Hardly anything is a secret anymore.
We may not physically, socially interact much anymore as a society, but we certainly know more about one another (than we ever really tried to know) than when we were more tangibly social.
I dare say, that whatever we do behind the cameras, the undocumented living we do, that's what counts.
I'm going to make three distinct points here and then you can decide if you agree...or not.
*(Disclaimer: If you are reading this, and you are not a Christ-follower/Christian, then you may not agree at all, and that's okay. I encourage you to keep reading anyway. And, as always, I'd love to hear from you)
"When you give to someone in need, don't do as the hypocrites do--blowing trumpets in the synagogues and streets to call attention to their acts of charity! I tell you the truth, they have received all the reward they will ever get.
But when you give to someone in need, don't let your left hand know what your right hand is doing."-Jesus, Matthew 6:2,3
Today, I think if Jesus spoke directly to us in person, He would say: "Don't share photos on social media and statuses about the charitable things you are doing in order to get comments and likes."
He even goes so far as to make it known that you shouldn't even let your left hand know about what your right hand is doing!! Now, clearly, that's just to emphasize just how secret He desires these charitable acts to remain. Jesus knows that our hands don't really care what the other does.
So, the next time you're tempted to share a photo of your family working at a soup kitchen, or serving others in a special way, stop yourself. It's not worth the superficial rewards you will get here, on earth. Don't live as those without the hope of Christ. They have no other reward waiting for them. That behavior should belong to unbelievers.
There have been countless times that I've done something charitable and I don't even dare share it with my husband. That's how serious I try to take this. I never want to miss out on what God has waiting for me in Heaven. The trade off isn't worth it. No thumbs up on Facebook could ever compare to the reward He's stashed away with my name on it.
"But when you pray, go away by yourself, shut the door behind you, and pray to your Father in private. Then your Father, who sees everything, will reward you." -Jesus, Matthew 6:6
I'm noticing a trend here...how about you?
Found just three verses down from the first verses I mentioned, is this guy. Another act God highly suggests we do in secret.
But why so secretive, Jesus?! Why does it matter?!
Think of it this way: we're pretty easily distracted, aren't we?!! It's hard to have a conversation with someone when they're texting someone on their phone or looking up some random Google whatever. Then, if we aren't distracted by a device, our minds wander. We think about what we'll say next once the other person shuts up, we think about what we want to eat for supper, how many days until vacation starts, etc., etc.
God says "go to a quiet, secret place and talk to me there."
But, say you're a mom. No place is quiet and secret around your home. They always, always find you.
This. Is. A. Problem.
All I can say is, send them outside with a box of crackers and some bubbles and do what you can.
Or, get up early....I know, sleep-deprived mama's hate this suggestion...but spend 10 minutes in the secret and the quiet and just talk to God. Give Him your undivided attention. That's the point here. Nurture this relationship, secretly, privately, intimately, above all.
When No One Is Watching
"For all that is secret will eventually be brought into the open, and everything that is concealed will be brought to light and made known to all." -Jesus, Luke 8:17
This one. It's a bit scary.
I'm not sure I want y'all to know all the stuff I do when no one is watching.
The way I yell at my kids. The way I think about myself before others. The times I snap at my husband and make sure he knows he should be one inch tall and I can squash him like a bug. The way I use my time unwisely or lie to a friend. The way I manipulate and correlate things to go my way.
But what we do in secret, it matters a ton. It's where our character resides. You may think, "ugh, if anyone ever opened my character closet, they would be pummeled with the things I've thrown and stuffed in there."
That's why Christ made such a point to emphasize that when no one is around, He still sees. He's there. Christ-follower or no, He sees what we do. If that sounds a bit horror movie/creepy to you, well, it should. Because Christ is perfect. And while He's perfectly loving, He is also, perfectly holy. We don't even come close to being that. Ever.
So He is THE Standard for right living because He was and still is perfect by all accounts.
If Facebook took a 30 minute video of you in your own home, with you unaware, and automatically posted it without your permission, what would the world see?!
There is no edit button on our lives. Yea, unfortunately, right? Some of us need more than an edit button!
What we do, it's already done. And what we will do, well, that's where we have the power to change.
So, while you may have been putting more emphasis on the life you lead in public places, you can make a plan to change. The photos you share of your "true lives", the words you express in order to receive the likes and the comments, those have little weight, if any, compared to the lives we lead when no one, but He, is watching.
Your secret life matters. It matters more than you ever imagined.
For He has prepared a place for those who love Him. And we have all the hope we ever could hope for in the palm of our hands. Share the hope, but do it in secret.