How to Grow in Wisdom
How to Grow in Wisdom Part 1 of this article can be found in the Spring edition of the She Yearns Newsletter. Click here to read the archive when it becomes live.
If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. James 1:5
Even though I don’t have a clue what to do in my given situation or in my relationships – there is a good chance I will rely on other people, personal resources, or my own hutzpah for going forward. Why do you and I do this?
Reasons we Might not ask God for Wisdom
We embrace, “I can figure this out myself-” kind of thinking. At least we think we can. Oh, yes. We’ve got it all covered. The last thing we need to do is pray and ask God for help. Prayer is just that– our last resort, when all else fails. We are completely in charge until the problem is too large to fix; the situation exceeds our financial capabilities; or it is out of our control altogether. Then and only then will we give God a chance.
Some of us lack experience in walking with God and a knowledge of Him. We really don’t know His character. We haven’t seen Him answer our prayer. We have not yet read Scripture to know how He deals with His beloved. There is a legitimate lack of knowledge in that we don’t know the freedom we have to ask and receive.
This is the place we arrive after everything turns south from forces within and then our circumstances go awry around us. It seems God is not helping or listening to our prayers. You and I become discouraged to the point of utter dismay. Why would we ask God for wisdom when there is so much going wrong in life? It never crosses our minds that these difficulties are present to draw us to Him, rather than away from Him.
If the first three obstacles fail to hinder us from coming to God for help, the Enemy will launch a full onslaught. We must remember – Satan is in this to win a war he is destined to lose. So he is taking as many down with his as possible. His objective is our total destruction. It matters not how it happens – or how much we participate. Using any and every tactic possible to keep us from knowing God’s character and His willingness to answer us and provide for our every need— is more than worth any cost. There is an agenda. It is for our demise – never for our good.
James seems to recognize our proneness NOT to ask – so he graciously reminds us of why we should go to God for wisdom.
Reasons we Should ask God for Wisdom
1) There is a lot to give
Our God possesses a character that gives generously and who is defined literally here as, “the giving God.” Over and over across Scripture, we find God to be a giver. And not only just a giver– but one who gives abundantly. He is a giver of wisdom—yes, but also in other matters.
he who spared not his own son — — will he not freely give us all things/ —
“It is his characteristic habit to be exceedingly bountiful” – commentary – p 9.
2) This wisdom is easy to obtain
There is not a catch. We don’t owe Him anything extra. It doesn’t require us to clean up first and stop doing some terrible habit we’ve been meaning to quit. James doesn’t say this is just for perfect people. We would all be disqualified! He knows us. Instead – it is a simple directive. Just ask. You and I will find more often than not – He will do exceedingly beyond what we can think or imagine.
3) It takes us out of the equation
When we ask God for wisdom – and He delivers, this allows us to see God move in our lives, and our faith grows. We begin to develop a history with Him. You and I can know – there was no humanly possible way we could have figured out that mess we were in or made that impossible situation work out the way it did. God did it because we asked Him for wisdom in how to deal with it all. He makes you smarter than you are – and wise beyond your years. And He does it such a magnificent way that makes Him look glorious.
4) We have nothing to lose
James reminds us from the get-go that we can rest confidently in knowing we are not chastised for our failings of thought and really, wicked misconceptions of the unchanging character of the giving God. Here states the brother of Jesus, who did not believe him his entire life on this planet, and we know made fun of him–that he “upbraideth not” – without rebuke.
What an encouragement!
If you are like me – you have at least a mental list of things of which you need answers.
1) What, if anything is keeping you from asking the Giving God for wisdom in your situation?
2) How have you experienced the wisdom of God in your life in the past?
3) In what ways can you suggest to someone who does not know the character of God well yet – to get to know Him better?
4) What does it mean to you to know that your God is known by name – as The Giving God?
Challenge members to think of one thing on your mental list of which you need wisdom. Tell it to your group – or somehow communicate it to your faith community so that they can pray for you. Then ask God for wisdom in this area. When you see God answering your request – let those you invited in know about it!
I’d love it if you posted it below! Let us all hear about how God is moving in the lives of His people! He is the changeless Giving God! We could all use your story to add to our foundation of faith.
With much affection!
For His glory,