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Thursday, December 8, 2016

Steps to Knowing God’s Will

In review of James 1:5 it says, “If you want to know what God wants you to do, ask him, and he will gladly tell you, for he is always ready to give a bountiful supply of wisdom to all who ask him”

Bottom Line:
If you need wisdom, ask God, and he will generously give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking.

What this means to me:
If I lack wisdom in any area, I should pray and ask God. He will gladly tell me, for he is always ready to give me a bountiful supply as long as I have faith that he will answer and will follow what he tells me.

Today’s verse comes from the first part of James chapter 1. In this section James tells us about faith and endurance. He starts by telling us that when troubles of any kind come, we should consider it an opportunity for great joy. For when our faith is tested, our endurance has a chance to grow. So we should let it grow and develop our character. Next, if any of us needs wisdom, we should ask our generous God, and he will grant it without rebuking you for asking. However, when we ask, be sure that our faith is really in God alone. We should trust God with what he provides and not waver or be indecisive if we are going to follow it. A person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave. If you don’t have plans to listen after asking or wholeheartedly following what he tells you, then don’t expect to receive anything from him.

Given this, knowing and understanding God’s will requires a couple of things:

First, I need to admit that I need guidance. I don’t always like to admit when I’m lost or confused. It’s not always in my nature to stop and ask for directions. I think this is why, when it comes to knowing God’s will, it takes some real courage to admit that I’m confused and need some direction. Psalm 25:9 says, “He guides the humble in what is right and teaches them his way” (NIV). However, If I’m arrogant and think I’ve got it all figured out, God’s going to say, “Be my guest. Go for it!”

Secondly, I need to ask God in faith for his direction. The Bible says in James 1:5-6, “If you want to know what God wants you to do, ask him, and he will gladly tell you, for he is always ready to give a bountiful supply of wisdom to all who ask him; he will not resent it. But when you ask him, be sure that you really expect him to tell you, for a doubtful mind will be as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind” (TLB). There are two keys to knowing God’s wisdom. First, I’ve got to ask the right person: God. I don’t ask a friend or a stranger on the street, or some other “reliable” authority like a radio talk show host. I need to ask the right person, God! Then I ask with the right attitude: expecting God to answer. It would be foolish for me to ask God to lead me, but not really expect him to. When this takes place, you won’t receive anything. I must ask expecting an answer. God honors faith, and he promises wisdom for the next step of your life.

In summary, to know God’s will, I need to admit my need, ask Him and have faith that he will answer. After he answers it is important that I follow what he tells me.