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August 21 | Numbers 6:22-27


 

DAILY READING

 

REFLECTION


The Best Blessing

by Pr. Dave Mann


What blessings do you want to receive from God?


I can think of a lot!

  • Peace and tranquility

  • Contentment

  • Love

  • A life-partner

  • Healing

  • Hope

  • Mental health

  • Self-confidence

  • Financial security

  • Good government

  • Adequate food and shelter

  • Good grades

  • Joy

  • Wisdom

Those are just the blessings that come to mind quickly. There are many more.


But the blessing that the Lord ordered Aaron and his sons to pronounce on the people of Israel and which we continue to use today is much deeper and broader.


“The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace.”


The verse that follows the blessing is actually an excellent explanation of what the Lord wants to give us, "So they will put my name on the Israelites, and I will bless them."


The Hebrew understanding of a name is that it embodies the essence of what a person is. So, to place the name of the Lord on the people is to place God himself on the people. The blessing of the Lord is not just a gift of good things, distinct and separate from the person of God. So, in addition to all the good things that God wants to bestow upon us, God’s intent is to give himself and to attach himself to his people.


Some people, when they hear the Aaronic blessing being recited at the close of a worship service, take it as a signal that it is time to gather up all their stuff that they have surrounding where they have been sitting for the past hour or so. Time to go, and to get on with the rest of the day. However, a more appropriate demeanor is to focus your mind gratefully on God and to reach out physically to receive what God wants to give us, himself. What an amazing God we have who wants to bless us with his presence.


Some of the most beautiful music has been graced by this blessing as lyrics. Please listen to this musical rendition of the Aaronic benediction and receive what God graciously desires to give to you. Click here.


PRAYER

Lord God, I desire to receive all your blessing. Hold me and keep me close to yourself. May your face shine and illuminate me, which is far more than I deserve – grace. May your face always be toward me, not against me. Then I shall be at peace, living in your shalom. May it be so, Amen.



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1 Comment


stacy.schad
Aug 21, 2023

"Hallowed be thy name"...that I bear as your child. May I not profane it.

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