“You are my Peace (My Shalom)”
By now you have heard me close out my blog with the salutation “Shalom, Mama Swan”. Unless Hebrew is your native language you may or may not have heard that word before. Shalom means peace. It is used in the Old Testament as a greeting for both hello and goodbye. It comes from “Shalem” which means “whole” or “complete” as in a person’s welfare or safety.
Isaiah 9:5 shows us that Jesus is the “Prince of Peace (Shalom)”.
Psalm 29:11 says that “God will bless his people with peace. (Shalom)”.
Solomon, whose very name comes from shalom encourages us in 1 Kings 8:61 that our hearts should be shalem which is often translated “wholly devoted” to the Lord, to live by his decrees, and obey his commands.
In the New Testament it is used a similar way as both a greeting and as peace. Most of the letters in the New Testament open with “Grace and peace (shalom) be to you”.
Luke 24:36 “While they were saying these things, he himself stood in their midst and said to them “Peace (Shalom) to you.””
John 14:27 “Peace (Shalom) I leave with you, my peace (Shalom) I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.”
Every night before our kids went to bed, we had a bedtime ritual. Having 3 kids meant we were outnumbered so we had to be creative about it. I would start by reading to all three every night. They would take turns picking out books and often had piles waiting by the ‘reading chair’. When they got bigger, we would all flop and read on our bed so we would all fit. When we were finished, then it WAS TIME! One child got to go on Sean’s shoulders, one child got to put their feet on his feet and walk with him like Frankenstein. The other got to walk Frankenstein with me. The child on the shoulders got dropped onto his or her bed squealing with delight. The child on the feet then got raised up as well and dropped into his or her bed. We tucked them in, and then sang our prayers. Yes, I know what you’re thinking… but we’re songwriters, we can’t help it. We would rap, sing, and make up melodies to the “Rhyming Bible” to teach our kids the Word of God. Like: Uh, oh, Jonah, you should have gone to Ninevah, Uh, oh, Jonah, you should have gone to Ninevah. At the end we would sing “The Blessing” over them. Our version. Just sayin, “The Blessing” made popular by Kari Jobe, she stole it from us, haha. We have been doing it for 33 years. In the Bible it is known as the Priestly Blessing or the Aaronic blessing.
This is one of the things that I believe helped establish peace in our house at the end of the day.
Numbers 6:24-26 NKJ says, “And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying: Speak to Aaron, and his sons, saying, “This is the way you shall bless the children of Israel. Say to them: “The Lord bless you and keep you; The Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you. The Lord lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace.””
NIV reads “The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you. The Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace.”
KJV “The LORD bless thee; and keep thee; The LORD make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee; The LORD lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace. And they shall put my name upon the children of Israel; and I will bless them.”
AMP “ The Lord bless you and watch, guard, and keep you; The Lord make His face to shine upon and enlighten you and be gracious (kind, merciful, and giving favor) to you; The Lord lift up His (approving) countenance upon you and give you peace (tranquility of heart and life continually).”
When we were singing this over our kids at night not only were we speaking the Word of God over them, but we were imparting it as well.
Here’s what we were declaring over them. The word bless in Numbers 6:25 means an increase in prosperity because Yahweh (God) will keep the worshiper from harm.
6:25 Make His face shine upon you implies taking pleasure in the worshiper, with the result that the Lord will be gracious or favorable to us.
6:26 to lift up His countenance upon you is similar to verse 25. It results in peace, the provision of all things necessary for our well-being.
We sang an Amen at the end of the blessing (ours was shorter lol) and as the kids got older we added a few harmonies along the way. To this day when we get together and sing it we fight (haha) about everyone taking each other’s part.
God loves when we pray, sing, and declare His Word back to Him. We can declare peace over our children, our homes, our workplace, our city, state, and our country. God’s Word does not return void. If you want more peace in your house then I encourage you to start praying, singing, or declaring His Word over yourself, your family, and any situation that you may be facing. God’s promises are Yes and Amen according to His Word and His will! He is always working even when we can’t see Him. Believe that He is who He says He is, and you will start to see Him working in ways you never saw before!
Say this with me: Father, in the Name of Jesus, I thank you that you are my Peace (My Shalom). I thank you that you continually watch, guard, and keep me. I thank you that you shine you face on me and are gracious to me. You show me mercy and give me favor. My heart is “Shalom” totally devoted to you. You love me with an everlasting love, and I declare that the Prince of Peace rules and reigns in and over my house during this holiday season.