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Have You Ever?
By Joel Osteen - Jun 17, 2011
There's a man in scripture named Jabez whose name means "trouble, sorrow, heartache." We don't know a lot about Jabez, but based on his name, I can imagine he'd been through a lot of disappointments. Life probably hadn't turned out the way he had hoped. But instead of sitting around feeling sorry for himself, Jabez believed that God had something big coming his way. In spite of the odds being stacked against him, Jabez knew that one touch of God's favor could turn any situation around. The thing that made Jabez stand out in scripture is that he was bold enough to ask God to do something big. He said, "God, I'm asking You to enlarge my territory and bless me indeed!" He was saying in effect, I've been through a lot of disappointments. I've had a lot of hurts and pain. But God, I'm not going to get stuck here. I'm expecting Your favor. I'm expecting You to turn it around and bless me indeed. That word "indeed" means "in great ways." The scripture simply says, "God granted him his request."

My question today is: have you ever asked God to enlarge your territory? Have you ever said, "God, bless me indeed. God, do something big in my life?" Friend, we have not because we ask not. When you stretch your faith, when you get a vision to enlarge, increase and expand your influence, that's what opens the door for God to do amazing things.

Sometimes we have such a limited view of God. We act like we're inconveniencing God to believe for big things. So we end up praying small prayers. "God, if You'll just give me a little raise, maybe I can get a better place to live." "God, if You'll give me a few customers, maybe I can make the budget this month." "God, if You'll give me a little help, maybe my marriage will survive." No, you're selling yourself short. God is all powerful. He has unlimited resources! You are not doing God a favor by holding back and being small minded. If you want to make God happy, then believe big, expect big and ask big!

You can increase your vision today by simply saying, "Father, thank You for doing something big in my life. Thank You for big opportunities, big ideas and big breakthroughs. Lord, help me to be a big blessing to somebody else." As you begin to think like God, to think big and expansive, you'll see your influence and opportunities increase. You'll see His hand of favor upon you, and you'll move forward into the abundant life He has for you!
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