"Bless her heart. She leaves for college Saturday."
"He's going to Afghanistan, bless his heart."
"Bless their hearts. The husband lost his job."
"She's facing six rounds of chemo, bless her heart."
"Bless her heart" is an expression I've heard almost every day for my whole life. I think most of us probably have. I must say, though, I've never thought too much about its origin, but in reading about Abraham, I wonder if it didn't start with him? After all, God made a covenant with Abraham. That covenant promised blessings to Abraham, his family, and to all who came after him. What a deal! However, Abraham was facing difficult and unknown territory. Wouldn't it be easier to stay home where life was safe and comfortable? Fortunately, Abraham followed God's call and entered the unknown In order to be bestowed a great blessing, he had to rely on faith and obedience. So, he left his home in Mesopotamia with his family in tow, and headed for Canaan. The unknown. Bless his heart! He had his father, his wife, and his nephew. They were to venture to worlds unknown. But God accompanied them. He promised blessing, and He delivered.
Sometimes we enter the unknown by choice when we take a new job, choose to marry, enter the mission field. Other times we face the unknown by chance when those we love get cancer, a spouse files for divorce, or we lose a job. Yet still, God is with us. He promises blessing, and He delivers. Abraham's story is proof. I have to give Abraham credit for the "bless his heart" expression. His story of perseverance, obedience, and faith reminds us that we are literally blessed. God promised. If we rely on faith, even in worlds unknown, we will receive blessing. The unknown can be scary and difficult but because of Abraham's testimony and God's grace, our hearts are blessed. So the next time you hear or say, "bless his/her heart," be reminded that it's TRUE...for all of us!
"The Lord had said to Abram, 'Go from your country, your people and your father's household to the land I will show you. I will make you into a great nation, and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you. - Genesis 12:1-3.
"By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place that he was to receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going." - Hebrews 11:8