It Never Hurts to Ask

I had a friend growing up whose motto was “It never hurts to ask.” He figured that if he wanted to do something, like ride his bike to the park, spend the night with a friend, or get a new toy, he’d never get it if he didn’t ask. If he asked, at least there was a chance. His parents just might say, “Yes.”

Did you know that there are times that God will always say “Yes” if we ask Him? One of those times is if we ask for wisdom. James 1:5 says, “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.” (ESV).

What is wisdom? True wisdom is not intellectual knowledge. Rather it is gaining God’s perspective on things, allowing us to see them as they truly are. In 1 Corinthians 1: 18-24, Paul points out that the death of Jesus, which he calls “the power of God and the wisdom of God” (v 24), only makes sense from God’s point of view. Wisdom is viewing life from God’s perspective.

What better tool could we have when studying God’s Word than wisdom? The best part is, if we lack wisdom (and we all do, whether we admit it or not), God promised in James 1:5 that He would give it freely! So if you need help studying a passage, ask God for wisdom. He’ll say “Yes” every time. The answer may not come as an instant flash of insight, but God promises He will give wisdom. When it comes to wisdom to understand God’s Word, it never hurts to ask.
Read 2 Kings 6:8-23.
8 Once when the king of Syria was warring against Israel, he took counsel with his servants, saying, “At such and such a place shall be my camp.” 9 But the man of God sent word to the king of Israel, “Beware that you do not pass this place, for the Syrians are going down there.” 10 And the king of Israel sent to the place about which the man of God told him. Thus he used to warn him, so that he saved himself there more than once or twice.
11 And the mind of the king of Syria was greatly troubled because of this thing, and he called his servants and said to them, “Will you not show me who of us is for the king of Israel?” 12 And one of his servants said, “None, my lord, O king; but Elisha, the prophet who is in Israel, tells the king of Israel the words that you speak in your bedroom.” 13 And he said, “Go and see where he is, that I may send and seize him.” It was told him, “Behold, he is in Dothan.” 14 So he sent there horses and chariots and a great army, and they came by night and surrounded the city.
15 When the servant of the man of God rose early in the morning and went out, behold, an army with horses and chariots was all around the city. And the servant said, “Alas, my master! What shall we do?” 16 He said, “Do not be afraid, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” 17 Then Elisha prayed and said, “O Lord, please open his eyes that he may see.” So the Lord opened the eyes of the young man, and he saw, and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha. 18 And when the Syrians came down against him, Elisha prayed to the Lord and said, “Please strike this people with blindness.” So he struck them with blindness in accordance with the prayer of Elisha. 19 And Elisha said to them, “This is not the way, and this is not the city. Follow me, and I will bring you to the man whom you seek.” And he led them to Samaria.
20 As soon as they entered Samaria, Elisha said, “O Lord, open the eyes of these men, that they may see.” So the Lord opened their eyes and they saw, and behold, they were in the midst of Samaria. 21 As soon as the king of Israel saw them, he said to Elisha, “My father, shall I strike them down? Shall I strike them down?” 22 He answered, “You shall not strike them down. Would you strike down those whom you have taken captive with your sword and with your bow? Set bread and water before them, that they may eat and drink and go to their master.” 23 So he prepared for them a great feast, and when they had eaten and drunk, he sent them away, and they went to their master. And the Syrians did not come again on raids into the land of Israel.

Think about the following questions:

How did the situation look to Elisha’s servant? How did it look to Elisha? Which was seeing things from God’s perspective?

On days when everything is going just as we hoped and we feel like we’ve got everything under control, what do you think God’s perspective on our situation is? What about bad days?

Thank God for the days that are good days from your perspective, and for the days that are not so good. Ask God to help you see both from His perspective.

About Tim Davis

The older I get, the more I realize I don't have much figured out.  But I'm very sure of 3 things:  God is love, God is good, and God is faithful.  I'm pretty much spending the rest of my life figuring out how to live consistently with those three things (and teach my kids the same), along with my best understanding of what the rest of the Bible tells us about who God is, who we are, and how we should live.   I live in the Atlanta area (so many of my musings happen while sitting in traffic) with my wife of 20 years and our 3 awesome kids - so yes, the days are long but the years are short.  My day job is in IT Infrastructure (hours of boredom when everything works, moments of terror when it doesn't).  Other than spending time with my family and reading, for fun I entertain onlookers who find it humorous to watch an old, out of shape guy attempt to do Tae Kwon Do.

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