Many Protestants are familiar with the following benediction at their Sunday church service: The Lord bless you and keep you;the Lord make his face to shine upon you, and be gracious to you; the Lord lift up his countenance upon you, and give you peace.
We could easily conclude that these are from one of Paul’s epistles, but no, they are the words of God speaking to Moses (Numbers 6.24-26). When I read them this morning, I was aware of how beautifully they sum up what I want to pray for people. Yes, I want to pray that disease is cured, that the sun shines, that people mend their ways; and yes, I do offer such prayers. But this prayer from Numbers shifts all my judgments and “shoulds” to the side and clears the way for me to pray, “Thy will be done.”