When our daughter was little, Christians became almost obsessed with the prayer of a guy named Jabez. Jabez was named that by his mother because evidently his birth was pretty painful and I guess she didn’t want him to forget it. Putting aside whatever parenting jewel is hidden in that fact, the focus is actually what comes next in 1 Chronicles 4:9-10.
You see Jabez asked God to bless him and expand his territory. (He also asked God to keep him from evil and causing pain.) As an average Christian mom, you are probably thinking you would consider asking God to shrink your territory a bit or at least give you some “people” to help. On the other hand, I hear so many moms talk about how they are bored or unfulfilled as mothers. They feel as if they are missing something.
What if what you are missing is that expanded territory? Not things. Not careers. But touching the lives of other moms and kids and pointing them towards God? What if your sense of purpose is not only parenting your own kids to be active, productive Christians, but helping others families learn about God and what He wants for them and from them?
Maybe the concept seems appealing or at least interesting, but you aren’t sure where to begin. That’s one of the best parts of being a mom. You are naturally in situations where you can have real conversations with real people. Interrupted a thousand times perhaps, but real all the same.
So chat with the mom at the playground or waiting to walk her child home from school. Ask the harried mom at the PTA meeting if you can pray for her and her family. Invite the moms in your child’s play group to have a mom Bible study or prayer group. Pray for God to give you opportunities, then keep your eyes open so you notice them when they come.
Praying the same prayer Jabez did may make your Christian parenting journey even richer and fuller. You may discover gifts from God you never realized you had. If nothing else, your kids will see every day examples from you of how to serve others and share their faith. Try it and see what God does!