02 August 2011

Thriving Family: The Blessing Challenge

I love to read magazines! I love the ideas, the articles, the pictures, the information, it's just great.  A new Christian magazine I have recently subscribed to is Thriving Family from Focus on the Family. 

It comes out quarterly and their summer issue June-August featured a great article on The Gift of Blessing: Five principles for affirming your kids, by Dr. John Trent. 

I loved this article because it talks about the importance of praying (or even singing) a blessing over your child each day.

After John got saved in 2001, he decided he was really interested in pursuing seminary school.  So in 2004/2005 he started classes at Nyack College toward his Masters of Divinity degree with an emphasis on Apologetics.  It was awesome seeing him grow and learn more about the Lord and grow closer to the Lord through his professors and studies.  One of the courses he took with Dr. Sanders was on the family and I was allowed to attend a weekend course at a church in town where we learned how to pray for our children and all about the biblical blessing.  After taking this class I couldn't wait for us to be parents one day, but at the time I had room full of students that I could bless through prayer and my actions.

Think about it.  Our children were given to us as a gift.  They are on loan to us.  It is what we teach them and train them that will shape their lives.  We are held accountable for our job of raising them.  No one else but the parents will be held accountable.  And isn't it sad to think that some parents who have children don't take this role seriously?  And my heart goes out to all of those single moms and single dads out there who are taking on the sole responsibility of raising their children because they have no other choice.

John and I are NOT perfect parents, and we do not claim to be.  We are simply sinners like everyone else struggling to do our very best with our two special gifts from God...Julia and Mark.

Some days it is so easy to see them as gifts and other days that are more challenging it can be hard.  But gifts they are all the same and we are still entrusted with them for a short time before they are adults and make their own decisions. 

After reading this article, and thinking back on the class we took about Biblical Blessing, I was inspired to share what a biblical blessing is and to actually begin to do it on a more consistent basis.  I think we all hug our kids and tell them that we love them, but a Biblical blessing goes further to remind our kids that God has a special plan for their lives, that God made them unique for a purpose, and to remind them that as their parent I am committed to love them and cherish them and guide them to bring God glory.  In the Jewish tradition the blessing is given every Friday night (the start of the Jewish Sabbath).  A father might place a hand over his child's head and ask God to make him like Joseph's sons, Ephraim, and Manasseh or like Sarah, Rebekah, Rachel and Leah.  Or you might bless all of your children with the priestly blessing as written in Numbers 6: 24-26.

24 “‘“The LORD bless you
   and keep you;
25 the LORD make his face shine on you
   and be gracious to you;
26 the LORD turn his face toward you
   and give you peace.”’

And the Five Elements of a Biblical Blessing are:

1. Appropriate and meaningful touch.

2. Words of love and acceptance.

3. Value placed on the child.

4. Acknowledgement of a special future.

5. Genuine Commitment.
John and I were talking about doing this biblical blessing on a more consistent basis on our ride to church this past Sunday. 

I can do a blessing over the kids before school each morning, in the car on our ride to an errand, or at bedtime.  But it would be really special if we both did it at the same time.  So we are thinking maybe on Saturday evenings or Sunday mornings when we are always together just praying this biblical blessing over our kids would really mean a lot.  We would hold hands (affirming touch)  remind them of our love for them (words of love and acceptance) say words of praise and honor about all of the good choices they make throughout the day (value place on the child) remind them that God has a very special plan for their life

Jeremiah 29: 11
11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
(special future) remind them that we will always love them no matter what even when they make mistakes (genuine commitment).

Our Biblical Blessing May Look or Sound like this: 
(I'm really thinking of singing it at this age to them)

Mommy and Daddy love you
No matter what!
God has great big plans for you
Yes He does!

Mommy and Daddy are proud of you
When you are kind and share
God has made you so special
Even knows the number of hairs on your head

Mommy and Daddy love you
We are so blessed
We get to love you and hold you
Til you leave our nest!

Mommy and Daddy love you
Praying you grow big and strong
Praying you will learn to love Jesus
All your life long

Will you accept the blessing challenge with us?
If so go to TheBlessing.com

Praying you and your family are blessed today!!!


  1. Excited to accept the Blessing Challenge along with your family! Thanks so much Kristi! xoxo C

  2. This is beautiful and a timely reminder for me. Thanks! Judah is in the throws of both potty training and lots of rebellion, and I'm kind of at the end of my rope. So hard to see him as a blessing at these moments. So thankful for a God who forgives me and fills me with strength and hope to get up and love and bless again. Praying for you and your family too! - Christianne

  3. Thank you Kristi for the Blessing reminder!
    You have said it so beautifully... And I remember when our Lord brought 'a Blessing challenge' to me, to share and Bless each member of our family.

    God, in the person of His Son, Jesus- continues to 'surround us with His favor and Blessing'..
    Psalms 5:12

    What a Savior!


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