Summary: An analysis and application of Jabez’ prayer.
9Now Jabez was more honorable than his brothers, and his mother called his name Jabez, saying, “Because I bore him in pain.” 10And 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.
My subject this morning is…Bless me. My brothers and sisters, I don’t know where each of you are individually in your spiritual walk. I don’t know whether you’ve been in the church all your life…or you just joined church last week. I don’t know whether you are on your way to becoming a spiritual warrior…or you’re still a spiritual baby, but one thing is for sure. If there is going to be any significant change in your life…if you’re going to be able to overcome the trials and tribulations that life throws in your path. If you’re going to be able to weather the storms and ascend the multitudes of hills and mountains that this world consistently causes you to have to climb. It is going to have to be through prayer. Amen.
It’s not just going to happen by happenstance and circumstance alone.
I’ve discovered that…”much prayer, much power…little prayer…little power…no prayer…no power.” And it is a sad fact that the church today, is filled with powerless saints, because the way to get your breakthrough…is to talk to God.
As we continue on our Christian journey, we will come to discover that talking to God is easy yet complex at the same time. Yes, every Christian has the right to pray…but you must realize that there is a method…in approaching God. You just don’t come to God in any old kind of way.
I don’t care who you are and how well you think you’ve got it together…if the president of the United States (and I know most of us didn’t vote for him), but if George W. Bush called you and requested your presence at the white house Monday morning, none of us would go about going to the white house…just any kind of way.
As it is with the president, so it is with God…you just don’t approach the Lord in any kind of way. Do I have a witness?
And so as we continue on in this year of 2002, I’m calling on every member of this church to realize that you can’t make it on your own. Is there anybody here this morning that will testify with me that in order to make it in this world, you are going to have to have some supernatural assistance to handle the pressures that marriage brings, to deal with the difficulties of singleness, to be able to weather the storms of bringing up your children…in order to deal with all of these things and more…you are going to have to have the Lord on your side. I wish I had somebody to pray with me this morning.
And so in order to accomplish this, I want to notice a few things about this man mentioned here in our text. Because the record tells us that he was successful in his approach to God and was able to secure the blessing of God. The text is not very detailed in giving us much background about Jabez. The only thing we know for sure about his past is the fact that during or shortly after childbirth…he caused her pain. So much so that she decided to name him after the sorrow she had endured.
It says she named him Jabez because she bore him in “pain”. I don’t know why she decided to name him “pain”. Maybe she thought that she was too young to go through the pain of childbirth. Maybe she was mad at his daddy…listen mothers.
You do know that some folk take things out on their children. But I come to tell you today that your drama shouldn’t be passed down to your children. Ya’ll know what I’m talkin’ about….You get mad at yo’ man and you cussin’ and fussin’ the whole world out. You get mad and send everybody to bed…it’s only 4 o’clock and you punishing everybody ‘cause you mad at Antwan! Come on and talk to me somebody!
So, I don’t know why she decided to name him Jabez, but there was something going on that made her name him pain. And all throughout his life…when someone would say, “Hey Jabez.” He was reminded that he represented “pain”. That’s why you’ve got to be careful what you say to your children. That’s part of the reason why our young folk are walking around lost, because folk are going around their homes talkin’ bout you remind me of pain, you make me sick, you remind me of your no-good daddy. And then turn around…and wonder what in the world is wrong with them…when they act out and get themselves in all kind of trouble.