Tuesday, March 21, 2023

            Wisdom is a virtue that we all need.  But we often find ourselves lacking wisdom.  We can lack wisdom about any number of things—finances, family, faith or failures we have suffered.  God’s wisdom is perfect—about anything at any time.  Indeed, the Bible is a collection of wisdom that can be applied to real life and real circumstances here and now.  The book of Proverbs alone is a graduate-level education in practical wisdom.  James wrote, “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you” (James 1:5).  We find six good lessons that James has for us in this one verse.
            First, we all lack wisdom at times.  No one knows everything.  And nobody handles every situation in life perfectly and without fault.  Frankly, we often gain wisdom from bad decisions and bad experiences.  Failure can be a good teacher.  But, if you think you lack wisdom, you are not alone.  We all share that frustration and find that wisdom can often be in short supply.  We have to acknowledge those times where we lack wisdom or certainty.  When we admit what we are missing, we are ready for what God can supply. 
            Second, God possesses complete and full wisdom.  He knows everything there is to know at the same time and all the time.  God never has to learn anything.  Nothing is ever new to Him.  God was “in the beginning.”  And God will be alive for eternity.  It is rather mind-blowing to consider that God has always existed.  Wow!  How do we even begin to imagine that?  Humanly speaking, we cannot get our finite minds wrapped around it.  The One who has always been has perfect wisdom and guidance on any matter we wish to take to Him.  In so many instances, God has already revealed in His Word exactly what we need to see or do.    
            Third, God is the giver of wisdom.  We have His Word.  We have His Holy Spirit living in us and with us.  We have His assurance and promise to be with us always—even to the end of the age.  We have His commitment to hear us when we pray—ask, seek or knock.  So, yes, we can ask God for wisdom.  We can ask for guidance and godly understanding when we need it.  We can ask Him to open our eyes, to supply us with grace, to grant us patience, to give us endurance, and to show us what we could not see by ourselves. 
            Fourth, God’s wisdom can change our perspective.  We often ask God to change situations or outcomes.  A better prayer might be for God to change us.  It may be that God wants to use a situation to sharpen our faith, to teach us humility, to show us how to forgive or to prepare us for service.  We can easily think only about the present moment at hand and changing it to something far better.  But God acts with eternity in mind.  He works to change character and perspective when we might prefer a shortcut or two.
            Fifth, we need to embrace God’s wisdom when He provides it.  His answer might be one hundred percent different from what we would have thought or expected.  But when God shows us His way, it is our responsibility to follow it and pursue it.  If we are not prepared to act on the wisdom that God gives us, then we should not ask for it. 
            And sixth, wisdom is an exercise in living by faith and not by sight.  To us, it might not make sense to forgive, to hold our tongue, to avoid that social media post, to hold our fire when someone has hurt us.  But divine wisdom might suggest we choose a different way to live or to act. God does not promise that we will always see the outcome in advance when we choose to trust Him.  Rather, He calls us to trust Him first and promises that we will have the light and grace we need to move forward. 
            The best way to encounter God’s wisdom and to imbed it into your life is reading His Word.  There is no substitute for Scripture reading and thirsting for God’s Word.  Time in His Word will exchange human wisdom for Godly wisdom, our ways for His ways and frustration for faithfulness.  Have a great Tuesday!  Make plans now to be with us this coming Sunday, March 26 at 6:00pm as Sam Nadler presents “The Lamb in Scripture.”  His message will tie in with what we have looked at in Revelation and most of all prepare us for Holy Week, Good Friday and Easter.  Remember worship is always accessible at youtube.com/FirstBaptistKannapolis.              

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