Jabez was more honorable than his brothers; and his mother called his name Jabez, saying,“Because I bore him in pain.” Jabez called upon the God of Israel, saying, “Oh that you would bless me and enlarge my border, and that your hand might be with me, and that you would keep me from harm so that it might not bring me pain!”
And God granted what he asked.
1 Chronicles 4v9-10
The name of Jabez is remembered for his praying.
Hudson and Maria Taylor wrote to their small group of missionaries in 1867 and asked them to make the prayer of Jabez their New Year’s Prayer.
“The difficulties of the work are so great,” wrote Mr. Taylor, “that apart from the mighty power of God we should indeed have a hopeless task before us.”
The group wanted to expand but did not have the money or the permission.
Amazingly a Singaporean Chinese had been travelling in the area and met the little group of missionaries months before. One of them had led the Singaporean to faith.
The Singaporean had travelled back to Shanghai and recounted his story to a businessman. Touched to hear of these foreigners who dressed, spoke and even ate like the Chinese, the businessman made a gift to the Mission which came through…in January of 1867.
So that first extension of the Mission from Hang-chau was possible when both permission for a new station was given them (in the neighbouring city of Siao-shan) AND the funds arrived unexpectedly for the rental of a property there. “Enlarge my borders.”
Assistant General Director