Congregational Blessing

By Terry Snapp of Independence, Missouri, USA

Let the church be admonished that the times are portentous and demand faithful adherence to the faith and work of the church, that mankind may be blessed…  Doctrine and Covenants 137:6a

During the more than 30 years Betty and I have attended our congregation many moments and people have made our experience a wonderful faith adventure.

Recently, the reality of God’s love for the community became real to me through the experience of a congregational blessing—an opportunity for an evangelist to bless the congregation in its work to share the peace of Jesus Christ.

I have no doubt that God inspired the words shared. For me, the beautiful spirit that was present and the loving invitation of those words reinforced the wonderful message of the blessing itself. At the same time, it added to all that had preceded it during the worship service.

The blessing stood out as a beautiful experience of realizing God was among us at that moment in a way that touched me deeply. For me, it was and will always be a moment of truth and inspiration.

It served as a vivid reminder for me that God is real and loves us intensely. God is with us, not just in the sanctuary, but wherever we are and as we share the peace of Jesus Christ.

Prayer for Peace:

God of blessing, we praise you for the sacraments that strengthen our connection to you and one another. We thank you for your servants, who pray for us in community and individually. We are comforted and strengthened by those acts. May we use that strength to share Christ’s peace in the world.

Spiritual Practice for the Week: Making Responsible Choices

Each day this week prayerfully seek God’s guidance in your choices. Discernment invites us to orient our lives toward God and God’s vision for us and for creation.

Begin by reviewing the responsibilities and opportunities in the day before you. Take these choices into prayer, asking God for wisdom and insight about what matters most. Offer yourself to God with the prayer of Teresa of Avila: “God, what do you want of me today?”

Sit prayerfully with this question as you review the day again. Be aware of images, thoughts, names, or actions that come to you. Ask for blessing to live this day responsibly and compassionately in the spirit of Christ.

Peace Covenant:

Today God, I will seek to bless someone, even as I have been blessed.

For more information about congregational blessings, visit http://www.CofChrist.org/evangelist/congblessing1.asp.

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