In his budget this week, Rishi Sunak announced pay rises for the public sector, an extra £1500 per pupil for schools, and £6bn for the NHS to help tackle backlogs. As with any budget, there are winners and losers, but many will welcome the spending boosts as an unexpected blessing.
The word blessing has many meanings, but I found a very helpful definition in Michael Frost’s book, Surprise the World. He said it means, “to confer prosperity or happiness upon another”. He suggests we can do this in any number of ways; a word of encouragement, sending a card or small gift or cutting an elderly person’s lawn. Getting into a regular habit of blessing others can have a much greater impact than you might imagine.
Frost goes on to tell a true story about the impact blessing can have on a church’s mission and outreach. A researcher looked at the work of two missionary teams, one he called the “blessers” and one the “converters”. The blessers decided to bless anyone who came their way in whatever practical way they could. The converters went out with the sole intention of making new converts. The researcher discovered that not only did the blessers have a greater social impact wherever they went, they were also 50 times more successful at leading people to God.
The old Baptist hymn tells us that, as Christians, we should count our blessings and name them one by one. As we do, let that motivate us to bless others – our own families, our friends, our neighbours and beyond. Who knows, it might give us an opportunity to share with them what we ourselves believe, that “Every good and perfect gift is from above”? John 1:17 NIV
Why not bless someone today?
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