I want to show up in my real identity regardless of what you are doing or saying.

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We are not in the business of surviving; we are in the business of thriving in life. For me personally, it doesn’t matter what people are doing or saying that is against me. It is utterly irrelevant because it’s not about them. It’s about who I choose to be in these circumstances. I want to show up in my real identity regardless of what you are doing or saying.

(from Pastoring People Prophetically)

Graham Cooke

People become converted because of the goodness of God.

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We are not sinners, calling down judgment! That is what a sinner mindset would think of. We are saints. calling down the goodness of God. People become converted because of the goodness of God. It’s the goodness and the kindness of God that lead us to repentance. So if the very act of repentance is dependent upon an act of goodness and kindness then we, as the saints of God, only have one question, “How much of the goodness of God does this person need in their life in order to be transformed?”

(from Mind Of A Saint)

Graham Cooke

It is the highest form of worship that exists!

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The whole point of lamentation is you don’t use your pain as an excuse not to worship; you actually take your pain and you bring it with you before the altar, and you stand there with your pain and you say, “Though all this is true, yet I will rejoice in You!” It is the highest form of worship that exists!

(from Seeing In The Spirit)

Graham Cooke

You can beat the enemy by being patient.

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You can beat the enemy by being patient. You can depress him with your joy. You can weary him with your rest, and your kindness, and your gentleness. You can totally dispirit him with the goodness of God because he has no access to any of that, and he doesn’t know how to fight it. He can’t fight against God; he is hopeless. The Holy Spirit never lost a fight yet!

(from The Art Of Thinking Brilliantly)

Graham Cooke

Making a way

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Wherever I am and in whatever I am doing God speaks to me. He is giving me examples about spiritual truths just like He did with His disciples when He talked fishing for men or the vinedresser pruning his vines or the property owner that paid workers to tend his land. God has given me a passion for creating access, paths around our property to access previously unaccessible areas in our yard. He has shown me that whatever concerns me, irritates or frustrates me it is my calling to change it, improve it, remove it. So, I have been neglecting my paths for quite a while and as a result they have lost their edge by dirt sliding down over time and have gotten overgrown by weeds and become almost impassable. So a couple days ago I got out the work gloves, shovel and shears and headed out to tackle the giants outback. It was then I decided another access was needed. A hill covered in weeds that was hard to get to. This caused me to put off cleaning up the existing trails but first things first. Create access! Now I wish I had taken a photo of all the befores but trust me, it was like John Muir discovering hidden treasure and making it easy for those to come after! It was heck pulling out the tightly rooted tall grass but the views after the climb were worth it all!

So what were the gems I heard–the keepers–God pressed into my heart as I chiseled out a path, uprooted tall grass and lopped off invading branches?

1. God is all about making a Way. Providing THE WAY to make it possible to reach Him. He is ALL about ACCESS. The Apostle Paul said he will use any and every means so that in all things he may save some. I have a deep longing for everyone to know Jesus. He is THE Way. He is my best friend. There is no hope to appease God’s justice apart from His sacrifice in our place. With Jesus I have complete access to the throne of God. I experience God’s approval, the tremendous assurance that He ALWAYS has my back!

2. There are things, weeds, rediculously huge branches that over grow and obstruct the path or access. These “things” can be wrong thinking about God, wrong thinking about what my purpose is in God’s big plans, habits and attitudes that get in the way of others seeing who God wants to be for other people and for me. And so I pray: Show me my wrong thinking and what I’m doing that might be turning people to take another direction and miss who You really are Jesus. Clear the way for a wide open road to You! I want none of me to get in the way of You. Jesus said “I only do what I see the Father doing…Thy will be done. They Kingdom come.”. That’s my passion too, Jesus! Have Your way. Clear the paths, lop off everything that crowds out or obscurs the way, Your way!

3. Just because it is small and pretty doesn’t mean we want to let it grow and take over. The little sprout of pine left unattended became a behemoth that took up the pathway and hid all sorts of dead needles and who knows what else. Habits, ways we interact with people, ways we do things just because they have always been done that way suffocate the breath and free movement of the Holy Spirit. When we depend on structure because it is familiar there is no dependence or need to hear from God. The Word of God is living and powerful and sharper than a two edged sword, piercing to the dividing assunder of soul and spirit and joint and marrow and is a discerner of the thoughts and intentions of the heart. God invites us into a life breathing encounter with His sword, the Word, that exposes the dead, the deeply rooted wrong thinking planted by our enemy , our culture and our fears that He may, with our permission, and surrender enable us to experience true freedom, true and unfettered access.

So here I am making a way!