Your time of blessing is quickly approaching now. Things that seemed withered and dead will begin to become green and supple again. Resource will water every part of your life.
Streams and brooks will form and it will be as I told you, “I will give you much so that you will have much to give away.” [2 Cor. 9:112 Cor. 9:11 English: World English Bible - WEB 11 you being enriched in everything to all liberality, which works through us thanksgiving to God.
“And the LORD will bless Israel again, and make her deserts blossom; her barren wilderness will become as beautiful as the Garden of Eden. Joy and gladness will be found there, thanksgiving and lovely songs.”
Isaiah 51:3Isaiah 51:3 English: World English Bible - WEB 3 For Yahweh has comforted Zion; he has comforted all her waste places, and has made her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of Yahweh; joy and gladness shall be found therein, thanksgiving, and the voice of melody.
“He shows His power in the terrors of the cyclone and the raging storms; clouds are the billowing dust beneath His feet.” (Nahum 1:3Nahum 1:3 English: World English Bible - WEB 3 Yahweh is slow to anger, and great in power, and will by no means leave the guilty unpunished. Yahweh has his way in the whirlwind and in the storm, and the clouds are the dust of his feet.
First, remember that all your gifts come from Me and they are freely given without reservation.
But remember this, too—what is given can be withdrawn.
It is your job to steward your gifts.
The more you can manage well, the more you will be given.
Remember: My eyes are always upon you, beholding all that you say and do.
I warn you again about that temper butterfly. You must hold your tongue if you cannot hold your temper. I know you are passionate. I created you that way. But you must lead your passions. They must not lead you.
Your enemy is.
I AM with you.
I will help you and uphold you with My victorious right hand.
Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.Isaiah 41:10Isaiah 41:10 English: World English Bible - WEB 10 Don’t you be afraid, for I am with you; don’t be dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you; yes, I will help you; yes, I will uphold you with the right hand of my righteousness.
As a self-confessed Prodigal, I will confess I craved it all of my life.
My father’s blessing.
I would even go so far as to say it was the deepest craving in my heart.
As a child, I longed to make my Father smile.
(It was not a simple task.)
Dad came from Quaker roots with German overtones. In our house “the Papa’s word” was law. Period. No other options. So, to make my dad happy was always foremost in my thinking from as far back as I can remember.
My problems arose when I failed to do so, which was often the older I got. Partly, because my dad was so hard for me to “read,” and partly because he encouraged me to “think for myself” as long as my thinking didn’t conflict with what he wanted from me.
Made for days of confusion with even greater conflict.
Question: How was I to think for myself and please my father?
Answer: Most of the time I couldn’t!
I could do one, or the other, but rarely both.
Maybe it was because I was a Baby-boomer who came of age in the turbulent Sixties. By the time I reached adulthood the Vietnam War was in full swing, protests on college campus’ were the rule, not the exception, and funerals of lost boys from the war were becoming a regular event in our small town. I remember “Women’s Lib” as just taking off, and I believed that my parents were dinosaurs, and just didn’t get me. (An affliction of every generation I think.)
In a way, it was true, because my father was a child of what has been called, The Battered Generation. He, being raised during The Great Depression when families had to pull together just to survive from one day to the next. My dad just didn’t “get” my heart-speak, and I certainly did not get his. I believe we both wanted to, but the gulf between us eventually bred a profound and abiding silence that was to last all of my teen years, and on into my adulthood.
Only one time do I remember even coming close to receiving his blessing. I was well into my forties, and I was in the middle of a ten-year marathon, caring for my mom. I had taken up writing as one of the ways to cope with my stress. I was in my home office working on the computer one day, when my father came into the room, stood behind me, put his hands on my shoulders, and began to pray, silently.
I cannot even begin to convey how painful it was that my dad kept the words of that prayer to himself. I begged him one time to share it with me, but he would not, and indeed, he never did.
Those words whatever they were, went to the grave with him, and to my way of thinking, I remained unblessed.
That silence of his became one of the deepest wounds in my soul. Though I wouldn’t admit it for many years and even today (now in my sixties) I write this with tears. How could my dad say he loved me, bless me, and not share those words with me? Was that even a real blessing?
For some of you, the only “blessing” you received from your dad was the back of his hand.
You not only feel unblessed, you feel like the cursed, and may have been just that.
For others, you never knew your dad.
There wasn’t a father—let alone a kind and loving blessing from one.
The absence of the father’s blessing can leave empty spaces in our hearts. Big black holes we try to fill up with lesser things in a desperate hope that they will make up for our absent blessing. We go chasing after anythingthat we believe might alleviate our pain and make us feel truly valued.
I did that for years. I used my work and accomplishment, alcohol, prescription drugs, anything I could find, to remove the hurting in my wounded empty heart.
Ah, but God saw; knew all about my prodigal heart and He longed for me to know:
He is a Faithful Father who doesn’t give up on us.
He is a Father who doesn’t let go.
He is a Father who doesn’t walk out.
He is a Father who doesn’t purposelessly cause us pain.
He shows up for us even when we don’t want Him to. And He shows up determined. He is relentless in His love for us. He speaks. He reaches down, and reaches out, with compassion, with tender love, and often when we least deserve it.
He’s like that—He’sfaithful.
He’s the Dad-love, the Dad-kindness, the Dad-blessing, we all desperately want and need, and can’t avoid… not when He’s made up His mind to come after us! And be sure of this, He knows right where you are. Knows everything you’ve done. And still, He is head over heels in love with you.
I believe there is a tremendous power for us, and our lives, in The Father’s blessing. I also believe, there is a deep pain “the unblessed” carry all of their lives unless they receive The Father’s Blessing from above; the one they missed from their earthly fathers. So, please. Believe these next eight blessings are meant for you.
Receive the gift of your Heavenly Father’s blessing.
“Jesus’s teaching consistently attracted the irreligious while offending the Bible-believing, religious people of his day. However, in the main, our churches today do not have this effect. The kind of outsiders Jesus attracted are not attracted to contemporary churches, even our most avant-garde ones. We tend to draw conservative, buttoned-down, moralistic people. The licentious and liberated or the broken and marginal avoid church. That can only mean one thing. If the preaching of our ministers and the practice of our parishioners do not have the same effect on people that Jesus had, then we must not be declaring the same message that Jesus did.”
— The Prodigal God: Recovering the Heart of the Christian Faith, Timothy Keller