Trouble comes to everybody sooner or later. Often trouble comes back to back. First the refrigerator breaks down, then your child gets sick and needs expensive medicine, and then you lose your job. My Lord, what to do! James the brother of Jesus, taught:
“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).
We often do not know how to respond when trouble comes. We try this, then that, and then the other. When nothing we think of works, we get frustrated and cry out, “God, why me!” We spin our wheels, and nothing works.
James said when trouble comes ask God for wisdom because knowledge is not enough. Knowledge has been defined as raw information and wisdom is knowing how to use the facts you have, or new information God wants to give to you so that you can be spiritually mature, wanting nothing. The problem is that sometimes the wisdom is so surprising we doubt that it is God speaking.
We may doubt because when we prayed to God, He revealed that:
- We were disobedient and should repent and obey, or
- We are in the middle of a test from Satan. He is trying to get us to turn our back on God, or
- We are being tested by God so that we can become better, stronger, and wiser. It is promotion time.
When we ask God for wisdom, He will give it liberally according to His greatness and not resent us for asking. However, God ‘s wisdom often causes us to doubt because it will test our flesh and our faith. When we doubt, we are double-minded because we trusted Him enough to ask for help but then questioned the answer. In fact, God sees us as unstable as the waves of the sea, unstable in all our ways. Being unstable reaps nothing from God. Nothing!
When you are in trouble, believe God. “Trust Him with all your heart and lean not to your own understanding. In all your ways, acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths” (Proverbs 3:5-6). No matter how hard His wisdom seems, obey. His direction, His wisdom will bring you complete victory.
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