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Blessings Galore

7 November 2014

Last Saturday we continued to celebrate our 10th anniversary by having Russ Parker to speak on The Power of Blessing. The whole day was incredible as he powerfully taught from the Bible on how God wants to bless us. Today I’m at a trustees meeting and so I’ve asked Sheila, one of our office volunteers, who’s good at writing, to share with you her experience of the day using other people’s comments too. 

“Russ combined life-experience, empathy, personal anecdotes, humour, passion and scholarship in his presentation. He was inspiring, energizing and uplifting. He opened with a story about his meeting with the President of Burundi, who’d unexpectedly summoned Russ to his palace to bless his work, as he’d become a Christian and wanted to serve God in the best way possible though he had no expectation of being re-elected. Russ did bless him (and he was later re-elected and serves Burundi today in that capacity). Russ then made the point that we are commissioned to bless others; this commission, he said, is not for “specially gifted charismatic loud-mouths like me,” but for all of us. 

Along with many other highlights, Russ spoke about “blessings in action”. He said he’d like to eliminate the word “may” from blessings. He defined "a blessing" as words that are well-pronounced in order to make others flourish, and to encourage growth and life. In the act of blessing, we should pronounce rather than request. In effect, when we call God’s blessing on others, God is saying through us: “I’m going to put my Name back on you by blessing you.” 

Russ involved us, too, in practical exercises. We were all to chat to our neighbours, find out what they needed from God, if their lives were to really flourish, and then we were to bless them ourselves. The words he recommended were: “I bless you with…” If anyone was unsure as to what they needed, Russ suggested the words: “I bless you with the biggest blessing you can live with.” 

Here are some comments from others who listened to Russ that day: 

I have rarely felt so in God’s presence for such a sustained period of time as I have today. Russ has modelled the father-heart of God today. 

Russ is truly an ambassador of God’s heart. 

The best thing about the day was that feeling of hope that Russ gave me, that blessing is something we can all have. We only have to ask God.

Russ’s talks have been recorded, and you can buy the CD from The Well office.

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