Week 34 Monday

The Blessing

Today’s scripture selection: Numbers 5-8

Key verses: Numbers 6:24-26

It’s funny the things that you remember; that stick in your mind as you grow older.

My father was a minister; a hospital chaplain for most of his career.  I don’t remember when I first heard him say it; or how often – but it sticks in my mind.  It’s “the blessing.”

It’s the traditional one found in the Old Testament; the one God said Aaron and his sons were to use when blessing the Israelites:

“The LORD bless thee and keep thee: the LORD make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: the LORD lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace.”

I remember my Dad giving that blessing, at the end of many chapel services, as veterans – some young, some old – sat quietly with their heads bowed.

It still brings me comfort to hear or read, or now say, those words at the conclusion of a worship service.

Maybe it’s partially the nostalgic feelings about my own family memories.  But I think it is also because it is such a simple and beautiful benediction.

It’s the idea of God’s face shining upon us and giving us peace – it just calms the soul.  Though I can’t imagine what God’s face is like, or how I could possibly stand in His presence, I somehow take comfort in the idea that being there would bring not just “shock and awe” but peace as well.

The “blessing” – may it rest on all who need it…now and always.

Prayer: Father God, thank you for your blessing and your peace, which always calms me.  AMEN.

 

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