Scripture Reading—James 1:1-8
We can ask for a lot of things when we pray—and we should. We can ask God to help us in times of stress. We can ask God to bless people we love and care about. We can ask God to be present with people who face war, hunger, or hurricanes. There are many things we can ask for. But James says that we should not forget to ask for something else—wisdom. God wants to give us all this gift, James claims. But what is wisdom exactly? Some say that wisdom is knowing how to apply or make use of knowledge. Wise people—you’ve met them—are perceptive. They understand situations and people. They know how to help people understand the truth, but do so with tact and compassion. They know how to help people solve difficult problems without coming across as know-it-alls. James says when we ask for this gift, we should do so with confidence that God wants to give it to us. The form of the answers to many of our other prayers makes us wonder sometimes if we’ve prayed rightly or if God has heard us at all. But we can never go wrong praying for wisdom. In time, whether from a flash of insight or through the words of a good friend, God will show us how to live the lives we were created to live.
Thought for the day: The one prayer God will always, finally hear, is the sincere, confident prayer for wisdom.
Prayer: O God, I do not always know how to pray or what to pray for. More than anything grant me wisdom, that I will know how to live a life that brings glory to you, good to others, and joy to me. Amen.