The Power of Blessing - Part FOUR

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As we focus on the 7 Stages of Blessing, we have reached the 3rd stage, namely Birth.

At Conception (1) the question is: "Am I welcome in this world?" During Pregnancy (2) the question to be answered is: "Is there a safe place for me in the world?"  At Birth (3) the question is: "Will my needs be met in this world?"

When a gentleman named Simeon blessed 8 day old Jesus in Luke 2:34, it says: "Then Simeon blessed them and said, 'This child is destined to...'" What amazing words! Every child is destined to be and to do. In fact, Mary the mother of Jesus and Mary's cousin Elizabeth had blessed Jesus while unborn in the womb. Then a couple of seniors, Simeon and Anna blessed Jesus days after his birth, speaking identity and destiny over infant Jesus.

Why? Why was Jesus blessed as an infant? Why should any newborn be blessed? At the moment a child is born, all five senses are active (unless there is a limitation) and billions of brain cells are processing information. Additionally, the unseen spirit of a baby is alive and active. Life questions continue to be reinforced: Am I welcome? Is there a safe place for me? Will my needs be met? As a child is touched and held and fed and spoken to, physical and emotional needs for belonging and acceptance are being met. These are foundational for emotional health later in life - scripture and science agree on this point!

A child is given a name or names at birth. Names are deeply bound to a person's identity. Just as Jesus' name was given to Him to life-purpose His identity and destiny as "God who saves," so to the names of newborns at birth. The gift of a name is part of blessing.

A Blessing on a Newborn may look like this:

* We bless you as you enter this world. You are our deeply loved daughter/son.

* We bless the day of your birth. May you always know that your needs will be met through God's resources.

* We bless your gender. You were created to become a wo/man according to God's design.

* We bless your birth order in the family you were given. May the timing of your arrival and the relationships with family members and friends be used by God to shape you according to God's will.

* We bless your spiritual journey. May you be spiritually protected from harm and deception and may you be surrounded by a faith community that will help you grow in deep relationship with God.

* We bless your emotional and cognitive growth as you begin to process the world around you. May your ears and eyes be guarded by those who care for you until you can make good choices.

* We bless your name. May God lead your life and may your name be suited to your identity and destiny. May God's purpose for your name be revealed and fulfilled as you grow.

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