Maybe you decided to read the Bible this year. There are many good aides for doing this online. But if you are just going to start from the beginning and read – beware – most people will make it to the book of Numbers and then stop. All those numbers for this, for that, will it ever end. And then you discover this blessing.
The LORD bless you and keep you!
The LORD let his face shine upon you,
and be gracious to you!
The LORD look upon you kindly
and give you peace!
This is a blessing given by God to Moses to give to his brother Aaron. Aaron is to use this blessing upon the people.
In our faith, we use this blessing quite often when we do a committal at a graveside service. We are blessing the deceased person. As sons and daughters of God we all have a responsibility to bless others. Especially our children. I have suggested that people bless their children as they go to school, come home from school, or make trips. When you travel someplace, whether near or far, ask the Lord for His blessing and a safe trip. In the busyness of life, do we remember to bless the members of our family? The responsorial psalm has a perfect little blessing. “May God bless us in His mercy.” We all need these many times over.
In the gospel, Mary reflected upon these things. She and Joseph were blessed with a baby boy, the Christ-child. I think of the things she must ponder. The angel and the annunciation. The visits of angels to Joseph. They had to travel to Bethlehem. Did she know what else was to happen? They lived in a dangerous and evil time. How could they take care of this special child.
This being the start of a new year, what should you reflect upon? As you recall things of the past, think about how they have shaped you into the person you are today. Then pause a moment, how are you being shaped for what is to come? Let’s start by blessing our loved ones today and every day.
May the Lord bless you in the name of the Father and if the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen