3 Reasons to Meet with God in Secret
by Shane Heilman, The Psalms Project
“But you, when you pray, go into your closet, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in secret, and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.” -Matthew 6:6
Jesus is clear that we are to set aside time for God to privately communicate with him.
Here are 3 reasons from Shane Heilman to have a secret place to spend time with God:
We go places with specific purposes in mind. When we go to work, we’re there to work. When we go to the gym, we’re there to work out. When we go to our secret place with God, we should be there to spend time with him, and for no other reason. Going to a specific place for a specific purpose produces the type of intentionality that is sorely lacking in the lives of many Christians.
The word “closet” that Jesus uses inMatthew 6:6, tameion, is defined in Strong’s Greek Dictionary as a secret chamber, a place where a person may retire for privacy, or a place for storage (like a closet). All three of these concepts unmistakably emphasize that this place should be private and cut off from the comings and goings of the household. It should be a place where the world can be shut out. The reason such privacy is necessary for prayer is clear: Privacy fosters honesty, and honesty fosters relationship.
How can we pray freely and openly with God when there are others nearby, who may disturb us and listen to us pray at any moment? Having a secret meeting place with God prevents any hindrances to the unbroken communion that is essential for meaningful prayer.
Intimacy comes right on the heels of privacy. Without the safety of privacy, having any depth of relationship with another person is impossible. Even when intimate friendship or relationship is developed in a group setting, it’s because of a certain privacy that surrounds the group, allowing people to bond without the encumbering presence of outsiders. There is no intimacy without privacy.
Also, the sharing of a special, secret place is an intimate act in itself. If there is a place where you meet with one person, and with nobody else, that place becomes a hallowed sanctuary for the relationship. It becomes more than a place. The thought of sharing that place with another person for similar purposes can even seem blasphemous. Simply going to that special, secret place creates an expectation in itself. In the same way, having a special, secret place to meet with the Father creates an expectation, before we even arrive, that God is already there, eager to meet with us.
Editor’s Note: Portions taken from the article, “4 Reasons to Meet with God in Secret,” written by Shane Heilman. You can read that piece in full here. All rights reserved. A version was originally published on The Psalms Project.