James 1:5 (NLT)
5 If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking.

The Apostle James tells us if we have a need for wisdom we should ask God and He will generously provide that wisdom to us because He is listening. He does not rebuke, but instead hears us out and then offers us what we need. There is a condition that follows in verse 6 and that is we must place our total faith in God.

In Life Together, his classic book on Christian community, Dietrich Bonheoffer says that listening is the first service we owe one another in the Christian community: �The first service that one owes to others in the fellowship consists in listening to them. Just as love to God begins with listening to His Word, so the beginning of love for the brethren is learning to listen to them. It is God's love for us that He not only gives us His Word but also lends us His ear. So it is His work that we do for our brother when we learn to listen to him. Christians, especially ministers, so often think they must always contribute something when they are in the company of others, that this is the one service they have to render. They forget that listening can be a greater service than speaking. Many people are looking for an ear that will listen. They do not find it among Christians, because these Christians are talking where they should be listening.�

We have relatives, friends and acquaintances that are facing overwhelming and heart breaking circumstances. Often we want to help, but we can�t even comprehend the depth of the problem or where to start to help. There are some things only God can accomplish. However, we can listen and we can ask God for wisdom. Instead of trying to hand out advice, stop, listen and have faith that God will answer.