How to Bless Your Kids

Today’s topic is how to bless your kids. It’s actually a question from our homeroom community if you guys who listen are a part of that, we love you guys. If you don’t know what that is, that’s kind of our membership community where we open once or twice a year where you can get in and we journey together, we walk together and it’s incredible and it’s amazing, but one of the questions there that we wanted to bring to you guys from the group was how to bless your kids. What does that mean? What does that look like? When do you start? Jeremy, I’ll let… You guys have been doing this for a long time and it’s been a practice you guys have leaned into and cultivated, so I’ll let you talk about it.

Yeah. One of the things that’s so exciting about having a family is the ability to see multi generational progress and the way that this is really described in the Bible is by passing on blessings from one generation to the next and of course this is a huge theme in the book of Genesis where you see these blessings being passed on from Abraham to Isaac, Isaac to Jacob, Jacob to all 12 of his sons and to Ephraim and Manasseh, the two sons of Joseph in Genesis 48. There’s so much here to think about, but I love this question because it really indicates that this questioner is saying, “Hey, how do we… When do we start this? When do we get to bless our kids?”

I really do think that this is something we should be investing in a lot and there’s ways you can do this just when you have infants. We love to pray and bless our kids when they were asleep. Your kids are toddlers and they’re running all over the place and the one time they’re actually just calm and relaxed is when they’re asleep in their crib and you can go in there and just put your hand on them and say a blessing over them. A blessing is really asking for the favor of God to take what you are doing in your training of your child and you’re raising of your child and just say, “God, multiply the effort that I’m doing.”

A curse is when something that you tried to sow in didn’t even get the result you were expecting. A blessing is when the result that you expected gets multiplied and that’s what we want for our kids and so we want to bless our kids and God allows us and gives us the spiritual authority to put our hands on our kids and give them blessings and we should take advantage of that.

What we do in our family is do this every week at our family meal. We have a Shabbat dinner on Friday night and we blessed the sons and daughters and this is a traditional thing that’s done in Jewish households as well. The blessing that we use over our sons is we put our hands on our sons. My dad does this. My father-in-law when he was alive would do this every other week and take turns with my dad and we just say, “The Lord, make you like Ephraim and Manasseh and give you the faith of Abraham, the heart of David and the righteousness of Christ as you build our family from generation to generation.” We’re just asking God to just take what is inside of us and just pass it onto our kids, multiply what we’re pouring into them and make it successful and give it favor and give it fruitfulness.

I think this is a beautiful thing to do and there’s lots of different ways to do this. I just encouraged, when we had this conversation in homeroom, is just yeah, go for it. Start right away. Start when the baby’s in the womb. Start all the way through their life. Pass on those blessings. Speak those blessings. It’s kind of a form of a prayer that is really beautiful and I think is one that a lot of times western people kind of struggle with a little bit because it feels a little bit magical, but I think that it’s important to just see, hey, this is a way in which we are taking the favor that God’s giving us and our generation and making sure that’s being passed on to the next generation. What are your thoughts?

Yeah and I think what I love about it too is it’s very much like a little bit deeper nuanced or liturgical prayer like you said, that kind of… You want to sew meaning. You want to repeat it. You want to kind of let it mean something and continually have the same patterns about it because there is something about that where we are embodied creatures that live in a real physical existence with a real physical body and so hands on the head or saying the same thing over again, those things matter and those things get weightier the more we do those over and over again and here’s the thing guys, you don’t need to reinvent the wheel. The Bible believes in blessings. There’s dozens of them. Just pick one, right, and talk to the Lord and read and see what lands on your heart.

We do something very similar to Jeremy. We do one every Friday night for our Sabbath dinner and then the one that we really like is from number six. I think it’s called the Aaronic blessing, “May the Lord bless you and keep you and make us turn his face upon you and be gracious to you and then give you peace.” What we do is same thing. Yeah, we put the hand on the kids’ heads and then I usually say it while the other adults are repeating it after me over whoever they’re touching and if there’s other adults, or if Alyssa’s parents are over, then they put their hands on the kids’ heads. It’s just special. It’s tangible and there’s something about touch and presence and there’s something about repeating that that just communicates a deep weight and blessing. Exactly what it is.

Then I think I would say whether it’s a high point on a weekly way or another really easy good entryway, I think for it is bedtime. Bedtime routine, whether that’s downstairs, whether that’s the lights were already off upstairs in the bed, whatever it is, some type of repeatable prayer where you look them in the eye and you get them to repeat something. We did something where they repeat something back to us, the actual kids and we ask them a couple of questions and we say, “Does God love you? Do you know dad loves you? Where do I love you too? And how much do I love you?” and a couple of other things. Then to hear them say those answers back every single time is awesome, man, and it’s like our favorite. It’s just that affirmation and that repeatable thing that that’s what they’re going to sleep with and that’s what they’re going to sleep to and so we love that and it’s a huge, huge deal.

Whatever that looks like, guys, experiment with it. Seek the Lord on it, but also there’s just a bunch in the scripture that you don’t need to overthink it. What would it look like? And like Jeremy said, it really is just a prayer. I think sometimes, yeah, we feel like it’s a little mystical, magical and I do think there is something about it that the western world doesn’t understand that just evidence… That actually does play out true that we have a struggle connecting the dots, even though the evidence is there, but regardless of that, it is just a special formalized prayer and what would it look like for you to start doing that today?

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