The Path Bible Study

Walking “The Path”

May God give you the dew of heaven… -Genesis 27:28

One of the benefits of Bible study is the rediscovery of our roots. Most of society’s ills come from the disconnection from our spiritual and family roots and the lack of reconciliation thereof. During our “Path” Bible Study, we were reminded of the words above from Isaac’s blessing of Jacob. But is this relevant for us today?

“Dew,” for the Hebrew, is a metaphor of abundance and reinvigoration, a symbol of God’s beneficence. Throughout most of the rainless summer months, dew provides a major source of irrigation for crops in many places in Israel.

One of the practices that Christendom has lost from our Hebrew ancestors is the “ritual” blessing of children. The ritual blessing of children is more than saying “have a nice day!” when they go off to school. A ritual blessing is when we take a few moments to be still, hold them by the hand, look them in the eye (at eye level), and give them a verbal ritual blessing such as Isaac gave to Jacob. Of course, Isaac’s blessing to Jacob was near the end of his life signifying the transfer of the family inheritance and status in the family. But there are numerous ritual prayers and blessings that can be tailored for a simple ritual blessing on a daily basis. If we do not plant the ritual of blessing as the foundation of the lives of our children, what other choices and influences will they place their life upon? A vacuum is only  too quickly filled. I wonder what the level of spiritual invigoration a child receives from “have a nice day” compared to a ritual blessing and/or prayer as they head off to school?

All of this has to be intentional. And it is not easy. I know only too well what happens in my own mind as I become preoccupied with my own inner world of how I will prepare for the challenges, known and unknown, of the coming day. I too often allow the external noise of chaos attract my attention away from what is most important: a soul centered on God.

This intentional practice involves more than children. At the home level, knowing the difficult challenges that Kathy faces in her  work places, I attempt to remember to anoint her with oil and pray for the Spirit to be ever in her awareness as she faces her challenges during the day. A ritual blessing can be taken from any Word of scripture such as the Aaronic Blessing: “The Lord bless you and keep you, the Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious unto you. The Lord lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace, now and forever.” Of course the words can be simplified depending on the age of a child.

I think that most of us go off during the day forgetting the incredible presence of God who waits for us to call upon the Spirit to transform us from our human nature  alone to our divine nature in Him. Studying “The Path” together in a group helps to remind me of God’s Presence and incredible transforming Power of Divine acceptance and love. I find myself wanting to put Moses in the Book of Exodus on hold in order to go back and reflect more on the Genesis stories. I feel like Genesis isn’t finished with me yet. For some reason I feel like the Spirit is saying that there is more to be revealed through them.

“The Path:” Sundays at 3:30 and Wednesdays at 12:05 at Mom’s Front Porch. Real timeless food for these transitory times.

Fr. Mark


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