He had a dream, and behold, a ladder was set on the earth with its top reaching to heaven; and behold, the angels of God were ascending and descending on it. And behold, the LORD stood above it and said, “I am the LORD, the God of your father Abraham and the God of Isaac; the land on which you lie, I will give it to you and to your descendants. Gen. 28:12,13

Jacob had his first divine visitation the night he left home. He was headed to his uncle’s house hundreds of miles away. He was all alone out in the wilderness, at least he thought he was all alone, until the angels showed up in his dreams. He had quite a night, he found himself at the very stairway into heaven. That’s the way it is with all of us, especially when we are going through rough waters, we think we are all alone, not realizing that we are right there at Jacob’s ladder. When Jacob woke up that morning, it hit him, “God is here with me, this is the very house of God” (he named the place Bethel which means house of God).
Have you been awakened from your state of sleep. Actually that is what happened to Jacob, while he was sleeping he was being awakened, awakened spiritually to a new awareness of spiritual reality. God was not only there with Him, but God had become his God. Jacob no longer had to go on the stories of his father Isaac or his grandfather Abraham, God was his God and He had a plan for Jacob.
Have you ever been suddenly surprised by the nearness of God? He comes in unexpected ways at very unexpected times. Sometimes you don’t even realize he was speaking until days later. Everyone remembers my wife Parris’s story of the faces in Bulgaria. God was speaking through the Bulgarian shepherd, the girls washing their clothes, the shining faces of the sunflowers, and the fragrant aroma of the Valley of the Roses. In 1994 he was speaking through the angels with watermelons, these were messengers preparing us for the days ahead. More recently He has been speaking to me from the faces in the crowd. I can’t forget the policeman’s cry for justice, the simplicity of the dancer, the urgency of the EMS worker, the cry for revival from “Evan”, the compassion of the newspaper man, and his cry for eternity. I remember looking at the faces in the tent at FTM last week as Courtney sang, “America the Beautiful” and saw the cry in their faces for an awakening in our country. Have you heard his voice lately? You know, like Jacob, maybe you are sleeping at the stairway to heaven, He is nearer than you think. If you wake up to His voice today, it’s time to follow Jacob’s example, pour out some oil and call upon the Lord.


  1. Your question about sleeping at the stairway to heaven made me think of Deut.4:29 where Moses is talking about seeking the Lord with all your heart and all your soul. Only then will you find Him. The message I am receiving is don’t be complacent. He will show up if you make a sincere effort.

  2. After reading “sleeping at the stairway to heaven”, I immediately thougth of Moses’ words in Deut 4:29 where he says the way to find God is to seek the Lord with all your heart and all your soul. You can’t hear from God if you’re complacent. But, if you seek Him diligently, he will show up!

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