I wonder how much we miss out on just because we don’t ask God? Or because we don’t really ask him.
I’ve had times in my life where I was thinking about something for several days, and I suddenly realize that I haven’t talked to the Lord about it.
Oh, I’ve worried about it. Lost sleep over it. Fretted and wrung my hands and contemplated all sorts of bad scenarios.
But haven’t taken it to the Lord.
I think that’s what James is talking about in this passage. He’s just told a group of Christians that they need to rejoice when they suffer, and he probably anticipated their response.
What? How could we possibly do that?
So he writes this:
If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him (James 1:5).
It’s natural to struggle with the meaning of the tough stuff of life. Lord . . . why?
And that’s exactly what we need to do when it happens, according to James. We need to beg God to help us see what he’s trying to accomplish.
That’s the “wisdom” James is talking about—the wisdom to see God’s hand at work in all of life’s messiness. The wisdom to see that he can bring good out of bad, that he cares about what we’re dealing with. The wisdom to know how to handle everything the world throws at us.
I love what James says about God’s response: he “gives generously to all without reproach.” In other words, he gives wisdom without begrudging it. He loves to give.
So here it is:
We can keep it to ourselves and worry and lose sleep and joy . . .
Or we can do what James says. We can ask God to give us wisdom to see his hand at work in our lives.