Today you should read: 1 Chronicles 4
This chapter in Scripture is probably best known for it’s 2-passage reference to the prayer of Jabez (v. 9-10) in which a best selling Christian book was written about. I remember reading this book in my junior year of High Schools, as a 2 year old Christian. I was on fire for Jesus at the time, bringing friends to youth group regularly, going on mission trips and leading my school’s FCA. I remember reading this book fairly quickly and started praying the prayer habitually with the best of intents, to be used by God. The book (and prayer) is fairly simple, You pray and ask God for 1. God’s Blessing. 2. An expansion of territory. 3. Guidance from God. 4. Protection from harm. Jabez’s prayer was answered and the book encourages that your prayers will be answered to.
In application for today’s Scripture, let me encourage you to pray for such things as well. As encouraged from the book and modeled by Jabez, we should routinely pray for all four things. God, who is our good, perfect Heavenly Father delights in the requests of His children and giving his children such good gifts. (Matthew 7:11). We should pray for blessings in each area of our life. We should pray for bigger opportunities in ministry and expanding the kingdom. We need His guidance on this earth for we are lost without it. We depend on His protection as the world around us is full of sin and temptation of sin. In fact, it would do you well to pray for such things right now and maybe God is using this devotion to rekindle a passion for praying to God for such things. However let me also warn you to not go beyond what the Scripture says in praying for such things, as the book does. You may have not read the book, or you may have read it and saw nothing wrong from it but one thing I did not mention yet is the book’s promise in God always answering such prayers. A promise from the author but not from God. A prosperity prayer of sorts that has left many disappointed and confused, including the author of the book. ( http://www.challies.com/articles/the-bestsellers-the-prayer-of-jabez ) Instead you can trust in a Heavenly Father who does delight in answering such prayer requests, but will also say No to such things or Yes but not right now. Who allows us to go through seasons of suffering to grow closer to Him or to glorify Him through the suffering.
Posted by: Erik Koliser