Desire for Increase

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1 Chronicles 4:10 “And Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, Oh that thou wouldest bless me indeed, and enlarge my coast, and that thine hand might be with me, and that thou wouldest keep me from evil, that it may not grieve me! And God granted him that which he requested.”

Jabez’s prayer is one of the more well-known prayers in the Scriptures. We admire his prayer because he wanted God to do more through him than what he had already attained. Jabez’s idea of God’s blessings on his life was that God would give him more than what he had. Certainly, this is a great prayer, and God noted His pleasure with this prayer by granting his request.

We live in times when many criticize those who want to get bigger. There used to be a day when young preachers wanted God to help them to build the largest Sunday schools in their city or state. There used to be a day when bus captains wanted to build the largest bus routes in their area. There used to be a time when people had a vision for God to make them the biggest, but it seems that now most make participation the model for spirituality instead of building something great for God. I find several things in Jabez’s prayer about getting bigger that should motivate you to want to build something big for God.

First, there is nothing wrong with wanting to get bigger. Desire is one of the keys to this prayer. Jabez would not have asked God to enlarge his coast if he had no desire. You ought to have a desire for God to do something great through your life, and if you don't have that desire, ask God to give you that desire.

Second, he didn't let success cause him to lose a vision for something bigger. Jabez already had experienced success, but that didn't stop him from wanting God to d o something more. An apathetic vision that is content with what you have and not with a desire for God to give you more is the death certificate for your Christian walk. Never be satisfied with present accomplishment. Always have a vision and drive for God to enlarge what He has given you.

Third, Jabez knew that getting bigger would not happen without prayer. Jabez didn't just voice his desire for more to others who could do nothing about it, but he expressed his heart’s desire to God in prayer. My friend, it still takes prayer for God to enlarge your coast. It is while you spend time in prayer that God gives you His confidence and ideas on how you can grow what you have. You are fooling yourself and wasting your time if you think you can build something great for God without prayer.

Fourth, Jabez understood that it would take work. Jabez wasn’t asking God to give him more without work; he was just asking God to be with him as he attempted to get more. There is no substitute for hard work. God doesn't build great ministries through lazy, pleasure-driven individuals, but He builds great ministries with the hardest working believers. If you want God to enlarge what you have, work harder. God always blesses hard work, and the harder you work, the more God will increase what you have.

Let me ask you, do you have a desire for God to build something great through you? Don't be satisfied with the average. Ask God to enlarge what you have and go work as if the enlargement is up to you, and you will find that God will bless your prayer and work efforts.

Dr. Allen Domelle


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