Summary: A mesage on the book the Prayer of Jabez
“The Distinguished Man” Text 1Chron 4:9-10. (Read at beginning of service 1Sam 16:1-13 NIV).
Have you ever been in the place where you have found yourself extremely dissatisfied with the way things are going in your life? Maybe you’ve had an itch to try something new-or find something different that would bring excitement and fulfilment into your life. Often it is during the low points in our life that this kind of thinking sets in. The kind of thinking that leads to wanting a better life, having more than we already have, and insulation from the hurts and pain we experience as well as those we cause. AS I speak these words, no doubt there are some of you out there who may be saying “Pastor, that’s the way I’m feeling right now -in fact that’s the way I live my life.” Others of you may be saying Pastor Been there, but things are ok for now.
Truth be told I’m sure that given the opportunity and choice many of us, if not all of us, would desire a life that is not a Roller Coaster ride but is more like a mountain top experience. We would desire a life that would take us out of the valleys and into paradise-”Heaven on Earth”. In reality these Heaven on Earth experiences seem few and far between. What if I were to tell you there is a way to satisfy this desire we have What if I were to tell you there is a principle that leads to a better fuller life, gaining more than you can ask for, insulation against hurts and pain we experience as well as those we cause? Would you practice this principle? Would you believe it?
If so them what I’m going to be sharing on in the next few weeks will speak to your heart. I’m going to be sharing about the principles found in a particular prayer. But I want you to understand something this is not a prayer that comes from a heart that is wanting for self but a prayer that seat you deep in the cavity of Gods desire and will for your life. A prayer that totally and absolutely leaves all in Gods hands. The prayer I will be sharing about is known these days as the Prayer of Jabez. When I mention it I am sure some of you immediately recognize what I am talking about. This is due to the ministry of one particular book by Bruce Wilkinson that has become real popular over the past couple of years (Might even win a “Christian” Oscar). I have read this book and encourage you to read it as well. However I have heard some things that have disturbed me a little bit when people talk about this particular prayer. You see there is a danger that this prayer is becoming some sort of magic formula to a successful and pain free life. That if you pray it hard enough and consistently you will start seeing tremendous immediate results in your life. However it is important to know that itisent the wording that matters in prayer-but the faith, belief, and heart attitude behind it that empowers what you say.
With that said, the prayer of Jabez is absolutely rock solid God filled substance that will lead you away from the central focus of the status quo in your life and bring you into the presence of God where:
1-You will not only receive, but also enjoy the fuller life God desires us to live.
2- you will not ask for what you can get for yourself, but what only God can give.
3- you will become acutely aware of the direction God is moving.
4-You will seek God’s protection from the evil filled living that tempts and taunts.
Bruce Wilkinson says” This petition has radically changed what I expect from God and what I experience everyday by His power.”
By now some of you are asking who is this Jabez Guy? The answer to these questions provides the beginning of the series of messages. In learning about Jabez-we learn about the man behind the prayer.
If you are a genealogy buff the records of 1Chron might interest you. But to the average Bible reader a long list of family names you can barely pronounce are about as interesting ax counting dots on a ceiling…you’d rather just skip over them.
1Chron begins with Adam, Seth, Enosh, with chapter4 listing the descendants of Judah…Perez, Hezron, Carmi, Hur, and Shobal… Koz begot Anub, Zoë bah, the families of Aherhel the son of Harum…and then without warning we are introduced to a man named Jabez… his spotlight in Hebrew history is but 2 verses. But in these 2 verses we the distinction this man Jabez had in His life. He was a Distinguished Man!