In reading the Bible I know there are some books that seem boring especially the ones in the Old Testament. Books such as the Leviticus and Numbers are almost repetitive in many of the chapters. Another book in the Old Testament has a similar pattern but has a section so powerful that it can transform your life.
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In the book of 1 Chronicles 4 we read about a man named Jabez who seems to have been born in difficult circumstances. His mom names him Jabez which means ‘pain’ so we get a picture of the kind of situation she might have been facing. However, Jabez does something so significant that it changes the course of his life.
“Now Jabez was more honourable than his brothers, and his mother called his name Jabez saying, ‘Because I bore him in pain.’
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.” ~ 1 Chronicles 4:9-10
Names are very significant because they tend to define what a person might become in life, they have very strong meanings. Jabez refused to be subjected to a life of pain and hardship by crying out to the Lord and asking that He would change the course of his life.
I am sure that you know people that have less than desirable names or who have been told that they are nobodies and will never amount to anything. Perhaps you find yourself in a similar position but what the Word of God says about you is more important than what other people have said about you.
That prayer has been referred to as the Jabez prayer by many people over the years. If God could answer that man’s prayer He can surely answer your prayer too. Author Bruce Wilkinson studied that prayer extensively and wrote the book, “The Prayer of Jabez” and breaks it down further into how you can apply it to the various aspects of your life.
I had the pleasure of reading, “The Prayer of Jabez” many years ago and it had an impact on my prayer life. Some of the key lessons I got include the following:
- Pray for yourself first so you can then be in a position to bless others
- You can move God to change situations in your life according to His will
- God wants to bless you abundantly
- Come boldly before God and make your requests known
There is much power in that prayer it is definitely worth studying. We serve a God who wants to show Himself mighty in the lives of those who call upon His Name. Your prayers do not have to be long, memorised and repetitive ones like the Pharisees spoke about in the Bible.
Your prayers to God should be simple expressions of what is on your heart. Remember to give thanks and praise every time you pray to Him. Let your relationship with God be real like you have with friends. Be sure to get yourself a copy of the book and apply the lessons to your life. You will begin to experience positive changes such that other people will see the light of God in your life.
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Be all you can be!