And of Joseph he said:
Blessed by the Lord be his land,
with the choice gifts of heaven above,
and of the deep that lies beneath;
Deuteronomy 33:13 (NRSV)
Along my life journey I have received words of incredible encouragement from family, teachers, and mentors:
“You will do well in whatever you do.”
“Whatever you do, I know you’ll succeed.”
“You’ll do great. I know you will.“
Those words are examples of what the ancients called a blessing. Most commonly given from father to son, king to subject, leader to follower, a blessing is a word of affirmation spoken to bless and encourage. Some blessings can be prophetic nature while others simply to strengthen and comfort the recipient.
In today’s chapter we find Moses approaching then end of the road. He is in the home stretch of his life journey, and the finish line is straight ahead. He gathers his people together and, tribe-by-tribe, he speaks over them a blessing. The blessing for each tribe is unique, and the themes include life, safety, strength, acceptance, abundance, provision, affluence, favor, possession, and etc.
Today, I’m thinking about my children, and others who live within the circles of my influence. I’m thinking about the opportunity I have to speak words of blessing into them. Conversely, I’m thinking about the curse of staying silent and not blessing those who I have the opportunity to encourage. I need not wait until the end of my life journey to speak a blessing over others. In fact, what a shame it would be for me to do so.