Climbing Jacob’s Ladder

Jacob's ladderBecause it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy.” 1 Peter 1 :16 (NKJV)

We are climbing Jacob’s ladder,
We are climbing Jacob’s ladder,
We are climbing Jacob’s ladder,
Soldiers of the cross.

Every round goes higher, higher,
Every round goes higher, higher,
Every round goes higher, higher,
Soldiers of the cross.

This Sunday school song runs through my head as I ponder God’s call to be holy. Do you ever feel like you’re on Jacob’s ladder?  In the Old Testament in Genesis 28:12, Jacob had a dream when fleeing from his brother Esau.  He saw a ladder going up to heaven, with angels going up and down and God at the top.  In our quest to fulfill God’s call to be holy, Jacob’s ladder is a good illustration.

When I first became a Christian, I assumed I was pretty close to the top of the ladder.  Jesus had washed away my sins and I was feeling good. But the longer I live and the more I read and study my Bible, I see how much I fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23).  It’s not that I’m sliding down the ladder, but that the ladder has become much taller, as I see what a mighty God we serve. Sometimes I feel farther from His holiness than I was when my Christian climb began.

Everyone is at a different place on her ladder.  Though we all should be moving away from coarse talk, immorality, etc. it might be at a different pace.  My friend Claire counsels girls who are incarcerated. Some have made poor choices, others come from rough family backgrounds.  For them it is a victory to step on the ladder, saying “yes” to Jesus’ salvation.  They might not be able to give up the swearing or boyfriends yet, but God will call them to that eventually.

God’s Word is so good at pointing  out where we are off on our Christian climb…

Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. Galatians 5:19-21 (NKJV)

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.  Romans 12:2 (NKJV)

Long ago our family gave up TV, movies and music that don’t glorify Jesus.  Yet there’s still so much in this world that can knock us off Jacob’s ladder. Just an advertisement on the internet could send a person on the wrong path.  Sometimes we slip down a rung or two, but Jesus picks us up and holds us, helping us to keep going.

Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down;
For the Lord upholds him with His hand.  Psalm 37:24 (NKJV)

And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” 2 Corinthians 12:9 (NKJV)

Instead of seeing each rung as something bad to put behind us, we can label each rung as a gift to attain — like the fruits of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience. long suffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control. Even more, may we always look up to God and help others up Jacob’s ladder.  If a friend slides down or topples off, we are to gently restore her (Galatians 6:1).  We should encourage each other to persevere on this upward climb, because one day in the twinkling of an eye, we will be whisked up to the top with God the Father, and hear Him say, “Well done.”

Today’s TEA CUPP:  Study the verses in this devotion, asking God to show you any areas of your life that need special attention.  Pray for Jesus to help you climb up to the next rung of the ladder.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23 (NKJV)

Just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love. Ephesians 1:4 (NKJV)

That you may approve the things that are excellent, that you may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ, being filled with the fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God. Philippians 1:10-11 (NKJV)

Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.  Philippians 3:13-14 (NKJV)

 New King James Version (NKJV)

The Holy Bible, New King James Version Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.

 

2 thoughts on “Climbing Jacob’s Ladder

  1. Dear Jennifer,
    Yor lovely webpage is such a blessing in my life. I am also a Tea girl and will be hosting my first Silver Tea for women at our church, Northland Christian Church located in Topeka, KS.
    May fill your tea cup be filled with His abundant love,
    Lisa Hansford

  2. Dear Lisa,
    Thank you so much for your kind note! I’d like to learn more about your Silver Tea for women. Hope it went well! God’s blessings, Jennifer Grace

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