I have a very complex and weighty blessing, and I’m trying to piece together what it means for me here and now. There are parts to it that are very specific to me, and parts about my pre-mortal existence. I know you can ask the church to send you copies of deceased ancestors’ blessings, but what about those of us who are first or second generation converts who have no idea what certain things could possibly mean for them? My father and best friend also have a very unique section that mirrors mine precisely, and I was hoping that a study of other blessings could help me. But I have no access to them apparently. Help?
You can learn a lot about patriarchal blessings by studying the Doctrine and Covenants. The early saints were so excited to hear the word of the Lord for each of them individually that they would importune Joseph for a revelation. If you wanted to learn more about a specific section, you could compare it to other sections (for instance, sections 15 and 16 only differ by one name – what does that tell you about the importance of sharing the gospel). You could also compare it with the other standard works. A glance at the footnotes in our scriptures shows the solid foundation the Bible and Book of Mormon laid for the modern revelations.
This is not much different from what you did with your bishop and patriarch. Like the early saints, you requested a personal blessing from a modern seer. This new revelation fits very well with the others in the Doctrine and Covenants and can serve as your own section 139. As you study it, you may want to look at the blessings that others have received, but you should note where these revelations differ from the canonized ones in our standard works. The revelations in our scriptures contain general counsel and principles binding on all saints. Your blessing is specific counsel for you and you alone. Similarities between your blessing and another’s blessing will probably be a better indicator of what principles are general, or perhaps serve as an insight for how your patriarch receives revelation, rather than a clarification of your blessing.
Given the personal nature of each blessing, the Church will not send you the blessing of others. If you want to study another person’s blessing you will need to ask her for consent. If you want a copy, you will have to request one from her. I recommend instead that you make a study of the scriptures in light of the blessings promised to you. Like the Doctrine and Covenants, you will find that your blessing has a solid foundation in the standard works. I have a set of scriptures that I underlined in green the references that related to my own patriarchal blessing. I also marked in red the references to our Savior. My sister-in-law used to call them my Christmas tree scriptures because of how colorful the verses got. This simple exercise served as a catalyst for me to understand my blessing better and opened my eyes to see my life as living scripture.