Ask for Wisdom: James 1:5-12

May 2nd, 2009

James 1:5-12

 1:5.  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.
 1:6.  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.
 1:7.  For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord;
 1:8.  he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.
 1:9.  Let the lowly brother glory in his exaltation,
 1:10.  but the rich in his humiliation, because as a flower of the field he will pass away.
 1:11.  For no sooner has the sun risen with a burning heat than it withers the grass; its flower falls, and its beautiful appearance perishes. So the rich man also will fade away in his pursuits.
 1:12.  Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been proved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.

 

Ask for Wisdom: James 1:5-12.

 

Patience is a good virtue to have. If you notice though, in these verses the writer suggests to pray for wisdom, not patience. In the previous verses he talks of patience. It is a byproduct of trials and suffering. We all face enough trials and suffering all by itself, they come without the need to pray for them. Patience isn't really the end product. It's what we do while the trials are going on. It is the mental exersize of keeping focused on God.

Pray for wisdom to recognize the trial for what it is, and the wisdom to respond in a godly manner. Then when the ordeal is over, that we have the wisdom to honor God for being our strength and stabalizing factor, our anchor, through our trouble.

God answers prayer. Don't doubt that he doesn't. At times, everybody has some amount of doubt. That's why it's important to take some baby steps. Through the little trials of life, practice wisdom in asking God what to do. Check your reaction, stop and let the frustration roll off your back, and let God handle it. In each small thing, you build confidence and increasing trust that God works. He does what he said.

To continue to doubt is to be double minded. It is to be prideful and think that you handled the situation alone. Pride over accomplishments appears to make us look rich, or like a flower of the field. In the end, all the wealth that a rich person has can't rescue them from death. Flowers have about the shortest lifespan of plants. They aren't even a plant, but a part of it that blossoms for a short time.

The humble person may or may not be a wealthy person by our definition of riches. The true kind of humility here has to do with the fact that this person believes. They have come to learn, through practicing a relationship with God, that He is the one in control. There are times where it is better to take the hands off the wheel, and let God steer through the trying times.

It's the humble person who has faced trials, and kept his focus on God as he remained patient, letting God handle the situation. The humble person didn't pray for the patience, or the tril, but for wisdom to do the right thing, to recognize how God has worked and how this trial has made him a finished work. The rich, prideful, boubtful person may take on a beautiful appearance, but once it fades, there's no more. The humble, trusting one, who puts glory with God and not himself, has earned the right to life that endures.

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