The first blessing I ever gave was as a new “green bean” Elder in Okinawa, Japan. My companion had gone into a grand mal seizure and I had to do something. I had NO IDEA how to do a blessing! I said a prayer and asked the Lord to help me. I put my hands on his head and said something pretty basic and the moment I told him to “be healed” I felt a rush of power come through the top of my head, through my body and out my hands to my companion. His seizure stopped instantly and he fell asleep. I’m sure the blessing was not in compliance with what the Church says as the proper way, so why was it so effective?


Over the years I’ve learned more about giving blessings and have gained much faith in their power. I’ve wondered why members of the Church seem to have certain ideas about blessings. Most people never think to ask for a blessing unless their Bishop offers one. Some even think it’s inappropriate to ask for a blessing unless they’re on their deathbed. Most blessings are given when someone is set apart for a calling or a confirmation. I’ve heard many standard blessings and they tend to be quite “safe” as if the one giving the blessing is afraid to go too far. At the back end of the blessings you might hear, “And I bless you with all other blessings the Lord has in store for you.” That’s a good way to say nothing.


I learned a great lesson over the years as I’ve watched my Dad give blessings. My Dad is a retired football coach. He is a good man, but not overly spiritual. He would always start by giving me his council and then the blessing would tell me the exact opposite. He would then say, “I am never giving you a blessing again!” (Of course he always does.) The part that has been amazing to me is that he would give me very specific promises that would always come true in a miraculous fashion. I would suggest reading this post on the “Law of the Last Second:”

I have learned that a blessing can be powerful, whether or not the giver is well learned or spiritually minded, as long as they allow the Lord to speak through them. A child could give a blessing if they had permission of the Lord and enough faith.


We are taught in the Church that one must have the Melchizedek Priesthood to give a blessing. If we really had the full priesthood we would be doing some pretty miraculous things like Moses, Enoch, Elijah and Jesus of Nazareth. The Lord Himself can only give that priesthood. What we have is the Aaronic, “administrative” priesthood. Our “Melchizedek,” as we call it, is simply an extension of the keys our Church authorities choose to give us. No person, even the President of the Church, has a right to give a blessing, in the name of the Lord, without His permission. To give a blessing, which is not by the power of the Holy Ghost is to take the Lord’s name in vain. I’m afraid this happens quite regularly in our Church. To give a blessing with power, one must first be given permission.


Whenever I am about to give a blessing I try to find a private place to pray and ask the Lord what he would like me to do. I usually acknowledge to Him my reliance on His help as I seek revelation for the blessing. I express to the Lord my desire to help this person, that I can only do this if He shares with me His light and love in their behalf. (I pretty much beg for His help.) I ask for permission to speak His words. I ask if they will be healed. I ask if I should do anything particularly different. When I get the answers, I am ready. I pray to the Lord using the pattern on the post, “Four Steps to Powerful Prayer.”


When we give a priesthood blessing, the Lord pours His Spirit upon the one offering the blessing (if they have faith and permission) and the recipient of the blessing (if they have faith) to seal the words of the blessing. The same blue light I talked about in the post on Powerful Prayer permeates those partaking in the blessing. If it is a healing blessing, the giver and receiver may feel that rush of the Lord’s power as the blessing takes place. I don’t always feel that, but when I do, it is unmistakable. Usually what we feel is a peaceful mild feeling that is typical of the Spirit of the Lord. We may feel the love of our Father in Heaven and the comfort of the Spirit as the blessing takes effect. It is good to have someone offer a regular prayer with those present before the blessing to help the recipient to have the Spirit with them and any who would be present.


There are many signs we use during the blessing to inspire faith. I usually will use consecrated oil if I have some handy. It is a sign that the Holy Ghost will seal the blessing. The Lord, during His ministry, would seal his own blessings using spit or clay or having them wash in water. It can be anything the Spirit leads you to do. You could take a wet paper towel and wipe someone’s forehead and it would accomplish the same thing. The act of placing one’s hands upon the head of the recipient is another sign that the giver is bringing the blessing from God to the receiver. The hands can be placed anywhere on the body as you feel inspired. A blessing can be given without touching at all, if so directed. Sometimes the Spirit may direct you to whisper the blessing and sometimes to speak loudly. Having others participate in the circle is appropriate for confirmations where Aaronic keys are bestowed, but only a courtesy when doing other blessings. It will not add any special power unless the person offering the blessing (without faith) is blocking the blessing and the power is sent through the faithful person (who is not speaking) to the recipient of the blessing.


I begin the blessing: “Person’s name, having been given authority of Jesus Christ . . .” I end the blessing like a normal prayer. Don’t worry about fancy words. Speak to the level of the person you are offering the blessing. The challenge is to tap into the Spirit and say what the Lord wants you to say. For me, the words come in blocks or phrases. As the Spirit guides, you receive pure intelligence, it comes to your mind and you have to translate it into the words you are familiar with. Sometimes it is difficult to find the right word for the thought and sometimes they will flow so quickly you need to slow down. Take your time. You may find certain thoughts come to you and you may feel reluctant to say them. If they keep returning, you darn well better say them. As you are offering the blessing, focus on how you “feel.” If your heart and mind are even and calm, and if there is a loving resonance covering your emotions, and if you feel that your thoughts are above your own—you are receiving the blessing from the Spirit. Don’t be afraid or doubt. The Lord has your back.


Sometimes, no matter how hard we try, our blessing falls flat. What would cause that? Many years ago I was asked to give a blessing to my sister in law. Half way through the blessing the Spirit stopped and I could hardly speak. I thought there was something wrong with me and quickly wrapped up the blessing. I talked with her and she admitted that half way through the blessing she doubted the blessing. She expressed her lack of faith when it came to blessings and the Spirit was offended. This has taught me that the blessing is really between the Lord and the recipient. Their personal faith will determine whether the blessing is a success. I like the way God’s servants will ask the person whether they have faith to be healed before they start the blessing. It may make all the difference.


When the blessing is over I often feel like I’ve just taken a final exam and my head is swimming; it can drain you emotionally and physically. If I feel impressed, I will add some words about the blessing to help the person, perhaps to clarify something. Often I can’t even remember half of what I said, but I suggest they write down as much about the blessing as they can and pray about it to receive more personal revelation. Sometimes when I give a blessing it says for them to ask in prayer and the answers will be given. The Lord usually does not want the blessing to become a crutch for the proper way to receive personal revelation, but the Lord is merciful.


I grew up believing like most that blessings were reserved for special occasions or dire circumstances. I would feel a sense of panic when I was called upon to do one. “What if I screw up? What if I say something that doesn’t come true? What if I . . . what if I . . .?” I’ve leaned that it is never about me. My wife has helped me to learn this lesson. I have been taught to NEVER feel hesitation to give a blessing. To offer blessings whenever the Spirit tells me to do so. Not only is it a gift to those who receive, but also a mighty gift to those giving. The more blessings you give, the more the Lord teaches you the process and it will bless you and your family immensely. Never hesitate to give a blessing because you feel too tired or sick. The Lord will back you up if your heart is right. Those are sometimes the greatest blessings offered.


Never judge whether a person is worthy to have a blessing. Don’t think to yourself, “Oh, they’ve already had one. They brought this on themselves. They just want to hear what they want to hear. They should go ask their home teacher, not me.” Don’t judge them or think you know, because the blessing will often surprise you. One of my most surprising blessings came when my wife asked me to give her a blessing when she was pregnant. She wanted to know which sex the baby would be. I started the blessing, excited to know myself, and then it simply said, “There are some things you just are not supposed to know.” My wife and I like to laugh about that one to this day.


There is a lot to consider on this topic and I could go on, but the main thing to remember is that all that is required to offer a blessing is an abundance of the Spirit of Revelation. The Lord allows His servants to speak for Him when they are given permission. This permission is what constitutes the Priesthood and by this power all things are possible.

This entry was posted in Blessings, Priesthood, Revelation. Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Jared says:

    Very cool info. Resonates with me. Thank you! You have given me additional information to apply to Future blessings. Again, love what you shared. Maybe a dozen-plus times in my life when I’ve given blessings I have felt that power surge through my body and go through my hands almost as though my hands are floating a little bit on the persons head. It is a Unique special experience. I am always going to ask the recipient of blessings (if they’re not too young) if they have faith to receive the Lord’s will– I like that approach. I have felt that is true when somebody teaches; if the members of the audience don’t have the spirit to receive -Than The Giver of the message is going to be stunted in their ability to share. this will obviously hold true with blessings, too! thanks for verifying that. 🙂


  2. Melissa says:

    What is your feeling about women giving blessings? Personally, I think it is fine, and good, and necessary in some cases, but many raised in the church would adamantly scream about that. There have been times when I was prompted to give one of my children a blessing, so I have, but there is a tiny piece of me that tells me I’m doing something wrong, that it is only for men to do, that I don’t have the priesthood. Another part of me says to ignore that voice. LOL Sometimes it’s confusing, but what I am learning here on your blog gives me the tools to find out for myself. I just wondered if you’d had any answers on this subject.


  3. The answer is that the Lord bestows that right. Yes, women and even children can have the priesthood if the Lord wills it. On the other hand, right to administer in church affairs can only come through those channels.


  4. Kim says:

    I have read through this many times and feel great comfort and joy from this process. I have experienced much illness, and trial in this earthly journey and have been greatly sustained by priesthood blessings. My faith has been strengthened and my spirit empowered by the Lords generous outpouring of love and care through his servants. I wish I knew you…..becauae I feel so drawn to ask for one from your hand. I love your spirit of goodness and Christ-like humility. I am grateful for all that you share with us and am so eager to learn and progress. I feel such gratitude as I walk this path for continued guidance, inspiration and revelation….as I continue in my fervent efforts to seek the face of the Lord. Thank you.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. God bless you, Kim. You can always ask the Lord to bless you in faith. It would be as if He were here in the flesh, according to His will. Often, the sickness and challenges we face are what propel us upward in our progression. Those in the heavenly realm admire us for our courage.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. Mike Ross says:

    Much appreciated! I have struggled with giving blessings in the past but recently have had a humbling experience as the Lord teaches me more about it.

    Our bishop offers blessings to every single person he counsels with and has asked his counselors to do the same on their weekly home visits with ward members. Do you think offering blessings at that frequency is appropriate? [I only offer a blessing if the Spirit tells me to do it. If asked to give a blessing I like to pray privately to ask the Lord’s will regarding what to do. I don’t think there is a time allotment to how frequent blessings can be given. We have to be careful not to reason it out, but to seek the Lord’s will in the matter. PR]

    And to Kim who wrote: “I love your [PR] spirit of goodness and Christ-like humility. I am grateful for all that you share with us and am so eager to learn and progress…”

    I second that sentiment, God bless!


  7. John Crane says:

    Another thing I learned sometime in my life is if you are the receiver of a blessing, whether in connection with a healing, setting-apart, ordination, or whatever, if you say a silent prayer to the Lord, prior to the blessing, expressing your faith and asking the Lord to use the person giving the blessing and to speak through him and say what God would have him say, it really makes a difference, and God will speak to you through him, and the officiator will be magnified by the Lord way beyond what he thinks he can accomplish. So, even though the officiator may not be a “superstar”, he’s all you got, and he’s all God’s got, and if you have the faith, God can use him. You don’t need to have faith in the man. You need to have faith in the Lord. He will never disappoint!

    Liked by 1 person

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