Editor’s note: The last several weeks have witnessed many events of violence that are difficult to comprehend, and which confound efforts to respond wisely and biblically: the Orlando nightclub shooting, repeated acts of terror in the Middle East, and most recently, terrifying violence involving police in the United States. As you process your own reactions to these events, please join pastor Mel Lawrenz in this prayer for God’s wisdom.
“If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you” — James 1:5
You have said in your word that whenever we know we need wisdom, we should ask for it, and that you will give it generously. In these perilous times, we pray for your wisdom from above.
Grant us wisdom to know the way you look on the affairs of our nation.
Grant us wisdom to understand how you view our world today.
Grant us wisdom to know what an ordered and just and compassionate society looks like.
Grant us wisdom to know what to do with the reality of evil.
Grant us wisdom to uphold the defenseless.
Grant us wisdom to love you and love our neighbor as ourselves.
Lord, we pray that our leaders will personally understand that you are a dynamic reality in the world and in our lives.
May we be a nation which depends on you, acknowledges your blessings, and values what you value. And on the day after the election, Lord, help us to be faithful members of your kingdom and responsible citizens of the nation we inhabit.
In Christ’s name and for his sake, Amen.
For more biblical insight to help you grapple with the difficult issues presented by acts of terror and violence, see this past posts:
- Why Does God Allow Tragedy and Suffering? — Christian author and apologist Lee Strobel’s thoughts in the aftermath of the 2012 Aurora, Colorado shooting comprise a very thorough exploration of Christianity’s “problem of evil.”
- What Does the Bible Say About Violence? — does the Bible condone violence? How does the Bible tell us to respond to violence? An in-depth look at a troubling question.
- Violence, the Bible, and the Sikh Temple — reflections on the 2012 Sikh Temple attack in Wisconsin.
- What Does the Bible Say About Religious Extremism? — Mel Lawrenz’ reflection on “religious violence” and what the Bible has to say about it.
Mel Lawrenz trains an international network of Christian leaders, ministry pioneers, and thought-leaders. He served as senior pastor of Elmbrook Church in Brookfield, Wisconsin, for ten years and now serves as Elmbrook’s minister at large. He has a Ph.D. in the history of Christian thought and is on the adjunct faculty of Trinity International University. Mel is the author of 18 books, the latest, How to Understand the Bible—A Simple Guide and Spiritual Influence: the Hidden Power Behind Leadership (Zondervan, 2012). See more of Mel’s writing at WordWay.
Did you know that praying Biblical prayers for wisdom will have a dramatic effect in your city? God wants to enlighten the eyes of our heart with a spirit of wisdom and revelation (Ephesians 1:17). To tap into the revelatory power of God, we need to experience the wisdom of the Holy Spirit on the inside. He lives within us and is always with us. He is the one who will open our spiritual eyes. When we pray for a spirit of wisdom and revelation, the Holy Spirit will give it to us. Divine information is released in our heart, and this changes us. He imparts His power to us.
With this in mind—having the very presence, wisdom, and power of the Holy Spirit living in you—permeate your area with prayers for the treasures of God to be released in wisdom and understanding. The following Scriptures will help you. They are so powerful. Begin to pray them over your city and over the body of Christ:
- Pray that the wisdom of the treasures and mystery of Christ will be released in your city.
“My goal is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Colossians 2:2-3).
- Pray that the wisdom of the Spirit is released in your life.
“Send me your light and your faithful care, let them lead me; let them bring me to your holy mountain, to the place where you dwell. Then I will go to the altar of God, to God, my joy and my delight. I will praise you with the lyre, O God, my God” (Psalm 43:3-4).
- Pray that the wisdom of God’s purposes will be released in the corporate Church.“Although I am less than the least of all God’s people, this grace was given me: to preach to the Gentiles, the boundless riches of Christ, and to make plain to everyone the administration of this mystery, which for ages past was kept hidden in God, who created all things. His intent was that now, through the church, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms, according to his eternal purpose that he accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Ephesians 3:8-11).
- Pray that the wisdom of God will be released in ministries and churches in your city.
“For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God” (Colossians 1:9-10).
- Pray that the wisdom needed for a House of Prayer will be released in your life and others in your city.
“Show me your ways, LORD, teach me your paths. Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long” (Psalm 25:4-5).
Realize that when Houses of Prayer are started in your city, God will release His Spirit of wisdom in increasing measure. Pray these Biblical prayers for wisdom individually, in your church prayer meetings, in your citywide prayer meetings, and in any Houses of Prayer in your city and nation.
Begin where you are presently. If you do not have a House of Prayer in your city, pray these prayers over your region so that God can prepare the area for what He wants to do. Maybe you feel that your own church really needs to grow in prayer. Pray these prayers for your church.
When you pray for wisdom, you are coming into agreement with God’s Spirit and His Word. This releases God’s favor on your circumstances. God begins to give you greater hope, and hope brings stability and a greater ability to focus on His purposes for your life and city. Hope gives you certainty of God’s way. Your faith will increase, bringing confidence (Hebrews 3:6; 10:23; 11:1). But you need to ask the Holy Spirit what He wants in every single decision you make. Ask for His will regardless of the cost. All throughout the process of starting a House of Prayer ask the Holy Spirit:
- What are you saying and doing?
- What do you want us to do?
- Give us Your wisdom in building Your House of Prayer.
Don’t let the devil discourage you along the way, but KNOW that God is more interested in a House of Prayer than you are. It’s His plan and desire. He initiates it. He will bring it about in His timing—so do not grow weary. Pray that the Spirit of prayer would fall on the Church regionally and worldwide. We read in Zechariah 12:10a:
“And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and supplication.”
Know that God’s treasures of wisdom and knowledge are available to the Church in your city as well as to you personally. Think about that long and hard. Don’t focus on the immensity of the task or look at the outward appearance. Houses of Prayer start slowly. Instead focus on the wisdom and power of God.
“When Jesus dwells in your life, everything available to Christ dwells within you (Ephesians 3:19). Don’t focus on outward appearances and physical strength, for these deteriorate. Rather, allow the Holy Spirit to convince you of the infinite treasure that is within you because of God’s presence.” Henry and Richard Blackaby
By Debbie Przybylski
Intercessors Arise InternationalIHOPKC
How is your life lately? Are you going through serious trials and tribulations? Are you in a time of peace and genuine happiness? Are you confused because you are at a fork in the road? Whatever your situation may be, seeking God’s wisdom for your life is essential. Here are 6 prayers you can pray to God for wisdom and discernment for your life.
“Even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is bright as the day, for darkness is as light with you.” (Psalm 139:12)
I am so lost. I don’t even know where to begin praying. I feel so lost in the darkness that surrounds me. My wife has left me for another man. My children are acting out because of our family breakdown. I don’t want to go to work. The bills are piling up. I want to move away and start over. I can’t handle this pressure and stress on my own, Lord! Please show me Your will in my life. Give me the knowledge and wisdom to conduct myself as a Christian. Bad circumstances aren’t a gateway for me to act out of accordance of Your will. I just wish this was a bad dream and that I could wake up. I cannot think straight. So many emotions are plaguing me, Father. Cast these burdens off of me! Lord, I humbly pray that You would honor my request for wisdom in this because I cannot do anything on my own. It is by Your power alone that I am moving through this chaos. I love You, Father! Amen
“Yes, if you call out for insight and raise your voice for understanding, if you seek it like silver and search for it as for hidden treasures, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God.” (Proverbs 2:3-5)
Lord, You have full knowledge of everything in Your grasp. There is nothing that surprises You. Father, I need clarity right now. I am at a fork in the road and I don’t know which way to turn. There are at least 3 different decisions that I could make and they all seem like wise decisions. I can’t rely on human intuition here, Lord. Father, I ask You now for a clear and concise answer on what I need to do. I want Your will to be done in this, Father. Give me clarity, Lord. I love You! Amen
Who Is The Culprit?
Please read the entire section of 1 Kings 3:16-28 for the whole story on two prostitutes who were fighting over custody of a baby. “Divide the living child in two, and give half to the one and half to the other…Give the living child to the first woman, and by no means put him to death; she is his mother.”
I am in a sticky situation right now. I have two people whom I love dearly telling me two different stories and one of them has to be wrong. I pray for Your help in this, Father. Give me the knowledge and the words to speak to both of them so we can fix this. Lord, I pray that you would prepare all of our hearts as we sit down and discuss this matter. Lord, when the truth is revealed I pray that the one at fault will repent of their sin and hold tight to You. I pray that you would soften the heart of the one who is right, so that forgiveness can be made for the transgressor. Lord, may You be glorified in this ultimately. I love You! Amen
Seasons Of Joy
“For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven.” (Ecclesiastes 3:1).
I thank You for this wonderful time of life! My family and I are so close right now. My spouse and I have never been closer emotionally, physically, intimately or spiritually ever! This is a wonderful time! Father, as wonderful as this is, I pray for Your wisdom in this time of celebration. Father, I don’t want to say anything that would mess this up. Please be with me and give me the words to speak in every situation. May we continue to praise Your name always, Lord! I love You! Amen
A Partner In Marriage
“Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness?” (2 Corinthians 6:14)
You know my heart. I yearn to have a partner to walk this life with. Lord, my human side is saying “take the first person that comes!” I know this is not wise. I don’t want to settle for anyone that You don’t want me to be with. Father, give me wisdom in picking a mate. You know the future down the road for me, Lord. Please give me the ability to turn off my longing for affection to be wise in this decision. Father, the last thing I need to do is to be unequally yoked with another. Marriage is a BIG deal and I want to marry someone that I can connect with spiritually and keep falling in love with every day! Thank You for all You have provided me with, Lord. I love You! Amen
“Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.” (Psalm 19:14)
Today I am speaking Your Word to Your church. Lord, let it be that the only words I speak come from You. The congregation doesn’t need to hear me; they need to hear You. Lord, I have spent time this week studying the passages You have put on my heart to preach. Lord, as I step behind the pulpit, I give my all to You. You are worthy of all glory, honor and praise! Father, I pray that You give me the words to speak as I deliver the message You have put on my heart. Father, I also pray for my church family. Give them ears of discernment. May they listen intently and be wise in their thoughts as they hear Your word spoken. Father, I give this to You. I love You! It’s in Your Name that I pray. Amen
We all go through many types of scenarios and seasons of life. No matter what the occasion, wisdom should be a major focus. When we act and speak wisely, ultimately God is glorified, but also, people notice something in us. This can be a stepping stone into a possible conversion. So, be on guard! Guard you heart, mind and soul! Stay in the Word and in Prayer! Seek wisdom around every single corner! God bless you as you live a life worthy of the calling!
Read more of what the Bible says about wisdom in this article:
15 Wisdom Quotes From the Bible
Resources – The Holy Bible, English Standard Version “Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved. YouTube “Give me Words to Speak” by Aaron Shust.
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The quality of being wise. Knowledge, and the capacity to make due use of it. (Webster’s Dictionary)
Study of the word ‘wisdom’
Today I spent some time researching the word wisdom in the Bible. I made some interesting discoveries. I found out that wisdom comes from God as a skill. It is a gift of God. Craftsmen who made garments for Aaron and his sons were filled with the spirit of wisdom (Ex.28:3) Similarly Bezaleel and Aholiab. (Ex.31:1-6)
Secondly, I found out that you really have to look for wisdom more than for anything in this world. The Book of Proverbs exalts wisdom and contrasts it with foolishness.
And thirdly, I found out that though it is a gift of God whether natural (as a skill) or supernatural (as ability to understand the Bible) one can grow in it as Jesus did grew in wisdom and stature. (Lk.2:52) What shocked me is the fact that Jesus even grew in favor with God and men. Somehow I thought that Jesus would be constantly in maximum favour in God’s sight regardless of his age.
a) Need wisdom and for that purpose they listen and increase learning
b) Understand that true wisdom is in fear of God and keeping His commandments
c) Need wisdom to understand proverbs (wise sayings),interpretation and dark (difficult) sayings
d) Get wisdom from God to understand righteousness, judgment and equity
e) Need wisdom to remember mercy and truth, trust in the Lord, lean not on their own understanding, acknowledge God in all their ways, be not conceited and proud, depart from evil and honour God by giving generously.
f) They get wisdom and forget it not
g) They seek it early and find it.
h) They are kept by wisdom.
i) Understand that wisdom from God brings true spiritual prosperity, spiritual fruit, spiritual heritage and spiritual fulness
j) They admire and follow after wisdom personified, described in Pr.8:34-36
k) They are watching daily at her gates, waiting at the posts of her door.
l) They understand that in its fullest sense only Jesus Christ can be their wisdom from God, for to find wisdom is to find life and to find life is to find Jesus Christ for he is what he says He is: “…the way, the truth and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me.” (Jn.14:6)
m) If they are kings, rulers or nobles they rule by wisdom.
I also checked out how Apostle James sees wisdom and found that it is truly impossible to have wisdom if you do not control your tongue. Good governing, mastery of bridling of the tongue is the sure way to both godliness and true wisdom.
I liked how Apostle James defines heavenly wisdom comparing it with the worldly wisdom:
17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.
18 And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.
The thing that I didn’t like was that ESV translated “easy to be intreated” as “open to reason”. I checked Blueletterbible and it says that there are 2 possible meaning of this “easy to be intreated” (Gr. eupeitheis) 1) easily obeying and 2) compliant. I understand that all those are similar phrases, but for me eupeitheis is more like obedient, compliant and not just “open to reason”. For example: My son many occasions will be “open to reason”, but rarely do I see him “easily obeying”, “compliant”.
Next thing that I didn’t like was that Blueletterbible said that adiakritos (without partiality) is translated in Strong’s dictionary as 1) undistinguished, unintelligible 2) without dubiousness, ambiguity or uncertainty when all the James 3 context says that it is about partiality? All right, I am not a Greek expert, so maybe I just have to be silent, peaceable, gentle and easily entreated.
May God bless you and give you His wisdom unto salvation through Jesus Christ!