I pray for many things every day. I pray for my family, my friends, my ministry, my nation—and, of course, myself. I pray for protection. I pray for a deeper revelation of God's love and over my life. I pray for grace.
But there's one thing I've been praying for more and more lately—and I am convinced that if we would pray more for this one thing we would make better use of our time, live happier lives, and ultimately see more answers to our prayers.
What is this one thing I've been praying for more and more lately? Wisdom. I believe if we pray more for spiritual wisdom—even if it means praying less for natural needs—we'll receive more wisdom and our natural needs will be more than met.
Take a Hint From Solomon
We could all take a hint from Solomon. You know the story. The Lord appealed to Solomon in a dream and made this invitation: "Ask! What shall I give you?" Can you imagine the Lord coming to you in a dream and making such an invitation? What would you ask God for if you could ask and assuredly receive anything?
It seems Solomon had enough wisdom to ask for the principal thing: wisdom. Solomon replied to God's invitation with these words: "Give to Your servant an understanding heart to judge Your people, that I may discern between good and evil. For who is able to judge this great people of Yours?" (1 Kings 3:9).
That made God happy. Let's see how He responded:
"Because you have asked this thing, and have not asked long life for yourself, nor have asked riches for yourself, nor have asked the life of your enemies, but have asked for yourself understanding to discern justice, behold, I have done according to your words; see, I have given you a wise and understanding heart, so that there has not been anyone like you before you, nor shall any like you arise after you. And I have also given you what you have not asked: both riches and honor, so that there shall not be anyone like you among the kings all your days. So if you walk in My ways, to keep My statutes and My commandments, as your father David walked, then I will lengthen your days" (1 Kings 3:10-14).
All I can say to that is, "wow" and "amen."
God is no respecter of persons (see Acts 10:34). You can receive the wisdom you need to walk according to God's plan for you. James clearly stated that "If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him" (James 1:5). The only catch is you have to ask in faith, without doubting. That's not much of a catch and it shouldn't be too hard to do. God wants to give you wisdom so you can walk wise, making the best use of your time because the days are evil (Eph. 5:15-17).
Let's check out what Solomon had to say in the wake of receiving such great wisdom: "Happy is the man who finds wisdom, and the man who gains understanding; For her proceeds are better than the profits of silver, and her gain than fine gold. She is more precious than rubies, and all the things you may desire cannot compare with her. Length of days is in her right hand, in her left hand riches and honor. Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace. She is a tree of life to those who take hold of her, and happy are all who retain her" (Prov. 3:3-18).
My Prayer for You
Wisdom begets wisdom. The ear of the wise seeks knowledge (see Prov. 18:15). The wise man listens to advice (see Prov. 12:15). A man's wisdom makes his face shine (see Eccl. 8:1). By wisdom your house is built (see Prov. 24:3). Wise ones are cautious and turn away from evil (see Prov. 14:16). The words of the wise win him favor (see Eccl. 10:12). The wise will inherit honor (see Prov. 3:35). Wisdom will keep and guard you if you love it (see Prov. 4:6-7). I could go on and on and encourage you to do a study of the benefits of walking in God's wisdom.
When we receive wisdom, it's important that we acknowledge its source. The Lord gives wisdom (see Prov. 2:6). We should never be wise in our own eyes (see Prov. 3:7). But we should humbly pray for wisdom more and more. So these are my prayers. I pray like Solomon, who said, "Give to Your servant an understanding heart to judge Your people, that I may discern between good and evil" (1 Kings 3:9).
And I pray like Paul, who asked, "that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him,the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come" (Eph. 1:17-21).
And I pray the Lord would give you wisdom, too. Amen.