The Lord bless you and keep you! The Lord let his face shine upon you, and be gracious to you! The Lord look upon you kindly and give you peace! (
This passage is sometimes called The Priestly Blessing. These words of prayer make up the solemn blessing used long ago by the high priest to bless God’s chosen people, the children of Israel.
None of us live in ancient Israel, but we do have a "high priest" who wants to bless us:
Then (Jesus) embraced them and blessed them, placing his hands on them. (Mark 10:16)
Jesus does not curse us; but rather, he takes us and blesses us. We are blessed, because Jesus has blessed us; and we, in turn, can bless others.
We know that our blessing comes from God. We can choose to respond to God’s blessing in our lives, by passing on the blessing to those we love.
As Christian parents, we have many opportunities to bless our children, but sometimes, in our human frailty, we curse them instead.
Instead of blessing our children with statements like, "I noticed you working really hard" or "You are so graceful," we sometimes curse them by saying, "Don’t be so lazy" or "Why are you always so clumsy?"
We can make a choice to avoid using words of cursing, and to shower our children with words of blessing.
I will bless you … so that you will be a blessing. … All the communities of the earth shall find blessing in you. (Genesis 12:2-3)
- What words of blessing do you recall hearing during your childhood?
- What words of cursing do you recall hearing during your childhood?
- What words of blessing or cursing do you recall giving your children?
- What words of blessing will you give your children today?