There was a man little known among the cast of characters in the Bible. His prayer would be very appropriate for us to pray with the coming new year. The Scripture is found in I Chronicles 4: 9,10 and reads, “And Jabez was more honorable than his brethren: and his mother called his name Jabez, saying, Because I bare him with sorrow. And Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, Oh that thou wouldest bless me indeed, and enlarge my coast, and that thine hand might be with me, and that thou wouldest keep me from evil, that it may not grieve me! And God granted him that which he requested.”
Jabez had an ambition to do and be more than his brothers. His life started off badly because he was born in sorrow or pain. Unfortunately, any of us can become accustomed to a limited life surrounded by bad things. We assume that that is the way life is supposed to be. However, Jabez looked beyond this and wanted to make a significant impact for God. We may ask the question of ourselves, “when was the last time we had God work through us in such a way that there was no doubt that God did it?”
There are blessings ahead of us waiting to be asked and, therefore, received. Let us make sure we understand this prayer. It is not selfish to ask for more from God. Perhaps you have heard stories of other people being blessed and you wished that was true for yourself. King Solomon asked for wisdom and God also granted him the blessing of wealth.
To do this we must look beyond the pain, regardless of the past. Jabez, and so must we, leave it up to God to define the blessing. Our New Year prayer must be to leave it to his will and his purpose for our lives. Remember, if we never ask, we never get.
Believe it or not, God is looking for people that want more. This does not necessarily mean they want more money or more power or more prestige. It means they want to be more involved with God and be used by him. We can view ourselves as a coworker and partner with God. Yes, we may be asking for a miracle! Jabez was asking for this miracle while taking a precaution because when he was blessed was a time that he was most likely to be tempted by the devil. In effect, he was invading the devil’s territory.
For your New Year’s prayer, are you ready to ask God? While anticipating a daily enlargement, are you willing to accept the responsibility? God is waiting for us to ask. He is also waiting for us to do.