How is prayer like going to the bathroom? You probably don’t hear many people say that! Jesus explained how we should pray, but it seems like nobody pays attention to what He said. Prayer is the most powerful thing you will ever do… if you do it correctly. Most people do prayer so wrong, the word has become meaningless.
Yes, the bathroom. Jesus said, “Go to your inner chamber” (Matthew 6:6). In that day, the inner room, the only typical private space was the bathroom—where you went to “take care of business.” Perhaps Jesus was making a humorous point here. The religious people of his day were taking care of business—praying—in public. Prayer should be as private as a bathroom is.
You don’t want anyone to see you in the bathroom. You should be just as discrete about praying. Real, earth-changing prayer happens in private with the world shut out. Don’t stand on a street corner to pray. Don’t be an actor who prays loudly in church so others can see how holy you are. Get alone with your Father in heaven who is in the secret place.
Your Father sees in secret. Could it be that He keeps no record of your public prayers? What if the only prayers He kept record of were the ones you prayed alone? Where do you put your most effort into praying?
He does not care about your flowery words and impressive vocabulary. He wants you to be real with Him and hide nothing. Alone, you have to face yourself as well as Him. No mask, no false front, just being real with God. That is where true change begins in you. That “inner chamber” time with the Lord is what transforms you until others see the hand of God on your life.
You take the effort to find a private place. In one home I lived in, I literally prayed in my closet. In another, I had a spare bedroom. Now, I share my home with 8 other people. For me, the best chance I have at closing out the world is to get up well before daylight. I don’t really have a closet—or even a bathroom—that is suitable for prayer. But I have found a time where I can shut the door on distractions and talk to my Father in secret. Find what works for you and do it!