“And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. 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.”
– Matthew 6:5,6
Today, I want to talk to you about the power of secrecy and reward. All throughout Scripture, and especially in the Sermon on the Mount, we see the theme of doing something good with the motivation of being rewarded for it. Contrary to the attitude we have adopted in Western culture, in the time of the writing of the Bible, Jews fully embraced the power of receiving gifts from God as motivation for doing the right thing.
Interestingly, in the Bible, secrecy is always on the receiving side of reward. In other words, God’s people have to give up the glory of public accolades and compliments for the greater gift of being compensated by Him in the form of blessings, both now and in the life to come. The reward for a secret prayer is an answered prayer and the reward for secret giving is an even greater bounty of favor, both physically and spiritually.
Friend, when you give, pray, and live solely for the glory of God and forego your need for the approval of others, your spiritual life soars and takes on new richness and depth. Because Jesus is the giver of every good and perfect gift, you can rest in confident assurance that He is your rewarder, and your heart can continually find joy in His love for you! No one can outgive God and the bounteous blessings you receive when you do good deeds in secret far outweigh the temporary pleasure of pleasing people. Practice connecting to your Heavenly Father in private and I promise, you will get to know Him in a deeper and more intimate way than ever before! Isn’t that good news?
Jesus, help me as I learn to relate to you in secret. I know that you are my rewarder and I want to focus my heart on you alone, knowing that you will reward me.
How do you feel about being rewarded for relating to and giving to God?