, , , , ,

See the source image

Why it matters: There are times that I seem to know what I am doing. There are other times I do not. I wander around aimlessly. I don’t have a clue, like a ship without a rudder.

  • I need wisdom.
  • When I need wisdom, I can simply ask my heavenly Father.
  • He loves to help me.

I can count on His help. I will not be condescended to when I ask for it. I need to ask boldly. I need to believe God will give it to me. I cannot have any second thoughts.

The wisdom God gives us is practical. God’s wisdom isn’t divorced from the harsh realities of life. How do we overcome difficulty? God’s wisdom shows us the way. It isn’t about how smart we are. Intelligence is not the issue. We cannot think our way out of problems.

Wisdom is divine and starts with God. In and of ourselves, we are not wise. God is. Starting with God and staying with God is the road to wisdom. God shows us the way.

  • Jesus is the wisdom of God. Jesus shows us the way.
  • Our goal is to be like the Messiah Jesus, our Master.
  • I must have faith in Jesus. That is the challenge.

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Master; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.

English Standard Version. (2016). (James 1:5–8). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.

The people to whom James wrote had problems with their praying. When we are going through God-ordained difficulties, what should we pray about? James gives the answer: ask God for wisdom.

James has a great deal to say about wisdom. The Jewish people were lovers of wisdom, as the Book of Proverbs gives evidence.

  • Someone has said that knowledge is the ability to take things apart, while wisdom is the ability to put them together.
  • Wisdom is the right use of knowledge.
  • All of us know people who are educated fools: they have brilliant academic records, but they cannot make the simplest decisions in life.

Why do we need wisdom when we are going through trials? Why not ask for strength, or grace, or even deliverance? For this reason: we need wisdom so we will not waste the opportunities God is giving us to mature. Wisdom helps us understand how to use these circumstances for our good and God’s glory.

  • James not only explained what to ask for (wisdom), but he also described how to ask. We are to ask in faith.
  • We do not have to be afraid, for God is anxious to answer, and He will never scold us! “He gives more grace” (James 4:6).
  • He also gives more and more wisdom.
  • The greatest enemy to answered prayer is unbelief.

James compares the doubting believer to the waves of the sea, up one minute and down the next. While vacationing in Hawaii, I learned that you cannot trust the waves.

This is the experience of the “double-minded man.” Faith says, “Yes!” but unbelief says, “No!” Then doubt comes along and says “Yes!” one minute and “No!” the next. It was doubt that made Peter sink in the waves as he was walking to Jesus. Jesus asked him, “O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?” When Peter started his walk of faith, he kept his eyes on the Messiah. But when he was distracted by the wind and waves, he ceased to walk by faith; and he began to sink. He was double-minded, and he almost drowned.