Keys To An Open Heaven

By: Donna J. Kazenske

I’m sure that many of us have had the awesome privilege of experiencing an “open heaven” at some point in our lives. Oh, what a joy it is to bask in the manifest presence of the living God. On the flip side of the coin, I’m sure that all of us have also experienced those dead, dry times, when it seems as if the Lord has gone to Hardee’s for chicken and biscuits! The heavens are closed, and our prayers seem to bounce right back to us just like a boomerang. Regardless of our spiritual condition, we must be diligent to keep our hunger level for God stirred up and healthy. When God’s people are hungry and thirsty for more of Him, He will always be faithful to respond to the cry of our hearts.

During the past few months, the Lord has been clearly showing me some very important lessons regarding the importance of 1) obedience and 2) persistent, persevering prayer. I believe these two vital aspects of our Christianity have the potential to not only change lives, but also to change cities and nations.

When God’s manifested glory and presence begin to be poured out from an open heaven, I’ll guarantee you there will always be some kind of reaction from those being touched by it. Everything that we have need of is found “in Him”. As believers begin to cry out in desperation for more of Jesus and His anointing, we will begin to see more clearly that His power has been made readily available to us. When we commit ourselves to seeking the Lord on a regular basis, and determine within ourselves to press in to the inner court of His presence with persistent, persevering prayer, something good is going to happen somewhere.

Isaiah 64:1-2 – “Oh, that You would rend the heavens! That You would come down! That the mountains might shake at Your presence as fire burns brushwood, as fire causes water to boil, to make Your name known to Your adversaries, that the nations may tremble at Your presence!”

The word “rend” in this Scripture means to “tear open”. Isaiah is crying out to God for an open heaven! “Oh, Lord, rend the heavens and come down! We need you!” Can you hear the cry of the prophet’s heart as he laments in prayer and petition to God? I long to see the day when the altars are once again filled with the cries of saints and sinners alike, petitioning the one true God of both heaven and earth, with tears of repentance and joy.

Acts 10:9-16 – “The next day, as they went on their journey and drew near the city, Peter went up on the housetop to pray, about the sixth hour. Then he became very hungry and wanted to eat; but while they made ready, he fell into a trance and saw heaven opened….”

What was Peter doing on the housetop? He was praying. The presence of God came upon him in such a mighty way, that he fell into a trance and saw heaven opened. Would it have been possible for him to have this experience without praying? I’m sure that all things are certainly possible with God, but we must understand that Peter had positioned himself to hear from the Lord. He could have been in a million different places, but he chose to go to the housetop to pray. As a result, the vision that he saw changed his whole life. How many times have we missed it because of our wrong choices?

The above Scripture also mentions that Peter was very hungry and wanted to eat. I fully understand that this Scripture was speaking about “physical hunger”, but I also believe that Peter was hungry spiritually, or he would not have been praying on the housetop in the first place. He was definitely in the right place at the right time, doing the right thing. Oh, how great are the lessons that we can learn from those who have gone on before us.

Luke 3:21 – When all the people were baptized, it came to pass that Jesus also was baptized; and while He prayed, the heaven was opened.

We see the heaven was opened once again when Jesus began to pray at His own baptism. Prayer seems to be a “key” that has the power and potential to open up the heavenly realm for God’s people. If prayer is a key, why don’t we use it more than we do? Have we lost our key, or possibly misplaced it somewhere? Or could it be that we just don’t have a full understanding of what prayer can do?

Deut. 28:1-2 – “Now it shall come to pass, if you diligently obey the voice of the Lord your God, to observe carefully all His commandments which I command you today, that the Lord your God will set you high above all nations of the earth, and all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, because you obey the voice of the Lord your God.”

Once again, we see the Lord strongly emphasizing the importance of obeying His commands. He uses the adjective diligently, which is characterized by persevering or painstaking effort. Most of the time, it’s going to take everything that we have within us to obey the voice of the Lord. He will not always ask us to do the “easy thing” for His kingdom. Sometimes, we will find it very difficult to obey, yet, deep inside, we will know exactly what we need to do. We must not reason things out with our minds, but we must listen and obey Him by the Spirit.

What will happen when we obey?

Deut. 28:12 – “The Lord will open to you His good treasure, the heavens, to give the rain to your land in its season, and to bless all the work of your hand.”

There are thousands of promises in God’s word that are available to each and every one of us, if we would just learn how to lay hold of them. However, thinking that we can just name it and claim it, and everything will be all right has deceived some of us. There’s more involved in this process than just speaking words that have not taken root in our hearts. His word must be made a reality to us. We must learn how to appropriate His word into our lives.

If we truly want to see the heavens opened over our homes, our churches, our schools and our nation, it’s going to take more effort than just saying a lifeless five-minute prayer in the morning before going to work. It’s going to take a genuine commitment on our part. The requirements are 1) obedience and 2) persistent, persevering prayer. Are we ready to start pressing in to what God has prepared for our lives? If so, let’s get to work and get at it!