While fleeing to Haran, Jacob rests one night. In a dream, Jacob sees angels ascending and descending a ladder. God comes to Jacob and repeats the same blessing given to Abraham and Isaac, and promises to protect and return him to Canaan. Jacob vows that God will be his God if God fulfills the promises.
In Genesis 28:12 we read, “And Jacob had a dream and in his dream there was a ladder standing on the ground and its top reached the heavens”. The Chofetz Chaim cited the idea expressed by many commentators that the ladder Jacob saw in his dream symbolizes the situation of every person in this world. There are two actions a person performs on a ladder. Either he goes up from the bottom to the top, or he goes down from the top to the bottom. Each day in a person’s life he faces new challenges. If he has the willpower and self-discipline to overcome those challenges, he goes up in his spiritual level. If, however, a person fails to exercise the necessary self-control, he lowers himself. This is our daily task, to climb higher each day.
There is no standing in one place. When challenges arise, you will either behave in an elevated manner and grow from the experience or you will fail. Learn to appreciate the daily challenges that face you. Every difficulty is a means of elevating yourself. Every time you overcome a negative impulse you grow as a person. When a person climbs a ladder, he feels his progress with each step. So too with your daily victories over your negative impulses – feel your progress and you will have the motivation to continue climbing.