At the end of every service, our pastor gives the benediction. I never thought about what this word meant before, but when I used an online translator and tried to translate the word “blessing” into French, the resulting translation was “bènèdiction.” So I decided that would be a good word for today’s Thankful Thursday acrostic poem.
Blessings are offered to you and to me
Ending each service with peace
Needs will be met by our Lord in answer
Everyone’s worry will decrease
Divine intervention exclaimed
Christ’s favor proclaimed from the pulpit
Traditional blessing bestowed
Immanuel sent to guide us
On our journey along life’s road
No longer must we be ashamed
One of the most commonly heard benedictions, at least in the Lutheran churches I’ve attended, is based on a passage from Numbers. It’s a beautiful blessing that does always give me a measure of peace as I leave the worship service and prepare for the week ahead. Just as God promised to bless the Israelites when Aaron blessed them, I believe God will bless His people when the pastor blesses us.
The Priestly Blessing
Then the Lord said to Moses, “Tell Aaron and his sons to bless the people of Israel with this special blessing:
‘May the Lord bless you
and protect you.
May the Lord smile on you
and be gracious to you.
May the Lord show you his favor
and give you his peace.’
Whenever Aaron and his sons bless the people of Israel in my name, I myself will bless them.” Numbers 6:22-27 (NLT).
But I don’t believe that the ability to offer a blessing or benediction is limited to official pastors. We are the priesthood of all believers (1 Peter 2:9-10), and so I offer a blessing to you, my readers: May the God of grace and mercy fill you with His Holy Spirit as you meet each day steadfast in the knowledge of Christ as your Savior.