The Language of Blessing by Joe Cavanaugh III is the latest book I’ve received from Tyndale for reviewing.
The book starts off somewhat with the teaching from The Blessing by John Trent and Gary Smalley, but mixed together with the author’s experiences, including as a life coach and working with a ministry related to relationship recovery.
It then goes into some of the things that can make this difficult, and the importance of learning your own strengths in the process. The book then finishes with some practical application chapters on how to learn to bless others.
This book came into my hands at a very interesting time… pretty much right as our church was ending an extended study of the blessing, and right about the time I was working through some of my own issues that had surfaced. So that may skew my perspective on things a bit.
The first and third parts of the book were pretty much what I had expected them to be.
The first was good at breaking things down and putting them in a way that made them understandable, and helpful at seeing examples of not only what the blessing looks like, but also honest at showing times when it didn’t happen.
The last section gives good guidance on how to actually make it happen, including some addressed particularly to parents.
The middle section of the book is pretty close to what the description of book says, that it’s a book about the importance of identifying your strengths and how to use them to bless others.
It goes into some depth about the difficulties caused by not realizing your own gifts and talents, because if you just see them as average, you expect everyone else to have them to that degree as well and may judge them accordingly.
To me, this was a new and interesting way of looking at things. And the author does tie in some as to how this effects being able to bless others and why this can create a situation of a child not being blessed because his parent expects them to have the same gifts to the same degree of the parent does rather than appreciating the child’s gifts on their own.
But at times it almost seems like an entirely different book than the other two sections. Again, my viewpoint is probably a bit skewed on this from recently being through a series that connected more to the other two sections, and also probably because I was thinking more from a barriers to it being received perspective than from the barriers to giving. But I guess it just didn’t connect together with me as well as I had expected, and for some parts seemed like a divided tangent more than it fit in with the section title of barriers to blessing. Still good material, just sort of different from the rest.
Either way, it’s a good book, and makes for a good followup for those already familiar with the blessing, but also explains well to cover those that aren’t as familiar.