"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 Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways."
|Painting: The Mayflower by Mike Haywood|
What an interesting day I had yesterday! I began this study in James, wrote about steadfastness and joy under trials, and spent the day fighting discouragement and joylessness. Isn't it just like the enemy? The temptation to throw in the towel is often so very real and so difficult not to give in to, especially when one is writing about it! I spent much time in prayer last night pleading with the Lord.
I am encouraged to go on. God has much more to say on this matter through the apostle James. So where do we go when we begin to feel the pull of the enemy, when we begin to feel like our steadfastness is giving way to discouragement?
We are to ask God for wisdom. If wisdom is " the exercise of sound judgment either in avoiding evils or attempting good, (Noah Webster) or, my favorite, "Seeing life from God's perspective," then certainly when we are in the midst of trials which we cannot rid ourselves of, then we must turn to God. In order to receive wisdom from Him, we are to:
- Ask for it. (Simple enough!)
- Ask in faith. (Okay, I believe God can do anything.)
- Do not doubt. (Do I feel a little nausea coming on?)
Let's get this next picture engraved on our minds:
- A ship is in the ocean.
- A strong wind has come up.
- The ship is being driven by the wind.
- The ship is being tossed about by the wind.
- It is unstable.
|Wreck of the SS Catala at Ocean Shores, WA. Wrecked in a storm 1965, picture taken in 1976|
That is a picture of humankind when we ask God for wisdom in the midst of trials and refuse to believe that He will provide it. Seeing that I get really seasick, that scenario seems quite nauseous to me! I DO NOT WANT TO BE DRIVEN BY UNBELIEF! I DON'T WANT TO BE SHIPWRECKED!
Matthew Henry said, "Wisdom shall be given to those who ask it of God, provided they believe that God is able to make the simple wise, and is faithful to make good his word to those who apply to him."
God is able
God is faithful.
I must believe that my Sovereign God will give me wisdom to endure the trials that He is allowing in my life. He alone is worthy of our trust. He is our Steadfast Hope. He is the Director of the things of life.
Thankful for a God who keeps His promises,