Then Saul said to David, “Blessed be you, my son David! You will do many things and will succeed in them.” ESV 1 Samuel 26:25
I’m slowly coming to grasp one of the most influential opportunities we have in the lives of our children is the words we choose to speak to them. All of us speak to our children throughout the day. Often our words are laced with anger or frustration (and sometimes rightly so to an extent). Other times we are tired or selfish, and our words cut more than they should. As I worked through the life of David, I noticed several things about the words Saul said to David.
First, the sheer power of this prophecy stands out. Note the blessing was aptly spoken. David had just spared Saul’s life for the second time. While Saul slept, David had the opportunity to kill him and thus end the years-long conflict that existed as Saul sought David’s life. David’s choice to entrust himself to God demonstrated his respect for Saul, and moved Saul to say what he did. When our children do what is right, even in hard situations, it clearly demonstrates the power of the Holy Spirit at work, and we can rightly affirm them when we see these things. Secondly note these are the last words Saul says to David. Even though Saul had spent a lifetime tearing David down and seeking his life, his final words to David are quite affirming. It’s never too late to begin to speak positive blessings to your children. Finally, note the prophetic truth to the blessing. David did go on to do many things and be quite successful. As authority figures in our children’s lives, God has given us the unique and awesome responsibility of speaking truth over our children and using our words to shape their future.
What words are you saying to your children? Are you speaking truth about their future? Are you affirming areas where you see the Holy Spirit at work in their lives? Are you warning about sin and character deficiencies? Be encouraged that it’s never too late to start, even if you have miserably failed in the past. Saul’s final words to David didn’t undo years of torment, but it meant he ended his relationship with David well. May you speak encouraging truth to your children and shape their destiny.