Beginning in Genesis, God tells Abraham:
“I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.” Genesis 12:2-3
This is how God prepared Abraham for his journey and calling. He blessed him!
With these words, God spoke to Abraham a blessing of greatness, of promised future blessings, and that he would be a blessing to others — even a channel of blessing to the entire world.
The Hebrew word for blessing was the giving of the power of God’s goodness and favor, usually through the spoken word and the accompanying act of laying on of hands.
So for Abraham, the blessing was God’s spoken declaration of favor that would convey God’s power to make Abraham into a great nation, able to share that divine favor and power to the whole world.
So a blessing communicates God's favor over a person, so they might demonstrate God’s power in their life, so that the world would take notice and share in God’s divine power and favor.
This is a much newer addition than the one I read 20 years ago. So, if there are things you don't agree with, "keep the good and dump the bad". I also want to stress that everything they talk about when it applies to blessing your children also applies when you are blessing grown friends, parents, enemies, etc.
The Family Blessing is a biblical way to unleash the power of faith in the lives of those you love most. This special edition guides you through the tradition of giving your kids a daily word of encouragement. You’ll understand why you should bless your kids, as well as how to make an unforgettable impact on your child’s heart. (Amazon)
John Trent and Gary Smalley
I loved this book! It had a lot of scientific research that compliments the Biblical foundation that this book is grounded in. I recommend getting the paperback and not the audio version (like I did) so that you can have the written blessings in front of you when you start praying them over your friends and family.
This life-changing gift, essential for instilling a deep sense of self-worth and unshakable emotional well-being, contains five essential elements: meaningful touch, a spoken message, attaching high value, picturing a special future, and an active commitment. The Blessing powerfully communicates these biblically based elements as necessary to prepare children for positive future relationships, including their relationship with a loving God. (Amazon)
I gave a talk on this subject last Sunday. You can listen to it and view the slides below.