Earlier this month, Gary Smalley crossed the finish line and entered heaven. I was one of the many who were blessed by his writing and speaking. As he ran the race that God had marked out for him, Gary shared some wonderful truths that he was learning along the way.
Be a Blessing!
Gary Smalley wrote sixteen award-winning books, selling over five million copies. One of those best-sellers was The Blessing, co-authored with John Trent. The Blessing explains how we can give a powerful blessing to our children, our spouses, our parents, and our friends.
Bless Your Children
Parents can give their children a life-changing blessing. In Biblical times, this blessing was a important, well-understood part of family life.
Do you remember the Biblical story of Jacob and Esau as they battled for their father’s blessing? The Genesis account is dramatic and heart-wrenching.
In our culture today, we are not familiar with the concept of blessing, but it is just as important as ever. If we do not receive a blessing from our parents, that sense of loss can plague us our entire lives.
Our desire for the approval and affirmation of our parents is a strong, innate longing. It is critically important to learn how to give this great treasure to our children.
There are five elements of the blessing:
a spoken message of love and acceptance
attaching “high value” to the person being blessed
picturing a special future for that person
an active commitment to fulfill the blessing[i]
Bless Your Spouse
- We can touch in ways that convey concern, affection, and encouragement.
- Every day, we can speak words of admiration, gratitude, and appreciation.
- We can choose to attach high value to our spouses, and we can be deliberate in expressing that high value to them.
In Hebrew, to “bow the knee” is the root meaning of blessing. … Bowing before someone is a graphic picture of valuing that person. … Anytime we bless someone, we are attaching high value to him or her. [ii]
- We can picture a future for our spouses that is full of hope, growth, success, and joy.
- We can express active commitment to our spouses. This is the “glue” that holds the blessing together.
In fact, this final element of the blessing is at the heart of “cleaving” in a marriage. When the Scriptures tell us to “cleave to our spouse” (Gen. 2:24), the root word in Hebrew means “to cling, to be firmly attached.”[iii]
Bless Your Friends
You can bless your friends with these same five elements. The fantastic friendship of David and Jonathan provides a great model. If you review their story, you will see how they gave each element of blessing to one another. (See 1 Samuel 18 and 20.)
And Be Blessed!
“The one who blesses others is abundantly blessed.”[iv]
If you are God’s child and His friend, He will give you His blessing, which is the richest of all blessings.
- You can feel His touch through His Spirit within you. God says that He holds your hand. (Isaiah 41:13)
- You can hear His words of love through the Scripture. (Jeremiah 31:3)
- You can be amazed by the high value which He attaches to you. (Genesis 1:27, Deuteronomy 7:6, Psalm 147:11, Zephaniah 3:17, Isaiah 43:4, Isaiah 49:15-16, Zechariah 2:8, Romans 8:32, Ephesians 1:3-5)
- You can look forward to the glorious future that He has planned for you. (Jeremiah 29:11, Philippians 1:6, Revelation 21:4)
- You can rest in His active, loyal commitment to you. (Deuteronomy 41:8, Psalm 136, Psalm 94:14)
May God bless you and your home with His life-giving power as you celebrate Resurrection Sunday this weekend!
Blessings to you,
[i] p. 25. Thomas Nelson, 1986.
[ii] p. 67
[iii] p. 177
[iv] Proverbs 11:25, MSG