A Prayer Place should be a quiet place where
you can withdraw and feel secure from interruption.
Jesus said 'When you pray, go away by yourself, all alone, and shut the
door behind you, and pray to your Father secretly.' (Matthew 6.6)
There are times, of course, when Christians are to pray
together (see Matthew 18.19) but Jesus is talking here about individual
prayer, not corporate prayer.
And the secret of effective praying as individuals is to
pray in secret.
Every Christian needs to have, if possible, a Prayer
Place. A quiet spot
in which to pray, for such a spot will gather spiritual associations
which will quicken his imagination whenever he goes there, and will
call him to prayer even when inclination ebbs.
Praying with friends, or with your family, is a
necessary and vital part of prayer, but to build up your personal
relationship with Christ you need to spend time with God alone. I
realize, of course, that for some, the finding of a quiet Prayer Place
is almost an impossibility.
Those who live in overcrowded homes, or share a room
with a non-Christian in a college or university, will find it difficult
to find a private spot in which to pray. Difficult, but not always
It's amazing how the Lord leads His children toward
appropriate private spots and places when once He sees within them a
desire for intimacy with Himself. A young man from a large family, all
of whom, apart from himself, were unbelievers, asked a pastor to pray
with him that God would enable him to find a quiet spot in which he
could conduct his daily devotions.
Some days after they had prayed together, he telephoned
the pastor to share a most amazing story. He said he was on his way to
work that morning and noticed a minister about to park his car in a
small car park adjacent to a church.
He felt led to go over to the minister and share with
him the fact that he was a Christian. During the course of conversation
the young man told the minister about his problem of not being able to
find a private Prayer Place in which to pray.
The minister said, 'Well, don't let it be a problem any
longer. I come to my church every morning at 7 a.m. to do my own
praying. I have a spare room which you can use if you wish, and when I
am away then you will be able to borrow the key and use it
There are innumerable instances where Christians,
desirous to spend time alone with God and unable to do so because of
circumstances, have been directed by Divine guidance to private spots
or places in the most remarkable manner.
And even if a private Prayer Place is not available,
don't let this keep you from a time of regular communion with God. A
young businessman and the only Christian in a large family, told of how
he overcame the problem of not being able to find a private place in
which to pray. He travels on an early commuter train that takes about
'I spend almost all of that time' he said 'in contact
with the Lord. Although the train is often crowded I have learned to
become deaf to the distractions. As soon as the train pulls out of the
station I climb the stairs in my soul to the sacred Prayer Place of my
imagination where I picture myself meeting with the Lord Jesus.
Every morning He greets me with a smile and says "I'm
glad you've come".' Admittedly it has taken him some time to learn the
secret, but with patience and perseverance you, too, can learn to build
a chapel in your soul.
It's astonishing how real a secret chamber can be built
within the heart by imagination and consecrated thought.
Dr W. E. Sangster tells, in one of his books, the story
of Charles de Foucauld who lived a hermit's life in the deserts of
North Africa. He was sometimes invited by the French officers to their
On some occasions the officers told stories that passed
the bounds of propriety. Rather than leave the Mess, he said, he
learned to sit still and withdraw into a secret Prayer Place of his
When he was asked if he felt upset by some of the
stories passed around he said he never heard them because he was in his
own 'oratory'. That kind of oratory any man or woman can, with
determination, build within his or her own soul.
It should not be forgotten, also, by those whose prayer
life is hindered because of lack of privacy, what it is always possible
to go for a walk with Jesus.
Christmas Evans, one of the greatest preachers, tells of
walking along the base of Mount Snowdon one evening and entering into
such a spiritual tete a tete with the Lord that it
transformed his whole being. How true it is, as the hymnist put it:
'Where e'er we seek Thee thou art found, And every place is hallowed
ATMOSPHERE in which to meet Jesus