The where of prayer

In his Sermon on the Mount Christ Jesus taught his disciples how to pray, giving them the prayer that has been named after him (see Matthew 6:9–13). In the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, Mary Baker Eddy writes that the Lord’s Prayer “covers all human needs” (p. 16). At different times Jesus elaborated on the requirements of prayer, often using parables as his teaching tool. The brief four verses of the parable of “the friend at midnight” (see Luke 11:5–8), for example, illustrate the importance of praying with perseverance. 

But in addition to teaching his disciples how to pray, Jesus also taught them where to pray. He said, “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). It is in this secret place of silent communion with God that we most clearly discern God, and where His presence is most deeply felt. It is in this place where He recompenses our earnest endeavors to know and find Him.

Referring to the closet, Mrs. Eddy writes, “In the quiet sanctuary of earnest longings, we must deny sin and plead God’s allness” (Science and Health, p. 15). This closet, or sanctuary, is a sacred place. It is not, of course, a building or physical location but the mental environment where we gain the clearest sense of dwelling in Spirit, in God’s loving embrace. 

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Claiming our divine immunity
November 21, 2016

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