And 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 (1 Chronicles 4:10).
Jabez’s prayer is misunderstood by many people. They think prayer is a way to obtain what we want. But it is not correct. God doesn’t exist for our pleasure, nor does He exist to do our bidding. When my heart is aligned with God’s, my prayers won’t be about my desires, but about His purposes.
Jabez understood that God wanted to bless him. God wants to bless you too, but there are things you must do to receive those blessings. You must hearken diligently to the will of God. You must walk in the ways of God. You must do the things God has commanded you to do.
If, like Israel, you ignore the voice of God, walk in your own ways, and disobey His commandments, you put yourself outside the place of blessing. But if you will just listen to His voice, if you will walk in His ways, if you will observe to do the things that He has commanded, then the blessings will be yours.
“Father, help us to truly understand the purpose of prayer, and may we not seek to use it as a means to gratify our own desires. We pray that we will walk in Your ways, and that we will observe the things that You have commanded so that we might know Your blessings upon our life. In Jesus’ name, amen.” — Dan Shock
SOMETIMES TRUE STORIES
Our churches are filled with many who have grown up in the church, attending Sunday School, attending church events, giving tithes and offerings, maybe even taking leadership roles. Yet, they have never accepted Jesus as Lord and Savior. Nor they repented and they have never asked Him into their hearts or lives. They attend, but have not known Him as Lord, nor understood His mission and the hope, peace, grace, love and forgiveness that He brings. Marty Stubblefield
— o —
“Christianity is in its very essence a resurrection religion,” wrote John R. W. Stott. “The concept of resurrection lies at its heart. If you remove it, Christianity is destroyed!”
In his commentary on Luke, Colly Caldwell offers this observation regarding Jesus’ resurrection. “This singular event establishing His divinity forms the unique aspect of Christianity which rises about all other world religions.” The remains of all other religious founders remain buried. But the tomb of Jesus of Nazareth is empty.
— o —
Sexually transmitted infections in the US surged to a record high in 2020.
— o —
Some 80% of the people who live in Tampa do not have or attend a local church.
— o —
QUOTES YOU CAN USE
Why does a $50 bill look so small at the mall and so large in church? Ken Whitten
DO SMALL THINGS WITH GREAT LOVE. MOTHER THERESSA
Reaching your goals and dreams takes more than just doing what is expected of you, as good and as hard as that may be. Exceeding your dreams and goals is about doing what is expected and then some. It’s about taking personal responsibility for it. It’s about owning it. Marty Stubblefield
Good things become bad things when they take the place of the best thing. Ken Witten
The enemy wants us to wallow in our own sin. Cindy Heiberg
Making disciples is the key to the great commission, Max Wilkins
I’m a success today because I had a friend who believed in me, and I didn’t have the heart to let him down. Abraham Lincoln
If you wonder why you have a yearning in your heart, it is because God calls people to do His work. Neither machines, computers, or technology of any kind can accomplish what God wants you to do. Dwight Short
People who are unable to motivate themselves must be content with mediocrity, no matter how impressive their other talents. Andrew Carnegie
Your talent is God’s gift to you. What you do with it is your gift back to God. Leo Buscaglia