Summary: God is more concerned with the soundness of your heart than with how your prayer sounds.
God’s Eye for the Praying Guy
April 3, 2005 FBC, Chester Mike Fogerson, Speaker
"But you, when you pray, go into your inner room, close your door and pray to your Father who is in secret, and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you.
Matt 6:6 (NASB)
ETS: God’s eye looked at the motivation of prayer over form in the believer’s prayer life
ESS: God is more concerned with the soundness of your heart than He is with how your prayer sounds.
OBJ: I want my listeners to commit to making one improvement in their prayer lives beginning today.
PQ: What improvements would God have you make in your prayer life this morning?
I. Location, Location, Location
II. Attitude, Attitude, Attitude
TS: Let’s look at two improvements we can make in our prayer life today.
I. The first improvement we can make in our prayer life today is...location, location, location. But you, when you pray, go into your inner room, close your door and pray... Matt. 6:6a
A. Jesus told these would-be prayer warriors to improve their prayer life by simply praying privately.
a. Jesus didn’t condemn any/all public prayer (Lord’s Prayer, OUR Father)
1. If Jesus was opposed to public prayer, the early church missed His point "Again I say to you, that if two of you agree on earth about anything that they may ask, it shall be done for them by My Father who is in heaven. 20 "For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst." Matt 18:19-20 (NASB) (Acts 1:24; 4:24-31; 12:12)
2. Jesus was simply saying it was wrong for these folks to pray in public if they weren’t praying in private.
b. Inner room (Greek: tameion): storeroom, basement, bedroom, upper room (most Jewish dwellings had a place for secret devotions-commonly on the roof or an upper room).
c. Shut the door: telling them to shut out everything else so they could concentrate on Him and Him alone.
d. (IL) In the fourth century, Christians prayed so loud, their family could hear them down the hall. Private prayer was for God’s ears alone.
B. Real prayer warriors are often snipers, not platoon leaders.
a. You desire to be alone with God on a regular basis.
1. Inner room is your truck, office, at soccer practice, traffic
2. Wherever you seek your inner room, God is already waiting for you to enter!
b. Don’t forget to shut the door. Why?
1. Many things we share with God in our private prayers are for Him alone to know (no other ears but God’s).
2. Our loved ones can betray a confidence.
3. Our secrets with God will forever be secret with God.
c. When we pray in secret with a pure heart we have the full attention of God.
TS: As important as the location is, it does take a back seat to the next area of improvement:
II The second improvement we can make in our prayer life today is...attitude, attitude, attitude. pray to your Father who is in secret, and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you. Matt. 6:6b
A. The end goal of praying in the inner room/shutting the door was for the early believer to be alone with God (intimacy).