Recently I was reminded of a picture that I'd created that tells a beautiful story. It's been used in past devotionals, but since our nation has recently celebrated the National Day of Prayer, I thought it would be timely to remind ourselves of this important truth: the power of the secret place of prayer.
The Grimm brothers recorded the tale of a princess who was locked in castle room and told to turn a pile of straw into gold. It was not something she could accomplish on her own, but a creature appears and helps her accomplish the task, and she does such a good job that the King asks for her hand in marriage. In the fairy tale, the imp who does the gold-spinning is an evil creature with malicious intent, but the Lord is offering to be our Helper with a different motive: I believe is calling His Bride into the secret place of prayer in order to entrust her with great treasure! It's in the secret place of prayer with Him that straw is turned to gold.
I feel like the Lord recognizes that our time is precious, since there are so many good things vying for our attention, and therefore our time is costly. Yet if we entrust Him with our time and invest it in the secret place, He will bring us things of even greater value. In comparison, the treasure He will entrust us with for investing our time with Him is like gold compared to straw. In that place of prayer, we can rest and receive His peace and grace for our daily lives.
“Where shall wisdom be found? And where is the place of understanding? ...the gold and crystal cannot equal it: the exchange of it shall not be for jewels or fine gold.” Job 28:12, 17
The Lord promises us wisdom when we ask Him, so I believe the place of wisdom is found in the secret place, where He takes the time we invest in prayer and brings treasure from it. Also from this place comes gold tried in the fire mentioned in Revelation 3:18:
I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich;
How do we buy gold? We purchase it with our time, investing it in the secret place of prayer and meeting with the Lord. It's here that our hearts become rich with the depth of His love, wisdom, and fellowship with the King of Kings. He literally takes our straw and spins it to gold!