[In which we follow the Andrew Murray classic With Christ in the School of Prayer]
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. (Mt 6:6)
Why does the Lord send us to a secret place to pray? If we read the verse above in its context we find that Jesus wants our prayers to be pure, to be lifted to God’s ears alone rather than simply spouted for show. He wants us to realize the intimacy of the act of prayer. Praying is our time of intimate communion with our Heavenly Father not to be shared with or divided by the outside influences that swirl around us at all times. By entering our prayer closet and closing the door behind us, we are shutting out the world both figuratively and literally. We are alone with God and our beating heart.
Jesus also telegraphs to us His understanding of our fallen nature. He knows that we will either pray for the admiration of those around us in our worst state or we will be constrained by the fear of the crowd’s judgment in our least. The privacy of our closet removes the inhibition that clouds true prayer and the joy of nestling in the Father’s presence, allowing its great comfort and security to wash over us and releasing the prayer of our hearts more than that of our heads.