Preached Jabez. In the middle of these genealogies we have Jabez and his wonderful story.
1 Chron 4:9-10 Jabez was more honorable than his brothers. His mother had named him Jabez, saying, “I gave birth to him in pain.” 10 Jabez cried out to the God of Israel, “Oh, that you would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let your hand be with me, and keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain.” And God granted his request.
As I was bouncing these verses around in my heart I realized what a young man or woman’s prayer it is. There is the expected course of life that doesn’t look good and then there is this call to God to change the predestined course of Jabez’ life. A young person’s prayer: bless me indeed, enlargement, with fellowship with God to avoid the unneeded pains of life. Do I wake up and say “bless me indeed” at 56. Its more like “help me Lord”. All of the older folks can relate. Yes, it is a young person’s prayer ready to take on life, but older people can pray it also.
After church we talked about the guilt in praying for our business needs. We talked about the Catholic vow of poverty for ministry. We talked about a nation that is taking aim at successful people.
We had taken a second offering to help a woman who is camped out a hospital with her husband in a coma and her young children trying to maintain life back home. “Bless me indeed” so I can bless others.
1 Tim 6:6-19 But godliness with contentment is great gain. 7 For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. 8 But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. 9 People who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction. 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs….
17 Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. 18 Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. 19 In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life.