A Month of Reflection: Day 3 – Bless

Elul is that time of the year to reflect and prepare ourselves mentally for the High Holidays approaching. Each day of Elul, I’ll reflect on a theme and invite yoElul blog listu to come along on that journey. Feel free to comment with your reflections on the theme, post your own blog or Facebook thoughts, or just quietly give yourself a bit of spiritual space.


I think about today’s theme – “Bless,” and I can’t help but wonder.

Is that something I truly have within my power to do?

Sure, I may say a blessing over a meal. I might bless someone who sneezes. I might wish someone blessings and love. I acknowledge and feel grateful for the blessings in my life, both those obvious and those in disguise.

But the very act of blessing. Is that my power, or is it God’s?

Every other verb on this month’s list is something I can do. Something within my capacity. I’m not so sure this one is.

Of course, I could speak to “the Divine within;” because God is in each one of us, each one of us truly has the power to bless.

Do we really, though? If I have the power to bestow blessings, wouldn’t it naturally follow that it is within my power to curse? I don’t desire to be weighted with that task. A Divine choice, indeed – one I don’t wish to make.

Which leads me to wonder. What are the powers we bestow to God, and what are the powers we recognize and develop within ourselves?

Where does the Divine within us end, and the human begin?


2 Responses to “A Month of Reflection: Day 3 – Bless”

  1. Sue Black Says:

    Does it have to be the ‘active’ bless?
    Consider how you are a blessing to so many — friends, family, students, strangers. I can identify people who are a blessing in my life — you among them. I can strive to be a blessing to those I encounter — a kind word, a smile, a small favor, a deliberate decision to act so that their life might be better in some small way.
    Rather than “bless you”, consider: “I hope that today something I say or do might be a blessing to you.” And “By the grace of God, may I be blessed today with people in my life who make the path just a little brighter.”

    • Lainie Levin Says:

      I love it when people give me new things to think about! Sue, you have put it beautifully – as you so very often do. Thank you for your wisdom and insight. You, as well, are someone I count as a blessing.

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