Summary: What is the “Secret Closet?” It's the Habit of shutting yourself in God, Seeking God, calling on Him, and Intimacy with God. Prayer is transfiguring, refreshing, and can alter the future.
THE POWER OF THE
1. Some things really changed between the former generations and the kids of the last generation.
2. At a grandma was keeping/ babysitting her grandson Dirk. Dirk followed her into the bedroom as she puts up things away in the closet.
3. "Grandma," he said, "what room is this?" "This is a closet, Dirk," she explained. "We don't have a room like this in our house," he said. "Of course you do," she said, "You have lots of closets in your home."
4. When he again denied having closets in his house, she tried another tack. "Where do you keep all your clothes?" she asked.
5. A true child of the times, he replied, "In the dryer."
6. Dirk isn't the only person who doesn't know much about closets. Many Christians don't act like they have one either.
“5 And when you pray, you shall not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. 6 But you, when you pray, enter into your closet, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father which is in secret; and your Father which sees in secret shall reward you openly.” Matt. 6:5-6.
C. WHAT’S A SECRET CLOSET?
1. The word "closet" could be better translated "bedroom." What is a “Secret Closet?”
2. It's the Habit of shutting yourself in God, Seeking God, calling on Him, and Intimacy with God.
D. THE IMPORTANCE OF PRAYER
The Gospel of Luke has been called "The Gospel of Prayer." WHY? OTHER GOSPELS SAY... BUT LUKE SAYS....
1. Jesus in the Jordan when Spirit descended like a Dove.
Luke says…It was while He was praying that the Spirit descended.
2. The Gospels say, Jesus chose 12 apostles. Luke says it was after He spent a night in prayer that He chose them.
3. Other Gospels say that Jesus died on a cross. Luke says that while he was dying, Jesus was praying for his enemies.
4. Other Gospels say Jesus went on a Mt. and He was transfigured. Luke says it was while He was praying that He was transfigured.
I. NOTHING IS MORE TRANSFIGURING THAN PRAYER
Prayer doesn't always change God but it always does change us.
A. IT CHANGES OUR VIEW OF GOD
1. Isaiah in chapter 6 was praying when he saw a vision that altered his life.
2. Paul was praying when he was caught up to third heaven, and saw unspeakable things. His life was changed.
3. The Apostle John was praying on Patmos when he heard a great voice say “Come up here” and he received the Book of Revelation.
B. IT CHANGES OUR CIRCUMSTANCES
18 I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. 19 For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed. Rom. 8:18-19.
C. CHANGES OUR VIEW OF OURSELVES
See ourselves as God sees us. We ourselves are changed.
D. CHANGES OUR VIEW OF OTHERS
II. NOTHING’S AS REFRESHING AS PRAYER
A. MUST BEGIN WITH PRAYER
1. "Don't have your concert and tune your instruments afterward. Begin the day with prayer."
2. We begin each day by taking a bath or shower, don’t we? Likewise, we should also get prepared spiritually.
a. There was a girl who asked her mom if she could start taking a bath each day before school, instead of at night.
b. Her Mom asked her, "Why?" “Because each day at school, for two months, the teacher has asked, ‘Would everyone whose taken a bath today, please raise your hand.”
c. "For 2 months I haven’t been able to raise my hand that I’ve taken a bath!”
B. PRAYER BRINGS US PEACE
1. As the song says, "Oh, what peace we often forfeit; Oh, what needless pain we bear. All because we do not carry, Everything to God in prayer."
2. I feel that busyness is one major hindrance to righteous living. We have so many demands placed on us these days that we often take care of the expedient rather than the needful.
3. We juggle our schedules and arrange our pursuit of righteousness AROUND the other insistent pressures in life rather than the other way round.
C. THRU PRAYER OUR SOULS ARE WASHED
1. Through prayer our souls are washed, our languishing spiritual nature is satisfied, and our thirst quenched.
2. We receive manna from heaven to feed our starving souls.
a. When Robert Louis Stevenson was a boy he once remarked to his mother, "Momma, you can't be good without praying." "How do you know, Robert?" she asked. "Because I've tried!" he answered.