Role-playing not necessary with God

July 29, 2016 | 19 comments

I’d never thought about role-playing with God before and the destructive effect it can have on our prayer until I read the below translation in The Message of a familiar Bible verse from Matthew.

From the New King James:

“When you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly” Matthew 6:6, NKJV.

From The Message:

“Here’s what I want you to do: Find a quiet, secluded place so you won’t be tempted to role-play before God. Just be there as simply and honestly as you can manage. The focus will shift from you to God, and you will begin to sense his grace” Matthew 6:6, The Message.

How often do you role-play? Perhaps the “tough dad” acting like he’s always a rock in every storm. Or the businessman who feels pressure to look like a success to his peers. Or the mother faced with demands pulling her in 8 different directions putting on an air of “Everything is wonderful.” Most people don’t consciously try to be someone they aren’t, but it often happens. People wear hats, then act the way they think they’re supposed to act, even if it’s out of character.

But it doesn’t need to be that way with God.

When we go to God in prayer, outward show, personal knowledge or professions are irrelevant. What counts is the sincerity of our heart and our intent.

God is not interested in how many Bible verses we have memorized, how fast we can repeat spiritual truths, or how many times we say, “I’ll do anything for you if you help me.” It’s our genuine love of God and willingness to shelve pride and ego that win God’s attention and bring healing our way.

So, when entering the Secret Place of prayer, leave all the human role-playing outside the door. Go in mentally bare-naked to let God see who you really are, and then to listen to what God wants you to really know.

19 thoughts on “Role-playing not necessary with God”

  1. “Hold perpetually this thought, — that it is the spiritual
    idea, the Holy Ghost and Christ, which enables you to
    demonstrate, with scientific certainty, the rule of healing,
    based upon its divine Principle, Love, underlying, over-
    lying, and encompassing all true being.” — Mary Baker Eddy

    Yes, falsity: the mortal concepts of ourselves and our roles need to be barred, and only reality: the spiritual idea, eternally encompassed in Love, have presence.

  2. “So, when entering the Secret Place of prayer, leave all the human role-playing outside the door. Go in mentally bare-naked to let God see who you really are, and then to listen to what God wants you to really know.”

    Yes! We are here to discover our spiritual identity and this is surely a good way to do it. Leave human ego and roles outside the Secret Place of prayer (don’t you love that phrase?) and listen to what God is revealing to you about who you are. 🙂 Blessings, all. Thank you, Evan.

  3. The “light-bulb went ON! ” – with this one! What a simple but PERFECT suggestion! I cannot wait to put this into practice! Life-changing! Thank you, Evan!

  4. Very nice. My take away from today’s post is a greater understanding of what it means to be humble and meek, standing authentically with God, open to his guidance. Thank you Evan this is a significant post for spiritual understanding.

  5. Love this, Evan! I know that Science and Health by Mary Baker Eddy is written in a rather formal style and thus a lot of C.Ser’s have adopted a more formal style of relating to God – and that includes Me! But when I think about it……I really think Jesus was telling us just what you are saying here……and the fact that he called God, “Abba”, which means “Papa” or “Daddy”, is very significant…..maybe even more than we have realized! I write Letters to God in my Journal most mornings and just pour out my Heart……what I need help with, what character faults I am ready to let go of, what I’m worried or scared about and how much I love Him/Her. Thru this writing I have developed a very personal relationship with God – a very warm, kind, loving, simple and Real relationship and I have reaped Huge Benefits! Thanks again so much! Love to All!

  6. I was telling my daughter today how we were taught to pray as children. Kneeling beside our bed we said Now I lay me down to sleep…etc and then we blessed everyone and all animals and asked for help in everything we do. I was thinking about how I often had no one to talk to as a child about my inner thoughts and I would turn to God and just talk, often lying in bed after the prayer ritual, talking to God. I think what you are describing is the essence of being as a little child when we go to our Father/Mother in prayer- open guileless, trusting.

  7. The first thought that came to me when I read this was “humility.” I love how it is expressed in Micah 6:8 “He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?” When we enter into the closet and open up our hearts to God, it is important to NEVER put conditions on our requests. God’s Love is unconditional, as should be our love always!

  8. An eye opener, a heart opener….humbly kneeling before God, being with God, being embraced by Him as his beloved child, listening for His pure thoughts, his sure directions, knowing Him as Abba, held in Love. Thank you, Evan.

  9. Thanks, Evan. The thoughts that came to me from reading this was that we must be like children—be pure, innocent, trusting, without guile. This week the 23rd Psalm hit me in this way—to put our hand in our Father’s and trust that He will take care of all our needs. What also came to me was the word “sincere.” A friend, many years ago, told me that the word came from the Latin (I believe) sin cere, which meant “without wax.” This referred to the sculptors who would sometimes take wax to fill in their mistakes. A sculpture that was free of wax—sin cere—was pure.

  10. Oh, how revealing to confused mortal thought. Humbly, quietly, in the “sanctuary of earnest longings” turn all over to God—deep humility, a listening ear, no thought of ego or material personality, no push to direct for an answer to self!!!! –what an eye opener for me for humble, consecrated prayer. THANK YOU, dear Evan.

  11. Thanks Evan, I have been praying and going to this place filled with God. I have had trouble remembering & or understanding bible verses etc & my testimony has been lagging. However, my sincerity of loving God and S&H is pure & honest. With humility I continue to go forth to express this goodness.

  12. Oh such helpful comments following a very timely (for me) from you, Evan,
    that in order to feel more of God’s omnipotence, all-power and presence,
    His loving care for His entire Universe of ideas, one must stop trying to run
    things. (You’ve already guessed how I know this doesn’t work.) And LET in
    Her light and Her love and goodness. The human mind is so busy trying to
    act just right, say the right words, etc., when what is mainly required is to
    “Be still and know…” as the Psalmist says…To wait patiently, to listen.
    These are, um, not my long-suits, but because God loves me, I am learning
    how…And learning that in my true being, this is what I DO!

    Particularly helpful just now, for me, as I am serving as Substitute First Reader
    tomorrow, with the privilege of reading this truly wonderful Lesson on “LOVE.”
    I really want to get self out out out of the way, and let Love read HER Lesson!

    So, thank you all for your help with this. I love you!


  13. Wow, great ideas. Someone once said, “Let go and let God.” Your words remind me of this. It sure feels good to drop the responsibility. Thanks, Evan and all.

  14. Thank you very much, dear Evan – yes, wow, great ideas, but jet so simple, pure and true!

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