Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Day 3: Alone with God

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.’ (Matthew 6:6)
But when you pray...’ this verse suggests that God expecting us to pray. John Piper in his audio podcast Desiring God said, “God doesn’t say ‘if you pray’ but ‘when you pray’. He clearly wants us to pray and always expecting us to pray.” Dear readers of Motivate for Life, pray! Pray! Pray!

God sees everything we do, and He will reward our prayer done in secret. As Jesus’ followers we are not to make a show of our prayer like the hypocrites does. On previous verse, Jesus said, ‘And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by men.’ Original word for hypocrites is hupokrites, which mean an actor under an assumed character (stage player). Have you seen someone dressed religiously pray in public places? Or group prayer in your local television channels? And you know that they acting doing it? That’s hypocrites!

‘…go into your room’, Jesus said. Room here refers to ‘storeroom’. My NIV Bible Study comments ‘… it is because; it had a door that could be shut.’ This does not mean that He’s condemning public prayer. But by praying in the private our motives is clear from pride and hypocrisy. During our Student Camp at Cameron Highland, my friend Enoch has a habit that he can freely pray during his shower. He closed the door, took his shower and prays.

J. Oswald Sanders in My Utmost for His Highest writes,
Prayer is the effort of will. After we have entered our secret place and have shut the door, the most difficult thing to do is to pray; we cannot get our minds into working order, and the first thing that conflicts are wandering thoughts. The great battle in private prayer is the overcoming of mental wool-gathering. We have to discipline our minds and concentrate on willful prayer”

Pray in secret. Shut the door and pray. His promise is this, “Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.’ Our goal in prayer is to have an intimate relationship with Him. Never pray just for the sake of receiving His reward but seeking the One who give it. My Father sees, my Father hears, my Father knows. Take time to be alone with Him.

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