Monday, October 12, 2009

The "Blesser"

I came across an old book in my library last week. It's called "The Blessing" by Gary Smalley and John Trent. I call it old. It was published in 1986, the year I graduated High School. I guess I just called myself old. I needed that little laugh today. This truly is an amazing work. The book basically gives instruction on how to give a blessing to our children. The authors trace back the concept of the blessing to the Old Testament. If you have studied the old testament you understand how the model of affirmation was found in the home. Friend, our children desperately need our affirmation and approval. It is critical that they get it from mom and dad while they are still at home. A child who is truly affirmed and blessed will grow to be an adult who affirms and blesses others, someone who can truly make a difference in this world. However, a child who is cursed and devalued will curse and devalue the world, making very little contribution to God's work and the world around them. Tragic. We have to get this right. And truth be told, we only have one shot.

I'll break down the book for you. The authors give 5 elements to passing the blessing onto our children.
1.) Meaningful Touch - We must touch our children in ways that say to them, I love you, you are special to me, I value you as a person.
2.) A Spoken Message - Our words are so important. Make sure you daily speak positive words into your children. Words of affirmation. "You are doing great in school, I am so proud of you." "I love watching you play with your friends, I understand why they like you so much." "I like being with you" "I am glad God gave you to me" "You are precious" "I love your smile" It goes on and on.
3.) Expressing High Value - To value someone means we attach high importance to that person. Have you ever yelled at your kids in a way that completely crushes their spirit. I have and it kills me every time. I'm not talking about getting onto them about something. I'm talking about going off on them when you are mad or angry and not necessarily at them. You have to immediately right the wrong. Say you are sorry and tell them how valuable they are to you. Been leaning to much on the grumpy side? Check yourself and bring balance (value) back to your household and the people you love.
4.) Picturing a Special Future - I really love this one. What girl doesn't like to dream about things to come, things that could be. Talk with your children about their future. Let them dream. Affirm them, encourage them, believe in them.
5.) Make an Active Commitment - No doubt about it, parenting is hard work. You have to be committed to doing these things day in and day out. He writes in this chapter about "learning our children." He says this will help us guide and direct them and it will also help us understand how to pray for them.
Do I know the following things about my children...
  • What do they most often daydream about?
  • What do they want to be when they grow up?
  • Of all the people they have studied in the bible, who is the person they most want to be like?
  • What do they believe God wants them to do?
  • What type of boyfriend/girlfriend are they most interested in?
  • What is the best part of their school day and what is the worst?

I know for certain that I do not want to hold back. I want to be a "Blesser." (I think I just made up a new word) You know, when we are focused on blessing others, we loose site of ourselves and our own problems. It amazes me that it works that way, but it does. So, calling all "Blessers.' Anybody in?

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