"For if you cry for discernment, lift your voice for understanding."
This word translated in the NASB here as discernment is really the word understanding – where the person is crying out for perception into the relationship between events and knowledge. The cry is for insight into what is behind just the raw facts.
This is the only place where both words for understanding are used in the same passage which adjusts the meaning of these usually synonymous terms. The first reference carries the usual meaning for the word understanding – insight even discernment. The second is a cry for the object of understanding – the carrier of key information that unlocks the understanding or relationship.
This is a very interesting bit of information. One must gain the understanding through a deep and open desire for the insight about what is the relationship between events, circumstances, people, etc; but one must also be just as hungry for the object or means through which that information will come. Understanding does not just pop into one’s mind; it is conveyed through someone or something and one must be ready for the teacher or the insight will be missed.
In other words, one must be very interested in understanding why things happen and the relationship between events, and one must realize that God will teach you these insights through a teacher from whom you must equally be prepared to learn.