If then you were raised with Christ, seek what is above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Think of what is above, not of what is on earth. (Colossians 3:1-2)
One of the great promises that the panorama illustrates is that God has made it possible for each of us to enter into his presence every day. Through his Son, Jesus, heaven has come down to earth, and through his Holy Spirit, we have been raised up to be with him in heaven. The following outline is one suggestion of how we can experience the blessings of heaven in our prayer.
As you experiment with this way of prayer, try to separate yourself from your everyday activities for a period of time and slow down your racing mind. Approach the throne of God with an open, expectant heart. Above all, believe in God, trust in him, and try not to let anything limit his movement in your heart.
“I saw the Lord seated on a high and lofty throne, with the train of his garment filling the temple. Seraphim were stationed above; each of them had six wings: with two they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they hovered. One cried out to the other:
“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts!
All the earth is filled with his glory!” (Isaiah 6:1-4)
Picture your heavenly Father. Imagine him seated on his throne (Isaiah 6:1-6: Revelation 4:5; Job 42:1-6). See him in the beauty of his holiness and perfection. Let your mind dwell on how Isaiah, John, and Job must have felt when they were lifted into this heavenly realm. Think about the impact it had on their lives. When their eyes of faith were opened, they were forever changed.
After this I had a vision of an open door to heaven… and [a] throne was there in heaven, and on the throne sat one whose appearance sparkled like jasper and carnelian. Around the throne was a halo as brilliant as an emerald. Surrounding the throne I saw twenty-four other thrones on which twenty-four elders] sat, dressed in white garments and with gold crowns on their heads. From the throne came flashes of lightning, rumblings, and peals of thunder. Seven flaming torches burned in front of the throne, which are the seven spirits of God. In front of the throne was something that resembled a sea of glass like crystal.
In the center and around the throne, there were four living creatures covered with eyes in front and in back. The first creature resembled a lion, the second was like a calf, the third had a face like that of a human being, and the fourth looked like an eagle in flight. The four living creatures, each of them with six wings were covered with eyes inside and out. Day and night they do not stop exclaiming:
“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God almighty,
who was, and who is, and who is to come.”
Whenever the living creatures give glory and honor and thanks to the one who sits on the throne, who lives forever and ever, the twenty-four elders fall down before the one who sits on the throne and worship him, who lives forever and ever. They throw down their crowns before the throne, exclaiming:
“Worthy are you, Lord our God,
to receive glory and honor and power,
for you created all things;
because of your will they came to be and were created.” (Revelation 4:1-11)
Now, imagine the elders, the saints and the myriads of angels all worshipping God and praising Jesus, the Lamb of God. Picture their gleaming white robes. How did these robes get so bright? By washing themselves in Jesus’ blood. Feel the sense of victory and triumph emanating from the celestial choir as they sing the praises of the Father and Jesus.
Look at Jesus.
Then I saw standing in the midst of the throne and the four living creatures and the elders a Lamb that seemed to have been slain. He had seven horns and seven eyes; these are the [seven] spirits of God sent out into the whole world. (Revelation 5:6)
Picture Jesus, the Lamb of God, still bearing the marks of his crucifixion. Imagine the look of authority and love, of mercy and justice in his eyes. Consider why Jesus was the only one able to open the scroll that contained God’s plans and purposes for his creation. Put yourself in that scene, praising God with all the heavenly chorus in one uninterrupted voice. There are no distractions; there is no confusion, no sin.
Imagining heaven in this way can touch our spirits and lift up our hearts. It can help us see Jesus as the victor over sin and death and as the pattern for our lives. We begin to experience the joy of knowing that we are an integral part of God’s plan to renew all things, and we begin to long for Jesus to come again and bring with him the new heaven and new earth.