The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face to shine upon you, and be gracious to you; the Lord lift up his countenance upon you, and give you peace.” vss. 24-26Numbers 6:22-27
In most of our congregations the pastor’s last words to the gathered people are some form of the Aaronic Benediction. And while for some this is a welcome signal that the end is in sight, most worshippers are touched by this familiar blessing. And pastors love to pronounce it! For some it’s the highlight of the week. There is power in blessings and most of us don’t give or receive enough of them. In this instance it’s not a personal blessing from the pastor, but a reminder that the Lord wants nothing but good for us. No matter how the rest of the service has gone, no matter how challenging the sermon, no matter how messed up our lives have gotten, the last word from the Lord in worship is a word of grace and commendation. It is God’s desire that every one of us feel as though God is smiling upon us and keeping us safe in every circumstance of life. And what God wants for us more than anything else is that we would have peace. And that’s what we want too! We don’t want anxiety and worries dogging our steps along the way… we want serenity, a sense of calm and an assurance that we have not been abandoned. And if we’re paying attention, that’s what we receive in the benediction.
Thought for the Day: What effect do blessings have on us?