“But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet [secret chamber according to Strong’s concordance], 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 (bold added)
“He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.” Psalm 91:1 (bold added)
Have you ever listened to the noise of this world? Not just listened, but noticed it? Sounds. So many. Competing. Clashing. Hurling themselves at each other. One sneaking in meekly; another one combative, rolling in like a hurricane. Some forming an unintended orchestra. Some on a battlefield. Constant noise. Chaotic sometimes. Other times quieter, close to peaceful. But always noise. Noise. Noise. All kinds of it. A variety of volumes. A cacophony of life in sound. With speakers booming. The mute button never seems to work. When I walked up to the receptionist’s desk at the doctor’s office, I asked the receptionist if I could sit outside the building instead of remaining in the waiting room. She figured it was too cold from the air conditioning. “No,” I explained. “There’s too much noise. The radio and the television.” She said she understood and told me I could wait for my appointment outdoors. I thought it would be quiet there. I settled down on the sidewalk with my sneakered feet resting on the road in front of it, expecting silence. Instead, noise. More of it. Cars, traffic, radios. Later a siren. Crickets, or some such thing, coming from multiple directions. Surround sound. I had not found the quiet I sought; I discovered more noise. The world is so full of it, isn’t it? How hard it is to hear the voice of the Lord in a noise-ridden world. The flesh screams at us to satisfy it. The world yells from another direction to follow its ways. The devil slithers in whispering for us to fall prey to his tantalizing, deadly tactics. And all of the technology we have created to help us and satisfy our desires adds more, and louder, noise. And we are faced with a decision. The most important decision of all.
Will we hear the voice of the Lord, will we believe in Him, will be obey Him, will we follow His voice and His ways? Or, will we allow the world and all its noises to drown Him out and fall prey to shutting our ears and hearts to the Lord and turning our backs on the Lord? Perhaps it is that I am getting older. Maybe it is just because I am sensitive to noise. Or maybe my gut feeling is true. The world is getting louder; the noise is increasing. The distractions are increasing. The temptations are more in our faces than ever. And yet the decision remains. Will we sneak away into a secret place and enter into a quiet time with the Lord and drown out all else so that we can bask in His love, soak in His Word, and hear His voice as He teaches us, chastens us where we need chastening, leads us to repentance where we need more of it, heals us where we need healing, grows us up in His ways as He teaches us His Word and transforms our hearts and lives, and draws us ever nearer to Him? We must shut the door upon the world if we choose to do so. Otherwise, the noise will steal us away from our precious time with Him. Is there anyone more important than Him? Is there anything more important than spending time with Him? Is there anything more vital than believing in the Lord Jesus Christ and following Him? Is there any noise in this world, any distraction or temptation, anything or anyone at all, that comes even remotely close to the infinite beauty and majesty of the Lord?
Enter into the secret place with the Lord. Tune out the noises of this world. Give Him your undivided love and attention. Bow down before Him. Seek Him. Hear Him. Follow Him. All the noise of this world will one day be gone. We will spend eternity with the Lord or eternity in fiery hell. Now is the time to make a decision. Repent of your sins, believe the Gospel that Christ died on the cross to pay the penalty for your sins, receive the promise of everlasting life, commit your ways to the Lord, and listen for His voice. Listen. Hear. Obey. Turn your back on the noise of this world. Turn your heart and face and ways unto the Lord. In his presence the world and its noise falls away. It is then, in the quiet, we come to know Him, not only as the one in whom we believe, not only in the one who teaches us His ways, but as the one whose love goes on forever and with whom we will spend eternity. Believe. Listen. Follow. Fall into His arms and embrace all that He offers. Drink of Him. Of His love and mercy. Of the one who is forever. The Lord!