There is a solution to every challenge that faces us. Over the years I have observed that there is usually a spiritual analogy to a physical challenge. Such is the case with the challenge that I faced last week. Here was my dilemma: How am I going to climb my stairs after foot surgery when I may not put any weight on the foot? The answer to my dilemma was the installation of a stair lift. It allows me to sit in a chair that rides on a rail to the top of the stairs.
As I was riding up the stairs after Friday's surgery I recalled a book written by Wade Taylor called The Secret of the Stairs. He writes about the ways in which a Believer is able to draw closer to the Lord through ascending the "spiritual stairs." We read in the book of Song of Solomon how God calls us to "rise up and come away with Him." Before my surgery the Lord reminded me that He made me with the feet of a deer. "The Sovereign Lord is my strength; He makes my feet like the feet of a deer. He enables me to go on the heights." (Habakkuk 3:19) Like all of us, I was made to ascend the stairway to heaven and to live with the Lord.
Psalm 139:13-16 tells us that God made us fearfully and wonderfully and that all of the days ordained for us have been written in God's book. Every one of us has a God-ordained destiny and has been given gifts in order for us to reach our destination. The Lord longs for intimate fellowship with us and wants us to have a similar longing for Him. The spiritual gifts He has placed within us are meant to help us ascend the stairs that bring us face to face with our Lord. He is our Bridegroom and we are His Bride.
During our lifetime we will have many opportunities to climb the stairs that take us closer to the Lord. Salvation is our first step in the journey of faith and sanctification. Then a unique set of life circumstances will be placed before us that are meant to take us up into the heavenly realm. We must ask the Lord to draw us up into a more intimate place with Him and cooperate with His prescribed way to climb the stairs. Our focus must be solely on Him, for He is the one who will lead us up step by step and help to prepare us to be His pure and spotless bride.
Our life on earth is meant to fit us for heaven. Here is what Wade Taylor says about our journey: "The height to which we have attained will be determined by the cumulative result of our choices, decisions and attitudes toward the things of God here in this life...It is here in this life, as we continue our ascent up the stairs, and are faithful in our times of testing, that our being 'called' by the Lord will be changed into being 'chosen' by Him to become His Bride."
As we fellowship with the Lord, there will be an awakening of our desire for Him and a revelation of the deeper things of the Spirit. Wade Taylor explains that "There are two levels of experience--or identification with the Lord...Through our devotion and submission to the Son, we experientially relate to Him as a Bride...Through our overcoming obedience and cooperation with the Son, we are raised up into a place of identification with Him as a son (or daughter)...Progressive, step upon step dealings are arranged by the Lord to produce within us that level of spiritual maturity and integrity which will enable us to become both compatible with, and productive in, our being seated with Him in His Throne--as a Bride, and as a son (or daughter)."
The Lord makes known the way to ascend the stairs that lead into His chambers where we can have intimate communion with Him. This requires us to have a single eye for Him. Wade Taylor concludes His book with this admonition: "Let us respond to His knocking upon the door of our heart, and begin the upward ascent on the stairs, one step at a time, until we stand before Him in our Bridal garments, awaiting our marriage to Him. That will be a glorious day!"
Joan E. Mathias