As Christians, we are not only blessed ourselves, but are given the privilege of invoking, mediating and embodying God's blessing to others. When we pray blessing on situations or projects we are praying that God will look with favour on all that is in line with his purposes and all that is life-giving.
Moreover, blessing embraces the idea of Shalom - peace, wellbeing and wholeness. It can be all too easy to focus on the negative in people or in workplaces; to focus on and bless what is good needs a deliberate choice - often one that goes against the flow of the prevailing culture. But then, aren't we as Christians called to be counter-cultural?
Providing we are blessing whatever is good, whatever is in line with God's purposes and whatever is life-giving (naturally and eternally) then there are no rights or wrongs in how we construct our prayers of blessing. These are simply some ways of 'getting started' either as a group or individually:
- Think about aspects of your work that would want to bless. Explore why it would be good to bless each aspect.
- Possible areas: the privilege of having work; relationships at work; the fruitfulness of the organisation for whom we work; management and decision making; use of resources; the 'output' of our hands & minds; the godly aspects of the culture and values of the organisation; and work colleagues - their well-being physically, emotionally and spiritually.
- If in a group, break into 2s and ask each couple to construct a short prayer (1-2 sentences) to bless one aspect of work. Record and group these.
- Type up the prayer of blessing to be circulated for future use.
An example prayer of blessing
You may choose to take one section to pray on a particular day.
Thankfulness: Bless the Lord O my soul and forget not all his benefits. We bless you, Lord, for your gift of work - for the opportunity to co-labour with you and to provide for our families and communities.
Output: We bless the creativity and skills you have given which enable us to make goods and deliver services that others need.
Relationships: We bless every contact with another person, be they colleague, customer or supplier. We bless those we meet, speak to or email that they may experience something of your love through us.
Resources: We bless the use and stewardship of all resources available in our organisations.
Organisation: We bless the organisations for which we work; we bless them as employers and pray that job opportunities may multiply through them. We bless the management decisions to reflect Kingdom values.
Culture: We bless the culture of our organisation. May it be a context for human flourishing - a place where people feel valued. We pray for people's life outside of work - that it will be honoured.