Bless your kids every day!

This week I had the chance to hang out with John Trent, author of “The Blessing” and Mark Holeman author of “Building Faith at Home.”  We talked a lot about leading churches to help parents equip their children spiritually.  As I listened to these men speak from their places of expertise both as dads and as counselor and pastor, I heard a simple appeal.  We need to bless our kids everyday.

Our kids grow up in a world of criticism.  How great would it be for us to bless them every day?  I will just be a little transparent.  Sometimes I wonder if I am 70% criticism as a parent and only 30% blessing.  Here is what I mean.  It is really easy to criticize.  You left your shoes out.  Your voice is too loud.  Stop hitting your sister.  Don’t use my toothbrush…you get the idea.

What if I blessed at least as much or more than I criticize?  Would my kids grow up to be much different kids? Let’s make a pact, you and me.  Let’s bless our kids.  Here is one way you could be really intentional about it.

Tuck your kids in bed whether they are 2 or 17.  Pray with them at the end of the day before they sleep and then take a bold step.  Bless them.  Put your hands on their head or their back or hold their hands and bless them.  Use Scripture as the model for blessing. Use the same verse for a month if you want. Indirectly both you and your son our daughter will memorize Scripture. Here’s a familiar first blessing:

“May the Lord bless you and keep you.  May the Lord make His face shine on you and be gracious unto you.  May the Lord lift up His countenance upon you and give you peace.  Amen!  -Numbers 6:24-26.

Bless them with the same verse on their way out the door in the morning.  Hug them as you bless them and tell them you love them.

We have built blessing into the path of Legacy Milestones at Kingsland.  Milestone 6, High School Graduation, affords parents the opportunity to develop a written blessing for their graduating son our daughter. But don’t wait until Milestone 6.  Bless them every day.

Visit the Legacy Resource Center and get two practical tools to help you bless your children.  My favorite, are the Blessings Cards developed by John Piper.  These cards are a collection of Biblical blessings that you can use at night to bless your children.  The idea is to make this so easy that we can all bless.  Read the blessing straight off the card as you pray for your son or daughter.  A second great resource is the book, “The Blessing” by John Trent.  The book is a life changer.  Visit the Legacy Resource Center this Sunday and ask for Blessing Cards or the book “The Blessing.”  Begin the process of blessing your kids every day!

  One thought on “Bless your kids every day!

  1. January 24, 2009 at 12:29 pm

    These are wonderful verses – thanks! I am SO good at disciplining and criticizing and want to grow in learning what it looks like to be a father that blesses his children (and wife!) with Scripture – it took me a lot of searching to find any sites with verses and I really like the Numbers one above, so will start using this each day with my kids.

    Praise God for your blog!

    Carl

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  2. Matt Adams
    November 18, 2008 at 2:11 pm

    I appreciate this reminder. Oddly my first thought was to criticize for instructing us not to discipline or kids. I know that is not at all what is being taught here, but it made me think about how quickly I am to be critical. I grew up in a home where I was criticized 99 times for every 1 praise. Were it not for God’s amazing Grace I would have done myself in from discouragement. Thinking of that is encouragement enough to be careful how I work with my own kids.

    I love the way Alex blesses us every week with Numbers 6:24-26. It motivated me to do the same with my kids. I try to pray this verse along with Proverbs 3:5-6 over each of my kids at bedtime. “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.” The neat thing is, as Brian said, it teaches them scripture. My 7-year old daughter happened to come across this verse as she was searching for scriptures to highlight in her Bible on the way to the dentist the other day. (It is amazing how many verses she found worthy of highlighting – but that’s another topic) When she came across Prov. 3:5-6, she pondered it for a minute and said, “Daddy, I didn’t know you were praying the Bible.”

    You never know how much scripture they will learn without even realizing it by implementing this blessing practice. I guess I better start memorizing more myself.

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  3. Mark Wilson
    November 18, 2008 at 9:10 am

    Praising our children is so important. The first pastor of Kingsland, Hollie Atkinson, told the story of a man he knew who Hollie noticed had “99-1” affixed to his watchface. Curious, Hollie asked him about it, commenting that it probably had to do with the one lost sheep and the 99 safe sheep of one of Jesus’ parables. The man explained that that was not it at all; rather, “99-1” was there to remind him every time he looked at his watch that he was to praise his son 99 times for every one time that he criticized him. Good advice!

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