Passing the Test

from Graham Cooke

Who has felt in their spirit they have passed a test? You know you have gone through a testing time and you have passed the test.

God is doing two things in this whole area of trust. He is teaching us how to hold on to him in every day situations. But God also has taught us how to stand firm despite the circumstances around us. You have learned to press in to him. But the second thing he's taught us is the importance of God trusting us. We are becoming people who God can trust. It's very important for us to go to a higher level, God must trust us.

Many people want to go to a higher level, but they have not learned to pay their dues. They don't persevere, they don't hang in.

When God wants you to go to a wider dimension, into a bigger anointing, he pushes and squeezes you through a very narrow opening. Imagine it this way: you are in one large room and there's no doorway no windows and the mostly way out of it is a tunnel... and you must crawl through it on your knees. It's humbling and it's frustrating. The only way you can get from one big space to even a bigger space is to get squeezed by God. And what he does this gets not the good stuff against squeezed out, it's the idiotic stuff. It's our pride, fears; it's our wanting a shortcut. Always wanting an easy road. We get all sorts of stupidity pressed out of us. We get pressed because we are in the wine press of God.

And then God pops you out into this big space. Then you don't know what to do with yourself. The squeezing is a test itself. Especially when you've gone from a high place in the spirit to no place in the spirit. You used to operate at a higher level and then it seemed like everything got taken away. And you got endlessly squeezed. Sometimes that's just how God prepares you for the real place wants to give you. So he gives you this place of ministry, which seems big to you but is small to him. Just when you're doing really well, it seems like the bottom falls out of your world, and you drop into this hole, and God squeezes you. And all this time he's been preparing you for a higher place. God is very particular about who he trusts. So there are lots of not-so-subtle tests that he gives you, to see if he can trust us.

The first thing is, that the Lord wants to thank you for persevering.... in passing that test. Some of you are standing here not really sure that you have passed the test. He knows what you're thinking. (Laughter)

If you're thinking that maybe you should not be standing, it is often a sure sign you should be standing. There is a grace on you guys. The Lord says thank you for enduring, for losing your reputation, and for some of you, thank you that you finally stopped bitching about it. Stop complaining about it.

Take a deep breath. Right now Lord just restore, restore our spirits, restore our soul, refresh our spirit. Renew our mind, in Jesus name. The Lord wants to say to you the time of testing has come to an end. Some of you have passed at 90%, some at 80%... the Lord isn't going to tell you what the passing grade is. You will recognize when the test comes around again and you'll pass. And you'll pass it quickly... it will just be a short test. The Lord is going to bring you into a wide, and broad, and spacious place. Add to that which you had... it will be returned to you, with interest, with stuff added. The Lord will restore the anointing, plus. Whatever you are moving in, what ever you are traveling in, plus. So expect things to open up for you, expect to be in this wide place, and it will be odd because you are so used to being restricted, it will be a bit weird for you.

When I got out of prison, I could not walk more than eight steps without running into a wall. It took me ages to get used to the fact that the doors behind me didn't automatically lock. You're going to be in this broad spacious place where opportunity will come to you, and opportunities for growth, opportunities for increase especially in your relationship with the Lord. That's the place you need to start. In your own devotional time, let the Holy Spirit broaden you out, so you're going to need to spend a little more time in your devotional experience where faith and trust will begin to grow. Touch your eyes so that we can see opportunities that come. Give us a spirit of wisdom and Revelation to see the opportunities, let us see the hand of God at work. And I just pray peace over you guys. We are just releasing things into your life.

It doesn't really matter now what's your feeling, that's not the evidence. You receive it in your spirit. Stand there in your will and receive it. Just say yes to the Lord. You have been so squeezed and in that place of pressure for so long you haven't felt the presence of the Lord in a while. It may feel the same as it always did, except it's different because now you have a word that this season is over and you are coming into a broad place. All those feelings will catch up with you. Some of you may be having an experience now where you feel the hand of God on you. Some of you feel nothing, but I promise you your feelings will catch up with you. You just need to trust. Some of you may need to take the trust test again. God is with you and God is for you. You're out of a confined place and in a place of release. Of new favor.

We proclaim release, we proclaim favor, we are coming into that broad place, that spacious place where you're going to connect with us... eyes to see and ears to hear. I pray Lord that you will begin to put things together in our life, that you will make connections for us in the spirit, and give us lots of tokens of your presence in these next few weeks. Things will start to happen to us that have not happened before, an increase of your presence, an increase of joy, an increase of favor, and that things will begin to happen outside of our ability to create. I pray for a spirit of exploration, that we will start to explore this wider place. Explore. Let's just wait here a moment.

When God opens up a bigger space for you, the first thing you're going to do is explore. You're not supposed to occupy. It's not about seeing something, taking hold of it and staying there, and unwrapping that whole thing so that you totally understand it... it's about you going out and exploring and when God shows you something, it's about putting your name on it and going out and exploring some more.

It's a little like the old land rushes... in the West. You go out to those new places and mark your claim... you stake your claim, carry on... and you keep on exploring until you feel like you put out enough claim stakes and then you go back and explore the territory you have claimed. So the first thing I want you to do is go explore this new territory. Explore this new land. It's a bit like the spies in Canaan, look at the fruit... look at what's available, look at what's out there. Keep a journal of this journey in the spirit... right now and the things that you feel God has given you and keep exploring for a few months, and gradually what will happen is that will slow down and in God may take you back to the beginning to the first thing that you saw.

Keep asking questions... and ask: what's the favor here on this area? Write that down.

Father we just pray blessing in the name of Jesus, we asked Lord for an anointing of your Holy Spirit just to rest... to rest on us. In the name of Jesus and give us rest, rest in our minds, rest in our hearts, rest in our souls. Rest as we explore. In Jesus name. Lord thank you that you're going to begin to open up this territory in the spirit... in the name of Jesus.

Graham Cook,
via Pacific Ministries, Oregon
October 2007