Have you ever asked God to bless someone who annoys you?

Solemnity of Mary, the Holy Mother of God, 1 January 2021

In today’s reflection, Waiting in Joyful Hope author Michelle Francl-Donnay reflects on Numbers 6:27, John O’Donohue‘s thoughts about blessings, and Madeleine L’Engle‘s extremely wise advice.

In the comments section below, share your own response to today’s scripture, Francl-Donnay’s reflection, or the accompanying meditation prompt.

3 thoughts on “Have you ever asked God to bless someone who annoys you?”

  1. Margaret M. Thomas

    Michelle Franci-Donnay writes “Blessings call forth something of the divine in both the one blessing and the one who is blessed.” I had never heard that before. She states that Madeleine L’Engle suggests “blessing six people you don’t like before breakfast each morning”. If we all did that it would change the world. I have not blessed someone who annoys me. I did not realize it calls forth something Divine. I will give it a try.

  2. A podcaster I listen to suggested that we should not just pray for our enemies in a general way, but actually try to picture them experiencing true happiness, security, companionship, even heaven. Whatever good thing we want for ourselves, he thought we should try to imagine the people who annoy us receiving that first, and condition ourselves to feel happy for them. When I can remember to employ this spiritual tool, it can be an amazing antidote for desolation.

  3. When I read the first reading, I was surprised. I thought that was an Irish blessing! Time to reread the Old Testament. Like Francl-Donna, the three of us say, “God bless you, I love you, night night,” to one another every night without fail. When apart, we text ILYGBYNN. Further, like Madeleine L’Engle, I have , for about 30 years, been blessing the people who have not treated me well. The act helps me to forgive them. It gives me peace. I really do hope God helps them to live their best lives. Some are easier to bless than others. But the more I say it in my prayers, the more I mean it. In 2021, we’d better start blessing those who who bother us, or we won’t change the justice system, stabilize our climate, eliminate racism, or accomplish anything meaningful.

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