My mother and I have the joy of living close to the sea. Nearly everyday we drive along the seaside. There are seagulls; and lately with the sunshine, there are kite surfers, children playing, picnics, and dog walkers. Such a feeling of the hope of summer coming.
Today as we were driving along, returning from our own time of dog walking, I glanced at the people and activity along the shore. That’s when a memory of long ago came back to me. I had gone down to the beach just to find a place to sit and enjoy the beauty of the wind and sea and sun. I remember that as I sat there I began to pay close attention to the people all around me. In fact, I would say I felt drawn to them but I didn’t know why. I tried to turn my attention back to seagulls diving, and waves rolling onto the shore, but no, I couldn’t keep my eyes off the people. That’s when I sensed God whispering into my heart, “pray for them.” What? I don’t know these people nor have I ever even met them. I considered my reasoning to be valid, but still, the whispers of Father were unmistakable. “Pray for them.” So I sat there, fastening my eyes on one person after another, praying for them.
You might be wondering what I prayed since I knew nothing about them. It occurred to me that I can pray a blessing on someone without knowing anything about them at all. We can all do that for anyone, whether we know them or not, and what a truly wonderful and loving thing to do.
The Lord said something to Moses about this in Numbers 6:23-27: “Tell Aaron and his sons to bless the people of Israel with this special blessing: ‘May the Lord bless you and protect you. May the Lord smile on you and be gracious to you. May the Lord show His favor and give you peace.’ Whenever Aaron and his sons bless the people of Israel in my name, I myself will bless them.” Isn’t that an amazing thought? As we pray a blessing on someone, it rouses the blessing of Father upon them. God has given us the amazing privilege of interacting with Him, through prayer, to bring blessing upon someone else.
As we drove along the sea today, with that memory of the whispers of God to me so long ago, I smiled and thanked Him for the habit that formed in my life from that moment. I pray for people in airports, while I’m driving along, when I see others walking their dogs, or even just glancing out my widow and seeing someone walking along the sidewalk.
When I do that, you know what I have discovered that happens to me? My own worries and troubles seem to fade into something manageable. At times, life’s struggles loom large, often, seemingly insurmountable. When I pray a blessing on someone, it brings my own concerns into the proper perspective of, “with God, nothing will be impossible.” Luke 1:37 God has designed a way for us to have an unusual peace; a peace that comes through a desire to bless someone else. It gives us fresh strength, a renewed joy, and hope that the troubles of today, are safe and manageable in the hands of our loving Heavenly Father.