Praying in Secret; May 2, 2018

Matthew 6:6 “But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.”

It’s amazing how we can forget that God sees everything. He is by definition omniscient, yet we act like we can hide things from Him, or like He fails to see our problems. How foolish! I am reminded of God’s interaction with Hagar (Genesis 16:13-14), as well as Jesus calling Nathanael. (John 1:47-49) How could the God who knows how many hairs we have on our head (Matthew 10:30) miss anything? God tells us to live so that those who see us may praise Him, (Matthew 5:16) but really, we live our lives for an audience of One. Too often we live for our human audience, and that causes all sorts of problems. How we think we are perceived can lead to such things as anorexia and even suicide. It is only when we know we have a heavenly Father who will always love us (Romans 8:38-39) that we can have the peace we so desperately need. In this verse Jesus is pointing out that we can’t say a prayer that God can’t hear. We don’t have to be in church, or be dressed a certain way, or be in a certain posture. The point is, if our hearts are turned toward God, we are in His throne room. Most of us have seen showy pray-ers who match the description Jesus gives in verse five. Here and elsewhere Jesus tells us that the only qualification we need to be able to pray is humility, and faith that God is listening. The better we understand that, the more we will pray, and the more God’s grace will flow through us.

I am often reminded of how blessed I am to have been raised in a home where prayer was as natural as breathing. I tend to forget that few people have been blessed in that way, and so I expect far more of them than I should. God will guide and grow any of His children who seek Him, but I need to do far better at walking alongside people to help them understand things that have been ingrained in me for many decades. God has given me a fresh revelation on prayer that I plan to share this coming Sunday, but I’ve got to cover the basics again or people will be left high and dry. When people don’t have a track record in prayer, teaching on prayer can sound like empty theory, when nothing could be further from the truth. I certainly need the anointing of the Holy Spirit to impart this to my hearers. However, I have the promise of that anointing, so I am not to hold back. God is doing good things among us, and this coming Sunday is going to be part of that.

Father, thank You indeed for all that You are doing. We get anxious about all sorts of things along the way, but that’s so foolish when You see the end from the beginning. Help us remember that You are always watching and listening, and acting, and so rest, relax, and rejoice in You, for Your glory. Thank You. Praise God!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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