Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Hands and Feet

A Devotional by Margot Cioccio

James 1:5 (NIV1984)

If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, 
who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him. 

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Through the years I've spent a lot of time asking God for wisdom. Some how in my perceptions of this verse I imagine God answering my prayer kind of like in the movie the Matrix. If they need to know how to fly a helicopter they were hooked up to a port and the information was downloaded into them.
So I have looked at receiving wisdom form God in a similar way. 

Looking back I realize that it really did not happen like the Matrix.  God has given me a wealth of opportunities to gain wisdom, to choose wisdom, to make wise decisions. I would not describe the process as painless. Somethings he has allowed me to practice over and over till I finally really get it.
One of the wisest people I know feels like a total failure some days. I can look at my own life and it is full of failures and set backs and stuff I can't explain. I have other friends who look back on their lives with guilt and shame. I have at times wondered why I don't feel that way, what makes us different. Why is it all a big learning and growing experience for me.

I think that maybe the only difference is the vantage point from which I view my life. I look at it from my position at the feet of Jesus. It is the only place that it begins to make sense. People often joke about asking God for patience. We all know that asking for patience leads to trials that cause us to grow in patience. No one jokes like that about wisdom and perhaps they should.

There is a "gift" called "Word of Wisdom" for me it happens when I am praying for people and I suddenly know how to pray. Then suddenly they are crying and God is healing something.
That kind of wisdom is a bit more Matrix like in that God just kind of drops it into your thoughts un-expectedly. The wisdom I am talking about today is not so much the gift but more of quality that must develop in our lives. Its like patience, we ask for it and we get the stuff that causes us to grow to have wisdom. I like James 3:17 But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure, then peace loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. I can tell you in my experince that God did not just "poof" give me those things. He has given me many opportunities to practice and grow in each of the things listed in Jame 3:17.

We have a choice to make each day, will we wallow in self pity because our life is hard. Because it often has not gone as we had hoped or planned. Or will we embrace the idea that everyday is an opportunity to gain wisdom and every day we have the blessing of being His hands and Feet.

Dear Lord, 
Help me to find a way to be your hands and feet. Help me to be bogged down by the stuff that did not go as planned and to get on with trusting you. The story is not over yet and who knows how it will turn out. What appears a failure now - may just be a training ground for the future.

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