“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways” (James 1:5-8).
Multitudes of “How to…” books and videos exist. Few, if any, in this genre are more concise than the three sentences used by James in instructing his readers on “How to Pray for Wisdom”. His instruction manual contains two simple items:
Ask. Aiteo—the Greek verb written by James’ quill—denotes a request made by one inferior in rank and power to its recipient. It is a petition which humbly arises from a keen and urgent sense of need, without any hint of entitlement. It necessitates personal action because of a personal deficit of wisdom.
Trust. If you believe the counsel of the all-wise God is one of several options available to addressing your current need, don’t waste your time. When there is a conflict in your mind which disagrees over the value or advisability of pursuing wisdom via prayer, you don’t meet the requirements needed to be a recipient of God’s generous offer. God responds to faith—faith in Him, faith in His promises, faith in His wisdom. God’s precious blessing of wisdom is unavailable to the double-minded.
Simple counsel. Challenging words. God’s bountiful blessing of wisdom awaits those who ask and trust.