MAKE ME A BLESSING!
Do you want to be a blessing to someone?
And they come unto him, bringing one sick of the palsy, which was borne of four. And when they could not come nigh unto him for the press, they uncovered the roof where he was: and when they had broken it up, they let down the bed wherein the sick of the palsy lay. When Jesus saw their faith, he said unto the sick of the palsy, Son, thy sins be forgiven thee" (Mk. 2:3-5 KJV).
This passage is a story of faith and devotion, sacrifice and love. We have a group of men who cared so much about their friend that they went to extreme lengths to take him to Jesus that he might be healed. Jesus mentions their faith, but their devotion and sacrifice are also of great importance. Such devotion and self-sacrifice are not common today. These four were a great blessing to their friend. They had a compassionate heart for him, they wanted to see him getting healed, they tried their best and we see the result. They were a blessing to him. Extending blessings to others is a special grace. A blessing is the gift of connection with God. 'Blessing' means two things-God is gracious and God is in control, and brings all things to pass in a way that benefits His people. Blessing could mean success, provisions, sovereignty and authority. 'To be blessed' means 'to be favoured by God.' Blessings therefore are directly associated with God and comes from God.
God wants us to be a blessing to someone. Are we ready for that? Are we using our blessings for others? Are we a channel of blessing to someone? Because we are well settled, we are in our own comfort zones. We don't want to take the step of being a blessing to others. We keep our blessings to us only. We have limited our blessings. We don't want to share them with others. We are not trying to help others because we are afraid of losing our blessings. Blessings can be in the form of possessions, materials, well settled life, etc. God has blessed you with many different gifts, in many different ways, for many different purposes. But what is not different, what is sure and certain beyond any doubt, is that God has blessed you. You belong to God. Prayers go up and blessings come down. The love of a family is life's greatest blessing. "Blessed is the man who expects nothing, for he shall never be disappointed" was the ninth beatitude.
The Lord said to Abram, "I will make you a great nation, and I will bless you, and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing." Blessings, in the Bible, come in many forms. In the creation story, God created the great sea creatures, the fish, and the birds, then blessed them all (Gen. 1).
Later, Jacob and Esau have a bitter fight over their father's blessing.
The Psalmist cries, "Blessed are those who walk in the light of the Lord," "Blessed are those who fear the Lord," and "Blessed are those who seek God's justice." Blessings are very important from a Biblical point of view.
Abraham was blessed in many ways, including being very wealthy (Gen. 24:35). After the death of Abraham, God blessed his son Isaac (Gen. 25:11). Isaac blesses his son, Jacob. Jacob is blessed by God before he meets his brother Esau, who hates him to death because he took away his blessing deceitfully from his father (Gen. 27:27-29). "Let me go, for the day is breaking." But Jacob said, "I will not let you go, unless you bless me" (Gen.32:26). We see here the importance of blessings. He wanted to be blessed by God. That's why he was wrestling with the Lord. God said to him, "Your name is Jacob; no longer shall you be called Jacob, but Israel shall be your name." So he was called Israel. God said to him, "I am God Almighty: be fruitful and multiply; a nation and a company of nations shall come from you, and kings shall spring from you."
Joseph is favoured with the blessing of the Lord. The LORD blessed the Egyptian's house for Joseph's sake; the blessing of the LORD was on all that he had, in house and field (Gen. 39:4). There was a time of great famine in the land, Judah, son of Jacob, went to Egypt to get some food. Joseph was the person in charge of the food supplies, when they came to ask for food. Joseph recognised them, but they did not; so he asked them to bring their father and their younger brother. They were very confused about it because they did not know the situation of Joseph. He revealed his identity to them later and forgave them, and he asked them to bring his father before him. They did so, and then Joseph was reunited with his family. Genesis talks about the importance of blessings passed by Abraham to Isaac to Jacob to Joseph to Benjamin. They were the channels of blessing to one another. Joseph was a great blessing to his brothers in the time of need. My friends, God wants us to be a blessing.
I always thank God for the position He gave me under my Pastor. He was a real blessing to many. Many a times we see people in leadership who do not want to share their blessings with their colleagues; but my Pastor shares with us-sharing room, flight, train journey, and much more. Many a time, I shared the table with him among the big leaders of the city. And it encourages me to be a blessing for others whenever opportunity arises. God has blessed me, and I want to be a blessing to others. I realised the sharing of blessing with others, looking at others who are blessed. We have many examples in our day-to-day life. We can learn from our own personal experiences. God is teaching us through these blessed people. He wants us to be a blessing to some one, but the day starts NOW with sharing WHAT we have.
In another passage, we see that a boy became a blessing to many by giving 5 loaves and 2 fishes (Matt. 14:13-21). This message speaks directly to us about the resources that we have. It doesn't matter how rich or poor you are as a Christian. It doesn't matter how rich or poor we are as a congregation. What really matters is what we do with what the Lord has given us to oversee and use! Whatever we bring to Jesus is never too small for Him to use. Jesus can use the gift that we have and use it well. Maybe, we find it easy to talk to others, and we can make them feel better when they are feeling sad. Maybe, you are able to share your time, your computer, or your games, with someone that does not have. They will see what you have done and begin to help others as well. It may be in sharing your pocket money. There are many ways we can share the gifts and talents that we have.
"Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interest of others" (Phil. 2:3-4). Paul, in prison, is writing to thank and encourage Christians in Philippi. They face their own trials and have their own problems. They, like many churches today, had some disagreements and selfishness. Paul points them to better interpersonal relationships. In the same way, he is telling Timothy to encourage the rich in church by these things-telling them to BE BLESSED PERSONS... "Do good, be rich in good works, ready to give, willing to share." Look beyond the good life. Store up a good foundation for the time to come. Lay hold on eternal life, unlike the rich fool who lost his life (1Tim. 6: 18-19).
What was wrong about the rich man's attitude was that when you have extra time, money, or resources, you need to share them. The rich man did not view himself as a servant of God, nor his resources as responsibilities entrusted to him by God. Rather, he viewed himself as the one being served, and his resources as toys to play with. This is an attitude of greedy covetousness, which is quite common among the rich, who make it their goal to retire and take it easy, or to do whatever satisfies their passions. But the more we have, the more we will be held responsible for. To be rich toward God is not to be poor in material things, but rather to use what resources God has entrusted to us for His Kingdom.
Let us thank God for blessings, and thank God for our wealth and for our community. Even though we are poor, let us be rich in God's grace; even though we are sorrowful, let us be always rejoicing; even though we have nothing, let us possess everything in Christ. When we help the needy, it gives us joy and happiness. We feel so good. Just remember the words of the Lord Jesus. He said, "It is more blessed to give than to receive" (Acts 20:35). By giving, sharing, caring, we can become a blessing. Let us decide to focus our life on being a blessing to others. The only way we can BE A BLESSING is that, firstly, we must BE BLESSED! So, let us begin to pray each day, "Lord, make me a blessing, make me a blessing, Out of my life may Jesus shine. Make me a blessing, O Saviour, I pray. Make me a blessing to someone today" (1 Chro. 4:10). Jabez prayed to God saying, "Bless me," and the Lord granted his request and then he was a blessing to many in his territory. So, that was why people named their town after his name as Jabez to remember him and his deeds (1 Chro. 2:55).
If that is what you want to be, a blessing to someone, these verses in Philippians 1 tell you how to go about doing it:
1. Begin by showing love. Show it by what you say. Show it by what you do.
2. And then pray for others. Pray that they would grow in love. Pray that they would choose the best. Pray that they would have holy character. Pray that they would do what is right.
You cannot put these principles into practice and not be a blessing! If you do these things, you will have an impact on others, a very positive one. They will be glad to see you coming. You will be an encouragement to them. Your life will make a difference in their lives. And you will be a blessing (Num. 6:24-26).