This post is about Healthy Lifestyles Tips – The Prayer of Jabez Remembered. Recently gh.studio.opera.com showed pictures in Congo Brazzaville in which a man who looked like the Actor of Jesus’ films was beseeched by hundreds of people who sought a miracle from him. His denials that he was not Jesus of the Bible fell on deaf ears as they surrounded him to simply touch him or his clothes for a desired miracle.
Ask many people who are rich and those who are poor if they desire a miracle in their lives. The answer will be 100% desire. Why is it that everybody, rich or poor needs a miracle in his/her life? The answer lies in the nature of a miracle. Any miracle outlined in the Bible brought something positive in the lives of those who received it.
For instance, Sarah, Anna, Manoah’s wife and Elizabeth were all barren and they looked forward to God who performs wonders and were granted special children in Israel’s eyes. Sarah bore Isaac, the great patriarch. Anna bore Samuel, the great prophet of Israel. Manoah’s wife bore Samson, the Philistines’ slayer. Elizabeth bore John the Baptist, the forerunner of Jesus Christ. That shows you the power of a miracle and it is not surprising that everybody is looking for one.
Perhaps one of the best miracles in the Bible can be singled out from the prayer of Jabez. If one can remember the prayer of Jabez, then it is as good as saying one can imitate Jabez and simply go flat out to seek God’s intervention in his/her life for a miracle. The beautiful thing about Jabez’ prayer is that God granted his requests. Before we go any further, let’s look at his prayer as it is outlined in 1 Chronicles 4 vs 10.
“Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, ‘Oh that you would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory, that Your hand would be with me, and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain!’ So God granted him what he requested. (New King James Version)
This is a simple, but powerful prayer accessible by anybody looking for whatever kind of miracle. What sort of miracle do you need? Let me share with you what miracle some people could have needed when COVID – 19 was at its pick sending shock waves in some countries of the world. One man lost his beloved wife and daughter to the epidemic. He could not stand the sight of losing two beloved people he had worked hard to earn an income for. He threw the money in the street and went back into his house and suffered from depression.
During COVID – 19, many people lost their jobs. Due to his strong desire to keep his job and be promoted, a police officer in the United States of America ended up killing George Floyd by pressing his knee on the victim’s neck. This caused uproar and people marched along many streets in the United States of America as well as in United Kingdom and France demanding justice for the death of George Floyd.
Therefore, the man who lost his wife and daughter needed a miracle to keep them alive. The people who lost their jobs needed a miracle to keep their jobs. George Floyd’s family needed a miracle to keep him alive. The police officer who caused the death of George Floyd needed a miracle not to go to an extent of causing a death.
When everybody remembers that he/she needs a miracle of any sort, it is better to remember the prayer of Jabez. If we analyze his prayer for which God granted his request, we can learn many things from it.
This was the first thing he asked God to grant him, “Oh that you would bless me indeed.”
According to some people bless means to protect, make holy, to favor or to make lucky or happy. It is a favorable word and a contrast to “curse” which requires bad or evil things to happen to someone.
We can then conclude that Jabez requested God to make good things happen in his life. God’s favor should cover him wherever he went and whatever he decided to do.
The second thing Jabez requested was, “enlarge my territory.”
This is a fabulous thing. Who on earth does not want his/her territory to be enlarged? Offer Donald Trump prime land to develop in a country of his choice and he will not hesitate to enlarge his territory in that particular area. Trump with his nine golf courses and clubs spread across states and nations would be delighted to reach twenty golf courses and clubs. Why? It is because the desire to enlarge one’s territory is embedded in everyone’s heart
Even Bill Gates would be very happy to have his territories increased. Rich as he is, he would like to have his territory increased to beautiful countries he admires.
At the point of beginning his prayer, Jabez is a “nobody”, but a person who had been causing pain to his mother and many other people including his siblings. He was a trouble maker to everyone he came across. So wherever he went to start any business he would be rejected as people smelt trouble as soon as he appeared on the scene. Therefore, he was limited to his family’s space.
Upon reaching a point of decision to change matters in his life, he does not want to waste time and he calls upon the God of Israel. Another time he heard many good things concerning the God of Israel and that this God was not limited to what He was capable of. He was a miracle worker and as such Jabez would rely on Him to manufacture a portion of miracle for his own life. He now wanted things to change for the better and only the God of Israel would grant the desires of his heart.
Another time he heard many stories how miraculous the God of Israel had been in the past and that He was still helping many people out of their troubles. Psalm 46 vs 1, “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help.”
God had been present to help the Israelites out of trouble when they were running away from their enemies in Egypt. At one time they faced the obstacle of crossing the Red Sea when the Egyptians were pursuing them to recapture them into slavery. They cried to the God of Israel and a miracle came their way.
No, it was not one miracle, but three great miracles. One miracle the God of Israel performed was to stop the Egyptian soldiers from reaching them. A pillar of fire was set up to prevent the soldiers from reaching where the Israelites were.
Secondly, a mighty wind was brought to divide the water and dry up the sea bed so that the Israelites would walk on dry ground.
Thirdly, the wind brought back the divided water to engulf the enemy soldiers and drown them up. No soldier escaped causing Miriam, the sister of Moses, to take up musical instruments and lead the women in dancing and glorifying God for a marvelous victory over their enemies.
Jabez came to understand that God was not short of miracles. He performed many miracles as He led the Israelites in the wilderness to their promised land. Moses led the way because he could not leave any camp without the God of Israel saying so. If Moses spent a long time at the mountain communicating with God, his face would turn into a shiny one. His face would be so shiny that no Israelite would look at him without covering his or her face.
Actually, there were too many miracles performed by the God of Israel for one to finish talking about them in one day. For forty years the God of Israel provided meat and bread to the Israelites as they journeyed in the desert. The miraculous water from a stone would provide for the animals as well.
For forty years the Israelites’ sandals did not wear out. More miracles were witnessed in the desert as people were bitten to death by snakes and a bronze snake set up to rescue those who would look at it in faith. At one time the ground opened up to bury alive the rebels who did not want to be led by Moses, the most humble leader on earth according to Numbers 12 vs 3.
As the miraculous scenes raced up in his own mind, Jabez’ confidence grew and put his trust in the God of Israel to answer his request of extending his place of residence which we are referring to here as his territory.
The third request was, “Your hand would be with me.”
Jabez knew that if god’s hand would rest upon him, he would be protected from the schemes of jealousy people who would see God’s abundant blessings upon his life and seek to harm him. Another time he created many enemies in his life and such people would rise up in vengeance as soon as he started prospering financially. With God’s hand upon his life, he would be safe and well protected as he who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. He shall cover you with His feathers, and under His wings you shall take refuge; his truth shall be your shield and buckler. (Psalms 91 vs 1 and 4).
The third request was, “and that You would keep me from evil.”
Jabez knew that God is holy and the people that worship Him should be holy. And so he requested God to keep him from indulging in any sort of evil lest he separates himself from the Holy One of Israel. And according to Psalms 1 v1 a man or woman remains blessed as long as he/she does not walk according to the counsel of the wicked nor stands in the way of the sinners nor sits in the seat of scoffers. However, the blessed man delights in meditating in God’s law day and night.
For God detests evil as outlined in Proverbs 6 vs 16 – 19: “These six things the lord hates, Yes, seven are an abomination to Him: A proud look, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that are swift in running to evil, a false witness who speaks lies, and one who sows discord among brethren. Beware of adultery.”
The fourth thing that Jabez requested was, “that I may not cause pain!’
Can you remember another prayer where we can find this kind of request? Do not even look further than the Lord’s Prayer as recorded in Matthew 6 vs 10 going downwards. Those who strictly follow the Lord’s Prayer do not cause harm to the others because God’s will should be done on earth as it is in heaven. There is no quarreling or causing pain to others in heaven and so the atmosphere of peace should be maintained.
So God granted him what he requested. That is true. Other people’s requests are not granted because their requests are based on selfish motives. Once they are blessed, they end up being proud and causing pain to their spouses or their employees as God regretted in blessing some Israelites in Isaiah 58 vs 3, “ ‘Why have we fasted,’ they say, and You have not seen? Why have we afflicted our souls, and you take no notice?’ In fact in the day of your fast you find pleasure, and exploit your laborers.”
So God granted him what he requested.
In all fairness, Jabez deserved his request to be granted because God does not turn away from anyone who approaches Him with a sincere heart and in humility. That is He who He is. Start requesting him with a humble and earnest heart and you shall not be disappointed. For everyone who believes in God shall not be disappointed. This is according to Romans 10 vs 11.
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Remember Jabez. After being blessed, he built up a city and important people like scribes started living there. 1 Chronicles 2 vs 55. You, too, may build up something long-lasting that will benefit you and your precious family. Therefore, do not forget to start your online business that shall lead you to passive income here.
Moreover, Jabez’ blessings led him to be more honorable than any of his brothers according to 1 Chronicles 4 vs 9, “Jabez was more honorable than his brothers, and his mother named him Jabez, saying, “Because I bore him in pain.”
Now you can see that after Jabez received all his blessings from God, he became a big blessing to his mother, his brothers and his community. He went about revealing god’s love to all the people he had caused pain. What a marvelous blessing. Because of his territorial expansion, his influence went far and wide.
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