Think About It!
Here’s something crazy: at the most basic level, being a follower of Jesus is about experiencing the blessing of God…Talk about a life upgrade! There’s two places we get hung up when it comes to God’s blessings: sometimes, we don’t want to let God bless us. Or if we do, sometimes we don’t work to bless others in turn. As we wrap up our journey through the Psalms of Ascent, we’re taking a deeper look at what it means to be blessed and to live a life that blesses others, too –– it’ll make a huge difference for all of us!
Talk About It!
1. The blessing of unity
- Have your parents or teachers ever taught you a song to help you remember something? If you were a kid growing up in Israel a long time ago, your parents would have taught you these psalms to sing. They were walking songs, and as families would walk to worship God together, three times a year, families sang these songs together to get their focus back on God and everything he has done.
- Have you ever been separated from someone because of a fight or unkind words? Did you ever make things better with that person? Lots of people in our world are divided because of arguments and unkind words. When we listen to our own minds, we get divided…but when we listen to the Spirit, we can be together in peace. That’s called unity!
- What is your favorite thing? What is most special to you? When this psalm was written, oil was an expensive and special thing. The psalmist is saying few things are more special than unity among God’s people. You can always tell when the oil of the Holy Spirit is at work in a group of people because it’s only then that humanity actively works together to take broken relationships and make them whole again.
2. Bless the Lord
- Have you ever had so much fun doing something that you lost track of time? What happened? That’s the idea that the psalmist is trying to get across. When we are so in love with Jesus, just spending time with him is fun. In fact, we can get so lost in it that we lose track of time! Has that ever happened to you?
- When you were small, did you ever go to a grown up and asked to be picked up? How did you do it? That’s the picture that is being used as an example, a small child asking to be picked up, hands high in the air toward a parent who loves them. When little kids do that, it’s because they love and trust that grown up and want to be close to them. Do you ever lift your hands up when worshiping the Lord?
- When you remember how good God is, what do you want to do? When God blesses us we react with joy and with praise! No matter what we’re going through, our lives as followers of Jesus should be marked by worship to the Lord.
3. Let the Lord bless you
- Do your words and actions make God happy? God wants to bless his people, but he can’t bless us in the same way if we are running away from him or disobeying him. We have to live our lives in a way that God can bless. God wants to bless us –– plain and simple! But if we live in a way that is outside God’s design, he can’t bless that.
- When God blesses us, what should we do? Psalm 67:1-4 talks about the process of God’s blessing on us. It goes like this: God blesses us, so we praise him. When we praise him, his name is known throughout the world. As his glory spreads, we get to worship with believers all over the world.
Optional Follow-up Questions
- What makes you say that?
- What makes you say that?
- How does that make you feel?
- How would you explain this to someone who doesn’t know Jesus?
- Why do you think God did it that way?
- Why should we do the things that God tells us?