Chaplin Jim Anderson
Sick and Shut – In
A Prayer for Wisdom
We live in the information age. We have so much information available that it is astounding. Thirty years later we are still unpacking cases of moon-rocks for study. The Curiosity mars rover is sending back billions of bits of information each day. I’m amazed that we are running chemical analyses of Martian soil. Using electron microscopes, we can peer into the very DNA molecules that make up our bodies. I can type in just about any subject into a search engine on the internet and pull up hundreds if not thousands of pages of information.
We certainly have more knowledge available today than ever before. But do we have the wisdom to handle this knowledge? We can split the atom and create treatments for cancer, but we can also create weapons of mass destruction. We can look at the very genetic code of human beings and possibly prevent disease. But that same technology could make possible determining who should live or die based on their genetic structure. The internet provides a tremendous vehicle for opening doors of knowledge and even spreading the Gospel, but hate groups use it to spread hate, militia groups use it to disseminate information on creating bombs, and pornographers use it to bring their filthy wares into the households of those who request it. Even so-called “churches” use it to attack those who don’t agree with their doctrines.
Even in our personal lives we struggle with making wise decisions. In my childhood, it was a simple matter for my mother to say: No TV until you finish your homework. But now, it might be no TV, video games, texting, or internet surfing. Making ethical choices at work in a world driven mostly by profit and not by service can be difficult. Does the Christian advertising sales rep solicit business from a brewery? Does the Christian investment counselor create a mutual fund which includes businesses whose business practices, though legal, are unethical? Does a Christian manufacturer contract out work to a sweatshop in Asia?
Fortunately, God tells us that, in a world without many wise guidelines, he is wisdom, and that he will give us wisdom when we need it. This is why the prayer for wisdom is so important in our lives. We constantly need to make decisions. For many of these, our human wisdom is enough. For instance, I doubt if God needs to be consulted as to which color to paint the kitchen. But many of our decisions require Godly direction. How should I discipline my children? Which church should I attend? Should I attend college? Which college? What should be my career path? Should I seek a new job? Should I enter the ministry on a full-time basis? Should I take early retirement? How can I best work for the Lord as a lay person? I’m sure you can add your own tough questions.
God will give you his wisdom. He will do it in three ways. First, he will direct you to scripture. Some things God has already told us about in his word. I knew a young woman who told a boyfriend who wanted to have illicit sex that she would have to pray about it and get direction from God. She didn’t need to pray about that. God’s word simply said “No!’ So should she. But sometimes, there will be a scripture that we never really noticed before or didn’t really have any meaning. Then, suddenly, as we are reading the word, it’s like that verse shows up highlighted, and we see it almost for the first time. It answers our questions and gives us a direction.
The second way God will guide you is through circumstances. You may have been asking God for direction in his will for your life. Suddenly, “out of the blue” a door opens up in exactly the type of activity you feel God leading you into. If you have a witness of the spirit, then you know that God has lead you to get involved in that activity.
The third way God will give you his wisdom is by direct revelation. Sometimes he will speak to you through another person, but most often he will speak directly to your heart, and you will know what is right. Of course, any revelation, must line up with the word of God in written form or it is not from God. He will not contradict himself. But whether through the word, circumstances, or direct revelation, God will still reveal himself to us today. All we have to do is listen. May the Lord Bless you as you learn to listen to him.
Patrick Henry DAV Chapter #34
The Chaplain's Corner