Ephesians 6:18 (GW) Pray in the Spirit in every situation. Use every kind of prayer and request there is.
Last week we looked at the pattern God gave Moses to enter into His presence. We are to enter into the presence of God before we petition God. This week I want to look at the heart of prayer!
THE PRAYER OF JABEZ
1 Chronicles 4:9-10 (NIV) Jabez was more honorable than his brothers. His mother had named him Jabez, saying, “I gave birth to him in pain.” Jabez [meant “sorrow and pain”] 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.
Jabez prayer focus wasn’t his pain or his past, his prayer focus was God’s promise! Jabez didn’t let his name label him or define him.
“OH THAT YOU WOULD BLESS ME . . .”
- Pray for blessing. God wants you blessed! Your marriage, your health, your family, financially, etc.
Genesis 12:2 (NLT) I will bless you . . . and you will be a blessing to others.
Always remember, blessing’s purpose isn’t selfishness, it’s generosity.
2 Corinthians 9:8 (NIV) God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.
“. . . ENLARGE MY TERRITORY . . .”
- Pray for influence. God has available to you a life bigger than you.
Ephesians 1:18 (NIV) I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you . . . .
Life isn’t about the absence of problems, it’s about the presence of purpose. Live for something bigger! When God gives you more, He wants you to do more for His Kingdom. Christianity is way more than getting our sins forgiven. It’s living a life of purpose—influencing people toward God.
Luke 12:48 (ERV) Whoever has been given much will be responsible for much. Much more will be expected from the one who has been given more.
“LET YOUR HAND BE WITH ME . . .”
When God increases your territory, vision, and influence you will get in over your head. God’s purpose is bigger than you.
- Pray for presence. I can’t do it without you. I need You, Lord.
The more God enlarges us, the more we need to press into His presence.
Exodus 33:15-17 (NIV) Moses said to him, “If your Presence does not go with us, do not send us up from here. How will anyone know that you are pleased with me and with your people unless you go with us? What else will distinguish me and your people from all the other people on the face of the earth?” And the LORD said to Moses, “I will do the very thing you have asked.”
“ . . . KEEP ME FROM HARM.”
When you pursue God’s calling for your life hell will come against you.
- Pray for protection. If you’re not butting heads with the devil, you might be walking with him.
1 Peter 5:8 (NIV) The devil is like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour.
Ephesians 6:12 (ICB) Our fight is not against people on earth. We are fighting against the rulers and authorities and the powers of this world’s darkness. We are fighting against the spiritual powers of evil in the heavenly world.
In prayer you can talk about your past, pain and problems OR you can talk about what God wants to talk about. Prayer is not about God moving toward us, as much as us moving toward God—His will, His way, His plan, His promise.