How to Pray for Wisdom Using Scripture

How to Pray for Wisdom Using Scripture

In the first few months of motherhood, I felt completely in over my head. Being the oldest of four children, the mechanics of caring for a child were not new to me. However, being completely responsible for a baby around the clock was a shock. Add in postpartum hormones and the shift from full-time employee to full-time mother, and I was sinking.

Things didn’t get easier as she grew. Soon, I saw her strong will come to the surface. Mom versus child battles became the norm. Potty training felt like torture. Fatigue made things worse. Oh, and then I birthed another baby.

Fast-forward thirteen years. I still feel overwhelmed much of the time. Raising children, making decisions, dreaming about the future—it all feels shaky and uncertain. In the middle of the unknown, God’s Word breathes hope.

“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 ESV).

I first discovered the hope found in James 1:5 in those early days of sleepless nights and fitful days. While it was not the first time I read it, it was the first time I felt so desperate for the wisdom it promised. It felt as if God said to me, “If you feel lost, ask me for the way home.”

I began praying for wisdom, and I haven’t stopped. Too often, I try to figure things out on my own and find myself in an unsolvable situation. Sometimes I am stubborn and try every option before I ask God for wisdom. Then I remember the instructions from James. I turn to God for wisdom and let me tell you, he is completely gracious and never holds back.

How to Pray for Wisdom Using Scripture

How to Pray for Wisdom Using Scripture

When I'm not sure how to pray for #wisdom, Scripture provides the words for me.Click To Tweet

When I’m not sure how to pray for wisdom, Scripture provides the words for me. I am in the process of putting together notecards of Scripture-based prayers for wisdom. I thought I would share some with you, just in case you are in the middle of overwhelmed and uncertain like me. Just ask; God will answer.

Start with James 1:5.

“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 ESV).

Lord, you say if I ask for wisdom, you will give it to me. I am desperate for your divine wisdom. You know all, see all, and understand all. Guide me now with your wisdom.


Follow up with some of these verses.

“For wisdom will enter your heart, and knowledge will fill you with joy. Wise choices will watch over you. Understanding will keep you safe.” (Prov. 2:10-11 NLT)

Lord, I need the kind of wisdom that comes from you. Please grant me both wisdom and knowledge. Guide my choices. I do not want to step outside of your will or act against your commands. Guide me, and keep me safe. 


“Give me wisdom and knowledge, that I may lead this people, for who is able to govern this great people of yours?” (2 Chron. 1:10 NIV)

Lord, in order to be a good [leader, parent, employer, small group leader, minister], I need your wisdom and knowledge. Grant me this request so that I may lead your people according to your wise counsel.


“But [only] with Him are [perfect] wisdom and might; He [alone] has [true] counsel and understanding.” (Job 12:13, AMP)

Father, I confess that I often look for answers everywhere but in you and your Word. You alone have the perfect answer for every situation. I need your counsel now. Bless me with understanding as I seek to find the answers in you.


“Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways!” (Rom. 11:33 ESV)

God, the depths of your wisdom and knowledge are unfathomable! You alone possess the treasures of wisdom. I cannot find it anywhere but you. Because your ways are perfect, I seek to follow them now. Show me your ways that I may follow them.


But the wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy and the fruit of good deeds. It shows no favoritism and is always sincere.” (Jam. 3:17 NLT)

Lord, I know when I seek your wisdom, I walk the righteous path. Instead of strife, I find peace. I am gentle with others instead of harsh. Your wisdom guides me in fruitful living. This is the kind of life I long to live. Fill me now with your wisdom that I may honor you with my life.


Praying God’s Word is a powerful practice. We see in these verses that he alone possesses perfect and complete wisdom. Use the words he gives us to ask for wisdom. James 1:5 promises he will not hold out on us!

Which prayer for wisdom resonates most with you? Do you have a verse to add to our prayers for wisdom? Share in the comments below.


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  1. Romans 11:33 is my favorite verse. It’s so comforting to remember the depths of God’s wisdom when my own feels depleted, knowing I have access to Him at all times. Thanks for this post. I’ve been working on a post about wisdom myself, and you’ve encouraged me to finish it.

  2. The promise in James has been a favorite because for many years I walked foolish. God always comes through on His promises, doesn’t He? Thanks for sharing about praying the verses. There are no better words to pray than His. 🙂

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