(9th article in the Salvation Series)
Where do you go when your heart is troubled? When you’ve sinned. Or when you have worries that are far above your ability to handle?
Do you stew in the moment? Do you think about it over and over? Do you try to figure out the solution? Do you imagine the horrible outcome?
If you do, I’d like to introduce you to the Secret Place of God.
King David describes it as he contemplates his troubles in Psalm 55.
My heart is sore pained within me: and the terrors of death are fallen upon me. Fearfulness and trembling are come upon me, and horror hath overwhelmed me. And I said, Oh that I had wings like a dove! for then would I fly away, and be at rest.Psalm 55:4-6
Oh that I had wings like a dove! for then I would fly away and be at rest.
It’s a safe place where David would go when he had fears and worries.
He further describes it in Psalm 91.
He that dwelleth in the SECRET PLACE of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.Psalm 91:1-2
Here we see that the secret place is a place where God is— under the shadow of the Almighty.
David also describes it as a house, a temple, a pavilion and a tabernacle.
One thing have I desired of the Lord, that will I SEEK AFTER; that I may dwell in the HOUSE of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to enquire in his TEMPLE. For in the time of trouble he shall hide me in his PAVILION: in the secret of his TABERNACLE shall he hide me; he shall set me up upon a rock.Psalm 27:4-5
You will notice that all of these places are places of covering. David is saying that if he can get in the presence of God, God will cover him. It will be as if he had the wings of a dove to fly away and rest. He will be secure and won’t have to worry about all his troubles because God will be there addressing his concerns.
But where is God and how do you get in His presence?
Well if you have been born of God (see my article, What It Means To Believe in Jesus), you will understand that God lives inside you, that you are the temple of the Holy Spirit.
Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?1 Corinthians 3:16
Because God lives in us we have access to His mind, will and emotions (1 Corinthians 2:16). We can know through prayer and Bible study what God is thinking. But that doesn’t mean that He participates in what WE are thinking unless we involve Him in it.
When you’re thinking fear thoughts and worrying about circumstances in your life, your mind, will and emotions are NOT under the covering of God. God can’t give you the REST that you desire.
Entering the Secret Place of God means that you practice the presence of God WHILE you are thinking your fearful thoughts! Only then can He give you the rest and security you desire.
Let me show you how it works.
1. You have to NOTICE your thoughts.
From the time you get up to the time you go to bed, you’ll be amazed at what you think about. Now, NOTICE what you are thinking about. But not only notice what you are thinking about, notice them with a conscience awareness of God.
For example, let’s say you are worrying about money. Notice the fear it brings, the worry.
Now tell God about it. Tell him how you really feel, that you are freaked out by it. Lay it all out for God, what's in your mind, will and emotions.
2. Leave it with God.
You leave it with God when you express your fears to Him FIRST (you get it all out), THEN you respond to Him in faith. You could say, “Lord I've told you my fears, now help me put my faith in you. You said that if I ask believing I would receive (Matthew 21:22). So I’m asking you— believing. I’m asking you to help me solve my money problems. I don’t know how you are going to do it but I believe you for it. As I trust you, give me the peace that passes all understanding. Thank you. In Jesus name.”
3. If you can’t leave it with God, that is, if you don’t have His peace— identify your STRONGHOLD.
A stronghold is anything that exalts itself in our minds, “pretending“ to be bigger or more powerful than God.
When your fears and worries become bigger than God to the extent that you can’t GIVE them to God, you are dealing with a stronghold.
The Apostle Paul says that God has given us “weapons of war” in order to deal with strongholds in our minds:
For the WEAPONS of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of STRONGHOLDS; casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity EVERY THOUGHT to the obedience of Christ.2 Corinthians 10:4-5
What are “the weapons of our warfare”?
Since the SWORD OF THE SPIRIT (The Word of God) and PRAYER are the only OFFENSIVE weapons mentioned in Ephesians 6:10-18, author Beth Moore in her book, Praying God’s Word, feels that these are the “weapons of our warfare” the Apostle Paul intended in 2 Corinthians.
This being the case— PRAY GOD’S WORD for overcoming strongholds in your life.
Beth Moore offers prayer and scripture for 14 different strongholds in her book. They are: idolatry, unbelief, pride, deception, insecurity of feeling unloved, feelings of rejection, addiction, food related strongholds, ongoing feelings of guilt, despair resulting from loss, unforgiveness, depression, sexual strongholds, and the enemy.
Of course these are just a start. If you are having trouble entering into the Secret Place of God due to troubling thoughts, take them captive by finding your own scripture and pray them to God. God will break these strongholds in your life and allow you to enter into the Secret Place.
Finding and entering the Secret Place of God is about noticing your thoughts in the presence of God. This is a place King David desired to be with all his heart (Psalm 27:4-5) There were times when the only way David could go to sleep was to enter the Secret Place of God because he feared officials in his kingdom were trying to kill him (Psalm 4:8).