Do you trust God?
Like, really trust God with everything?
It’s easy to respond “yes” as a Christian. Of course I believe that God is good and in control, worthy of my trust. However, if I look closely, many times that I ‘trust’ God, it is because I feel like I have a handle on the situation. I don’t necessarily need to trust Him. It’s an easy place to rest.
But what if a situation arises that I cannot control?
What if God calls me into a place where I must trust Him completely?
James 1:5-6 challenges my heart and reveals where my doubts hide.
If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind.
Now if you are anything like me, your mind just went straight to the doubting thing. But if we do this, we miss the whole point. James reminds us to put our priorities in check. This passage is primarily about God.
God is good. He is generous. He loves His children. We can trust Him. When we ask Him for wisdom, in His glorious grace, He gives it to us! Knowing (and believing) this is the key to fighting against doubt that creeps in.
Doubting in this passage (verse 6) refers to being torn between a person’s “allegiance to God and his distrust of God”* Doubt is believing in God with your mind, but failing to see His goodness and power. It is asking God for something yet expecting that He won’t deliver.
I know that God is not a genie. It would be ridiculous for me to give Him a shopping list of requests for Him to grant. However, when I search my heart, I find that I tend to only request the ‘safe’ concerns. “Lord, I pray for safe travel on our trip,” for example.
Or, I pad heavy requests with, “If it’s your will...” This phrase, instead of being a reminder for God’s will to be done (Matthew 6:9-10), becomes a buffer in the event that God does not answer my request in the way I wish.
However, James identifies this type of thinking as doubt. Instead, I should remember that God is good and He loves to hear the requests of His children. He is a generous Father.
If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!
Right now, my phone’s lock screen displays a challenge from Jennie Allen to pray “crazy, bold, amazing prayers”. This starts with James 1:5 - to ask for God’s wisdom, which is HIS knowledge and understanding. I need His wisdom to pray outrageous prayers.
And you know what? God promises to give me that wisdom when I ask in full confidence that He will fulfill that promise!
Would you join me in confidently asking our loving Father for wisdom today?
See You In The Round!
*Loh, I.-J., & Hatton, H. (1997). A handbook on the Letter from James (p. 17). New York: United Bible Societies.