Thursday, May 18, 2017

God Provides It

Solomon knew he was out of his league.  He knew that his responsibility as king of Israel far weighed his ability to do the job.  So, he turned to God.  He asked for wisdom.  The big question becomes, then, “How will God respond?  Will God say ‘Yes’ and give Solomon the wisdom he needs?  Will God deny the request outright and tell Solomon he already has what he needs to do the job?  Or will God respond with the ever-dreaded, ‘Wait,’ telling Solomon to give it some time.  Solomon asked for wisdom.  Will God provide?

The Lord was pleased that Solomon had asked for wisdom. So God replied, "Because you have asked for wisdom in governing My people with justice and have not asked for a long life or wealth or the death of your enemies--I will give you what you asked for! I will give you a wise and understanding heart such as no one else has had or ever will have! (1 Kings 3:10-12 NLT)

God said yes!  Solomon will receive wisdom.  Not only that, God is so pleased with Solomon’s request that God will pour out more blessings on Solomon as well.

And I will also give you what you did not ask for--riches and fame! No other king in all the world will be compared to you for the rest of your life! And if you follow Me and obey My decrees and My commands as your father, David, did, I will give you a long life." (1 Kings 3:13-14 NLT)

We often talk about whether these Old Testament stories apply to our lives today or not, but they do.  When Solomon asks for wisdom, God provides it immediately.  God offers us the same gift today as well.

If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and He will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. (James 1:5 NLT)

Our generous God wants to give us wisdom.  We simply need to ask.  The problem is that we usually don’t ask for it.  I lift up many, many prayer requests each week for people I am connected to in life.  Many of those requests, unfortunately, boil down to requests for long life, wealth, fame, or even punishment of our enemies.  Very few of those request are for wisdom.  I always think to myself, “That’s too bad.  God would say ‘Yes’ to a request for wisdom…if they would only ask.”

If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and He will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. But when you ask Him, be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind. Such people should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Their loyalty is divided between God and the world, and they are unstable in everything they do. (James 1:5-8 NLT)

We can’t fake God out, either.  We can’t ask for wisdom when we really just want enough money to keep our nice house, fancy car, or boat.  God sees right through that.  We can’t ask for help forgiving people who wronged us when we secretly want them to get what they deserve.  God will see right through that as well.  God gives us what we need to forgive.  We simply need to forgive.  You see, God wants to give us wisdom because wisdom leads us to the life that God has in store for us.  The question is not whether God will provide or not. The question is simple: “Will we ask?”

But the wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy and good deeds. It shows no favoritism and is always sincere. (James 3:17 NLT)

How about you?  Do you ask God for wisdom?  Does God provide?