“So give Your servant an understanding mind and a hearing heart [with which] to judge Your people, so that I may discern between good and evil. For who is able to judge and rule this great people of Yours?” – 1 Kings 3:9
Solomon’s dream was not a common one. While his bodily powers were locked up in sleep, the powers of his soul were strengthened; he was enabled to receive the Divine vision, and to make a suitable choice. God, in like manner, puts us in the ready way to be happy, by assuring us we shall have what we need, and pray for. Solomon’s making such a choice when asleep, and the powers of reason least active, showed it came from the grace of God. Having a humble sense of his own wants and weakness, he pleads, Lord, I am but a little child. The more wise and considerate men are, the better acquainted they are with their own weakness, and the more jealous of themselves. Solomon begs of God to give him wisdom. We must pray for it, Jas 1:5, that it may help us in our particular calling, and the various occasions we have. Those are accepted of God, who prefer spiritual blessings to earthly good. It was a prevailing prayer, and prevailed for more than he asked. God gave him wisdom, such as no other prince was ever blessed with; and also gave him riches and honour. If we make sure of wisdom and grace, these will bring outward prosperity with them, or sweeten the want of it. The way to get spiritual blessings, is to wrestle with God in prayer for them. The way to get earthly blessings, is to refer ourselves to God concerning them. Solomon has wisdom given him, because he did ask it, and wealth, because he did not. – Matthew Henry
He made the demand for the gift which he, of all the heroes of the ancient Church, was the first to claim. He showed his wisdom by asking for wisdom. He became wise because he had set his heart upon it. This was to him the special aspect through which the Divine Spirit was to be approached, and grasped, and made to bear on the wants of men; not the highest, not the choice of David, not the choice of Isaiah; but still the choice of Solomon.” — Stanley.
“O God the Holy Spirit, most loving Comforter, I pray that you will always turn what is evil in me into good and what is good into what is better; turn my mourning into joy, my wandering feet into the right path, my ignorance into knowledge of your truth, my lukewarmness into zeal, my fear into love, all my material good into a spiritual gift, all my earthly desires into heavenly desires, all that is transient into what lasts for ever, everything human into what is divine, everything created and finite into that sovereign and immeasurable good, which You Yourself are, O my God and Savior.”
Thomas á Kempis