verse 10: Jabez cried out to the God of Israel, "Oh, that you would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let your hand be with me, and keep me from harm that I may be free from pain." And God granted his request.
Jabez had some pain somewhere in his life but rather than give into it, he prayed to be more useful to God. He wanted to share what he had been blessed with, by asking for more. More territory, more opportunities, more influence and more blessings!
This was no ordinary prayer. It was a crying .out. to.the. God.of. Israel. prayer. He meant business.
I speculate the simple audacious prayer of Jabez was birthed out of a confidence in the character of God.
Where do you experiance pain in your life?
What do you do with that pain?
What if you turned TO God -not away- and asked for more influence, more blessings, more territory and more opportunities? It's not easy to ask like that- when the enemy would like to suggest that we don't deserve to ask or receive. But that's what Jabez did.
Jabez reminds me of a person who has allowed themselves to RECEIVE forgiveness and in full confidence can stretch their faith- to ask for more. They are assured of their salvation and redemption. They know they are unequivocly loved by God and are freed from all condemnation and shame. We can all get to that place by becoming acquainted with the Person and character of God.
At a very hard time in my life, on my way to getting things right with God, I was introduced to Isaiah 1v18... "Come now, let us reason together," says the Lord. "Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.
God is a reasonable God!! The reason why He wants us to talk about our sin with Him, is only for the purpose of restoring us, NOT to condemn us!!
I had a very hard job believing I was forgiven. It literally took me years to fully accept and receive forgiveness and the love of God. Now; why was that -you ask? Two words- unbelief and pride. Also I was waiting for the magical feeling of forgiveness. I think I made this whole forgiveness thing so much more complicated that it needed to be. In the modern language, I had to "get over myself".
For Jabez, who knows what his pain was. But he knew what to do with it. He turned TO God and asked to be blessed and asked to have more territory and influence.
When we are stuck in the land of unbelief and pride or whatever land you happen to be in at the moment; it's a pretty small territory- I'm sure you can agree. For most of us, we can get to the point that puddling around in the shallow end of life feels very tedious and frustrating. What if-like a child that wants to get on" the big bike", we cry out- like Jabez- for change???
King David had a moment like this as well and after acknowledging his sin in Psalm 51 versus 10 to 13 inclusive: he turned to God and not away- and he asked God for more:
Verse 10: Create in me a pure heart and renew a steadfast spirit within him. Verse 11. Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of my salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me. THEN I will teach transgressors your ways and sinners will turn back to you.... He too wanted to do something with what he had been given.
It doesn't take me long to need to ask for this right spirit again and again. I so soon forget the sacrifice that Jesus has made on my behalf.
Lets live like the free people we truly are and ask for more. Hiding away in condemnation and shame doesn't glorify God one bit. Let's be like Jabez and David- people who own up to what we have done, accept the HUGE sacrifice paid for us, turn to God and not away- and then ask God for more!!!
(Pictured with my Mum)
I'm a budding writer living in Masterton,
North Island, New Zealand.
Happily married to Colin and we have 7 daughters
and 13 grandchildren- between us.
Currently working as a Registered Nurse.
Also working as a support Coordinator
for Crisis Pregnancy Support- Wairarapa.
I long for the day I can retire so I can write heaps more :)
Current writing work: writing silly and funny stories
for children and chipping away at first book about Our Identity in Christ.
When procrastinating about writing, I like to cook and bake. See my Facebook page called Granny's Kitchen-Chef