When I was little I thought that some of the things Jesus said were a bit strange. I used to think about one thing in particular. It was when He talked to people about praying. He told them, “When you pray, go into your closet and shut the door and pray to your Father…” Matthew 6:6.
I wasn’t too big and closets struck me as being a bit spooky. Especially mine – the one I shared with my brother. Clothes on and off hangers. Shoes. Boxes of stuff. Games and toys. Dirty socks. Dirty underwear. Dust and cobwebs.
It had no light and I wasn’t about to go in there and pray – let alone shutting the door. With all the junk it wouldn’t shut anyway.
After a while I thought I had got it figured out. Jesus must really mean a closet especially set aide for that purpose, with all the stuff taken out and a light put in.
Then I changed my mind again. I figured our Lord must mean the closet is anywhere. The barn. A field. The bush. The tree house. In school, especially during a test you hadn`t studied for! Or lying on the grass in the backyard, watching clouds move across the sky. Just me and God.
And maybe that is right.
But then I learned something about this closet that just amazed and encouraged me.
It isn`t a closet at all. It`s a storehouse!
The same greek word the translators of the King James Version translated ‘closet’ in Matthew 6:6, they translated ‘storehouse’ in Luke. He tells us in 12:24, that when Jesus was speaking about birds He said, “Consider the ravens. They don’t sow or reap, they don’t have a ‘storehouse’ (same word as closet) or a barn, and yet God feeds them.”
And what an amazing storehouse. And best of all, God is the Storekeeper! And God is a most marvellous Giver. His storehouse is filled with countless blessings, both spiritual and physical. “And this is the confidence we have in Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us: and…we have the requests thar we asked of Him.” 1John 5:14-15.
I think James tells us what one of our big probles is; “We have not because we ask not. So “When you pray, enter into your ‘storehouse’, and when you have shut the door, pray to your Father…”