May those who pass by not say to them, “The blessing of the Lord be on you; we bless you in the name of the Lord.” Psalm 129:8 NIV
Did you read the above verse slowly? The author tells the reader to “NOT say to them, blessing.” Like me, you can probably think of 10 people quickly who have done evil and don’t deserve blessing. Child abusers, swindlers, those who have murdered innocent lives, and the drunk driver who kills a teenage driver, all of them easily fall into this category of undeserving. You would be justified in your evaluation, they don’t deserve to be blessed.
Enter Jesus into our stories of pain and injustice. He tells us to bless and curse not. My head is spinning as I think how unfair this idea seems to be. I think, “Shouldn’t they be punished for their wickedness, hatred and evil? Why should we say blessing over them? Can they be punished and at the same time speak blessing over them?” (yes, punishment can still be administered while we ask for God’s blessing to be upon them)
We know that Jesus showed his unconditional love toward US, in that while we were sinners, Christ died in our place. He took the punishment for our sin, evil, selfishness, pride, rudeness, callousness, and lies. We did nothing good to deserve the expression of His grace and mercy toward us. But He loved us still. When we are undeserving, Jesus blesses us.
Wanting to justify ourselves like the Pharisees, we think “But God, I was never as bad as those other people. I was a little sinful, but they are really bad people who physically hurt others.” “And God, by the way, I’m not as good as Jesus. How can you expect me to treat others in the same way as He did? I don’t possess the ability to love and bless like Jesus.”
Here is the reality which is true for all of us. There is power and authority when we speak blessing over others. The Psalmist knew if someone invoked God’s blessing over their enemy, God would begin to move in a healing and helpful way in their lives. We possess a wonderful privilege and honor to ask God to be kind and bless others, which God desires to do. We can bless the underserving…just like we are underserving.
Speaking a blessing over others is not complicated, but it is trainable. You can redirect your tongue to choose life instead of death. When the car in front of you cuts you off, pray for their protection and blessing. Especially when they give you the single finger salute. Try saying this aloud, “Father, thank you no accident occurred. Please bless them to arrive safely to where they are going. May they have ears to hear you speaking to them about every need in their life. If they don’t know you as Savior and Lord, please put people in their path to share the good news of Jesus. Bless them in the name of the Lord. Amen”
The wonderful thing about speaking blessings is the boomerang effect. As you speak blessings over others, the blessings return to you also. When you speak blessing over another’s marriage, it positions your life to receive blessings for your own marriage. When you bless other drivers, it reminds you to be courteous…which results in your safety.
On this Monday Mantra, choose to bless others who don’t deserve blessing. Cast your seed upon the waters and see them return with blessing. Train your tongue and response to choose life instead of cursing. Your blessing could help open the door for goodness to fall upon another’s life
Blessings Love y’all