Is Private or Public Worship Better for Spiritual Growth?

The Power of Private Preparation

The Bible is clear that a private, personal relationship with the Lord is an important part of your spiritual life (Matthew 6:6). “The secret place of thunder” (Psalm 81:7) is a stunning image of the hidden place where you shut out the world, close into the Lord, and let Him open the eyes of your heart, mind, and soul. That is a physical and a spiritual location, where distractions are intentionally and purposefully set aside to minister to the Lord in worship; where you make a point to let the Lord know that you are there for Him. 

This spiritual connection with the Spirit of God is a weapon of warfare and a way maker (Psalm 50:23)—and it attracts the Father who is seeking such worshippers (John 4:23)—but it is also the most spiritually attacked point of connection with God. 

Why? Because Satan knows the real power of praise even better than the people of God.

Think about it: If having a private life of spiritual preparation, prayer, and maintaining a vital, living connection with the Spirit of God in worship were the only thing it would take to win every single battle you’d ever face in your whole life, ever, you’d do it, right? You’d build your whole life around it. Everyone would. 

The problem? We don’t fully grasp the power of praise, but Satan does. “If only you knew what would bring you peace!” Jesus cried out over Jerusalem (Luke 19:42). 

Meanwhile, Satan makes sure you’re too busy, too overwhelmed, too angry, too guilt-ridden, too depressed, too self-conscious, too doubtful, and too busy fighting off feelings of unworthiness or sin to construct your natural life around your spiritual one. Instead, we do it the other way around—our private, spiritual connection with the Lord is stuffed into the cracks of whatever our natural life can accommodate. 

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