Have you ever tried to describe the place in your heart where you experience the presence of God? Or define the place from which you pray strong prayers? If you could describe that place so that someone else would understand what you meant, what would you say?
I know that when I think of how to put into words or how to describe that place where I meet Jesus, it sometimes seems like there’s no way I could ever explain it. It’s so subjective to who I am. But I’m going to attempt it here anyway. If my feeble attempt resonates with you, then that’s wonderful. Perhaps you would add to it. Perhaps you would want to say something different. That would be OK also. You would be welcome to enter the conversation.
Here goes: Jesus said that when you pray, you are to go into your inner room, your hidden chamber. Then you are to shut the door and pray to your Father in secret. My experience of that “room” consists of a space in my heart that no one can see. No one knows when I’ve entered that hidden chamber unless I choose to tell them.
Sometimes I’m in solitude when I pray from within that room. Other times, I’m in the middle of other people being in the same physical room where I am. They won’t know that my heart is in that hidden chamber unless I choose to tell them. Most of the time I choose not to let anyone know.
That special place surely resides in my chest, because that’s where I cry out to the Lord with one emotion or another – emotions as varied as a feeling of desperateness to one of hope to one of joy. I can make a case for any of those emotions in prayer, if strong enough, as emotions that need to be cried out to the Lord either in pain or total thanksgiving and praise.
It feels for sure that all of that resides in my chest, in my heart. That’s where my inner hidden chamber is. Jesus said that’s where we are to retire to, in order to pray.
However, there have been times when I have felt love and adoration as coming from my head, inside my skull, as though love and adoration can stem from my brain, my mind, as well as from my heart. I have felt so much love in my mind for Jesus that it seems, as it were, that my head is resting on his head, or at other times, on his heart.
Either way, whether I feel the sensation of my love, or his love, or his presence, as I pray from my chest or from my head, I’m still praying from within my hidden chamber. No one else knows of either my emotions or the contents of my prayer, unless I choose to tell them. It’s a secret place.
I’ve heard many of you allude to having an experience of an ongoing running dialogue with the Lord. I too have experienced the same thing. When our prayer life is going well, that is indeed what it can be like. We carry on a conversation with Him all day long.
When spiritual abuse happens, it seems like I no longer know how to enter that inner room. I’ve lost the key, and it's locked. Or perhaps it’s like the room has been squashed into a different shape, and I no longer fit in there. Or maybe the walkway that leads there has been obliterated, and I no longer know the way. Spiritual abuse can make us feel horribly alone, “stuck out there” on some foreboding planet where there’s not enough oxygen to even nourish our lungs, much less feed our heart and brain.
It is at such times as these that we need to know that we’re not alone. We need to know that someone else who has experienced much the same thing before us, has arrived on the scene and knows several avenues to try, knows various prayer “tools” that can help kick start our prayer life again.
I have been there. I have experienced everything that I write about. I have experimented with spiritual prayer “tools” that come from the many centuries of Christianity – that come from many other Christians who have walked this path before us. This whole website is designed to share what I have learned so that you too can take up these tools for your own spiritual healing and growth.
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And remember, you're awesome! May God bless you and hold you in the palm of His hand.
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