But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly (Matthew 6:6 - I’m intentionally using the King James Version today for emphasis on the word closet.)
God wants us to share our heart with Him. He wants to be our burden bearer. Casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you (1 Peter 5:7). Heart fellowship was the reason He created us. It’s the reason He redeemed us.
Jesus said that when we pray, we’re to go into our most private room. He called it a closet. This is a place of closeness. The Greek word here could be translated bedchamber, or bedroom. This is a place where a husband and wife share intimate moments. Life comes from that sharing.
God wants to be close to us. He wants us to share our secret thoughts with Him. Life will come out of those moments. With all of the pressure that living today brings, we need a place where we can decompress, where we can vent our heart, our thoughts, our emotions, and potential worries. We need a place where someone smarter than us can wrap their arms around us, minister peace, and brush away the cares of the day.
I have found that the “closet” place is the absolutely best way to unload the pressurized freight of modern life. I have learned to take every worry, every emotional pain, every frustration, every concern, every fear, every thought of lack, every relational challenge, and lay it at the feet of my sovereign, loving Lord God. In the place of all these things I come away with rest, peace, confidence, hope, and settledness of heart and mind.
I want to encourage you to take time to develop closeness with the Father in your closet, your bedchamber. Find a place that is undisturbed, and just begin to talk to Him about the concerns of your life. Notice again Philippians 4:6 (JB Phillips Translation): Don’t worry over anything whatever; tell God every detail of your needs in earnest and thankful prayer, and the peace of God which transcends human understanding, will keep constant guard over your hearts and minds as they rest in Christ Jesus.
I’m going to leave you today with Psalm 139: 1-18. The Father has used this passage to reveal to me how tenderly He thinks of me. Allow it to minister to you:
Psalms 139:1-18 (Passion Translation)
YOU KNOW ALL ABOUT ME
Lord, you know everything there is to know about me. (2) You perceive every movement of my heart and soul, and you understand my every thought before it even enters my mind.
(3–4) You are so intimately aware of me, Lord. You read my heart like an open book and you know all the words I’m about to speak before I even start a sentence! You know every step I will take before my journey even begins. (5) You’ve gone into my future to prepare the way, and in kindness you follow behind me to spare me from the harm of my past. With your hand of love upon my life, you impart a blessing to me. (6) This is just too wonderful, deep, and incomprehensible! Your understanding of me brings me wonder and strength. (7) Where could I go from your Spirit? Where could I run and hide from your face? (8) If I go up to heaven, you’re there! If I go down to the realm of the dead, you’re there too! (9) If I fly with wings into the shining dawn, you’re there! If I fly into the radiant sunset, you’re there waiting! (10) Wherever I go, your hand will guide me; your strength will empower me. (11) It’s impossible to disappear from you or to ask the darkness to hide me, for your presence is everywhere, bringing light into my night. (12) There is no such thing as darkness with you. The night, to you, is as bright as the day; there’s no difference between the two. (13) You formed my innermost being, shaping my delicate inside and my intricate outside, and wove them all together in my mother’s womb. (14) I thank you, God, for making me so mysteriously complex! Everything you do is marvelously breathtaking. It simply amazes me to think about it! How thoroughly you know me, Lord! (15) You even formed every bone in my body when you created me in the secret place, carefully, skillfully shaping me from nothing to something. (16) You saw who you created me to be before I became me! Before I’d ever seen the light of day, the number of days you planned for me were already recorded in your book. (17–18) Every single moment you are thinking of me! How precious and wonderful to consider that you cherish me constantly in your every thought! O God, your desires toward me are more than the grains of sand on every shore! When I awake each morning, you’re still with me.
Psalms 139:23-24 (Passion Translation)
God, I invite your searching gaze into my heart. Examine me through and through; find out everything that may be hidden within me. Put me to the test and sift through all my anxious cares. (24) See if there is any path of pain I’m walking on, and lead me back to your glorious, everlasting ways— the path that brings me back to you.