By faith Isaac invoked future blessings on Jacob and Esau. By faith Jacob, when dying, blessed each of the sons of Joseph, bowing in worship over the head of his staff. Hebrews 11:20-21 ESV
Isaac & Jacob were men that had significant flaws and failures in their lives along with significant dysfunction in their family. Nevertheless they have the high honor of making it into the chapter of the Bible known as The Great Hall of Faith. They didn’t get much ink in the eleventh chapter of Hebrews but they were both honored for having faith and blessing their children in faith at the end of their lives. These two fathers had some issues, especially Jacob regarding his parenting, but they did one thing right & honorable to make it on the list of faithful saints in Hebrews 11. Their notable faith action was verbally transferring the blessing of God into the lives of their children. This is more profound than you or I might recognize on the surface. First of all the blessing of God is a massive theme throughout the book of Genesis from beginning to the end.
In Genesis 1:28 we read that God blessed humanity and commissioned them to be fruitful and multiply. Eight times or more the blessing of God is connected to or followed by the aspect of being fruitful & multiplying. God has truly designed humanity to be recipients and channels of HIs blessing into the lives of others and that starts with our very own children and family. This is clear that God wants His people to be recipients & channels of His blessing as seen in God’s promise to Abraham. God promised He would bless Him & Abraham would be a blessing, and through His offspring all the families of the earth would be blessed (Genesis 12:1-3).
Second, there is something really special & significant about a father speaking words of blessing into the lives of His children. Ultimately this is a reflection of God the Father who dearly loves His own children and speaks words of grace, hope, life, and identity to His children. The powerful words of blessing that one hears from their father has potential to effect and influence them significantly.
This is an aspect of parenting that is so often overlooked, neglected & not realized by many parents. There is power of spoken words of blessing in the lives of your children. Too often we see the negative aspect of the power of words operating in the lives of children whose parents painfully shaped them through harsh & graceless verbal communication. Many parents don’t recognize or understand how powerful their words are to direct the lives of their children like the rudder of a ship directs the course of a boat (James 3:4). Many parents don’t realize that their words can destroy the lives of their children like a destructive fire (James 3:5-6). The book of Proverbs has much to say about how to use our words wisely and in the context of a book full of wisdom we are taught that “death and life are in the power of the tongue” (Proverbs 18:21).
With that in mind we must be careful with our words & consider the positive or negative effect they have in the lives of those around us, especially our children. We must not curse with our lips anyone who is made in the likeness of God (James 3:9) by name calling, sarcasm, ridicule or any devaluing words that tear down. Some parents may feel justified in doing this with their children as an expression of their punishment for bad behavior. Others may curse their children merely because they are the closest person around and there is an overflow of death & cursing that overflows out of their heart. Jesus said that “out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks” Matthew 12:34 ESV. God desires to fill your heart with good things so that good things would flow from your lips.
Remember what the Apostle Paul wrote to the Ephesians “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.” (Ephesians 4:28). Your words can not only spread corruption to others but they could also channel grace into their lives. If you become a channel of grace with your words in the lives of your children you will see them flourish and convey that same grace to others. There will be a great domino effect that will bring God glory & delight and bring much good to many people.
What spoken blessings over you have had significant impact in your life?
Have you allowed God to make you a channel of grace & blessing for others through speech?
What meaningful words of blessing do you want to leave your children with when your long gone in glory?