But if any man of you be deficient in wisdom, let him ask it of God, who giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, harbouring no doubt: for he who is doubtful is like a wave of the sea, driven by the wind, and in constant agitation. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing from the Lord.

"If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering." That there is a Divine law underlying prayer that helps to release the inner springs of wisdom, which in turn leads to power, was well known to Jesus, for his life abundantly proved it.

"Whoso casteth a stone at the birds, frayeth them away; and he that upbraideth his friend, breaketh friendship.

Then Zeus the cloud-gatherer, sore troubled, spake to her: "Verily it is a sorry matter, if thou wilt set me at variance with Hera, whene'er she provoketh me with taunting words. Even now she upbraideth me ever amid the immortal gods, and saith that I aid the Trojans in battle. But do thou now depart again, lest Hera mark aught; and I will take thought for these things to fulfil them.

He knew how to become all things to all men to save some. Christ's exhortation to his disciples was, "Be ye as wise as serpents," but how little wisdom many seem to have in seeking to win the unsaved to Christ! And this, too, when we have the promise, "If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not: and it shall be given him."

No one twitteth him with ostentation above his means. No one accuses him of pride, or upbraideth him with mock humility. None jostle with him for the wall, or pick quarrels for precedency. No wealthy neighbour seeketh to eject him from his tenement. No man sues him. No man goes to law with him.

We can wear out men's patience, but God's is inexhaustible. The same long-suffering Hand that poured water from the rock for two generations of distrustful murmurers still lavishes its misused gifts on us, to win us to late repentance, 'and upbraideth not' for our slowness to learn the lessons of His mercies. It is in striking contrast with the patience of God.

The giving of His Son was as the knife with which He would divide Himself amongst His children. He knows, He only, the heart, the needs, the deep desires, the hungry eternity, of each of them all. Therefore let every man ask of God, Who giveth to all men liberally and upbraideth not and see at least what will come of it.

"Whoso casteth a stone at the birds, frayeth them away; and he that upbraideth his friend, breaketh friendship. Though thou drawest a sword at a friend, yet despair not, for there may be a returning to favour.

"'But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. "'If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him." "There," whispered the sick man, and rested with a peaceful look in all his face. "It doesn't mean wisdom in general, Doctor, such as Solomon asked for."