Then he [Jacob] had a dream, and behold, a ladder was set up on the earth, and its top reached to heaven; and there the angels of God were ascending and descending on it. Genesis 28:12
Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, "Surely the Lord is in this place, and I did not know it." And he was afraid and said, "How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven."
Jesus was that ladder. In John 1:51, he says, Most assuredly, I say to you, hereafter you shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man.
Lessons from the Gateway
I went to Maine the last week of July. It was great to be there on Capitol Island, surrounded by all that natural beauty. Capitol Island was one of Lee's favorite place in all the world. The veil between me and heaven was very thin all that week. Lee felt close, especially as I watched spectacular sunrises over the water and neighboring islands from the front porch and enjoyed his paintings hanging all around the cottage.
An excerpt from an email I sent to my Belgian friend Catherine last Monday
In one email you sent recently, you said, "life is learning -- always." So true! I have been in the classroom with the best teacher in the world since June 8. He is a teacher who really knows how to stop us in our tracks and get our undivided attention. He gives us the lesson -- then LOTS of opportunities to apply what we've learned. So where has this classroom been located? At the bottom of the driveway at Lilac Hill. I call it the gateway; it's where we enter and exit the place.
There has been a very clear progression to the lessons I've been receiving this summer. The Lord has been showing me some deeply rooted issues in my family -- some rather toxic mindsets I've carried my whole life, and their effect on those closest to me. Is anyone in this world without faulty patterns of thinking? Some can be so subtle and pervasive we think that's who we are! But the Lord says "NO" to that. He has given me some tools to dig out those pesky roots!!! Now it's my job to get digging!
Over the next few days I will be sharing these lessons from the gateway. Some of the topics coming to mind just now will be:
Abiding in the Vine
The Power of Forgiveness: Living in a Readiness to Forgive
Pruning: Submitting to the Process
Power Tools and How to Use Them