I have hundreds of books sitting in my office ranging from Dr. Seuss to Paul Tillich. Each book, whether read or not, holds a special place in my heart for various reasons. But there is one book-one of the smallest on my shelf-that has captured my attention this week. As I’ve prayed and planned for 2016 and Second Chance Christian Church I picked up Bruce Wilkinson’s The Prayer of Jabez: Breaking Through to the Blessed Life. In total the book is only 92 pages and centers around one of the bible’s least known characters, Jabez.
I can’t tell you exactly who he was or what he did, but I know what he prayed. In 1 Chronicles 4:10 Jabez says “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”. That’s all there is, there’s no more about him anywhere within the bible, but we know that Jabez was blessed and God heard his prayer.
This year I want Second Chance to move into position where the prayer of Jabez is true for all our collective identity. I want us to claim enlarged territory with every blessing that has our name on it. I want this to be the year we multiply exponentially and give Columbus (and our haters) something to talk about. I am making the commitment to read one chapter from this tiny little book each day for the next week and then prayer the prayer of Jabez for the next 30 days straight.
I don’t know why God answered Jabez’s prayer, but I’m willing to pray this little prayer with great faith. Will you join me?