Be sure to shut the door!
(Charles Orr, "How to Live a Holy Life")
"But you, when you pray, enter into your closet, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in secret." Matthew 6:6
It is as impossible to live and prosper spiritually without prayer — as it is to live and prosper physically without food. Those who enjoy a close walk with God and have power with Him — are those who pray. Natural abilities and intellect can never supply any lack in spirituality. Unless you are spiritual — you are of but little use to God; and to be spiritual — you must live much in prayer.
It is not those who are on their knees the oftenest or the longest — who do the most praying. Some may pray more real prayer in one hour — than others in two or three hours. Too many people leave the door open. Prayer that feeds the soul, must be offered with the door shut. "But you, when you pray, enter into your closet, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in secret."
God is in secret. He is hidden from the world. You can never reach God in your prayers — unless you shut out the world. Shutting the door means something more than closing the door of your literal closet. People may enter the literal closet and close the door — and yet have the world in their hearts and thoughts! Such have not closed the door, in the true sense.
Even in the public assembly you must enter your closet when you pray, and shut the door — or your prayers avail not with God. You must talk from your heart — to the heart of God.
There is a blessing in such praying; there is a joy that cannot be told. Such prayer feeds the soul upon the divine life, and lifts us into realms of holiness and happiness. Thank God for the sweet privilege of secret communion with Him.
O beloved, when you pray, enter into your closet — and be sure to shut the door!