The other day I was chatting after Mass with our recently ordained deacon and one of the women from the parish. She was telling us about a presentation she was excited to give, but asked us to pray that not only does she do well, but that the audience understands the information. Our deacon then proceeded to bless her efforts so that they bring glory to God. I was rather in awe to witness the moment. Afterwards, with a joyful grin, he indicated how much he loved blessing people and how he wished he could just bless everyone. What a marvelous attitude for someone with his vocation!
I knew that deacons had special privileges at Mass, like reading the Gospel and giving the homily, and that they could baptize as well. I don’t think, until that moment, that I realized deacons could give a blessing as well. What an amazing gift: to be the instrument of God and invoke His grace and blessing on His creation. A gift that is meant to be shared and given away to others.
While the ordinary lay person does not have quite the same power for blessing, we too can pray for a blessing over others: parents, children, siblings, friends and strangers. Asking God’s aid on behalf of another, in their presence, brings us closer together in the family of God. For some this may come easy, but for others it may seem awkward; the remedy is practice! God has blessed us with many gifts beyond that of prayer. Some are material while others are more intangible. They all are meant to be shared as well. As we share, from giving to the poor, to listening to a person’s troubles, to smiling at a stranger, we not only share the gifts that God has given us, we bring His blessing to others.
In the troubled world we live in, we can all use God’s blessings, especially when they are delivered by you and me.