I was fortunate to receive a book entitled the Prayer of Jabez from a friend a few years ago. Do you know who Jabez is? Well I would understand if you didn’t because he only has two short verses in the entire bible, but we are told that Jabez was an honourable man who asked God among other things to not only bless him, but to also enlarge his territory.
I do not offer this prayer as often as I did when I accepted my friend’s gift, because in all honesty, if my present territory is too much for me now, how will I be able to handle an even larger one? But I digress.
One Friday last year as I on my way to visit my aunt for lunch, I specifically asked God to send me a breakthrough or a sign as it related to my writing and/or acting. I felt as though I was in limbo. I was unsettled not only in my creativity, but in trying to balance my home and work life while fitting in “Gale” time; I was tired of being tired.
I returned to work, opened my e-mail and found a note regarding a casting call for the Barbadian television series “Keeping Up With The Joneses”; I would have no lines to say but I would be a part of the episode. I couldn’t believe it (even though I had just prayed for it – oh me of little faith)! I was excited and happy, but the excitement soon wore off because I felt I wasn’t ready. What was I going to wear? What accessories would I chose? And makeup, who was going to do that for me?
As I became more and more worried, I realized a very important fact: while we are waiting for God to answer our prayers we have to be getting ready to meet the opportunity when it finally comes. I did find something to wear, and the filming went very well. The seed has been planted and I met some really great people. God is in control of the harvest now, as I wait on Him to send me a ‘real real’ acting part sometime in the future. In the meantime, I will continue to hone my writing and performing skills little by little and day by day, so that I am better prepared for the next opportunity.
Your Story (?)
But what are you praying for? Are you asking God for a bigger car or home? Do you want a promotion or a super wonderful spouse? Perhaps you have been trying for years to conceive and this is your deepest desire. The main question however is this: are you ready for ‘bigger and better’? Will you be able to clean and maintain a bigger home? Can you afford to pay for the additional fuel for your bigger car? Are you capable of managing the additional responsibilities that will come with a promotion, and are you studying or updating your resume while you wait for your dream job? Do you have adequate time to spend with a spouse or child to ensure a truly meaningful relationship?
I learnt the hard way that we need to be prepared to answer the door when opportunity knocks. By the next casting call not only will my wardrobe and makeup be organized, but more people will know who I am from the focused promotion of my work. In the meantime, I encourage you to really think about what you are praying for and to answer honestly as to whether you are indeed ready to receive all that God has planned for you.
Remember: God is with you wherever you are – and that covers seven days a week including Sundays! So while we wait to receive the answers to our prayers, let’s ask God to bless us and to lay His hand upon our lives. Let us prepare and make ready to go out in confidence to claim the enlarged territory He has waiting for us because we know that He will grant us our request – just as He did for Jabez!
Verse for Reflection
Jabez was more honorable than his brothers. His mother had named him Jabez, saying, “I gave birth to him in pain.” Jabez 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.
1 Chronicles 4:9-10