Summary: As we spend time in the secret place of prayer – in solitude, silence, soaking and Scripture meditation, we are transformed into the image of Jesus.
TRANSFORMATION #3: THE SECRETS OF THE SECRET PLACE #2
INTRO TO TOPIC: I believe the Lord is calling us to go deeper in the secret place.
“Nevertheless I have this against you, that you have left your first love. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent and do the first works.” (Rev. 2:4-5).
“As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me.” (Rev. 3:19-20).
Whatever else we do in this season, let’s respond to the call of Jesus to the secret place.
KEY TEXT: “But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.” (2 Cor. 3:18).
THE BIG IDEA: As we spend time in the secret place of prayer – in solitude, silence, soaking and Scripture meditation, we are transformed into the image of Jesus.
REVIEW TEXT: (John 15:4-5).
“Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.”
• The first spiritual discipline is prayer – abiding in Jesus – in the secret place.
1. SOLITUDE: Review this point from last week.
• Solitude is spending time with Jesus alone in the secret place of prayer.
• “But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.” (Matthew 6:6).
• Silence is spending time with Jesus listening in the secret place of prayer.
• “Be still and know that I am God.” (Psalm 46:10).
o “Be silent, and know that I am God!” (NLT).
o “Step out of the traffic! Take a long, loving look at me, your High God.” (The Message).
• Too often in prayer we do all the talking and don’t pause to listen.
• God wants to speak to us and give us encouragement, wisdom and direction in our lives:
• “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.” (John 10:27).
• We need to take the time to listen to what the Spirit of the Lord is saying to our lives.
• As we’re going through the process of transformation, part of the work of the Holy Spirit is to convict us of sin and show us areas we need to work on.
• QUOTE: The secret place “is the place of conversion, the place where the old self dies and the new self is born, the place where the emergence of the new man and the new woman occurs… (where) I get rid of my scaffolding: no friends to talk with, no telephone calls to make, no meetings to attend… just me – naked, vulnerable, weak, sinful, deprived, broken – nothing.” (Henri Nouwen).
• This is why it’s good to get silent in solitude – so we can hear God speak to our hearts.
“1 In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord sitting on a throne, high and lifted up, and the train of His robe filled the temple. 2 Above it stood seraphim; each one had six wings: with two he covered his face, with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. 3 And one cried to another and said: "Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; The whole earth is full of His glory!" 4 And the posts of the door were shaken by the voice of him who cried out, and the house was filled with smoke. 5 So I said: "Woe is me, for I am undone! Because I am a man of unclean lips, And I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; For my eyes have seen the King, The Lord of hosts."” (Isaiah 6:1-5).
• When we get alone in the secret place, God can speak to our hearts and give us direction:
• “Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying: "Whom shall I send, And who will go for Us?" Then I said, "Here am I! Send me.” (v.8).
• Soaking is spending time with Jesus abiding in His love.
• “As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love.” (John 15:9).