This is Basil Frasure with Whole Person Counseling of San Angelo.
To bless means to speak good rather than evil, to encourage rather than discourage, to project success rather than failure, to give faith rather than doubt, to instill boldness rather than fear, to impart hope rather than distress, and to share love rather than neglect.
Here is a brief outline for blessing a child. First, prayerfully discern the natural and spiritual giftings of the child. Second, prayerfully look at the child's potential by the grace of God and though faith. Third, formulate the blessing in a written form. Fourth, place your hands upon the head of the child. Fifth, speak the blessing over the child and repeat it periodically for reinforcement.
Blessing a child both encourages and gives a child a strong sense of direction. Since God works through the established authority of parents, God will also work in the life of the child toward fulfilling the blessings that the parents speak over the child.
Speaking blessings over a child is like prophesying over the child (see Ezekiel 37:4 for an example of speaking a prophesy). Let us look at how Isaac bless Jacob (Genesis 27:28-29). Isaac blessed Jacob by saying that God would give him the dew of heaven, the fatness of the earth, and plenty of corn and wine. Jacob was to let people serve him and nations honor him. Even his brothers were to honor him. Isaac also placed a curse upon those who would curse Jacob and a blessing on those who would bless him.
In Genesis 27:38-40 we see that from Esau's reaction just how significant a father's blessing is. We should understand that the custom was that the elder son was to receive the greater blessing; however, Jacob had deceived his father into blessing him as the elder son. In Genesis 48:14-20 we get a picture of how Jacob (Israel) blessed the sons of Joseph by placing his hands upon their heads. Then in Genesis 49:22-28 we see Jacob also blessing Joseph.
In the New Testament in Luke 2:34, we see Simeon, an aged saint, blessing both Mary and Jesus. "And Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his mother, Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against" (Luke 2:34).