Reading time: two minutes.
Pastors sometimes feel, “I bless everybody, but I could sure use a blessing myself!”
Part of fending off the dangers of compassion fatigue is finding a place to get blessed once in a while. Now that I’m out of regular parish ministry, I find myself treasuring the absolutions and benedictions I’m receiving. When I was dishing them out, I didn’t always recognized how much I needed them myself.
I love, “The Lord… be gracious to you” in Numbers 6, especially in this week of Sola Gratia, but there’s so much to cherish in the blessing God instructed Aaron to place on the people of Israel.
Read on for a couple more quick thoughts on Numbers 6:22-27!“The Lord bless you and keep you.” That word “keep” is really loaded! How comforting to know the Lord will not toss me aside. I’m a keeper, by His grace and love. In Luther’s Third Article, I’m reminded that I’m “kept in the true faith.” That will keep me from all harm that might destroy me. There’s much comfort and security in being kept.
The “face” of God shows up twice in Aaron’s blessing. What an amazing concept. It would be easy to be intimidated at the thought of the face of God looking straight on at me every moment of every day, but it is the greatest blessing we could ever know.
In times of stress and anxiety, (such as those you’ll encounter TODAY for example!) what comfort it is to consider that nothing will come my way that my dear Father is not completely cognizant of. Nothing gets past His view.
And how comforting to consider also that my Lord is not watching TV, not taking a nap, not distracted by any cataclysm or catastrophe. His face is focused and directed right upon me. His face is turned toward me. That gives me peace.
Maybe the most healing, renewing, sustaining part of this marvelous blessing of the Lord is the bottom line: peace. Shalom. Wholeness. Put together-ness. Completely satisfied-ness. All working together-ness. God is with me, watching, sustaining, defending, guiding and finally gathering me to Himself forever-ness.
My brokenness is always hanging around, whether it be spiritual, physical, relational, financial, emotional, vocational. What a gift to know that this heavenly benediction is mine, anytime, any day, even if there is not a pastor around to offer the blessing.
Keep these familiar words close by. You are in the business of blessing others.
Don’t forget that you need a blessing for restoration and wholeness every day too!
Thanks for reading.
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