Spirit of the Living God, come and be with me.

Awaken me to your presence.

Spirit of the Living God, come and sit with me.

Guide me in your wisdom and truth.

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It pleased the Lord that Solomon had made this request. God said to him, “Because you have asked for this instead of requesting long life, wealth, or victory over your enemies—asking for discernment so as to acquire good judgment— I will now do just what you said. Look, I hereby give you a wise and understanding mind. There has been no one like you before now, nor will there be anyone like you afterward.”

1 Kings 3:10-12

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“A wise and understanding mind” sounds admirable and necessary for a king or a world leader. But what about a student? What difference would that make for a student? Shouldn't I ask for strength in memory for my tests, or openness when I meet diverse people of various backgrounds? Those seem more practical than a wise mind. Give me an open mind instead, Lord. Or a mind that is sharp and intact for high performance. Such things are good for me as a student in the school of life.

Solomon's prayer, however, directs us towards a different focus. He is less interested in self-gain and more concerned with the welfare of the people under his care. His heart and mind need to work together so that God is the one adored by all. His desire for wisdom is an extension of love for his neighbors and for God. Perhaps it's time to start praying like Solomon, to ask for wisdom so that we can be fully used for God's kingdom here on earth. I’m ready to give it a go, are you?

Aram Bae

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God of infinite wisdom, show me how to live so that the world experiences your love, mercy, and goodness in tangible ways. Encourage me to use my mind for the creative, imaginative ways your love can be real in today’s world. Amen.

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May the God of Love bless me and keep me.

May Jesus the Christ smile upon me and be gracious to me.

May the Spirit of Truth lead me in the path of wisdom and peace.

Aram Bae

After ten years in New York City, Aram moved to Charlottesville, VA and is the Associate Pastor for Youth & Mission at First Presbyterian Church. She continues to teach Christian education courses as an adjunct professor at the New York Theological Seminary, but does so remotely. In addition to her passion for youth ministry, there is nothing she loves more than a (large) plate of fried chicken, barbecue ribs, and collard greens. Cornbread sweetens the pot, too.

Walking Towards Morning: Wondrous Love

Ken Medema

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