All these are the twelve tribes
of Israel, and this is what their father said
to them when he blessed them, giving each the
blessing appropriate to him. (Bereshit / Genesis
Shortly before Jacob, who was also called Israel,
passed away he took the time to formally bless
his twelve sons. The giving of a father's blessing
is not something that most people are familiar
with in our own day. I am aware that this has
become more popular in some circles, but my guess
is that most people wouldn't understand why something
like this is important.
There are some people who think that our lack
of receiving blessing from our fathers is the
cause of many problems in our lives. Concepts
like "the father wound" attest that
there is a great need in our hearts for good relationships
with our fathers. The movie "Field of Dreams"
has had a profound effect on many people, especially
men. "Field of Dreams" is the fanciful
story of a middle-aged man who, having never reconciled
with his father while his father was still alive,
is given an opportunity to do so. The popularity
of such a film reveals how many people there are
who never received their father's blessing.
Our fathers have a special role to play in our
discovery of who we are in life. That is why a
father telling his child statements like "You'll
never amount to anything" has such a devastating
effect. On the other hand, a father who lovingly
affirms his child is giving him a solid foundation
towards developping into a healthy, well-adjusted
But if current trends continue, more and more
people will grow up without a father's blessing.
Not only that, many will grow up with no relationship
to a father at all. Some will not even have a
biological father as science paves the way to
make fatherhood obsolete. The result will be a
level of lost-ness in the hearts of people that
has never before seen in history.
You might be someone who fully understands all
this. You long for your father's blessing, but
have no hope of ever receiving it. Maybe your
father is no longer alive. You know that stories
like "Field of Dreams" are only for
books and movies. Maybe your father is alive,
but the nature of your relationship is such that
you believe he will never bless you. Maybe so.
Thankfully whatever your relationship is to your
biological father, there is another Father, who
longs to bless you. God, the Heavenly Father,
has the ability to heal the father wound in you.
What was only fantasy in "Field of Dreams"
can become reality – not that you will be able
to satisfactory address every unresolved issue
you have with your earthly father, but the greater
Father can mend every broken part of your heart.
This is not to say that we should not hope for
resolution with our early fathers. In fact allowing
the Heavenly Father to heal us will most likely
be the beginning of healing with our natural dads.
God's desire is for us to have good, healthy relationships
with our natural parents. It is true that due
to our broken state, we will not see every relationship
flourish the way they were meant to. Still, if
we would receive God's blessing, we will begin
to see even our broken relationships in a new