There is a profound spiritual lesson that we can learn from Jabez’ mother [1 Chronicle 4:9]: What we choose to remember, can bless or curse the people in our lives.
Jabez’ mother chose to remember her pain while giving birth to Jabez, to the extent that she named her child Jabez, meaning ‘pain’, as a result Jabez was cursed in his spirit. Jabez’ mother could have chosen to remember how the Lord blessed her with a son, leading her into a spirit of worship and thanksgiving. Had that been her choice, Jabez would have been blessed (and probably would have a better name)!
One might wonder how deep and how obsessive was Jabez’ mother’s bitterness over her birth pain to the extent that she forgot completely about the joy of birthing a child! How could a blessing being twisted into a curse? Before we rush to judge Jabez’ mother, let’s not forget the logs in our eyes. In many life situations, we made the same foolish choices that Jabez’ mother made.
There are countless times we, like Jabez’ mother, turn God’s blessings into curses:
- Instead of thanking God for providing us a new place to move into, we dread the pain of packing and cleaning and all the stress in moving.
- Instead of being thankful for family gatherings, we whine about the preparation and the cooking.
- Instead of remembering how the Lord spared our lives, we chose to remember how the brand new car was damaged from the accident.
- Instead of remembering how the Lord has provided for us, we chose to remember the luxury that our neighbors indulge in that we cannot afford.
- Instead of worshiping God with the gifting we received from Him, we chose to envy the superstars among us who seemed to be gifted in everything (yes, and often also very good looking with seemingly perfect family).
- Instead of remembering how the Lord has delivered us from our crisis, we chose to remember all the meticulous details of the crisis itself: the date, the hour, the minute, the frame by frame details of when and how that crisis happened. Some even went to the extent of making an “anniversary” out of it year over year!
- My goodness, the fact that it took me no time to get this list going scares me!
The spiritual truth is that our choice of what to remember has the consequence to bless or curse the people in our lives, the same way as how Jabez’ mother’s choice cursed Jabez (though Jabez has God’s grace).
We need to repent from the spirit of Jabez’ mother!
I pray that the Holy Spirit to come and remove any trace of the spirit of Jabez’ mother in me regardless of whatever situations that come my way! I pray that I would be His instrument of bringing God’s blessings to the people around me and not be an agent of curse.
Another spiritual lesson from Jabez: