Yesterday, we learned that God wants to meet with us in the secret place of prayer. What is that secret place like? How can we recognize it? Let’s begin to look at its qualities.
Jesus’s sacrifice on the cross gives us access to the presence of God, and prayer is the place where that access occurs. To pray is to recognize we have a divine appointment where we can speak face-to-face with a holy God. Because we cannot talk with an absent God, it is necessary for us to know that He is present and He hears and responds to us.
No matter where we go, God is with us. Through the fire and the storm, in tribulations and persecutions, through loneliness and fear, He is always with us, because He has promised to be there. Jesus gave us His word that He would be with us “even unto the end of the world” (Matthew 28:20 KJV).
True prayer, therefore, includes a consciousness of being in the presence of God Almighty. To be in God’s presence, you need to set all your affection on Him; this means fixing your attention and thoughts on Him, focusing completely on His person. When we do this, eternity is pulled into the realm of time.
So He [Jesus] Himself often withdrew into the wilderness and prayed. Now it happened on a certain day, as He was teaching, that there were Pharisees and teachers of the law sitting by, who had come out of every town of Galilee, Judea, and Jerusalem. And the power of the Lord was present to heal them. (Luke 5:16–17)
Every day, Jesus made sure He was in communication with the Father and filled with His presence. This is why, after He would return from the place of prayer, He would radiate power. When the multitudes approached Him seeking healing and deliverance, Jesus only had to declare the word, and supernatural breakthrough occurred. After spending time in the presence of God, Jesus didn’t need to pray for people, because the atmosphere He carried—which He had built with His Father—produced instant miracles, signs, and wonders. The Father saw Jesus’s prayers in the secret place and rewarded Him publicly. When we are fully aware of God’s presence and spend time in fellowship with Him in the secret place, then wherever we go, we will carry the atmosphere of His presence; we will radiate His life, liberty, power, and glory.
Because God’s presence is manifested to us in the secret place of prayer, it is there where we come to know the Father. “This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent” (John 17:3). As we pray, God reveals Himself to us, and we are attracted to Him in an ever greater way. He places us under His care as His special treasure and as part of His very heart.
God wants us to see Him as He is; He longs to establish an intimate relationship with us, and for us to become one with Him as He is one with His Son Jesus. And prayer is the place where we can see God as He really is and receive His life.
In the book of Acts, every time Christians got together to pray, the power of God manifested. This indicates to us that the church should never lack power. The enemy attacks the prayer life of churches and individual believers because he doesn’t want them to have access to God’s supernatural power and grace.
Power is our inheritance as children of God, but we can only use it legally, in a spiritual sense, through prayer that is part of an intimate relationship with the Father.
The Spirit of God is continually active on the earth. When you pray, you become a participant in what He is currently creating and doing in the world. Sadly, much of the church today doesn’t know how to pray; consequently, spiritual darkness has become thick on the earth. This generation lacks the spiritual depth that a life of prayer produces. The depth of our prayer life will determine the depth of our message. When a person’s spirit is empty, they produce empty words. When a person’s spirit is burning with the Holy Spirit, they release God’s power through anointed words and generate spiritual activity.
Spiritual authority belongs to all children of God by inheritance through Jesus. (See, for example, Luke 10:19.) However, as is the case with spiritual power, our use of spiritual authority is legal only while we maintain a relationship with our heavenly Father. And a significant way in which God imparts His authority to us is through prayer.
For this reason, whenever our prayer life begins to diminish—in our individual lives or as the corporate church—our spiritual authority is weakened. Today, we live in extreme times in which the enemy is doing everything he can to diminish the power of the church. Therefore, every day, we need a greater level of spiritual authority, and for this we must “pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17).
Thought: Before giving us power, God wants us to have a relationship with Him.