Devotional: ‘Accepting God’s Answer’

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

Whenever we encounter a problem, the first question that comes to our mind is the question – ‘why?’ Yet perhaps the question we should ask is ‘what?  “Lord, what do You want me to learn from this? How do You want to use this for my good and Your glory?”

James tells us that God desires to give us such wisdom. That is part of the purpose for Him allowing us to experience the problem. Scripture says that God will generously pour out His wisdom upon those who sincerely seek His wisdom. However, there is an important condition that is necessary for us to receive God’s wisdom. We must be willing to accept what God says.

James 1:6 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. 7 Such people should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. 8 Their loyalty is divided between God and the world, and they are unstable in everything they do. NLT

In order to receive God’s wisdom, we must be willing to receive what He says. Yesterday we took a look at Paul’s struggle with a thorn in the flesh. (see 2 Corinthians 12:7-10) At first, the only answer Paul wanted to receive was how the thorn could be removed. Yet God had a different answer. God’s wisdom was not how the thorn could be removed, but how the thorn could remain and yet Paul could still be strong.

Sometimes the answer God has for us is different from the one we want to hear. Sometimes we say that God is not speaking to us, yet perhaps He is speaking and we’re just not ready to receive His answer. James tells us that if we resist God’s guidance and wisdom, we will remain troubled. Actually our inner struggle might even get worse. James compares such believers to an unsettled wave that is tossed about by the wind. God’s peace comes only to those who are surrendered to His will.

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