Once blessed, [you] are blessed forever.
–Rachel Naomi Remen, M.D.
The verbal act of blessing is a marvelous gift. I have been pondering the gift of blessing more intentionally as I look upon my 3 year old son this week. I have been very attune to my feelings as a parent these last days, thinking of what it is like for all these families of Sandy Hook Elementary who have suffered so greatly because of the loss of their children and daily sending my prayers around them. It has been touching to read about the acts of service that have been offered to honor the lives of those who have died. See Ann Curry’s #26 Acts. But as I have thought about these acts, I have also began to think more about the children who have lived through this terror: the children who will carry the fear, the hurt, the loss of their childhood innocence with them forever,and I realized they too need to be remembered. They too need to be celebrated. They too need to be blessed. They need to be allowed to be children, and to be celebrated as children. We need to bless the living while they are here, so that they recognize their lives as blessed.
One of my favorite authors introduced to me in my training as a spiritual counselor was Dr. Rachel Naomi Remen. She shares stories that invite you to look more deeply at your own sacredness, and that invite you to celebrate your life as you are living. The quote I shared today, comes from a wonderful story she shares called, Blessings, from her book, My Grandfather’s Blessings. She shares a story of how her grandfather would bless her each time she was with him…how he accepted her and celebrated her for just being the little girl she was created to be right there in the moment. And that these blessings have stayed with her forever.
So I invite you to act out service whenever you can, but make blessing those you meet a part of your day every day, by receiving them just as they are at that moment, with an open heart: Sit with those who are grieving and listen, praise your children for just being the wonderful individuals that they are, tell your friends that they are a blessing in your life, and so on. And remember that no matter how life treats you or what befalls you, “Once you are blessed, you are blessed forever.” So even if that blessing came along when you were 1 day old, you are blessed each and every day since then:
This is a blessing that says you are a wonder of the world, you are amazing just as you are, you are a beautiful soul, a wonderful friend, a Divine creation, a symbol of love; you are a blessing unto others, and to yourself.
By offering blessing to those we meet, and by recognizing ourselves as a blessing as well, we heal the world, and celebrate life.
I join you in this offering of blessing. I will continue to work at teaching my son how to love, how to do acts of service, how to “pay it forward,” every day of his life. But right now, most importantly I will bless him, and love him for all that he his, so one day when he walks out the door, and I am not there to guide him through his day, he will know he is beloved, so no matter what struggles he encounters, he will already know deep in his heart he is blessed; and that will be something no one can take away from him, but it will also be a reminder each day for him, that he is wonderful, and that his life matters. And by blessing him, I will teach him to bless others along his journey: to take the time to be present to people, to celebrate their lives, to bless this gift of life that he has and that he shares with all of us who live on this planet.
You are a blessing!
Blessings to you, Erin, Bella Bleue
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