“Jabez was more honorable than his brothers . . . 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 (NIV)
Every human is designed for excellence. You may feel ordinary, but God made you to live a life of significance.
The Bible is filled with ordinary people who lived extraordinary lives because they believed God would work in and through them. They believed God made them for a purpose and intended for them to successfully fulfill their mission.
One example is a man named Jabez. God gave him an honorable mention in 1 Chronicles—a Bible book that includes nine chapters of genealogies. Right in the middle of that long list of names, God singles out Jabez—an ordinary guy—in two verses.
The Bible says, “Jabez was more honorable than his brothers . . . 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 NIV).
Those two verses give all the information we have about Jabez—but they reveal that he lived a life that was anything but average.
Jabez stands out because of three secrets to his success.
We’ll look at the first two today.
He had great ambition. While many people are content with being average, Jabez wanted God to do something significant through him. He didn’t want to live half-heartedly; he wanted a full and meaningful life.
Jabez was ambitious, but, just as importantly, he was motivated by the right things. How do we know Jabez’s motives were genuine and not selfish? Because we read, “And God granted his request.” God will never honor an unworthy request.
Many people just drift through life. They have no goals, no master plan, and no overall purpose. As a result, they never go anywhere. If you want to live above average, dream big! You’re not meant to go through life wondering, “What am I doing? Where am I going?” God wants you to have a great ambition—fueled by the desire to serve him.
He had a growing faith. Jabez had a deep trust and belief in God. There’s no mention of him having any special ability or talent. The Bible doesn’t say he was wealthy or educated. He was just a common man with an uncommon faith.
There is something in life that is more important than ability and talent. It’s faith. I know a lot of super talented people who are sitting on the sidelines while people who have faith are making the touchdowns. Faith is believing God will work through you.
How do you break out of mediocrity? Like Jabez, you get a great ambition and a growing faith—and depend on God to do the impossible. Missionary William Carey once said, “Attempt great things for God and then expect great things from God.”
Talk It Over
UNDERSTANDING THE CHURCH: Rev. Yates will lead a class to help us understand who we are as a church beginning on October 3 during the Sunday School hour. They will meet in the last classroom on the left past the office.
NEW LOCATION FOR MEN’S LUNCH: Men will meet for a time of lunch and fellowship on September 16th at noon at Courtney's Diner (4066 N. Mt. Juliet Road, Mt. Juliet).
LIFE LINE SCREENING: There will be another Life Line Screening at Old Hickory on Friday, October 29. Click here for details or register by calling toll free 1-888-653-6441 or text the word "circle" to 797979.
BAPTISM: If you are interested in Baptism, please see Pastor Mike.
MAGNOLIA DISTRICT WOMEN'S RETREAT will be October 22-24 at Camp Garner Creek with speaker Allison Durham Speer. Click here for details.
HOLIDAY BAZAAR: Kick off your holiday shopping by supporting local crafters and vendors at the Holiday Bazaar in the FLC from 9:00 AM to 2:00 PM on November 13. https://fb.me/e/1d0i0DQzO
YOUTH GROUP NEWS!! Bring a friend and join us for fun, fellowship, and growing in Christ. Youth Group meets on Tuesdays from 6-8pm. The first hour will be games and snacks and the second will be the Bible study with a dive into Romans. BRING A FRIEND AND JOIN US! Contact Brice for more information.
YOUTH BUNCH TO LUNCH will be every 2nd and 4th Sunday. Teens will meet after worship for lunch and fellowship.
TAEKWONDO: Join Brice for free Taekwondo classes on Mondays and Fridays from 6:00-7:00pm in the Family Life Center.. Please email for more information.
WORKERS ARE NEEDED. Please let us know if you can help in the following areas...
CHURCH CENTER: You are invited to join us on the Church Center app! Church Center is a place to connect with small groups and church events, send messages to your group, update your profile, and more! Download from the App Store and connect today. If you have trouble with setting up or updating your profile to keep your contact information up to date, see Jenn Houchin or Terri Ray.
FOOD PANTRY: The Old Hickory Nazarene location is open on Wednesday from 5:00-7:00 PM. Volunteers and donations are needed.
COFFEE SHOP: Uncommon Grounds is open every Monday-Saturday from 7:00 AM-2:00 PM. Invite a friend and use this great outreach to introduce the church to your friends.
CLASSES & STUDIES
Debbie Woodard leads the Young Adult class via ZOOM for anyone who would like to join.
Meeting ID: 868 1977 8952
Kenneth Ray & Gracie Smith lead the Friendship Class in person and via ZOOM for anyone who would like to join. They meet Sunday mornings at 9am in the classroom down the hall and to the right of the office.
Meeting ID: 846 6822 8046
Brice Rupert leads the teens class (grades 6-12), Kelsey Quillen leads the kids class (grades k-5), both in person at 9:00am. We have kids classes for all ages.
SUNDAY MORNING WORSHIP begins at 10:00am in the sanctuary. The services will continue to be live streamed on Facebook and our website home page for those unable to be with us in the church building.
OH|KIDS CHURCH for K-5th grade meets in the kids room downstairs during the worship hour at 10:00am.
Coffee & Community Bible Study every other Tuesday at 9:30am in the Coffee Shop. Next meeting is on September 28.
YOUTH GROUP meets on Tuesdays from 6-8pm. The first hour will be games and snacks and the second will be the Bible study.
Wednesday Night Bible Study with Debbie Woodard is on Facebook Live (from Debbie's page) at 6:30pm.
Richard leads prayer and devotional on Thursdays at 7:00 PM via ZOOM for anyone who would like to join.
Meeting ID: 894 2501 3143