Thursday, February 21, 2013

Blessing Your Children

“May the LORD bless you and protect you.
May the LORD smile on you and be gracious to you.
May the LORD show you his favor and give you his peace.”

                                                                                    (Paraphrase From Numbers 6:24-26)

Each night, as we put our children to bed, my wife and I lay our hands upon their foreheads and bless our children using this passage from the book of Numbers and then we pray for them. 

We do this for a couple of reasons.  First, we want God to do those things in their lives each day.  Second, we want to remind them that God is with them each day.  In the course of our prayers with them each night we ask God to also let them be a blessing to others.  To let others see Christ in them because of their actions.

The single most important concern we should have as parents should be the same primary concern Jesus has for us: We must make it our ultimate goal to help our children know and love God with all their heart.  How do we do that? One of the simplest and most powerful ways to help children know and love God is to give them a daily, concrete encounter with His power and favor by laying hands on them and speaking a blessing.

The concept of a parent speaking a blessing on a child may seem strange, but it is scriptural. It's an ancient and respected custom dating back to biblical times. In fact, the family setting for the blessing apparently predates its use in the public setting; the priest or other official who spoke benedictions on the people of Israel was only supplementing the most basic of blessings - the one given by the father to the children.

In the past week I received an email from a teacher.  It was a “thank you” letter.  The teacher wanted to thank us for our child’s sweet spirit and how kind they are to others in class.  I heard similar words from a senior adult in our church after she met my child at a church event. 

I want my kids to be a blessing to others.  I want people to see Jesus in my kids’ lives and to hear from others that they are displaying Christ’s love. What more could I ask. 

My wife and I are not perfect parents; not by a long shot.  We struggle with issues just like other parents.  We have good days and bad.  Sometimes we overreact when our kids do something wrong and sometimes we can be too lenient.  Like I said, we’re not perfect.  But one thing we do, and you can do it too, is pray this blessing over our kids and pray for them that God would use them for His glory.

If you’re struggling as a parent and you feel like you could do more to raise your child spiritually I would like to invite you to join us at our Parent Summit this weekend.  You can find more information about it on our church website.  Whether your child is newborn or college-bound it’s not too late to get started parenting spiritually.

Scripture to Claim:

"So they shall invoke My name on the sons of Israel, and I then will bless them." Numbers 6:27

Submitted By Brian McKay

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