As I grew up, I had no idea that wisdom was being developed in me.
I had listened to my mom speak truth into people’s lives, and I prayed for the type of wisdom that I saw in her.
In high school I began to give guidance to parents in our church regarding their kids. I could see how the decisions of these parents would impact their children’s futures, and I was able to offer clarity for their difficult situations.
During my teen years, I was being empowered with wisdom from God.
When I was seventeen, I was giving advice to a college friend who was a year older than me. She looked at me and said, “How did you become so wise?” I remember shaking my head and responding to her, “Honestly, it’s not from me. I’m not even sure where it comes from.”
Wisdom from God gives you a certain insight into people’s lives, so that you can help them to see right from wrong.
King Solomon did not ask for wisdom only to make wise decisions for his kingdom and his finances. In his request, Solomon even calls himself “a little child,” and he asks God for “an understanding heart to judge Your people, that I may discern between good and evil” (1 Kings 3:9). Solomon asked for wisdom to be able to guide the people that God had placed in his kingdom.
Just the same, God gives wisdom to us if we ask for it, so that we may impact the lives of those within our own range of influence.
As I entered the working world a few years ago, I began to wonder how I could possibly utilize God’s wisdom in my workplace. My previous experiences had mostly been within the context of the Church, and I did not know if it was even possible to use wisdom outside of the Christian realm.
Before long, I realized that wisdom is just as needed outside the Church as it is within the Church.
I found that my coworkers were coming to me to ask what I thought about an idea they had or a system that needed to be fixed. I became one of the first calls my boss would make when a difficult situation arose. And people openly stated that they wanted my opinion because I had wisdom.
Most of the people I work with are not Christians, and I began to realize that I could have an impact on their lives by utilizing God’s wisdom in my workplace.
Being one of the youngest employees in the company, people recognize me as someone with good ideas and wise input. This allows me to become a witness and a reflection of God’s grace in my life, because I know that this wisdom doesn’t simply derive from my own knowledge or thinking abilities. It is a gift that God has given to me, and it is humbling to allow Him to use it to impact others’ lives.
What Is Wisdom?
Just before King David died, he charged Solomon with taking over the Kingdom of Israel (1 Kings 2:1-4). Shortly after Solomon became King of Israel, God appeared to Solomon in a dream and allowed him to request anything he desired. Solomon’s response is focused on the fact that he was ill-equipped to be sitting on his father’s throne, leading God’s people. God was so pleased with Solomon’s request for Wisdom that He granted to Solomon wisdom along with honor and riches. God acknowledges that Solomon could have asked for a long life, victory over his enemies, or unending wealth. Instead, Solomon asked for the ability to discern between right and wrong. We do not know how old Solomon was at the time of this interaction, but he admittedly was too young to be ruling over an entire kingdom, and he asked God for the one thing that he knew would equip him for the tall tasks ahead of him. 1 Kings 3:3-14
We can see from this story that wisdom can be defined as the ability to discern between good and evil. Wisdom is the active application of all types of knowledge. Both wisdom and knowledge come from God, and He is the one who reveals all things to us.
We know that all Christians have access to wisdom: “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.” James 1:5
So, we can ask for wisdom from God, and He will give it to us liberally. Throughout Scripture, “wisdom” simply refers to a deep understanding of God’s Word. Wisdom empowers us to live out God’s will in our lives. All we have to do is ask for it.
Since wisdom is the application of knowledge, spiritual wisdom simply refers to the application of God’s Word.
The Spiritual Gift of Wisdom
There is also the spiritual gift of wisdom which goes beyond the spiritual wisdom that we all have access to. Only some Christians have the spiritual gift of wisdom: “For to one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit.” 1 Corinthians 12:8
The spiritual gift of wisdom is intended to be used to recognize truth in people and in situations. It is well-utilized in guiding individuals or groups toward making sensible and righteous decisions. Those with the spiritual gift of wisdom can often see aspects of a situation that others are unable to identify. Even when things become cloudy or chaotic, the spiritual gift of wisdom can create clarity and understanding.
It is by the same Holy Spirit that we are each given various spiritual gifts. 1 Corinthians 12:1-11
We need to remember that spiritual gifts are given to us so that we may minister to others and participate as members of the Body of Christ. Without the spiritual gift of wisdom in the Church, there would be a great lack of forethought and warning in terms of making decisions and navigating situations. On the other hand, if we all had this gift, the body would be lacking in other areas.
We all have access to spiritual wisdom through the Holy Spirit, and I believe that we are able to apply this wisdom to our spiritual lives. All we have to do is ask.
Further, some Christians receive the spiritual gift of wisdom through the same Holy Spirit.
With spiritual gifts come responsibility. We must humbly and generously use our spiritual gifts to impact the lives of those around us – both inside and outside of the Church.
INVEST IN YOUR GOD-GIVEN GIFTS AND SPIRITUAL GROWTH
Your Gifts: Spiritual Gifts Discovery
God created you with purpose and passion—learn how you can take the gifts He has given you and use them to advance His Kingdom in ways you never imagined.
Here are more free articles, excerpted from the book Your Gifts shown above, one for each of the nine Team Ministry Spiritual Gifts…
- Do You Have the Spiritual Gift of Evangelism?
- Do You Have the Spiritual Gift of Prophecy?
- Do You Have the Spiritual Gift of Teaching?
- Do You Have the Spiritual Gift of Exhortation?
- Do You Have the Spiritual Gift of Shepherding?
- Do You Have the Spiritual Gift of Mercy-Showing?
- Do You Have the Spiritual Gift of Serving?
- Do You Have the Spiritual Gift of Giving?
- Do You Have the Spiritual Gift of Administration?
Lead others to discover their spiritual gifts.
For pastors and group leaders.