How to Pray for Wisdom


On the night before teaching the prayer Bible study about how to pray for wisdom, I was out on my porch talking to my husband. I asked him what I should say if some of the women have asked God for wisdom and didn’t get it. In other words, what blocks people from getting wisdom from God? And conversely, what can we do to ready our hearts to receive God’s wisdom?

I asked my husband because so many times he has received supernatural wisdom from God when I came to him with an impossible situation that I needed him to fix. I always thought my husband was just gifted in godly wisdom, but he laughed. He said that whenever I came to him with an impossible situation, he would freak out God-ward, and then God would give him the answer. In other words, my husband leaned on God and cried out to Him with all his heart and soul, and God answered by giving him wisdom on the spot.

Many times God has done this in my own life. I have counseled women, where I felt like I was in over my head. I would inwardly freak out God-ward, and then He gave me the right words to say at the time that were straight from the heart of God to that person.

God is King of the universe, and He knows all things. He knows the real answer to everything. As a believer, the God of the universe lives inside of us through His Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is our paraclete or counselor. (Psalm 16:7) He counsels us, and if we ask Him for wisdom He will grant it. (James 1:5)

So what are the things that block us from getting wisdom from God? There are two main reasons:

  • unbelief
  • unconfessed sin

First let’s deal with unbelief. James 1:5 says “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.” So we must believe Him at His Word. Is God a liar? If not, He will give us wisdom. James 1:6-8 says that if we doubt and don’t believe that God will give us wisdom, we shouldn’t expect to receive anything from the Lord. So we must believe Scripture. Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. (Hebrews 11:1) So we can ask God for faith if we have no faith. But His Word says He will give us wisdom when we ask, so please believe God at His Word.

Secondly, if you have unconfessed sin in your life, God will not hear you. (Psalm 66:18) So of course He will not give you wisdom.

But if your sin is confessed and you believe that He can give you wisdom, the reason you haven’t received it is probably because you didn’t pause long enough to receive it. Do you race into your prayers, ask God for wisdom, and say Amen, and run off to the next thing? Did you pause and open your heart to God to receive the answer?

Here is the next audio in the prayer series, which will help you to understand how to receive wisdom: (Right click “Save as,” and choose “desktop” to download the audio)

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8 Responses to “How to Pray for Wisdom”

  1. Melissa says:

    I can’t even tell you how often I freak out God-ward during therapy sessions! Whether the client is Christian or not, I seek wisdom so that He can give me the words and direction in the way God wants them to go.

    • Susan says:

      What a great idea for a counselor! The Holy Spirit knows how to solve impossible situations and heal them, and we need His wisdom to do that.

  2. Alice Mills says:

    When I go into inner healing sessions, I have to completely throw myself on God’s mercy. His wisdom and presence is the only thing that bring a person healing.

  3. tiffany says:

    I remember the first time I realized I could ask for big things – directly to God and not through my power prayers. It was life changing! And every answer to prayer further fuels my faith!

  4. Heather says:

    Too often we lean on our own understanding when what we really need to do is lean into Jesus and seek God’s wisdom. Great post, Susan. Thanks for this reminder.

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