“Watch out! Don’t do your good deeds publicly, to be admired by others, for you will lose the reward from your Father in heaven…Give your gifts in private, and your Father, who sees everything, will reward you” (Matthew 6:1, 4, NLT).
When we practice the spiritual disciplines of giving, praying, and fasting we are cultivating a quality of life that helps us develop an authentic relationship with God.
Jesus’ disciples who are growing spiritually through the regular practice of the spiritual disciplines have to be especially careful not to show-off or flaunt their spirituality. So, Jesus recommended these practices be undertaken in secret so that only God knows that you are giving, praying, or fasting.
Jesus warned you to practice them privately so that your desire to have the approval of others does not impede your spiritual growth and development.
When we serve God without the approbation of people, then it is a genuine fellowship with God. And fellowship with God without pretense allows the Holy Spirit to work God’s perfecting process in us.
Through him you…are also being made part of this dwelling where God lives by His Spirit. (Ephesians 2:22, NLT)