THIS IS THE MOST BRILLIANT TEACHING I HAVE EVER HEARD IN MY WHOLE LIFE!
These are my notes from Graham Cooke’s talk with the Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry students in in Redding, CA. I had randomly stumbled upon the archived message on Bethel’s website last week and I’ve been turning the message over and over in my head for a good week now with fresh perspective, new vision, and abundant HOPE for the upgrades that God is wanting to give me NOW through this season and situation.
TO READ THIS YOU WILL NEED: a sweet moment of welcoming the Holy Spirit to come and have his way, two cups of coffee, a quiet and comfortable place to sit and let your mind reflect on every phrase that carries a rich measure of truth and faith with it, and an open, hungry, yielded, believing, EXPECTANT heart.
TO THE ONE WHO PERSEVERES AND READS THIS WITH EXPECTATION, HE WILL HARVEST (find, have, yield, KEEP) THE REWARD.
Do yourself a favor and open your heart.
The truth in this message has literally transformed my heart and my relationship with God.
That the Lamb would receive the FULLNESS of his reward in the learning, growing, glory-to-glory transformation of your heart towards him.
Amen & Amen.
EVERYTHING IS ABOUT GROWING IN YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD
Understanding the upgrades available to you & your starting place to enter into that upgrade:
We’re not asking for the presence of God, we’re ENJOYING it. Stop asking for things that God has already done. If you’re gonna look for the presence of God look for the presence of God that’s actually inside you right now and learn the JOYFUL discipline of living from the inside to the outside and not the other way around.
Any situation that you’re facing right now. Most of the time we go through situations and what we’re looking for with issues in our life is we’re looking for them to be RESOLVED. All of our attention is on THE ISSUE BEING RESOLVED.
That’s not God’s intent. The issue WILL be resolved but the resolution is a consequence (an effect) of something else happening. No matter what is going on in our life and circumstance, what God is doing first of all is wanting you to know that EVERY SINGLE THING IS RELATIONAL.
Everything in your life is about relationship with God. There is not anything in your life that is not about your relationship with God. Every single thing that God does and that God allows is ALL about RELATIONSHIP.
For us, when something adverse happens in our life, we come to God because we want resolution. We miss the point because that’s not his PRIME thing. God allows in his wisdom what he could easily prevent by his power.
Warriors do not pray for rescue. Warriors are people who are INTENT on PROSPERING from something not just merely avoiding it.
It used to be said, “if you’re going through hell, move quickly”. That may have been true pre-Christ, but it’s irrelevant now that Jesus has come because he’s the only man who went into hell and came out with more. He PROSPERED in hell. He’s the model of how we go through this life, whether life is good, bad, or ugly.
Your starting place guarantees your outcome.
Your starting place is “Christ, in you, the hope of glory”
Your starting place is “he always leads us in triumph”
Why would you want to start off (addressing your circumstances and learning from them) with a thought about defeat?
Your starting place determines your outcome, so why would you want to start from a negative place?
I’m not fighting AGAINST anything in my life, I’m fighting FOR something in my life, and I’m fighting FROM something.
I want to start with Jesus.
If everything is relational then my first question is, “What is it that you want to be for me now that you couldn’t be for me at any other time?”
“What is the UPGRADE (in this situation) in my relationship with you?”
That is his prime agenda.
Everything in life carries an upgrade with it. All of your circumstances carry an upgrade with it. The key for you is not to get your issue resolved, it’s for you to come into ALIGNMENT with who God wants to be for you now. As you come in, as you let that relational thing with God be the prime focus (of growth and learning). How else are you going to get rid of your fears?
If all you’re trying to do is manage your fears, somehow get through them, when actually God ALLOWS situations that BRING UP your fears because he wants to REPLACE them.
You need to know, if you’ve got any fear in your life, then the key issue on God’s agenda is that you KNOW some more perfect LOVE. Perfect love casts out all fear. Any fears that come up, it’s not a matter of being afraid, it’s a matter of becoming the beloved.
When God allows something in your life that causes that fear to rise up, it’s his way of saying, “Time for more love. Time for you to be loved in this place so that you lose that.”
We’re all dealing with our stuff. With God, you deal with your stuff the way that he wants it dealt with, not the way you would like it dealt with. He deals with it by bringing it to the surface and then he wants to exchange it for something else.
We aren’t REALLY dealing with stuff, we’re getting rid of it. We’re not having our stuff counseled – I am not PASTORING my negativity, I’m getting rid of it as fast as I can! I want something ELSE. I don’t want to list to a talk that’s “14 ways to manage your insecurity” I want to KILL my insecurities stone dead.
Everything in your life is always about upgrade. You’re meant to be filling the shoes of Jesus. That’s a lot of upgrades! The whole goal of the Holy Spirit is to make us like Jesus. We need a lot of upgrades to get us anywhere near where God wants us to be.
You don’t think that God looks at you and he hasn’t planned a whole series of upgrades? There are unclaimed upgrades everywhere and they’re unclaimed because our starting place is always wrong. We start from the wrong place, we start from a place of NEED rather than from a place of PROVISION. We start from a place of LACK rather than a place of FULLNESS.
There are upgrades. What if every single situation in your life was about you receiving an upgrade? What if it isn’t about anything else? What if that’s ALL that it’s about? That in this situation, whether it’s good, bad, or ugly, its about you becoming Christ-like.
What does that mean? It means you lose a part of yourself you don’t like anyways and take on a part of him that you love!
Now that you’re in the Kingdom, now that you’re in Christ, now that he’s in you, every single thing in your life is about an upgrade. It’s about receiving something from God, it’s about becoming something in Christ that you never were before this situation happened.
REJOICING is BRILLIANT weapon.
Choose your weapon and come out fighting.
You have to know your starting place.
There is nothing happening to me on that day (of great difficulty) that could possibly prove that Jesus isn’t Lord.
So my starting place is, “you are with me, you are for me.”
Confess all of the things you know to be TRUE.
Just because this is happening doesn’t mean anything untoward my relationship with God.
At the very, very, very, very, very, very, LEAST that’s going to happen is he’s going to make it turn out for GOOD. That’s the LEAST that can happen. It’s not the BEST that can happen. That’s your default position. You’re reaching for something MORE than that.
When you’re under threat from the enemy, it’s GOOD to threaten him back.
GOD WANTS TO UPGRADE US TO LIVE AT HIGH PLACES:
At high altitude everything changes. The way you move, the way you see, the way you percieve, the way you think, the way you respond. High altitude demands a complete change in how we live, move, and have our being. How you started this Christian life is not how you’re supposed to finish it. It’s supposed to radically change you from the person that was born in the natural to a person that really is compatible with their supernatural birth.
We aren’t trying to live a life of having Christ added on to who we naturally are. We’re born again by the Spirit. We need to learn that we are ACTUALLY a different person. How we approach life in all of it’s variety is dependent upon our starting place in terms of who God is for me and who I am called to be in him.
The life you’re going to live has to be in line with your calling and in line with who God wants to be for you in reference to your calling and the vision that’s on your life.
At high altitudes you think like a child and you move like one. When you’re 15,000 – 16,000 ft. up on a mountain you don’t take big strides, you take small steps. The life in the spirit, the equivilant of that means that we don’t see our lives as a series of big issues, we see it as a series of small ones.
There are no BIG changes that God wants to make, they’re a whole series of small adjustments. If you miss the small thing, you won’t do the big thing. Life in the spirit is about doing the simple things WELL. It’s about doing the small things consistently.
The higher you go, the more baby steps you take and so one of the lessons of living at high altitudes is you need to generate for yourself, a child-like simplicity about how you approach life. Your default position is a much-loved child.
Always remember, you only have to be the CHILD to defeat the enemy.
When push comes to shove and the enemy comes against you, you default to your default position in JESUS not your default position in the natural. My default position is I am a much-loved child and I can beat the enemy with a wooden SPOON.
You need to determine your default position. This is the place I’m never going to fall back from. This is the lowest I’m going to fall, right here, and when I hit that place, I’m going to bounce back.
You must learn to walk at a pace that you can sustain. Take small steps, often. At high altitude you have to do everything for yourself. Mountaineers will tell you with a team that is climbing Mount Everest that everyone on the team must be self-sufficient. You can’t go up there expecting that the team is going to carry you. In the spirit it’s about your own sensitivity to God.
SENSITIVITY to God means that you include him in EVERYTHING.
Seek me and keep on seeking and you’ll always find me. You LOOK for him at every opportunity, in every situation, because everything is relational. No one can do that for you. It has to be YOUR walk, your worship, your faith, and your relationship with the Holy Spirit.
Anything you get from people is a BONUS. I’m expecting to get stuff for MYSELF from the Lord. I’m not talking about being independent here, I’m talking about being dependent on the Lord. If he uses another human, bonus, but he doesn’t have to. I’m self-sufficient in terms of wanting to understand who Christ is for me and looking to pursue that in every opportunity I get.
At high altitudes people can’t handle complex issues. A rarefied atmosphere means that your brains don’t work in the same way on the mountain as they do in the valley. So mountaineers will tell you they never take complex books on a big climb, they only take light reading because their brain can’t handle it. Spiritually, sometimes it means if you’re going through a season of difficulty, I would recommend reading the Gospels, the Psalms, or the book of Acts. Keep it simple, read what Jesus wrote.
There’s a place for Paul in our thinking, but when your back’s to the wall, it’s not about Paul, it’s about Jesus. It’s about discovering who he is, what he said. He has precedence. For me it’s about memorizing the sayings of Jesus. It’s about studying Jesus afresh. How simple his gospel was to him: I only do what the Father’s doing, I only say what the Father’s saying. That’s simplicity.
When your life is under threat go to a simple place, go to a child-like place, keep it simple, do the simple things really well and maintain your own consistency in the small things and breakthroughs will come.
Jesus went up into a mountain to pray because he knows that a mountain is about commmunion and it’s about initmacy. So here’s Jesus stealing private moments to be with his father.
Life in the high place is about child-like simplicity, it’s about sensitivity to God. At the high place your emotions are always in a state of flux. You can be in a state of peace one minute and panicking the next. Your whole emotions are tilting. You have to bring yourself to peace. You can’t live at high altitude without peace; without rest.
Every negative in your life has already been targeted by God for an upgrade. That’s your starting place. So what do you want to do? Do you want to focus on the negative and try to work your way through it? Or do you just want to focus on the upgrade and forget the other stuff?
The starting place guarantees your outcome.
Your starting place is: You ARE the beloved already. You don’t need to do anything to become the beloved, you already are. God loves you, he chose you, it’s not about your performance, it’s about your permission to be there. You have permission to be in Christ. That means you have permission to become WONDERFUL. If you’re in Christ and he’s in you and one of his names is Wonderful, then what does that make you?
You can’t say, “Well everything about Jesus is wonderful, everything about me is rubbish.” It’s not true. He’s in you, you’re in him, if he’s wonderful then you have to be wonderful too. Can we forget all this religious nonsense? This whole thing of putting ourselves down in order to glorify Jesus? That’s not glorifying Jesus. If you put yourself down, he won’t accept, because he doesn’t like it, it’s just religious nonsense that he died to set you FREE of. That’s FALSE humility.
Real humility is knowing what you’re like without Jesus but knowing what you’re like WITH him.
You’re chosen, you’re invited. You have to allow God to CHERISH you in your insecurity. You live your life as the beloved because of what HE did. You get your inheritance when somebody else dies. You’re in your inheritance right now because somebody died. Babies are learning to get their needs met, real sons and daughters are actually moving into their inheritance. There comes a point where God doesn’t want to just meet your needs anymore, he wants to give you a chunk of your destiny and say “spend THAT”.
When you start to have an understanding that you are chosen by God and you are the beloved, he will make sure that all your insecurities and inadequecies start to rise up in you so he can deal with them.
You’re in Christ, learning to be Christ-like. When the Father looks at you, he doesn’t see anything wrong with you. He only sees what’s missing in your current experience of Christ and he is so COMMITTED to giving that to you. So when the Holy Spirit puts his finger on a part of your life that’s not working, the Father and Jesus are standing there rubbing their hands together with glee, pointing to the site of your next miracle.
The Holy Spirit only puts his finger on a part of your life SO THAT he can give you an upgrade there. Everything in your life is about an upgrade.
When the Holy Spirit brings that conviction he is showing you that you have an upgrade coming in that area. The enemy wants to turn that conviction into a condemnation that makes you feel ashamed of yourself (his hopes that you’ll never enter into your next upgrade). God is not ashamed of us. He’s saying, “if I put my finger on something that’s not working, I want you to smile and nod in my direction because you know that you know that you know I have a GIFT for you in that area.”
Do you see the GRACE and the JOY that God gives us in our learning and growing?
He’s not worried we won’t make it. He’s not separating himself from us until we “get it”. He’s excited, he’s moving, we’re willing and this is GOOD.
We’re learning to be CHERISHED in the areas of our own LACK, in our own need, in our own insubstantiality. Holy Spirit loves to make war on the flesh. The Holy Spirit gets excited when the Lord puts his finger on a part of your life that’s not working because he loves to deal with that thing next. He’s got a GIFT for you in that area. Everything is relational. Everything is about you discovering who you REALLY are. That means on your nightmare-of-a-day, God can make it brilliant and amazing.
To you as an individual ADVERSITY is just another word for UPGRADE.
DIFFICULTY is just another word for BLESSING.
WARFARE is just another word for FAVOR.
There’s only one Lord in your life and he’s come to teach you what it means to be IN Christ IN THAT MOMENT.
Holy Spirit always targets what’s not of Jesus for upgrade. He’s teaching us how to turn our WEAKNESS into a JOYFUL VULNERABILITY to the GOODNESS of GOD.
If you’re going to be vulnerable in your life, be vulnerable to the goodness of God.
WEAPONS OF FRUIT:
Emotions at a high level are unstable and so what happens is, as you’re being reconsituted in Christ, he’s going to deal with the emotional part of you as well. He’s going to teach you how to develop a LOVE, a PEACE, and a JOY that transcends everything that comes against you.
At a high place if your emotions are unstable, you’re going to get somebody killed. Love, Joy, and Peace, produce a lifestyle of well-being, calm, and strength so that you learn to do everything out of that.
The fruit of the spirit is a more powerful weapon against the enemy than the gifts. You can DEFEAT the enemy with your JOY. You can make him DEPRESSED by your PEACE. You can totally discourage him by the LOVE that you live in. Why? Because when you live in those places of strength, he cannot touch you, but you can so touch him.
He can’t inhabit the world that God has made available to you. He fell out of that world, he can’t inhabit it anymore. His whole deal right now is to make you like him – out of the life God has for us – which is depressed, fearful, angry, resentful, bitter, hateful, and so on.
So the antidote to all of that is by learning to LIVE in the love, joy, and peace of God. When it’s your turn, learn PATIENCE. You’ll defeat the enemy with patience. The reason you need patience is so that you can stop being an idiot and learn how to be brilliant. The reason you need patience because at some point it’s going to be a weapon in your hand that will defeat the enemy. He’s always about a quick kill. If you live in patience (endurance, perseverance), he doesn’t have the patience to fight you, he only has impatience. If you’re patient, you’re going to kick some butt.
It’s so important that we learn JOY as a way of life. Joy is the abiding atmosphere of heaven. Joy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting. In the presence of the Lord there is fullness of JOY forevermore. Joy is the atmosphere of heaven. Joy is who God is. Rejoicing is our response to who God is. If you’re clever, you won’t just rejoice over what God is doing, you’ll rejoice because of who he is.
When I’m rejoicing I’m rejoicing in the fact that he’s the HAPPIEST person I know. He’s HAPPY in all of my situations. I want to find out what that looks like for me. If Christ is in me and I’m in him and God is joyful always, I want to be joyful. I want to find that place of joy because my starting place guarantees my outcome.
Joy has to become instinctive and intuitive. First thing you do, REJOICE. Before we start praying or whining you REJOICE in WHO God is; in TRUTH.
LET FEAR GIVE WAY TO FREEDOM TO ENTER INTO YOUR UPGRADE:
The high place will always bring you into conflict with the prince of the power of the air. The devil lives in the atmosphere. As warriors we make a difference to the atmosphere of where we are. I can walk into a room and I can change the atmosphere of that room just by being there. I expect to do it. I live in an atmosphere, I expect to create one. We are a walking environmental health program. We change the environment. I can create peace in the room full of uncertainity just by being there. It’s part of what God wants to give us, that we make a difference to an environment and we actually create one by the depths of who we are and who we are in Jesus. We’re learning to create a new environment and change the atmosphere.
Jesus said the prince of the wold has come and he’s got nothing on me. Jesus carried an environment where all kinds of possibilities were available. You choose the environment that you live in. Our environment has GOT to be associated with possibility. All things are possible to those that believe. It’s easy to believe if you’re focused on Jesus, it’s impossible to believe if you’re focused on your self.
Faith is easy because faith works by LOVE. If you want to be a person of high faith you need to learn to live in the Love of God. Faith works by Love. Everything is a starting place towards an outcome. I am the beloved therefore it’s not difficult to believe. I am totally loved therefore I can believe ALL things are possible. Jesus said, “Only BELIEVE”.
If you’re struggling with FAITH (and consequently fear) get yourself into a place of LOVE.
The enemy is attracted to the place that you have not put right. Opposition attaches to what you don’t remove. That’s why it’s so important when the Holy Spirit puts his finger on something that’s not working you immediately exchange it for an upgrade, because if you don’t exchange it for an upgrade you’re setting yourself up later for some opposition to attach itself to that very area.
Opposition attaches to what you don’t remove. That’s the reason Holy Spirit puts his finger on something that’s not working because you’re supposed to pick up your gift; your upgrade. Then when you attach the upgrade to that area and you become different the enemy loses more power over you because you are no longer in agreement with him in that. We’re learning how to stay in the embrace of God and out of the clutches of the enemy.
A high place can be a hostile environment to a lack of trust and negativity. You pay a price to be on a high place and the price is you have to lose all the things you don’t like about yourself. You’d be amazed at how many people hang on to stuff; they resist the grace of God.
I remember listening to a guy giving a testimony and the whole testimony was “well you know God was really talking to be about this area and for months…and I FINALLY gave in” and everyones clapping and I’m thinking “Lord, am I the only one sitting here thinking this guy is a plank? Why didn’t you give in two months ago? THAT would’ve been a testimony! You resisted the grace of God for two months, you pelican!”
You say to somebody, “So how’s it going?” and they say, “The Lord’s really changing me. I’m in the winepress of God.” Well you’re in the winepress of God because you’re an idiot! You’re in the winepress of God because this is the place of last resort. You get to a place where he squeezes you in your circumstances to place where you say “Uncle”. Say “Uncle” straight-away! You don’t NEED to go to the woodshed, you don’t need a Hebrews 12 experience unless you’re really dumb! God disciplines those he loves! But he would prefer NOT TO!
It’s like “okay, if you want a visit to the woodshed, I’ll accommodate you”. If you want to learn to live a disciplined life, all discipline is rooted in DELIGHT. Here’s the one thing every person on the face of the earth is afflicted by the same thing we all will do exactly what we want to do. All of our life, good, bad, or ugly is rooted in desire or delight. That’s why Jesus is called the desire of the nations.
All discipline is rooted in delight. If you develop the desire and delight for something, the discipline will come. Any dicipline you want to generate in your life, you’ve got to root it in delight first. Don’t ask the Lord for the discipline, ask the Lord for the PASSION; the JOY as the motivation!
Everything God wants to do in your life is to give you confidence. You have to become acclimated to confident living. We know who we are, we know who he is for us, and we’re living in a place of favor and really enjoying it.
Isaiah 61 – you cannot have favor without vengance. Favor from God, vengence on the enemy. He has to regret the day he ever messed with you. So God takes all the things where you’ve been a victim and he turns that around so completely that he gives you a ministry in the very area where you were a victim. That’s revenge!
You need to pay attention to your history. What are the things where the enemy has held you down? What are the areas of your life where you’ve been victimized, threatened, abused, whatever? You’ve got an automatic ministry in those areas. When God sets you free he gives you the POWER to set somebody else free.
THE ART OF THINKING BRILLIANTLY:
In the world you think with your brain, in the Kingdom you think with your heart. Ephesians 1: 17 and 18 talks about the eyes of our heart being enlightened so that we prove what the will of God is an so on and so forth. We learn how to put our mind under our spirit. God never spoke to your head in the first place. He speaks to your heart. There’s no 18″ drop where things make their way from your head to your heart. God speaks to your heart, faith gets hold of it, and then it rises up and comes into your way of thinking and it changes everything about you.
We are governed by what comes out of our heart. You can’t recieve revelation in your mind because your mind can only process information; logic, reason, rationale. The only time God reasons with you is when you’ve sinned. He says, “Come now lets reason together, though your sins are a red as scarlet they will be white as snow.” The rest of the time he looks at you and says, “Trust in me with all your heart and don’t lean on your own understanding”.
In other words, the place for thinking is in your heart and your heart is always a place of affection before God. The starting place guarantees your outcome. You recieve revelation in your spirit and you come to acknowledge it in your thinking. It changes the way you think. What you receive in your spirit, you need to DECLARE; confess it back to God, declare it to people around you, proclaim it to the enemy. When it comes out of your mouth your brain will adjust to the SPOKEN WORD. You need to speak out revelation.
You are renewed in the spirit of your mind. Your mind comes under that spirit and we are transformed in our thinking. You need a new mindset. If all of your thinking has brought you to place you don’t like, have another thought. Think again. That’s what repentance is. Think again.
If your current thinking right now is not supporting the lifestyle that God wants for you, its time to get a different thought. A different thought will lead to a different action.
A high place has to get into your blood when you’re up at 16,000 ft. it gets into your blood. Living with God in a high place is a matter of blood. Blood got you there and blood will keep you there. You need to acclimate. You need to adjust your whole system to that high place.
The way that I choose to live must originate in how God sees me. What’s my best time of the day? What’s my most creative time of the day? That’s the time that I really want to give to the Lord whenever possible. What’s your favorite time of the day? Everyone has a rhythm of how you were made. You need to connect with the rhythm.
Some of you live a life that is more systematic than rhythmic. We all have school or jobs or responsibilities that seem to clash with that creative time, but you have to find a way that enables you to live in the rhythm that God set for you. You are fearfully and wonderfully made. Find out what your rhythm is. Don’t burn a candle from both ends, because at the end you won’t have a candle to burn.
WE ALREADY LEARNED TO TRUST GOD, NOW WE’RE LEARNING THAT HE TRUSTS US:
You have to accept a certain level of hardship in order to fulfill the dream of being with God. Some of the hardship is going to be conflict from the enemy. You’re destined to live your life on the battleground between two kingdoms. Figure out where you want to be and figure out who you want to be standing next to. Choose your companions.
The hardship is mostly in the acclimation process; developing the internal capability in relationship with the Holy Spirit. It’s true that dreams are received in comfort but nearly always birthed in adversity. Sometimes the degree of difficulty is directly linked to the new level of comfort that you need to receive from the Holy Spirit.
If you don’t experience the Holy Spirit as Comforter, not only are you missing out on something huge, but you won’t be able to rise to the level that God has set for you in times of warfare, you’ll be the one that runs and you won’t persevere to breakthrough into an anointing. You pay a price to be in the anointing; you pay a price to be trusted by the Lord.
Two things the Lord is doing with you right now: First of all, he’s teaching you how to trust him. We’re all learning to trust the Lord right now. He’s looking at every single one of us to determine how he can trust us. What can he trust in us right now? He will make certain parts of your journey into the anointing difficult. He won’t open doors when you think they should be open, you’ll have to serve a little bit longer in the lower place. What’s he doing? He’s just testing you out. Are you really passionate about “this thing”? Will you really press into it? Will you really keep praying about it or will you just give up and “make the best life possible in Egypt” (instead of pressing onto the Promised Land)?
In the end that’s always the choice; people on the way from Egypt to Cannan, some chose to go back and chose to make the best life possible in Egypt. God is trusting you. He wants to trust you with high things, with big things, but he’ll test you. He’ll test your resolve, he’ll test your hunger, he’ll test your passion. He wants to see how much you want it. He wants to see if he can really commit this thing to you or not.
Will you wait? Will you be faithful?
We’re learning faithfulness. Faithfulness to the vision. God doesn’t measure faithfulness by our success. He measures faithfulness by our PATIENCE to PERSEVERE.
There are authorized adversities and there are unauthorized ones. The unauthorized adversities caused by the enemy and it’s to teach you authority. You learn how to say NO and fight it. You learn how to take authority in the name of Jesus. Then there are authorized adversities that are primarily concerned with our relationship with the Holy Spirit as our comforter. And we have to learn obedience by the things that we suffer.
Here’s the thing about suffering: the Bible talks about long-suffering with JOY. Joy is always a part of every single situation. So when God leads you into a place where you’re learning some long-suffering, you’re not just learning long-suffering, you’re learning patience, you’re learning perseverance, you’re learning faithfulness, and you’re learning it HAPPILY!
Do you ever wonder why there’s never been a conference on patience? You can’t teach patience in a weekend but you can LEARN it through experience. Everything is relational.
THE UPGRADE IS FOUND TAKING A TEST YOU’LL NEVER FAIL:
The things about us is that we are so result-oriented. We just want things resolved, we don’t want to become different. Ever heard people say, “Well, I’ll be happy when this is over”? So you’re denying yourself happiness now? “I’ll be glad when this is over, won’t you?” Actually I want to be glad NOW. What are you doing? You’re postponing something relational. You’re putting it off until this issue gets sorted out. What if you could be happy now? What if your happiness NOW is part of the resolution of this thing? What if God is teaching you JOY?
God doesn’t fail us at anything, he just gives us the opportunity to re-test. You don’t fail anything with God, you get to take the test again and again and again and again until you pass. How many of us have the same tests in so many different situations?
When we see ourselves from a flesh perspective, we have no worth. When we see ourselves from the truth of God in Christ, the truth of that sets us free. We’re learning to see ourselves and other people in the Spirit. When we see who we really are in Christ, we discover the nature and the beauty of God and we are undone by the love of God for us. You don’t become a new person by changing your behavior, you discover the person you already are in Christ and you behave accordingly. What if in God’s eyes, you are already the person that you always dreamed you would be? If that’s your starting place, the outcome is that’s actually present as a reality in your life.
We fight FROM victory, not towards it. We’re not trying to get anywhere with God, WE’RE ALREADY THERE. What we’re learning is how to ABIDE in the place that he put us.
Right now this moment, Jesus is standing before the throne making intercession for you. What’s your question going to be? WHAT IS HE PRAYING? You want to know, right? At the same point that Jesus is standing before the throne, the Holy Spirit is here on earth and he’s making groanings of intercession for you. Now what’s your question going to be? WHAT IS HE PRAYING?
What if prayer is a three-fold chord? You’ve got prayer going on in stereo, Jesus is speaking in English (or whatever your language is), Holy Spirit is praying in tongues (language of the spirit which is also your language), and so what if you are the third part of a three-fold chord of prayer? What if prayer is not about praying TO God, it’s about praying WITH God?
Kind of puts a whole different spin on prayer…The ART of praying WITH God and therefore the art of getting your prayers answered.
THE UPGRADE OF EXPANDING YOUR SPHERE OF INFLUENCE:
It’s a great life that you have. It’s a great life that you’ve been given. It’s time to live it in a great way. You’re here because you’re calling to live at high altitudes. You’re called to live from a high place. You’re called to see things that are far off from above. You’re called to be strong and do exploits in who Jesus is for you. While you’re here you’re learning the art of being great. You can’t be in Christ and not be great. That’s like the biggest oxymoron that exists. You can’t live in Christ and not be great; that’s illegal behavior. You’re called to GREATNESS. What you do every day is about being great. Greatness really is doing the simple things well. Taking care of the small things around your life. Not pursuing the big things to where you forget the small things, it’s always the little foxes that spoil the vineyard. It’s about doing the small things to a point of excellence. If you’re faithful in the small things, God will give you much. He’ll increase the size and the scope for what he’s got for you.
God made the world. He put Adam and Even in a small part of it. A garden, a small sphere of influence. From that little place, he wanted to expand their rule in greater and greater measure. We’re in a small sphere of influence and you need to be faithful in that sphere. Whatever it is, whether it’s in your job, your church, your neighborhood, etc. You need be faithful with the people that you DO have around your life in your small sphere of influence. Then God will expand it and increase it because you’re learning not only how to trust the Lord, you’re learning how to be trusted by him.
The high place exposes your frailties but it also exposes the true nature of who you are in Christ. Here’s the thing about physical high places. If you’re at 20,000 ft and you get a cut, it doesn’t heal. If you’re on base camp 3 on Mt. Everest and you get a cut, you can’t go to the summit. Only unwounded people can go up there.
Only unwounded people can go there…
You don’t have a RIGHT to be wounded, you have a right to be HEALED. Can you just get healed? If you were really sensible and brilliant, you would forgive everybody everything so that you could get on with your life! You can’t live on a high place if you’re easily offended, if you’re easily wounded. If you’re easily wounded it proves that it’s not time yet for you to go there. You can’t make the summit, the last stage of Everest, if you have cuts because going higher with a cut means it won’t get healed as you go, it’ll get worse and it will effect the whole party.
You take care of your own woundedness, your own greiving, your own bitterness, your own resentment, your own hurts, your own offenses. Don’t speak about them to somebody else, it’s none of their business. You deal with it before the Lord yourself. You don’t have a right to be wounded, you have a right to be healed and you have a right to live in a place where LOVE doesn’t recognize when others have done you wrong. If you’re reporting an offense made against you by somebody else, you’re the one that isn’t being perfected in love and maybe that was the whole issue. Maybe the Lord is showing you how much you need to grow up in the love of God. Love doesn’t recognize when others does it wrong. 1 Corinthians 13. Read it.
HE REALLY DOES SAY YES & AMEN FOR EVERYTHING TO YOU:
The whole point of living on a high place is that you actually, tangibly partner with the God of favor. God comes to you in a dream and says, “Ask what I shall give you”. Jesus said, “If you abide in me and we abide in you, you can ask for WHATEVER YOU WANT and IT WILL BE DONE for you”. The whole point of a high place is that you come away from all of the distractions and you learn to live a life, even in the business of the world, you learn to live a life from WITHIN. You aren’t distracted by things but you’re living in PARTNERSHIP with the adgenda that God has for your life and in THAT PLACE you will discover FAVOR as a tangible reality.
God has things to give you! For some people when they leave this earth and go to heaven, the one thing that God may have against them is that “I had ALL THIS to give you and you only received “THIS”. There was so much I wanted you to have. There was so much I wanted to push through you to other people. I wanted to resource this and this and this but you never got to a place in your life where I could give you your inheritance, you were always crying out for your needs to be met.” Babies get their needs me. Getting your needs met is the “baby” end of living life in the Spirit. Coming into your inheritance is the real issue. Anyone can get their needs met, God is not reluctant to bless you, but he wants you to grow up so he can give you your inheritance. You don’t want to stand before him one day and hear him say, “I had all this to give you and you only let me give you this”. That would be a source of grief to the Holy Spirit.
People think that it’s only sin that grieves the Holy Spirit. It’s UNBELIEF that grieves the Holy Spirit. Sin has been dealt with once and for all. Dealt with in Christ. He’s not grieved by that. He’s not grieved by what you’re not. He’s grieved by what you refuse to BELIEVE. Holy Spirit has things to give you! It’s important, not just for you, it’s important for all of the people around you that you’ll connect with that you come into those things he has for you.
The Father wants to look you all in the eye, smile at you, and say, “You need to ask me for something.” On your journey, right here, right now, you need to ask the Lord for something in connection to your relationship with him. “What is it you want to be for me now that you couldn’t be for me at any other time?” What is it that you need from the Lord right now for your relationship with God? Some need PEACE to relearn how to live in peace. Some need a greater sense of being the BELOVED.
What is the next installment of being Christ-like that belongs to you right now? What is the next upgrade? What is that you want God to be for you right now? What are you learning right now? What are you tasked with overcoming right now in yourself? Some are learning to stop being anxious. Some are learning about not being offended. What are you struggling with right now? Whatever you’re struggling right now in your relationship with God, that’s the things that he probably wants to give you, that’s the upgrade that you’re supposed to have.
There is a YES & AMEN and the Lord wants to say that. You need to identify something so he can just say that! He’s going to establish this thing as a reality of your life and you will be a part of the process, part of the PARTNERSHIP that enables him to do that.
When you understand what God wants to give you, understand that he has a PASSION to give it to you. All your circumstances over the next few weeks will prove that you have it. You don’t get it as a reward at the end of something. You get it as a STARTING PLACE and you prove that you have it. So if you’re going out believing God wants to teach you JOY then you’ve got to PROVE that you have it in every situation. That’s going to be fun!
The Father put us into a place in Jesus; into a place where we ALWAYS have APPROVAL, into a place where he can now ALWAYS say YES & AMEN to us.
We have to go into places KNOWING that we already have the YES & AMEN from God and our choosing to OPERATE in it, from that perspective is what will establish the very thing our hearts long for.
The Lord says YES & AMEN and he says ENJOY EVERY SITUATION. Because every situation now that you’ve identified what you want the Lord to say YES to is about you having an ENCOUNTER WITH GOD IN THE VERY THING YOU’VE ASKED FOR.
Your life will be UPGRADED in JESUS.