by: Ruthann McKenzie
If you have ever read 1 Chronicles 4, it is primarily all genealogy. When you get to verse 9 and 10 the story changes a little bit. You hear of man named Jabez, who was honorable. This man who was called "because I was bore him in pain" asked God to take harm away from him so he would not be "pain" any longer. Jabez was trusting enough to asked God for blessings. God was faithful in providing blessings to Jabez. Yet, there is so much more that we can grasp from these verses.
The story of Jabez is hidden among lists of genealogy, yet Jabez's father is not mentioned, nor are his brothers. The Bible does state he is honorable. In other words, Jabez delighted himself in doing good and following God's commands. Despite his family history, or lack thereof, it did not stop him from being an upright man in the sight of God. Jabez had walked with God and knew that he could ask for God to change the trajectory of his life. So instead of remaining in lack like his family, with no good history for his name, He asked God to bless him and change his future.
After doing much research on the verses I was greatly enlightened. I have not always prayed the "prayer of Jabez" in faith. It was more out of selfish gain or misunderstanding. In the Bible it states ask and it shall be given unto you (Matthew 7:7). However, most of the time we ask out of our own selfish gain or motives. Other times, we want the pain and sorrow to pass from us in an instant. So, we pray and we ask the Lord to bless us, to fill us like never before and that is a good thing, if we are asking for the right reasons and we believe God can truly do these things for us.
A few points I take away from this gem of scripture:
- Trust in God. Jabez had faith that God could do something special in his life. He had to allow God to lead and we clearly see him asking and trusting God with the statement, "that your hand might be with me".
- God delights in us honoring Him. Jabez was honorable in the sight of the Lord. If we do not honor God first, but ask for blessings out of selfish gain, then as stated in James 4:3, we ask but do not receive anything because of our wrong motives. Our hearts must align with God's heart and we must honor God first.
- Have a vision for your life. Jabez had a bright vision for his life. He no longer wanted to be referred to as "pain" or "sorrow". He knew the Lord could change this for Him and grant Him with better than his family ever had.
- Ask the Lord to bless you. The final point I take from this passage is that we must stay in constant communication with the Lord. When you seek God first and your heart and His align, then you will ask for blessings to be a blessing to others. Once Jabez asked to be blessed and God granted his request, I am sure it changed the outcome of not just his situation, but generations to come.
Abound in abundant blessings!