can take many forms; financial, emotional, and spiritual.
“Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD, the people He chose for his inheritance.” Psalm 33:12, NIV
America has traditionally blessed her people in prayer since her inception as a nation and before. It rings true before a simple dinner table, in halls of education, and even on Capitol Hill at bi-partisan prayer meetings.
The First Continental Congress of 1774 opened with a prayer that embodies our verse. Here is an excerpt:
“Be Thou present, O God of wisdom, and direct the councils of this honorable assembly; enable them to settle things on the best and surest foundation. That the scene of blood may be speedily closed; that order, harmony and peace may be effectually restored, and truth and justice, religion and piety, prevail and flourish amongst the people. Preserve the health of their bodies and vigor of their minds; shower down on them and the millions they here represent, such temporal blessings as Thou seest expedient for them in this world and crown them with everlasting glory in the world to come.” — Reverend Jacob Duché
We want to be blessed as a nation, right?
However, there are some who have misappropriated the reason for this verse. Those factions who disregard blessing for all people. They want to undermine our ability to bless ourselves and other nations through fanatical rhetoric and violent acts.
Blessings for Women
“You are blessed because you believed that the Lord would do what he said.” Luke 1:45, NLT
Luke records the interaction between Mary, the mother of Jesus, and her cousin, Elizabeth. Mary has gone to stay with her extended family for three months.
Maybe to help with the elder woman’s needs or to confirm the message God sent her. I can only imagine the scene playing out.
Mary walks through the entrance of her cousin’s house and Elizabeth exclaims that Mary is blessed because she believed. What? God sent the Angel Gabriel to inform Mary that she is blessed and highly favored, and is to bear the Son of God.
That is a tall order!
If Mary can believe God’s Word, so can I. If women, half of the population of the earth, can believe some of the verses I mentioned earlier, this world would be a better place to live.
“The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; the LORD turn his face toward you and give you peace.” Numbers 6:24–26, NIV
We know this blessing as The Blessing of Kohanim (Hebrew) or The Priestly Blessing. This prayer is the only one dictated by God Himself to Moses to pray over the people of Israel.
It has been sung, written, prayed for the past three millennia. I pray it over my grandchildren, at meals, before I travel (pre-COVID), and even myself. I substitute the word me instead of the pronoun you.
After all my research and practice of blessing, I discovered that I could bless myself. I do it all the time. I pray Scriptures over myself, reciting the words of God.
Blessing is a wonderful thing. Most cultures the world over engage in rituals of blessing or believe that blessing can positively impact their lives. I know blessing is a part of my daily life.
You can have one too; just believe.