“Jabez was the one who prayed to the God of Israel, ‘Oh, that you would bless me and expand my territory! Please be with me in all that I do and keep me from all trouble and pain!’ And God granted him his request.”
“They cried out to God during the battle, and he answered their prayer because they trusted in him…But these tribes were unfaithful to the God of their ancestors. They worshiped the gods of the nations that God had destroyed.”
1 Chronicles 4:10; 5:20, 25
Each one of us is part of a genealogy, but that list of names does not end with us. So how will we influence the names that follow ours?
I noticed some good examples in Israel’s genealogy, and each has to do with the heart. Jabez revealed a longing for God’s presence when he requested, “Please be with me in all I do.” God answered that prayer, as He did for the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and Manasseh. They could have been considered the “lesser” tribes of Israel, but “They cried out to God during battle, and He answered their prayer because they trusted in him.” In both examples, God noticed their hearts rather than their importance or their size.
That is why it is heartbreaking to read that those same tribes who once trusted God were later unfaithful to the God and worshiped the gods of the nations that God had destroyed. Their hearts turned from God to idols, and that heart shift resulted in their exile. Those three tribes became the first in Israel to be taken into captivity! (5:26) Yes, the heart matters to God.
So, may our prayer be that of Jabez, “Please be with me in all I do!” And may our hearts worship only God.
Let’s make a difference in our genealogies!
It’s our turn now!