Behind Closed Doors

In April 1973, Charlie Rich momentarily scandalized the music world with the release of “Behind Closed Doors.”  The song was briefly banned from radio play by some stations though it went on to win Grammys for Song of the Year and Single of the Year with Rich receiving the award for Best Male Country Vocal Performance.  The song spent twenty weeks on the country charts and was a crossover hit, as well.  I’d say the controversial lyrics helped in all regards.  We need not allow our minds to run wild, however, in order to understand that some things are more appropriate in private settings and some for general consumption.  There may be many reasons for confidentiality though nothing is really and ultimately unknown. 

Some things are too personal to share.  There are a handful of experiences and conversations of mine which I have and will never divulge for no other reasons than that they strike too deep a chord in my life and are not communicable in the general sense.  In addition, people do not have to tell me to keep sensitive information in confidence.  I can tell by the nature of the revelation which things people would rather not have repeated.  It boggles my mind that people will irresponsibly broadcast sensitive matters when any degree of maturity would indicate they should know better.  There is a sense in which motivations do not matter as the wagging tongue sets on fire the course of nature bringing shame on all involved parties.

Use care in divulging thoughts and dreams.  Vito Corleone adjured his son, Santino, “Never let anyone outside the family know what you are thinking!”  Just everyone doesn’t need to know what’s inside your noodle.  Jesus warned us of the danger in quick and voluminous speech urging us to say yes or no and leave it alone.  All of us have let the cat out of the bag unmeaning because we couldn’t shut our yaps.  You have the right to remain silent and should use it since the things you say can and will be used against you in the court of public opinion.  Many of us have been set aside and even mocked for our inspirations shared in careless moments.  As children we sang, “Be careful little tongues what you say.”  O, be careful.

Do your good deeds confidentially.  Jesus taught us to eschew earthly praise for our kindnesses lest we lose out heavenly reward.  In fact, He instructed us to give in a liberal manner and not to so much as let our separate hands know what the other is doing.  There is great temptation to accept, if not seek, temporal attention for the slight graces we bestow, and this should never be the goal of a Christ-follower.  The best way to avoid such is to serve in secret.  In this manner, our contributions are known only to God and lay up treasures in heaven.  Some seek attention as a moth the flame and perform best and most in the viewfinder, but God is not slack concerning His promises.  He will remember unseen efforts and reward doers openly.

Finally, pray in private.  It is not the objective of prayer to be beautiful.  The goal of prayer is to be effective.  Our Lord warned us that hypocrites pray to be seen by others as pious and receive their reward in adulation.  Rather, Jesus said His followers should go to private places and pray to God in secret since the God Who sees in secret answers in observable manners.  As the aim of helps is to benefit others, the aim of intercession is to communicate with our Heavenly Father.  Each of these is best accomplished unseen as then our motivations are most pure.  Someone is aware of what goes on behind closed doors nothing being unnoticed by Him with Whom we have to do.  Shunning the limelight, believers strive to make Him proud.

Sterl

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