In this final day of your journey into the Father’s heart, your Very Dear Divine Daddy wants to give you his blessing. A blessing that will stay with you for the rest of your life. A blessing that will carry you into the bliss of Heaven. A blessing that will make a difference today and every time you return to Abba-Father during prayer.
But his bow remained steady, / his strong arms stayed limber, / because of the hand of the Mighty One of Jacob, / because of the Shepherd, the Rock of Israel, / because of your father’s God, who helps you, / because of the Almighty, who blesses you / with blessings of the skies above, / blessings of the deep springs below…. / Your father’s blessings are greater than the blessings of the ancient mountains, / than the bounty of the age-old hills. (Genesis 49:24-26 NIV)
This is his promise. You are a much-loved adopted child of God. With your adoption, you have inherited all that belongs to him. Generously! Abundantly! But what does this mean? In our human experiences, someone has to die before we receive our inheritance. Since Abba-Father is eternal, how does our divine inheritance come to us? Do we have to die? Do we have to wait until we reach Heaven before we can receive it?
Our inheritance looks like this: God has made available to us eternal life and every blessing under the heavens and in heaven. (See Genesis 49:25, Ephesians 1:3, Malachi 3:10.)
Jesus often said, “The kingdom of God is at hand.” We can correctly interpret that to include: “The full inheritance of God is at hand.” Note that Jesus did not say: “When you die, if you believe in Me you will enter the kingdom of God and then you will receive your inheritance.”
He did say, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live forever” (see John 11:25-26). This is the greatest blessing of all. But we need every blessing under the heavens now. Today. Right? Don’t you wish you could have Heaven on Earth this day and every day? Isn’t that what you’re asking for when you ask for God’s intervention in the problems of this world?
The good news is: Your inheritance is available to you right now. Abba-Father desires to give it to you today and every earthly day — as long as you are following Jesus and trying your best to be the saint he re-created you to be.
In human inheritances, very often the writers of wills base their decisions on how worthy the inheritors have been. In divine inheritances, Father God bases his decision on our acceptance of Jesus as our Lord and Savior, for it is Jesus who is worthy, not us.
Jesus also said, “Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.'” Now this he said about the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were to receive (John 7:38-39 ESV). This is the blessing from Abba-Father that empowers us to be the saints that he re-created us to be. The Holy Spirit helps us to become more and more saintly each day (if we ask him to).
In another scripture, Jesus put this blessing into the context of using our inheritance now, in daily life:
Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it. (John 14:12-14 NIV)
We have inherited the right to ask!
The reason why we don’t see this blessing fulfilled — the reason why we don’t always get what we ask for — is because we have not fully grasped (and believed) that we are God’s adopted children and that we have an inheritance that’s available to us right now. Jesus knew we’d struggle with this, so immediately after telling us we have a right to ask, he explained:
“If you love me, keep my commands. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever — the Spirit of truth.” (John 14:15-17 NIV)
A personal relationship with the Holy Spirit is necessary to receive and utilize our divine inheritance. We are impotent Christians if we love Jesus but ignore the Holy Spirit. We live as foster children instead of adopted children of the Father if we neglect learning how to be in a loving relationship with the Holy Spirit.
Another condition for receiving our divine inheritance here on Earth is what we plan to do with what we receive. Every blessing is meant to be shared.
Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God. (2 Corinthians 9:6-8,11 NIV)
Jesus explains this clearly in the parable about separating the sheep from and the goats:
Then the King [the Son of Man when he comes in glory] will say to those on his right, “Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.” (Matthew 25:34-36 NIV)
Eight Special Blessings
In Matthew 5:1-12, Jesus teaches the Beatitudes. The word “beatitude” means supreme blessedness or happiness, a state of utmost bliss. This is what Jesus desired for us when he preached the Sermon on the Mount. This is what the Father wants to give us as our inheritance – right now. Today.
The first set of Beatitudes (verses 3-6) focuses on our relationship with Father God. They tell us that God is the source of our happiness. The rest of them deal with our relationships with each other. This pattern reflects Jesus’ core message: First love God with all your heart and soul and mind, and the second commandment is to love your neighbor as yourself (see Matthew 22:37).
(Note: The Bible version quoted here in bold font is the English Standard Version, ESV.)
1. Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven (verse 3).
We are “poor in spirit” when we stop placing our confidence in material security or other false gods (the kingdom of the world). By depending instead on our Daddy-God (the kingdom of heaven), we experience his power and love and faithfulness. Think of a time when you died to yourself by choosing to be poor in spirit, trusting in the Father when it seemed easier or more sensible to trust in the things of this world. Remember how much closer to God you felt!
2. Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted (verse 4).
We “mourn” or “sorrow” when our flesh-nature wants to take the easy path that leads to sin but our spirit chooses to resist and to take the holy path. Our Daddy-God comforts us while we struggle and suffer. His ability to comfort us is limitless. Recall an experience you had fighting against yourself because you didn’t want to do something God’s way. Did you feel like crying in frustration? Did your flesh-nature mourn when you refused to give in to it? How did God comfort you?
3. Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth (verse 5).
We are “meek” or “lowly” when we are submissive to our Father’s Divine Will, obedient to his commands. Inheriting the “land” means becoming one of Abba’s royal children in the kingdom of heaven. What are some rules of the Church that people don’t like to obey? Is there a rule that you first disobeyed then obeyed? Why did you change? What effect did it have on you?
4. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied (verse 6).
We “hunger and thirst for holiness” when we choose to live morally, i.e., when we conform our will to the Father’s will. This hunger will be satisfied because the Father gave us Jesus, and Jesus gave us the Holy Spirit who helps us achieve righteousness. Reflect on how you have grown in righteousness. What activities have purified you? Have you ever experienced growth in your ability to love? Did you become stronger morally because you overcame temptations?
The second half of the Beatitudes reflects the spiritual growth that is produced by the first half.
5. Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy (verse 7).
When we are poor in spirit and place our trust in God’s mercy (verse 3), the next step is to give his mercy to others, and this results in the blessing of receiving even more of God’s mercy (verse 7). Call to mind some of the contrasts between the world and Christianity; for example, lying versus honesty. When you have chosen the Christian way, see how this shows the purity of your heart!
6. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God (verse 8).
When we’ve wanted to sin but we’ve chosen instead to do what is holy even though it makes our flesh-nature mourn (verse 4), we become pure in our hearts and we can see Abba-Father more fully, i.e., we dwell in the presence of God (verse 8). This purity allows the light of Christ in us to shine more brightly onto others, and they are brought closer to God through the witness of our lives.
7. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God (verse 9).
When we are meek (verse 5), we become peacemakers (verse 9), because we no longer fight and argue with others. Consider how God deals with us when we choose the path of sin. Does he fight against us? Sometimes it seems like we’re wrestling with him, but it’s not God who is arguing: We’re the ones who do all the complaining and yelling and struggling. Being peacemakers means we live as his adopted children by handling conflicts the same way our Father does, the same way that Jesus showed us. We love our enemies unconditionally. We turn the other cheek. Reflect on a time when you served as a peacemaker. How did it reveal the Father to the people with whom you dealt? Did you have the opportunity to see the difference it made in their spiritual lives?
8. Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you (verses 10-12).
When we strive to live out our true identity as saints – the adopted children of the Loving Father — we become more like Christ. This is a clear contrast to those who don’t, and for this reason they persecute us. They convince themselves that they are better than we are in order to avoid realizing that they should give up their old ways and be converted. When was the last time you were persecuted because of your relationship with God? Perhaps someone misunderstood your faith or rejected you or deliberately caused problems for you. Did you feel blessed by it? Did you feel closer or further from Jesus when it happened? Did you grow spiritually?
It’s not easy to live in such a way that we can receive the blessings described in the Beatitudes. It takes great effort, but the Holy Spirit is here to help us, to comfort us, to guide us, and to reward us.
One of the functions of ancient kings was to bless the citizens of their kingdoms. Most cultures believed that their kings served as intermediaries between the gods and the people. And so they expected their kings to have the power to bless his people with good weather and abundant crops, children, and prosperity in business dealings. We, however, have the One True God as our king, and we have direct access to him.
In the Old Testament, we read about the great patriarchs of the faith giving a father’s blessing to the eldest son before dying. This was a reflection of God the Father. They believed that the father of the home was directly connected to God the Father. Therefore, whatever blessing the father chose to give to his offspring (usually the first-born son) came with the authority of God. This is why Jacob stole the blessing from his twin, Esau, and why Esau was so upset by the trickery (read that story in Genesis 27). They knew that the blessing was not a wish; it was a guaranteed plan for the future, an inheritance received from the hand of God.
May God give you heaven’s dew
and earth’s richness–
an abundance of grain and new wine.
May nations serve you
and peoples bow down to you.
Be lord over your brothers,
and may the sons of your mother bow down to you.
May those who curse you be cursed
and those who bless you be blessed.”
(Isaac’s blessing to Jacob, Genesis 27:28-29 NIV)
Moses relayed the guaranteed blessings of God to the people of Israel. He proclaimed the inheritance given to those who enter into the covenant with God. In Deuteronomy 28:1-13 (NIV), we find fifteen blessings. As you read them, remember that God has never changed. The needs change, but not God and his blessing. Let this truth sink in: God wants to bless you in the same way, though adapted for your circumstances today.
If you fully obey the Lord your God and carefully follow all his commands I give you today, the Lord your God will set you high above all the nations on earth. All these blessings will come on you and accompany you if you obey the Lord your God:
- You will be blessed in the city and blessed in the country.
- The fruit of your womb will be blessed,
- and the crops of your land
- and the young of your livestock — the calves of your herds and the lambs of your flocks.
- Your basket and your kneading trough will be blessed.
- You will be blessed when you come in and blessed when you go out.
- The Lord will grant that the enemies who rise up against you will be defeated before you. They will come at you from one direction but flee from you in seven.
- The Lord will send a blessing on your barns and on everything you put your hand to.
- The Lord your God will bless you in the land he is giving you.
- The Lord will establish you as his holy people, as he promised you on oath, if you keep the commands of the Lord your God and walk in obedience to him.
- Then all the peoples on earth will see that you are called by the name of the Lord, and they will fear you.
- The Lord will grant you abundant prosperity — in the fruit of your womb, the young of your livestock and the crops of your ground — in the land he swore to your ancestors to give you.
- The Lord will open the heavens, the storehouse of his bounty, to send rain on your land in season and to bless all the work of your hands.
- You will lend to many nations but will borrow from none.
- The Lord will make you the head, not the tail. If you pay attention to the commands of the Lord your God that I give you this day and carefully follow them, you will always be at the top, never at the bottom.
Blessings come to us all the time. Every breath and each heartbeat is a blessing of life. We are blessed whenever we see, do, hear, or feel something that comes from the heart of our Divine Daddy. Thus, we’re even blessed in situations that feel like curses, because he is with us, guiding us through it!
To grow stronger in our relationship with the Father, we need to become more aware of our inheritance. We need to look for the blessings he wants to give us. Admittedly, this can be especially hard to do during hardships. But we succeed when we give it conscious effort and ask for the help of the Holy Spirit.
During troubled times, we must overcome our desire for humans to make things better. We must, instead, look for and listen for Abba-Father pointing out the part of our inheritance that we can pick up and use while waiting for him to work inside the troubles. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you do this.
The blessings inside the Lord’s Prayer
Jesus gave us the “Lord’s Prayer” so that we can have a wonderful relationship with our Divine Daddy. The problem is, if we run through it quickly and mindlessly, we miss the blessings that Jesus intended for us to receive.
This, then, is how you should pray: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.” (Matthew 6:9-13 NIV)
When we pray the “Our Father” prayer meaningfully and mindfully, we submit ourselves into a relationship of complete love with and trust in the Father. The Catechism tells us that having a loving relationship with the Father “has enormous consequences for our whole life” (para. 222-227):
1. “It means coming to know God’s greatness and majesty.”
No matter how loving and powerful and caring and helpful and wise we think God is, he is infinitely more so. But we box him up in our minds, believing that he is limited because the examples of humans and our understandings of what the Father is like have been limited. When our problems become overwhelming and it seems that God’s help is very limited, it’s because we imagine him to be who he is not. This is when it’s time to pray, “Our Father, give me this day my daily bread, and help me get in touch with how You are loving me right here and now.”
2. “It means living in thanksgiving … everything we are and have comes from him.”
How much credit do we give to ourselves and the hard work we put into getting the good things in life? How much credit do we give to luck or happenstance? The truth is: Nothing good exists except that it comes from the God. When you pray “Hallowed be Thy name,” right after calling God “our Father,” pause to reflect on the total goodness of God’s Fatherhood. Then pray it again with the awe of immense thankfulness.
3. “It means knowing the unity and true dignity of all men.”
When we really believe that God is the Father of all, we have no prejudices, no feelings of being superior to certain people, no fears of being inferior to others, and no difficulty loving even the most unlikable folks. Since God’s love for all people is unlimited and unconditional, being in a close relationship with the Father stirs up within us the same love for everyone. But if we can name someone whom God supposedly does not totally love because he or she is undeserving, we will have a hard time believing that the Father totally loves us, because we, too, are unworthy.
4. “It means making good use of created things … to use everything that is not God only insofar as it brings us closer to him, and to detach ourselves from it insofar as it turns us away from him.”
What possessions, what people, what habits and ideas and dreams are hard to let go of? When we truly believe that the Father loves us completely, everything else loses their importance. We eagerly take time to sit in his love, share our hearts with him, and do favors for him. If a neighbor’s house burns down, we don’t mind giving them some of our own furniture while they rebuild. If the church asks for more money, we don’t mind increasing our donations because we know that the Father is generous with us. What do we love more than God?
5. “It means trusting God in every circumstance, even in adversity.”
Do we see blessings in the troubles we experience? We do if we know that God is taking care of us as a Good Father and that he’s working a plan to bring good from the bad. What comes to mind when he doesn’t answer our prayers the way we want him to and in the timing we desire? Do we say, “Abba-Father, You have a better idea than I do of how to answer this prayer!” Or do we take matters into our own hands first? When we rush ahead of God, we’re not taking time to consider all of the resources that we’ve inherited from our Father, such as understanding, patience, sacrificial love, wisdom on how to remedy a difficult relationship, the involvement of the right people, the right circumstances falling into place, etc.
The Lord’s Prayer as a dialog
The “Our Father” prayer is most helpful when we slow it down enough to allow it to become a dialog. For example:
Our Father —
“Yes, My wonderful child? What do you want to ask of Me? I’m delighted that you have come out of your busy day to spend time with Me.”
Who art in Heaven —
“I long to spend eternity with you here in Heaven, My blessed child. I’m delighted that you accepted the tremendous gift of My Son’s sacrifice. Please don’t be lazy about your journey towards Heaven. I will provide you with a period of purification in Purgatory if necessary, through My Great Mercy, but I’d much rather wrap My Loving Arms around you the very moment that you leave Earth. My greatest desire is for you and I to have complete union. Waste no time in reaching My Love!”
Hallowed be Thy name —
“Thank you for acknowledging My Perfect Holiness. When you call on Me and depend on My holiness, My purity, My total and complete love for you and My inability to ever sin against you, we are dancing together in the joy of our Father-child relationship. Depend on My holiness; it is the source of your confidence. My holiness means that your prayers are being answered in the best way and at the best time.”
Thy Kingdom come —
“Everything in My kingdom is your inheritance, my beloved child. My grace is yours. My generosity is yours. My confidence is yours. My power over evil is yours. What else do you need? If it’s something that belongs to My kingdom, it’s yours for the asking.”
Thy will be done —
“Trust My perfect timing in everything you ask for. Let go of your ideas of how and when your prayers should be answered. Unite your will to My Divine Will. Repeat this part of the prayer whenever you feel disappointed, or confused about My will for you, or overwhelmed by the invasion of evil in the world. Pray out loud, ‘Our Father … Thy will be done. Thank You. I trust in You. Take care of everything.'”
On Earth as it is in Heaven —
“Heaven and Earth unite when you and I unite, my dear one. Your desire to submit everything to My Divine Will brings Heaven into your earthly life. And in that union, you have the fullness of the inheritance that I have given you. Count on it. Watch My Will unfold in unexpected ways and in the wisdom of My perfect timing.”
Give us this day our daily bread —
“Tell Me, My precious one, what you need from Me today. Start every day this way. Which of the blessings of Heaven do you seek today? What kind of help do you need? Remember: The measure in which you give to others is the measure you have chosen for yourself. To receive more of My blessings, become more generous in giving.”
Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us —
“What sins do you want Me to forgive today? The measure in which you forgive others is the measure you have chosen for receiving My forgiveness. Do you think I will not fully forgive every sin you confess in the Sacrament of Reconciliation? And in the Penitential Rite of the Holy Liturgy? And in your repentance at any time or any place? I am not a liar. If you still feel unforgiven or unforgiveable, who is it that you have not forgiven? Choose to forgive – even if the one you have withheld forgiveness from is yourself. If you don’t forgive yourself, return to My Divine Will which has fully forgiven you.”
Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil —
“Those who do not ask for My help are seduced by temptations. I have not taken you out of this world yet, and so you face many temptations every day. I am selective about which ones come into your life, because I want to strengthen your fidelity, increase your virtue, and augment your merits. I have given you everything you need for overcoming the lies and seductions of the Evil One. My blessed child, rely on the inheritance I have given you. Each temptation is a test you can ace. Learn from them.”
“Amen! It is so! I have spoken, with full authority, in total agreement with your prayer.”
The Litany of the Father’s Heart
Now I would like to share with you a prayer that can help you complete your journey into the Father’s heart. You would do well to make it part of your daily prayers. (All the prayers in this chapter are available for download below.) This is a prayer to your Doting Daddy, the loving God who cares for you far more than you can imagine. Afterward, we will end this book with his blessing to you, his response to your prayer.
Father, First Person of the Most Holy Trinity,
Thank You for creating me to be Your beloved child.
Father of the only-begotten Son,
Thank You for loving me so much that You sent Your Son to die for me.
Father who, with the Son, sends me love in the Person of the Holy Spirit,
Thank You for sending me an Advocate who comes to my defense.
Our Father in Heaven,
Be my eternal Father.
Father, infinite majesty,
Thank You for caring about me with all Your might.
Father, infinite holiness,
Thank You for being my Perfect Father.
Father, infinite goodness,
Thank You for not abandoning me when I am struck by evil.
Father, infinite happiness,
Thank You for sharing Your joy with me.
Thank You for wanting to take good care of me.
Thank You for doing what’s best for me.
Father, present everywhere,
Thank You for being with me in all my trials and all my victories.
Thank You for appreciating me for who I truly am when others misjudge me.
Father, all merciful,
Thank You for forgiving me when I repent of my sins.
Father of love,
Thank You for cherishing me.
Father of beauty,
Thank You for making me in Your image.
Father of wisdom,
Thank You for directing me through Your Holy Spirit.
Father, Divine Providence,
Thank You for watching over me.
You are my Good Father in joy and in sorrow.
You are my Good Father in sickness and in health.
You are my Good Father in prosperity and in adversity.
You are my Good Father in life and in death.
You are my Good Father for all of eternity.
Thank You! Amen.
To go into this more deeply, listen to my podcast about the Litany of the Father’s Heart, where I unpack its wealth line by line. Go to https://footstepstoheaven.com/prayer/the-litany-of-the-fathers-heart/. Or watch the video of it.
The Litany Inside the Father’s Heart for You
And now the Father gives you his blessing:
Thank you for being My beloved child.
My child who follows My only-begotten Son,
Thank you for loving Me so much that you want to spend eternity with Me.
I am your Father who, with the Son, gives you My love in the Person of the Holy Spirit;
Thank you for receiving the Advocate whom I give you for your defense.
I am your Father in Heaven;
I bless you with the full inheritance of being My beloved child.
I am infinite majesty;
I bless you with the fullness of My caring compassion.
I am infinite holiness;
I bless you with all of My being, all of My righteousness, all of My perfection.
I am infinite goodness;
I bless you with the promise to never abandon you when you are struck by evil.
I am infinite happiness;
I bless you with My joy.
I am all-powerful;
I bless you with My divine power to defeat evil and to do all that I call you to do.
I am all-knowing;
I bless you with whatever I know is best for you.
I am present everywhere;
I bless you with My hug in all your trials and My dance in all our victories.
I am all-just;
I bless you with My appreciation of your goodness when others treat you unjustly.
I am all merciful;
I bless you with forgiveness in the very moment you repent of your sins.
I am the Father of love;
I cherish you.
I am the Father of beauty;
I have made you in My image, and so you are very beautiful!
I am the Father of wisdom;
I am directing you through My Holy Spirit.
I am Divine Providence;
I am watching over you.
I am your Good Father in joy and in sorrow.
I am your Good Father in sickness and in health.
I am your Good Father in prosperity and in adversity.
I am your Good Father in life and in death.
I am your Good Father for all of eternity.
I bless you! Amen.
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© 2021 by Terry A. Modica
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