I like the first part of today’s scriptures. I’d certainly like a bit more (well, a lot more) wisdom, and I’m assured I can ask God, and He’ll give generously to me.
But then comes that phrase that breaks my heart: “… he must ask in faith without any doubting …”
Without any doubting? Is that humanly possible?
Because there are still times when I doubt, when I question—even after walking with the Lord for years. There are times when I feel “driven and tossed by the wind.” So does this mean that I shouldn’t “expect that [I] will receive anything from the Lord”? Am I “double-minded, unstable in all [my] ways”?
Praise God, I believe the answer is “no.”
Just as the Bible convicts those who live in habitual sin, I believe these verses speak about a state of mind. A constant doubting. A continual double-mindedness.
The Adam Clarke Commentary gives some insight:
The man who is not thoroughly persuaded that if he ask of God he shall receive, resembles a wave of the sea; he is in a state of continual agitation; driven by the wind, and tossed: now rising by hope, then sinking by despair … The man whose mind is divided, who is not properly persuaded either of his own wants or God's sufficiency. Such persons may pray, but having no faith, they can get no answer … The man of two souls, who has one for earth, and another for heaven; who wishes to secure both worlds; he will not give up earth, and he is loth to let heaven go. (http://www.studylight.org/com/acc/view.cgi?book=jas&chapter=001)I know God is in loving control. I know He has a perfect plan for me. I may not always understand. And doubt may sometimes make me question why things happen the way they do. But then I am reminded how faithful God has been and how faithful He will be.
And so I know I can ask for wisdom to know His will. And the strength to do it.