What do you do when you feel lost? We usually ask our phones for directions first—and if that doesn’t work, we ask a person who knows the way. But what do we do when we feel lost in life? Maybe it’s just staring at an everyday problem like how to respond to a difficult coworker. Or perhaps it’s a more serious decision, like whether to change jobs.
It’s in those moments that we need wisdom. Wisdom allows us to make informed, strategic, and compassionate choices. It also helps us feel confident and centered—no matter what life throws at us.
So how do we gain wisdom? Below you’ll find five prayers for wisdom and direction. You’ll also find some other helpful tips for gaining wisdom. They can provide you with a starting point as you pursue God’s calling in your life.
What Is God’s Calling for My Life?
There’s a plan and a purpose for your life. For many, that’s a comforting thought. For others, it might cause some anxiety.
I used to worry about making the wrong choice and missing out on God’s plan for my life. So I’d pray for guidance and wisdom and feel anxious when I wouldn’t get a clear answer. Can you relate? You’re facing a choice, but you worry about making a decision that pulls you out of God’s calling.
If you feel like that, you’re not alone. Fortunately, we don’t need to live with anxiety that we’ll miss out on God’s calling. Why? Here are two reasons.
1. God Is Kind.
First, God loves us. So He’s not in heaven saying, “I have a great plan for Sam’s life but I’m not going to tell him what it is—even when he asks Me. I’m going to force him to guess, worry, and wonder if he’s doing it right. And if he goes down the wrong path, I’m going to ruin his life forever.”
That doesn’t sound loving, does it? No, that would be cruel. So we know that’s not what God is like—because God is love. Instead, God came to earth Himself and showed us how to live with wisdom. Jesus is our model. Then, God provided us with access to His energizing presence through the Holy Spirit.
So when we pray for guidance and wisdom, we’re not speaking to a far-off, distant God. We’re talking to a loving Father who is right here with us and wants to provide us with divine wisdom. We can trust Him to give it to us.
2. God Gives Us All the Same Clear Calling.
The second reason we don’t need to feel anxious about missing out on God’s calling is that He provides all of us with a clear general direction.
What’s our calling? It’s to live and love like Jesus. That’s why one of the best ways to gain wisdom is to read about Jesus in the Bible.
While God certainly does lead us down a particular path in some situations, He’s always calling us to show kindness, courage, and humility like Jesus. And as we become more like Jesus, we gain wisdom.
For more on Jesus’ life and identity, check out this article.
What Is Wisdom?
Do you know a wise person? Maybe it’s a friend, a family member, or someone you follow on social media. What is it about them that makes them wise? Usually a wise person has a lot of life experience, a calm demeanor, and a strong faith. They make good decisions and are able to give great advice.
Wisdom means having an informed, healthy perspective that allows you to discern good choices. Usually, people gain wisdom through experience, knowledge, and relationships. People can be wise at any age—and it isn’t determined by your intelligence. Anyone can become wise.
What Does the Bible Say About Seeking Godly Wisdom?
The Bible has a lot to say about wisdom and making wise choices. Let’s look at a few Bible verses about seeking God’s guidance. They can build your faith as you navigate life.
1. We Need God’s Wisdom.
The book of Proverbs in the Bible is dedicated to wisdom, so it’s a good place to start learning about God’s wisdom. The author turns wisdom into a character (kind of like Anger, Sadness, and Joy in the movie Inside Out). Wisdom is portrayed as a woman who wants people to make good choices. But she has a problem—no one is listening to her.
“Since they would not accept my advice and spurned my rebuke, they will eat the fruit of their ways and be filled with the fruit of their schemes. For the waywardness of the simple will kill them, and the complacency of fools will destroy them; but whoever listens to me will live in safety and be at ease, without fear of harm.” Proverbs 1:30-33 NIV
Wisdom is worth it.
Lady Wisdom wants to help people live whole, healthy lives—but they choose to live without her. Why? Because godly wisdom values sacrifice over comfort, chooses compassion over pride, and puts others first. But wisdom is worth it. Why? Because it’s one way God is making the world a better place for everyone. When we choose wisdom, we live in faith that God’s way is greater than the world’s way.
2. God Wants to Give Us Guidance.
The book of Proverbs goes on to tell us that God doesn’t want us to feel stuck, aimless, or passive. Instead, He wants to guide us toward wisdom:
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6 NIV
There’s No “Road Map to Life.”
It’s easy to read this passage and think, If I pray the right prayer for guidance, the Holy Spirit will download turn-by-turn life directions into my brain. Then, I’ll always know the best choices to make! Unfortunately, it’s not that simple.
If you keep reading in Proverbs, you’ll see that the Bible does provide wise direction—but it’s generally applicable to everyone, not a specific, detailed plan for each person. The author tells us that a wise person shuns evil, lives generously, and seeks correction from God. That’s good advice for all of us as we seek wisdom.
So, if you’re waiting for God’s direction and want to become more wise, seek the Lord Jesus with all your heart. How? By running from evil, living generously, and seeking spiritual growth opportunities.
3. God Offers Us Greater Wisdom.
So, how do we gain wisdom? The best way to start is through asking God in prayer. Praying for wisdom isn’t just a great idea, it’s also something God encourages us to do.
If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. James 1:5 NIV
You Can Make Great Choices.
So God wants us to be wise and He wants to help us gain wisdom. When you do, you’ll find yourself making better choices. Then you’ll be a helpful resource to other people around you who need guidance!
So let’s explore some example prayers for wisdom, direction, and guidance. These prayers aren’t magical—they won’t always give you exact guidance in every situation. Instead, they can help you develop a habit of prayer that can connect with your heavenly Father.
5 Prayers for Wisdom and Direction
Here are five example prayers to use as you seek help from God. Through Him, you can make wise decisions—no matter what you’re facing. Use these powerful prayers as a starting point whenever you need God’s guidance.
1. A Prayer for Clarity
Do you feel like you’re not sure where to go next? Maybe you feel stuck in life, or like you can’t figure out your next step. If so, then try this short prayer for guidance and clarity.
God, thank You for giving me a calling and a purpose. I ask that You would provide me with discernment in the choice I need to make. If there’s a specific path You want me to take, please make it clear to me. And help me to have the courage to take the step you’re leading me toward. Thank You for Your compassionate presence. In Jesus’ name, amen.
2. A Prayer for Making the Right Decision
Are you facing a life-changing choice and need some help as you decide? Then try this example prayer for wisdom and discernment.
God, I know You want what’s best for me. As I’m making this choice, help me to trust Your consistent love for me. If there’s a particular choice You want me to make, please show me. Provide people to give me wise direction. In Jesus’ name, amen.
3. A Prayer for Trusting God’s Timing
It can be challenging to wait for God’s direction. If you’re feeling frustrated or a little impatient as you wait for God’s guidance, then try out a prayer like this one.
God, I ask for wisdom as I work through my current situation. I trust You, even when it’s difficult to see the big picture. Please help me to be patient and trust Your timing. And I ask that You would help me to be intentional in my growth as I wait. I’m grateful for Your constant comfort and peace. In Jesus’ name, amen.
4. A Prayer for Peace of Mind
A key component of wisdom is feeling centered and peaceful—even when life is hard. So we invite you to pray this simple prayer for peace of mind as you seek God’s guidance.
God, thank You for supporting me in every situation. I ask that You would provide me with peace of mind as I’m navigating life. There are things on my mind that are causing me to feel distracted and discouraged, so I ask for Your encouragement as I follow You. In Jesus’ name, amen.
5. A Prayer for Humility
Wisdom comes from experience, knowledge, and relationships. When we don’t know the right choice to make, and the Holy Spirit doesn’t reveal a specific path forward, then we need to rely on the wisdom of others. So here’s a prayer for humility that can help you receive God’s guidance through others.
God, please guide me in cultivating humility, accepting my strengths and weaknesses, and being compassionate toward others. Remind me that everything I have is a gift from You, and help me use my gifts to serve others. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Confidence in Our Choices
Remember God can and does provide direct guidance—sometimes. That’s why these prayers for guidance and wisdom are so important.
Other times He simply wants us to choose. There’s not always a right and wrong path. Sometimes there are multiple good choices, and God gives us the opportunity to choose on our own.
Find Guidance Today
As you seek guidance and wisdom, know that God is with you. He wants to provide you with every opportunity to pursue your calling in big and small ways. When we choose wisdom, it helps us make choices in our daily lives and gives us opportunities to help others.
So ask for God’s wisdom and He’ll provide it, whether it comes through the Bible, directly from His Spirit, through wise counsel from others, or some other way.
These prayers for guidance, wisdom, and direction can help you find confidence in any situation you might face.