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. But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt,
because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind.
Those who doubt should not think they will receive anything from the Lord;
they are double-minded and unstable in all they do.
I love and am made uncomfortable by this passage at the same time because I’m not a sceptic but I am a all-possible-scenario type of person. I want wisdom. I want God’s wisdom. If I want wisdom this passage says I should ask for wisdom and it will be given to me.
What a beautiful thought, that God, who desires to give us so much out of his fullness and wants to give us that no matter where we are, what we’ve done, will give us this request if we but ask for it. It’s a free gift but it requires something of us. (that seems to negate the freeness somehow, but stick with me). It’s not the way we ask, does not hinge on our perfection or behavior, isn’t about a ritual. We must believe. That’s it.
But this believing is hard for me to do. It’s belief without such confidence that I can’t imagine that God would not answer this request. But this is hard, isn’t it? Because we’re trained for the ‘what ifs’. Our culture has trained us to think of all possibilities of what happens if not. We’re uncomfortable with believing too much because what if we’re wrong? Will we be made foolish? Will we look like idiots? So we want to believe but we also want an escape hatch just in case things don’t turn out our way.
This is being double-minded. Where you’re not fully committed. Where there is something else that has a hold on you that prevents you from giving yourself fully to what God has promised. In my case, and for many others, it may be doubt. But what am I doubting? Am I doubting that God has the ability to give me this wisdom? No. Then I must be doubting that God will come through on his promise. Does that mean I think that God is a liar? No. Well, then do I think that this is available for everyone else but not me? That means I’m doubting God’s word and God’s love. That his love does not extend to the sort of generosity that doesn’t find fault. Then do I doubt God’s generosity? That would mean that he’s a liar when he says he will do this.
So where does that leave me? It leaves me realizing that by holding back I’m letting myself believe untruths about God. I’m choosing to believe lies instead of accept that he istoo good to be true. Psalm 119:113 also talks about being double minded “
I hate double-minded people,
but I love your law”
These lies that we tell ourselves, that we believe from other people, they are keeping us from knowing and believing who God really is and from the blessings that he offers to us freely. What would happen if we took our divided selves and really chose to believe what God has promised? What he could do with us if we would just let him.