Monday, May 3, 2010

Blessings and Beautiful People

What is a blessing?

A blessing is something you say every time you witness or experience an incredible event.
  • If you see lightening or hear thunder, you say a blessing.
  • If you see a rainbow, you say a blessing.
  • If you see a comet or the ocean, you say a blessing.
  • If you eat or drink something, you say a blessing.
  • When you get up in the morning, you say a blessing.
  • When you go to the bathroom you say a blessing.
  • If you see a friend for the first time in a long time, you say a blessing.
If you see an exceptionally beautiful person – like when you see me – you say a blessing.

And the list goes on and on.

That is a lot of blessings. Why do you need to say so many?

Here is a very heavy idea: God made the world. He created it from scratch. And because he made it, everything in it belongs to him. It is his world. But – and this is cool – when you say a blessing, the thing you bless becomes yours.

How does that work?

All blessings follow a simple formula. They all start the same way. All blessings start:

Baruch atoh: Blessed are you oh Lord…

Have you heard that before? I am sure you have.

The only problem is, that is not what the words really mean.

Think about it. Blessed? How can God be blessed? That is a silly thing to say. It doesn’t mean anything.

Take a look at a blessing in Hebrew.

It says, Baruch, Atoh…

It doesn’t mean that God is blessed. What the Hebrew words mean is that God is the source of all blessings.


Now that is cool. When you say a blessing, what you are really doing is acknowledging that the thing – the comet, the rainbow, the meal, the experience, or whatever – is coming from God. God is the source. He made it happen. He made the event or experience possible.

Neat. But why do you have to say a blessing?

Let me give you an example.

Pretend that you really want a new bike. Like you really want one. And one day your grandma buys you one. You come home from school and there it is – wow – a brand new bike. And you are so excited that you put it together and ride it around all day.

How does your grandmother feel? She is thrilled. She kvels. She watches you. She smiles. She loves it. And she gets so much joy because you are happy. Your joy is thanks enough. And really, that is enough for her.

But is it really enough?

No way. You know it isn’t. You have to do something first. What is that?

You have to say the magic words. You have to say, “Thank you grandma.” You can’t just take your new bike and leave. (You probably have to kiss her too.)


Does grandma want to be paid? Is that why she bought the bike? Was it a trick, a ploy, a scam, a rouse? Is grandma a shrewd manipulator? Is grandma an operator? Did she buy the bike to make you say thank you?

No. And that is silly. The truth is like I said: grandma is happy because you are happy. She really is. So why do you have to say thank you? It isn’t for her. She doesn’t have to hear it.

You have to say thank you for you. It is for you. You need to say it.

When you say thank you, you acknowledge that your new bike didn’t just fall from the sky. You have a new bike because grandma thought about you. And she loves you. And she wants to give you things. And you realize – even if it is just for a second – that grandma is the one who made you happy.

And that is the reason you say blessings. God made a big, fat, amazing, wonderful, fantastic, beautiful world. And He gave it to you. He wants you to live here. And He wants you to enjoy it. And if you do enjoy it – that is enough. God is just like your grandma. He gets so much joy when you are happy. He loves it. He made this world for you to enjoy. And he loves it when you do.

God doesn’t need your blessing.

But you do.

Every time you say a blessing you realize – even if it is just for a second – that God is the one who made you happy. He is the one who gives you everything.

And all that cool stuff that you see – like rainbows, comets, food, and beautiful people – he put them in this world for you to enjoy. And when you say the blessing you realize just how much God loves you, how much he gives you, and how much he helps you. And you feel special and amazing and loved.

And that is the point. Every blessing reminds you that this incredible world was created just for you.

So enjoy it. And say blessings.

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