Missing the Reward

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 6:6

Living for Rewards

I was watching the movie Return to Me again recently and was struck by something I hadn’t noticed in previous viewings. Several times in the film, a generous donor to the zoo publicly mentions his “anonymous” donations that made the construction of a new gorilla habitat possible. The habitat bore his name in honor of his gifts.

Though fictional, what a beautiful thing to do, but still, not so anonymous! He has received his reward here on earth in the accolades of those around him. Jesus is clear to point that way of life out in his teachings. How often are we drawn to that way of living? Too often, in my own life, decisions are made related to visibility and immediate reward. It’s only human, I guess.

But, if we are to take Jesus’ words seriously, our lives should be marked by our commitment to prayer and prayer in secret. Our “religiosity” made visible to others threatens to undo us with pride. Coming before God alone eliminates other distractions and priorities, and it comes with a reward.

What might that reward be?

 Being alone with God makes us more like Jesus. I have been married to the same beautiful woman for 42 years and trust me; we have grown to be very alike over that time.

Being alone with God gives us a real sense of our value. He is the one who created us and now pursues us.

Being alone with God highlights our purpose. In him, we find ourselves.

Being alone with God assures us of his love. He reminds us of just what he paid to ransom us.

Apart from these things, there may be more rewards reserved for us in God’s future, things greater than we can ask or even imagine.

Pray. Get alone with God every day.

Don’t miss the reward!

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