Long ago, when Israel was exiled to Babylon, the Lord saw the distress of his people and promised: “My people will live in peaceful dwelling places, in secure homes, in undisturbed places of rest” (Isaiah 32:18). A home is an important place. It ought to be a place where you feel safe, where you are embraced by loving family, where you show hospitality to friends and strangers, where you rest and are rejuvenated to face the gifts and challenges of the coming day.
In the tradition of King David (2 Samuel 7:29) and Saint Brigid of Kildare, we might seek God’s blessing upon our homes that they will indeed be places of peace, security, rest, and hospitality. Earlier this week, I offered a house blessing for a family who is moving into a new home and hoping that it will be just that kind of place. We walked together through each room of the house, read a verse or two from the Scriptures, and offered a prayer. The children participated by repeating each prayer, line by line. I share those verses and prayers with you now so that you, too, might seek God’s blessing upon your home and family.
For the entryway, foyer, or front porch
Blessed shall you be when you come in, and blessed shall you be when you go out. -Deuteronomy 28:6
Lord, bless this house and the family who lives here. May this be a place of rest and of play, of love and of peace. Bless all who pass through this doorway when they come in and when they go out. Amen.
For the living room and/or dining room
Let mutual love continue. Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by doing that some have entertained angels without knowing it. -Hebrews 13:1-2
Lord, bless this house and the family who lives here. Grant them generous and hospitable hearts that they may share your love with friends, strangers, and even angels. Amen.
For the kitchen
Give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with the food that I need. -Proverbs 30:8
Lord, bless this house and the family who lives here. Grant that they might have enough bread for each day, and enough faith to trust you for tomorrow. Feed them with food for their bodies and food for their spirits. Amen.
For the master bedroom of a couple
Set me as a seal upon your heart, as a seal upon your arm; for love is strong as death, passion fierce as the grave. . . .If one offered for love all the wealth of his house, it would be utterly scorned. -Song of Songs 8:6-7
Lord, bless this house and the family who lives here. Seal the love between this couple and ignite their passion so that nothing may destroy their bond. Grant them a love for one another that exceeds every other love except love for you. Amen.
For the master bedroom of a single person
I will both lie down and sleep in peace; for you alone, O Lord, make me lie down in safety.
Lord, bless this house and the family who lives here. Help them to trust you amid all the worries of the day so that at night they may sleep in peace. Grant them protection from every outside danger that they lie down in safety. Amen.
For a child’s bedroom or playroom
Do not let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity. -1 Timothy 4:12
Lord, bless this house and the family who lives here. Bless the children who sleep and play in this room. Give them confidence that you have given them special gifts and talents, and help them to be an example of love and faithfulness among their friends. Amen.
For a bedroom or closet
As God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. . . .Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love. -Colossians 3:12-14
Lord, bless this house and the family who lives here. When they rise each morning help them to put on compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, patience, grace, and love and so reflect Christ to their neighbors. Amen.
For a bathroom
Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love; . . . Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin. . . . Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. -Psalm 51:1-2, 10
Lord, bless this house and the family who lives here. Remind them each day as they wash their faces that through Jesus Christ you have forgiven their sins and renewed their spirits by your Holy Spirit. Help them to live joyfully as your redeemed and beloved children. Amen.
In closing, I share with you the prayer of Saint Brigid of Kildare, a woman remembered for her work alongside Saint Patrick for bringing the faith of Jesus Christ to Ireland. She is honored for her work among the poor and for her healing miracles. This prayer is offered in her name:
May Brigid bless the house wherein you dwell;
Bless every fireside every wall and door;
Bless every heart that beats beneath its roof;
Bless every hand that toils to bring it joy;
Bless every foot that walks its portals through.
May Brigid bless the house that shelters you. Amen.