Doubt Hinders Your Answers
“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. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.”
Do you struggle with believing that the promises God makes are for you? Have you ever asked yourself, “Does God really care about me? Will He really supply all my needs? Will He heal me from this disease? If God really loved me, why would He let this happen to me?”
If you have, there is no need to be so hard on yourself, as most of us, if we’re honest, have been in this place at some point in our lives. The issue is not that we have had these questions at one time or another. The real issue is that we continue to revisit them or harbor on them more than we try to build our relationship with God through spending time in His Word and praying.
James wants believers to know that God will deliver. In today’s passage, he speaks of wisdom. If we need wisdom in any area of our lives or for any decision we must make, all we need to do is “ask of God.” Frequently, we seek wisdom from ungodly counsel, self-professed gurus, or from popular opinion. There is nothing wrong with seeking wise counsel from people, but the wisest counsel we can receive comes from God.
Have you ever asked a person how he may have achieved a goal, and in answering your question, that person gave you an abbreviated version as though he were keeping the secrets to himself? Unlike others from whom we may seek advice, God will not withhold the wisdom we seek. In fact, He wants to be generous, liberal, and abundant in giving His wisdom to us, but sometimes we can be too busy to listen. While in prayer, our attitude may imply, “Hurry up, God, and give me the answer before I’m late to work!”
It is amazing that we are willing to listen to another human being share details about how they reached a goal, and we may get upset if we feel that they have short-changed us in the story. Yet we want God to “get to the point.”
Failure to spend time with God increases the likelihood that we only have a superficial knowledge of His existence. There is a difference between knowing of God and knowing God. The more time we spend with God, the better we will get to know Him. We will learn how He speaks to us. We will not have to rely on how He speaks to someone else to determine if we have heard from Him. We have the Holy Spirit to help us.
The tests and trials we face in life put us in one of two positions. We either doubt God’s goodness or we realize that He is sufficient. When we sink into doubt during the challenging times of our lives, it only underscores our lack of confidence in God and the instability of our faith. If we can only trust God when things are going well, we need to question our faith. We need to come to a place where we are secure in our knowledge of God, who He is to us, how He speaks to us, and what He wants to teach us.
When we pray in faith, we must approach the throne of grace, trusting in the One who sits on the throne. Heaven and earth will pass away, but God’s Word will last forever. Lack of quality time in His Word and with Him only increases our doubt because we do not know His promises. There is a detrimental direct correlation between doubt and unanswered prayer. If we want prayers that have results, Les Brown says, “Feed your faith, and your doubts will starve to death. Even when you have no evidence to point to, . . . it’s possible.”
Reflection: Are there areas of your life in which you trust God more? It is possible to believe God for provision and not believe Him for healing. Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal to you where you might doubt in your life.
Prayer: Loving Father, I know Your Word says that all things are possible for those who believe. Help me to not just know what the Word says but to believe it in my heart. I repent for not spending time with You or being in a rush when I do. I need Your wisdom for every area of my life. As I meditate on Your Word, let my faith increase and my hope arise as I deepen my trust in You and my dependence on You. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Upcoming Connect 21 Events
- Saturday Morning Prayer (Jan 13th @ 9 am at The Way Woodstock 109 Towne Lake Pkwy, Woodstock GA)
- Sunday Morning Service (Jan 14th @ 10 am at River Ridge High School)
- Prayer Masterclass, Wednesday, Jan 17th via YouTube (https://www.youtube.com/@linkedupnorth)