Saturday, October 15, 2011

Prayer of Jabez

A Prayer That Changed Destiny

By Abraham Israel 

The Old Testament of the Bible contains many mysterious passages. In 1 Chronicles 4:9-10, we find a short prayer uttered by an obscure man:

"9 Now Jabez was more honorable than his brothers, and his mother called his name Jabez, saying, “Because I bore him in pain.” 10 And 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."

I believe that the mother of Jabez must have gone through tremendous struggle of labor pain for prolonged period and went on to near death experience before bearing this son, so she named him Jabez which really means the pain causer. In the Jewish society, name is one of the most important part of the parental heritage to one's well being and the identity in which a person will thrive in his life.

But think about Jabez, when he was called as 'Jabez' each time by someone, his name must have reminded him of the atmosphere of gloom, suffering and pain that he brought to them. He must have been made a topic of mockery for all. He must also have been a lonely and depressed guy because of the hate with which many must have hated him for no reason except his name.

Jabez must have got deeply wounded in his heart for all the hate his family members and all those people around him showed to him even when he was more honorable in the midst of all the family members, but he tried his best to thrown away their mockery and love them honestly from his heart.

I know of many people who go through the same problem of hatred from other people for no reason of their own. People mock them for their poverty, color, name, facial appearance, character, holiness, godliness and etc. We can clearly see the wounds that makes their heart bleed for love, acceptance and identity just like Jabez.

But one thing Jabez knew was that the God whom he believed was the God who allowed these things to happen and he firmly believed him to be a good God. He did not look to his wounds and curse God, parents and his circumstances as many people usually do and gain nothing out of it but more rejection and hate towards God and people.

Jabez believed that the good God has the power to turn his destiny in to a blessed one. How did this understanding would have come to Jabez? When the whole community mocked him and rejected Him, he must have went on to his roots and searched for the Creator God whom they believed to be righteous. There in the word of God, he derived his faith about this righteous God of Israel who helps the weak, powerless and hopeless individuals.

Once faith came in to his broken heart, it gave him the confidence to pursue a relationship with God who is righteous and not like men who always reject the weak and the unfortunate people. Then a beautiful prayer flowed out of his lips that caused God to move on behalf of Jabez. The same thing applies for all of us who are rejected by the society and are hopeless for no reason of ours. We should seek the righteous God for our destiny to be changed as He is the only able person in the universe to do it for us. When we seek the Lord with a true heart of faith, He will be pleased to answer our prayers just like He did for Jabez.

We should note the main points of his prayer in our heart so that it will bring blessings of God to us in the same way it brought to Jabez. Jabez asked the Lord to bless him and tangibly enlarge his territory which to us in our context means, 'Lord bless me in such a way that I will be able to see your tangible increase in the area of relationship, favor with God and men, financial increase, good physical health, joyous and a peaceful soul and a steadfast spirit to follow you always.' Such prayer of faith will believe that only God has the power to make a difference in our hopeless lives. God will definitely be pleased when we are believing Him in such a way.

Then Jabez wanted the hand of God to be always with him and keep him from evil. This is a great and a thoughtful prayer from Jabez because he knew that even though the blessings of God would come to him, he had no power to keep it safe from the prying eyes of jealous and evil men who would hate to see him prosper. Jabez knew that unless the power of God keeps him safe, he will again be mocked as pain giver when he loses the blessings of God. We must also understand like Jabez that unless God protects us from evil by the hand of His power being with us always, we will again lose the blessing of God as fast as we have gained it. Then again the same taunt and mockery will start around us, so be wise to ask the help of God's mighty hand to protect you from evil always in your life.

If there is one thing that Jabez hated, it was the name pain-causer. He prayed to God desperately to change his profile as blessed in spite of people calling him Jabez the pain-causer, God granted the request of his dear hopeless child of His who by then proved that he was a sincere seeker of God with a true heart. The same thing will happen in your life too when you seek God desperately, seeking His blessing and His mighty hand to protect you. When you do not hate and blame people or God for the circumstances you are in, but choose to proactively and desperately seek God to change your destiny profile in spite of the name, face cut, color, region, family that cannot be changed, God will hear your prayers to make you live a blessed life on earth because of your faith. The destiny-changer will change the pain-giver profile of yours in to a blessed profile. Today he likes to change your life as He did it for Jabez. Are you ready for destiny, favor, power and blessing of heaven to overtake your life in God? If you are ready, God has already set Himself in hearing your prayer and answer it in His time soon as you keep seeking Him and live for Him. The blessing of God increases perpetually when we choose to walk by faith. So keep walking by faith and not by your sight to inherit all the promised blessings of God!

Pray with me saints : Dear God, I thank you for opening my eyes through the life of Jabez. He was a proactive man who did not blame You or his surroundings for his hardships in life. Instead he believed that You are able to bless him in spite of all the circumstances that remain unchanged around him. Lord you did hear him and have honored him in your Bible to be remembered forever. I pray “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!” I thank you for granting me my request in JESUS name! I am now blessed because you have put your name over me from this time on (Num 6:27). Help me to live this blessed life from now on in Jesus name I pray. Amen and Amen.


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