Let's look at the prayer of Jabez, a popular prayer of blessing that has become a great model of how we can pray over our lives.
He asks the Lord: "Oh that You would bless me indeed and enlarge my border, and that Your hand might be with me, and that You would keep me from harm that it may not pain me." (1 Chronicles 4:10, emphasis mine).
Isn't it interesting that he asked for blessing AND that God would grow his reach, protection and that God would be with him? Could that be because blessing is within his heart and all the success part is simply part of (or not part of) God's will? Of course God desires good things for our businesses, our families and our volunteer positions, and of course blessing can come in the form of growth.
But when we value success OVER God's nearness - His contentment, peace, wisdom, discernment - we are continually disappointed.
I am a writer so I deal in terms of page views, likes, shares and readership.
I am a shop owner so I also deal in terms of sales, revenue and measured growth.
I am an artist and deal yet more in technique growth, finding my voice and education.
These are all good things.
But they are not the best thing.
They are not the thing that we should be after as believing women! The thing we should be after is Christ, and the thing He is after is our heart.
Maybe you are in a place of discouragement today. Maybe you feel down about your numbers or not getting a promotion. Maybe you simply feel small - and you see women all around you who are “enlarging their territory” and it seems as though God’s hand is on them but not big enough to cover you as well.
I've been there. Heck - I am there a lot of the time. But the encouragement is that God loves us and blesses us from the inside out. He is teaching us, shaping us, molding us to be more like HIM to be used by HIM so that we might speak about HIM.
It’s not about us, but it is all about Him. And always will be.
I am more convinced than ever that God's blessing is not, in fact, measured by how successful we are, but measured more by how much we place our trust in God - and the result of that is peace, joy and contentment - all of which money (and success) cannot buy!
So we have two choices today.
We can measure our blessing by worldly success and come up wanting more often than not, or we can measure our blessing by God's nearness in our lives. I hope we will choose the latter.
"But as for me, the nearness of God is good for me;
I have made the Lord God my refuge,
So that I may tell of all Your works."