Praying in the New Year with Wisdom

Every year, as the Christmas season winds down and we start to get a glimpse of the changing calendar, I always pray for the Lord to lay on my heart a specific word for the year. In years past it’s been words like refuge, rest, and abide. This year, the word that the Lord gave me was wisdom. I encourage you to do the same, to pray for a specific word as we head into 2021.

In the past, I have always thought that wisdom was something that would come with age. To me, it seemed as if I was almost too young to not just pray for wisdom, but for me to even to expect God to entertain the idea. So this year, when the word wisdom was firmly planted into my heart, I sensed it was from the Lord in such a real way. Even still, I sat on it for a while. I certainly prayed for wisdom, but I didn’t share this word out loud like I normally did. You could say I “fleeced” it a bit, taking a page from Gideon’s story in the book of Judges.   

The first confirmation I had was during a moment of worship. Our retired Senior Pastor (senior as in he is old, not in charge), whom I love and respect dearly, sensed the Lord drop a word in his heart for me. As he came over to pray for me, the words he spoke over me almost took my breath away. He was praying for wisdom. As he did, I felt the presence of the Lord as He used that moment to speak an echo into my heart.

Pay attention to the echoes God speaks into your heart.

For most people, that might have been enough of a confirmation, but I tend to be stubborn. I almost held my prayers back as I wondered if it wasn’t humble of me to ask for wisdom. Almost as if I hadn’t yet earned the right to.

The second confirmation came a week later. I have three prominent leaders in my field of ministry that I admire and respect. Through various ministry opportunities, the Lord has opened the door for me to have the privilege of direct contact with them. From time to time, the Lord will prompt me to reach out to them, in order to offer them prayer and encouragement. As I was in the Word studying, the Lord prompted me to reach out to all three of them. That wasn’t typically how He worked in that area, at least in my life, so I was quick to obey. Within minutes, all three had responded, asking me to pray for them to have wisdom. Wow. All three were roughly my age, and yet they were boldly asking for the same thing that I was timidly approaching in my own prayer life. As I got down on my knees to pray for them, I included myself in the prayer. I prayed for an outpouring of wisdom in every area of their lives, in my life, and in our respective ministries. It was such a powerful moment for me because God allowed these leaders to speak to my place of insecurity, without them even realizing it. As I prayed for wisdom on how to even seek wisdom, I committed to making my year one that would be a quest for what this meant in my own life. I wish I could say that immediately God dropped a word into my heart, or led me to a specific scripture. Instead, there was stillness.

Part of the process of seeking wisdom is being ok with the stillness.

We tend to busy ourselves, oftentimes over-extending ourselves, so stillness feels foreign. Yet it’s in those moments that the Lord can work if we allow Him to.

As we approach a new year, it is my encouragement to you, to seek a specific word from the Lord to guide your heart and mind as you grow in Him in the new year.  

Allow the Lord to speak to you, and be open to what He has to say. He loves you. No matter your age, your position, or your past, you are incredibly loved by the author of wisdom. 

James 1:5  But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him. NASB

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