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  • Mar6Fri

    The spiritual discipline of secrecy

    March 6, 2020

    Christians have long used the season of Lent as an opportunity to take additional and intentional time for confession, reflection and spiritually enhancing practices or habits.  Each week we are considering a habit, practice or discipline to incorporate into the coming week. (suggestions based on “Spiritual Disciplines Handbook: Practices That Transform Us” by Adele Ahlberg Calhoun). 

    The practice suggested for this second week is called “SECRECY” and is part of the theme of RELINQUISHING THE FALSE SELF.  The kind of secrecy that is meant here has nothing to do with dishonesty or trying cover up evil.  It is a secrecy that aims for humility.  It is a desire to be in tune with the spirit of Jesus in Matthew 6 in which Jesus discourages making a display or show of one’s piety, especially as it relates to good works. Do not give to the needy, says Jesus, and announce it with the sound of trumpets.  Practicing secrecy is doing a good deed without telling anyone that you have performed one including if possible, even the recipient.  Recently, I was greatly encouraged by being the recipient of a kind deed practiced in precisely this manner.  Additionally practicing secrecy involves keeping confidence well.  Practicing secrecy means then that you do not show what you know about what you have heard in confidence or from another in a moment of vulnerability.  Discuss this question with a friend: Is it difficult to practice the discipline simplicity?  What are the challenges?  -EGN