It my previous post I wrote briefly about the power and purpose of the benediction. In this post, I want to write about some practical suggestions on pronouncing the benediction for greater impact.
Some Brief Tips:
- Meditate on the benediction before you give it. When you understand the meaning, your blessing will have a greater impact as you pronounce it. Your engagement and immersion into the text will be clearly telegraphed to the congregation.
- Pause after you say the words, “Receive the benediction.” This will allow people to prepare their hearts through this method of building anticipation.
- Most ministers who pronounce a benediction lift their hands towards the congregation. This has been a common posture since the Old Testament. Jesus Himself blessed through the lifting up of his hands. (Lev 9:22, Luke 24:50)
- Have the congregation bless each other. You may project the benediction on the screen and have the congregation say it together and towards each other. This is a wonderful way to live out the Priesthood of all believers: (Ex. 19:6; Hos. 14:2; Ps. 50:23; Ps. 51:17-19; Ps. 141:2; 1 Pet. 2:5-9; Heb. 13:10-16)
- Invite your congregation to place one hand of the shoulder of the person beside them as the benediction is pronounced either by the minister or by the congregation as an entire body. Please be aware that there are some settings where this may not be appropriate. Always be sensitive to your setting.
- Sing the benediction over the people. This can be performed in a canted (chanted) format (possibly with or without a predefined melody) or by members of the worship team through a song of benediction.
- Consider placing a music bed underneath the benediction in the key that the closing song will be played in. (I will share more on this in a later post on the principle of the unbroken line)
- Play a benediction video. Many are available online. You can start here.
- Bring up a child to pronounce the benediction.
- Play a short piece of instrumental music as a benediction and invite people to meditate on a meaningful scripture of blessing during this piece of music
- Recite a poem with deep spiritual blessing.
- Play a Youtube or Vimeo video of a slam poet. One of my favourite is Mike Young. See his work here and here.
In my next post, I’ll provide many benedictions from the scriptures for you to use in your times of worship.
As of November 15th, Break Forth Canada 2012 is 87% sold out. Do you want to dig in deep to enrich the worship life of your church? Join 15,000 at the largest event of its kind in North America. Learn from some of the best in the world. Click the graphic below for more info: