Worship F.I.T. for the King (continued)

Edited CrownMerry Christmas!

I wanted to continue my thoughts from last month on “Worship F.I.T. for the King”.  As we discussed last month, the “F” dealt with Frequency.  Both the how frequent we gather to worship (individually or corporately) as well as the Frequency in the sound waves of the heavens.  This month, I want to deal with the “I”.

We all know the songs that touch our individual hearts.  We love it when we hear the intro to that tune because we know what follows.  And with that audible cue, a certain level of anticipation begins to rise up within us.  That is something God placed within us, and that best describes the power of song.  But if we are not careful, we can easily become offended when the worship leader quits singing “Our Song”.  This is the common fallacy when the “I” in worship is about you and me.

As I continued my prayerful contemplation on the “I” in worship, my thoughts then shifted to the word Interactive.  Interactive, by definition, references a two-way system of communication.  It is mutually or reciprocally active.  If we think in terms of electronic communication, it is a method of communication in which the program’s outputs depend on the user’s inputs, and the user’s inputs in turn affect the program outputs.  Many years ago, I learned this acronym G.I.G.O.  It simply stood for Garbage In, Garbage Out.  Of course, the Bible is filled with this understanding.  Be not deceived, God is not mocked.  For whatsoever a man sows, that also shall he reap.  If he sows to the things of the flesh, He shall of the flesh reap corruption.  If he sows to the things of God, he shall reap life everlasting.  Of course, the same is true with our worship.  If we never engage in worship, we can never expect to receive anything through worship.  In order to receive the fullness of what God has provided for us in our worship experience, we must ascend the hill of the Lord with clean hands and a pure heart.  We have been granted access to that Throne Zone dimension of God’s worship, but we must actively pursue His presence and avail ourselves of every opportunity to come into that Throne Zone dimension.

I realized that Interactive still stemmed from the “What’s in it for me” syndrome.  If I do this, then God will do this for me.  And although both of the above thoughts are true and occur in our worship experience, there is one more “I” in worship that holds the key to Worship F.I.T. for the King.  That word is Intentional.

We must begin with the understanding that when Christ died on the cross, the Veil that safeguarded the Holy of Holies was torn in two.  We know that because the shed blood of Jesus Christ, he became the mediator for us and through His blood, we can boldly approach God’s Throne.  That means that Christ’s blood was shed for all mankind, not exclusively you and me or the denomination or fellowship that we are connected to.  His blood was shed for whosoever that believeth on Him.

We must also realize that every time Jesus showed up in a situation, the status quo changed.  When He walked into a room, blind eyes were opened, deaf ears began to hear, the lame walked, the dumb talked and those tormented by evil spirits were set free.  Everything happens when Jesus walks into the room.  So the problems in our church will not be solved by our great musical skills, nor our great pulpit oratory, and not even by our cutting edge ministries that we proudly exhibit to attract all newcomers.  The problems represented within our congregations will be transformed when He shows up in our sanctuary.

To that end, we must be intentional in our worship experience not to showcase our talent, but rather be intent on invoking the presence of the Lord to enter the house!  We must do whatever necessary to make sure that He shows up in our services.

How do we do that?

First, we must remind ourselves the instructions of King David.  If we are to enter into the Hill of the Lord (aka The Throne Zone)- we must have clean hands and a pure heart.  That requires a lifestyle of holiness and sanctification.  We really don’t hear a lot of that being taught these days.  We hear more of grace.  And please do not misunderstand me it was the shed blood of Jesus that provided grace to us while we were yet sinners.  Because of that grace, I can come to Jesus just as I am.  However, that doesn’t give me a free pass to live my life contrary to the will of God and still have access to the Holy of Holies.

God is not looking for perfect Christians, just Christians who are being perfected
in His Presence.

Secondly, we must realize scripture says that we enter His gates with thanksgiving and into His courts with praise.  Scripture throughout Revelation tells us the song of Heaven.  We know that there is worship being sung around His Throne 24/7 as the angels cry “Worthy, Holy, Who is and was and is to come”.  Therefore, we must acknowledge the fact that our praise and worship is the access portal to that Throne Zone dimension.

CLEAN HANDS, PURE HEART, THANKSGIVING & PRAISE

I believe that as we approach His throne in this manner, we in fact join the host of Heaven in jubilant praise.  As we join with the song of Heaven, there comes a moment when Heaven and Earth connect as we are singing on earth the song being sung in Heaven.  Think about it this way.  Jesus prayed, Father let Your Kingdom Come on Earth as it is in Heaven.  Following that train of thought, it only makes sense that Jesus could easily say, Father let Your Song be Sung on Earth, even as it is being Sung around your Throne in Heaven.  After all, singing is merely sustained speaking or prayer.

It is at this point in worship that there is a shift in our atmosphere.  I believe it is this point where Heaven invades Earth through our simple portal of worship.  And when that takes places, God’s glory begins breaking out in the area where our worship is being released.

Think about it.  When we effectively engage the congregation in worship, all hearts are in one accord.  All thoughts & words expressed are the same lyrics.  That means the conversation is corporately expressed as one voice.  Isn’t this what happened in the Upper Room as recorded in the book of Acts?  They were in one place, in one accord when Suddenly there came a sound from Heaven as a Mighty Rushing Wind and it filled all who were sitting in that room.  Hallelujah!

This must be the focus of our worship:  Heaven must invade the Earth releasing His Glory!  We must be Intentional with our worship, no longer to sing to men, or settle for singing about God.  We must begin to sing directly to God, engaging the entire congregation so that God’s glory be released because He has showed up in the midst of our worship.

For me, as a worship

leader, my goal is not to sing the latest, greatest, hottest worship number being played on the radio.  I realize (and am intentional) on creating an atmosphere conducive to allowing people the freedom to join me in a song familiar being sung directly to God, and having that song sung in the fullness of all harmonic beauty sung with great passion to the presence of God, knowing that Heaven will meet earth and God’s glory will be released as He enters the room.  I choose to be Intentional in my worship experience.

By partnering with this ministry with your prayers and financial support, you are helping us to help people experience the Glory of the Lord- many for the first time in their lives.  As a result, we are witnessing individual lives being changed as they discover the manifest presence of God in their lives.  Additionally, as this Glory Spout continues to pour in many of these congregations, we watch the Glory transform many congregations.  You are making the difference in many people’s lives.  The seeds you are faithfully sowing into this ministry each month are affecting change and releasing the Glory.

Please don’t stop praying.  Don’t stop giving.  You must know you are impacting lives of many and helping their lives to be transformed because God is showing up in their homes, their offices, their churches and even their regions.

We will continue to Dig the Wells of Worship, allowing the worshipers opportunity to come drink, find refreshing, and watch as God sends them back to their congregations to infect them with a fresh passion for His Presence.

Let us be INTENTIONAL in our worship!

Merry Christmas!

Worship F.I.T. for the King

On November 6th, you and I will have a wonderful opportunity to go to the polls and cast our vote for our next President of the United States and other elected officials.  I would highly encourage you to make time in your schedule to go to the polls and vote.  Whether it be cold, rainy, or somewhat inconvenient, it is important that we as Christians elect officials and leadership who will embrace the Godly values we embrace to ensure that we remain “One Nation Under GOD”.  We must remember that it is not a political party that guarantees success of a nation.  Proverbs 14:34 states that “Righteousness exalteth a nation:  but sin is a reproach to any people.”

 

Of course, we in America can often be confused in our approach to God because America is a Democracy.  Our President and other officials are elected by the people, for the representation of the people, to ensure that people’s rights and liberties are protected.  However, this is not the paradigm in which the Kingdom of Heaven operates.

 

The Kingdom of Heaven is a Kingdom, not a Democracy.  It is imperative that we realize there are key components in a Kingdom which are opposite to a Democracy.  This is perhaps the fundamental concept we must understand as we concentrate our focus on worship…more specifically worshiping F.I.T. for our King of Kings.

 

To begin with, let’s recap some important Kingdom Principles we must always keep before us to ensure we maintain proper balance and focus in our worship. (Kingdom Principles- Myles Munroe ©2006 Destiny Image)

  • The Central component of a Kingdom is the King
  • The King is Never Voted into nor out of Power
  • A King’s authority is by birthright
  • A King personally owns everything in His Domain
  • The Constitution of the Kingdom is the documented will, intent, desires, and purposes of the King for the citizens of His Kingdom.
  • Citizenship in a Kingdom is not a right but a privilege, and it is at the pleasure of the King himself.  Citizens are chosen by the King and are beneficiaries of the King’s pleasure and promises.
  • Royal Privileges of the Kingdom are the benefits the King affords his citizens.  They serve as a security for being in good standing with the King.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Matthew 6:33-34a says, “But seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.  Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow.”

 

Philippians 4:19 says, “And my God will meet all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus.”

 

If we, being citizens of the Kingdom of Heaven through the shed blood of Jesus Christ, expect to live under the blessings & provisions of the King, we must begin with the assumption that we are to ascribe to our King the worship that is rightfully due Him.  We must understand what our King likes, and what He doesn’t like, ensuring that we live in the favor and good pleasure of the King.

 

Frequency is defined as the number of times an event occurs within a given period.  For example, “What is the frequency of Full Moons which occur within one year’s time?” And to that end, I would pose the question, what is the frequency of your worship?  How many times do you stop in any given week to worship?  Do you worship only on Sunday morning, or perhaps at home fellowship?  Sadly, many professing Christians turn their thoughts to worshiping God only on Sunday.

 

According to The Barna Research Group, “Many adults find that having a truly worshipful experience is not something they can turn on and turn off at will.  Without giving themselves time to clear their minds and hearts of their daily distractions and other problems, many people attend a worship event but never enter a worshipful frame of mind.  A large share of churchgoers do not pray, meditate, confess or focus on God prior to the start of a church worship event.  One consequence is that they find it difficult to connect with Him spiritually.  Having never been taught much about worship, they find the inability to interact with God on a deeper level frustrating, but don’t know what to do about it.” (www.Barna.org- “Worship Tops the List of Important Church-Based Experiences”)

 

Let me pose a second theory:

 

Radio Stations operate on various radio frequencies.  You have AM and FM stations, each with a varying frequency which sets them apart.  To find different music styles or radio formats, one simply needs to dial into a new frequency by scanning the available frequencies being broadcast.  The fact remains that thousands of stations are broadcasting, but you must tune your radio into their frequency setting to receive their broadcast.

 

The same is true when it comes to worship that the King likes.  The sound is being broadcasted 24/7/365 from the Throne Zone.  The task lies with us to dial into that frequency so we can hear the sound of Heaven and then release it upon the earth or into our environment.  Let me explain.

 

During the summer, a bunch of youth gather at the river, get on their friend’s boat and go out for a fun day on the water.  While on the water, they turn their radio into a station that broadcasts “fun-time” music and what do they do?  They crank up the volume.  Why?  Because they know the louder the music, the more infectious the fun they will seemingly have.  The same is true if you go to a dance or a party.  The music there is broadcasting “fun-time” music that helps to create the atmosphere of “Fun”.

 

As Christians, and Citizens in the Kingdom of Heaven, there is a frequency that is operating in the heavens broadcasting worship FIT for the King.  The lyric base has nothing to do with me or my perceived entitlements.  It is all about HIM, the King.

 

The lyric base was penned from John the beloved who was caught into the 3rd Heaven where he stood before the Throne of God.  He entered into the Throne Zone and penned the lyrics that transpired in that dimension.

 

  • Revelation 4:8-  “Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God Almighty, Who was and is and is to come!”
  • Revelation 4:11- “You are worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power; for You created all things, and by Your will they exist and were created.”
  • Revelation 5:9- “You are worthy to take the scroll, and to open its seals; for You were slain, and have redeemed us to God by Your blood out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation, and have made us kings and priests to our God:  And we shall reign on the earth.”
  • Revelation 5:11- “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom, and strength and honor and glory and blessing!”
  • Revelation 5:13- “Blessing and honor and glory and power be to Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb, forever and ever!”
  • Revelation 7:12- “Amen!  Blessing and glory and wisdom, Thanksgiving and honor and power and might, be to our God forever and ever, Amen.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

As a worship leader, I realize that I must use current songs to help gather the people.  However, it is my responsibility to realize the lyric base of heaven, and then engage the congregation into joining with the heavenly host singing worship around the throne.

 

Well, it looks as if I will have to finish the “I” and the “T” portion of this partner letter next month.  I have so much to share with you on this thought, and I can’t pack it all into this one letter.

 

So, I leave you with this thought in closing:  Let us worship frequently throughout the week (in our home, car, office, bedroom, prayer closet, etc) and not use a lyric base of entitlement, but rather readjusting our sound waves to the frequency of Heaven- releasing the song of Heaven upon the Earth- declaring His majesty, His glory and His “worth-ship.”

 

Worship F.I.T. for the King!

 

Winter is Past, and Your Springtime Has Come!

I believe that Spring has finally arrived!  The flowers are in bloom, the trees have began growing their leaves, and pollen doth abound.  It seems as if I cannot keep our car clean no matter what I do.  I ran it through the carwash the other day, and before I got home it was covered in a yellow dust.  Unfortunately, our van is black.  It looks awesome when it is clean, but this time of year it looks more like a yellow-jacket.  But we are very thankful that our winter is past, and the spring time has come.  Along with the new sprouts and blooms, God has brought new opportunities to me and Michele and this ministry.

Last month, I had the wonderful privilege of traveling Roanoke, VA and ministering to leaders from all across the state of Virginia at the Church of God “Equippers Conference”.  I was given four 1-Hour sessions to teach on the subject of praise and worship, and what a glorious time we had.  I received the evaluations from each of our students and was able to read what God did for them in the classes.  There were words like, “Transformation”, “Forever Changed”, “I will never view worship the same way again”.  There were so many additional comments that indicated how God used four hours to radically change those who attended.  Praise the Lord!

For Michele, March brought about some amazing opportunities for her.  Last month, she was crowned the new Mrs. Virginia United States of America.  She will go on to represent the state of Virginia at the Mrs. United States of America pageant being held in Savannah, GA July 22-28, 2012.  Already, God has given her some amazing opportunities to minister to women, and has been invited to share at a women’s conference the end of this month in Richmond, VA as Mrs. Virginia.  This will be the first of many stops for her on this journey as she continues to share the love of God with many of these women who have only been concerned with how they look.  And already, many women who are reading her blog and Facebook updates are responding to the challenges that Michele is sending out.  Hallelujah!

Perhaps one of the most life changing opportunities presented itself two weeks before Throne Zone and was made official the week following Throne Zone.  We were contacted by the owners of Titanic- the museum attraction in Branson, MO and Pigeon Forge, TN- regarding their upcoming 100th Year Memorial Tribute to the Titanic.  The Titanic sank April 14, 1912 at 11:40pm, and now- 100 years later- the Titanic Attractions will host a Memorial Tribute to honor those passengers aboard its maiden voyage.  More specifically, they wanted to hire Christian Producers to organize and execute this musical tribute.  I have been contracted out as the Music Producer/Director, and Michele will serve as the Producer of the entire program which will take place on April 14th

They gave us complete liberty to pull together and organize this memorial tribute, and gave us certain elements that they wanted to incorporate into the program.  Their main concern, they wanted a good flow for this memorial tribute.  And, of course, flow is what we know how to do in this ministry.

It has been A LOT of work, but it has been very fun.  We have been working with Pastors, Priests, Rabbis, Choirs, Soloists, Bagpipers, Pyrotechnic Directors, and the media.  As a matter of fact, you may have already seen the Titanic on the front page of USA Today, as well as their special edition insert with exclusive coverage on the Titanic.  We will have National Geographic TV, The History Channel, Canadian TV, and all the major US networks covering this Memorial Tribute.  Additionally, there will be International TV Correspondents, as well as USA Today and NY Times. 

Now you may be asking how does that fit into the vision and scope of ministry for His Call?  Well, let me share.

They have allowed us the opportunity to pull together the music for this event, as well as all of their participants.  Therefore, we have created a “flow” for the program that will present the salvation message in a unique format which will follow the historical documentation of testimonies and events from the passengers aboard the Titanic that fateful night.

One such story comes from the Rev. John Harper.  Rev. Harper was scheduled to go to Chicago to preach at Chicago’s Moody Memorial Church.  He was to have sailed on the Lusitania to preach, but felt directed by the Lord to change his travel to the Titanic.  An English man had a bad feeling about his traveling on the Titanic, and therefore offered to pay Rev. Harper’s total passage aboard another ship.  However, Rev. Harper felt compelled to travel on the Titanic. 

In the book, “The Titanic’s Last Hero”, the account of Rev. Harper’s last convert is document.  I would love to share an excerpt from that book (p.9)

During those final fifty minutes, George Henry Cavell, who was clinging to a board drifted near John Harper.  Harper, who was struggling in the water, cried, “are you saved?”  The answer returned, “No.”  Harper shouted words from the Bible; “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.”  Before responding, the man drifted into the darkness.

Later, the current brought them back in sight of each other.  Once more they dying Harper shouted the question, “Are you saved?”  Once again he received the answer, “No.”  Harper repeated the words of Acts 16:31, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.”  Then the drowning Harper slipped into his watery grave.  The man he sought to win put his faith in Jesus Christ.  Later he was rescued by the S.S. Carpathia’s lifeboats.  In Hamilton, Ontario, George Henry Cavell testified that he was John Harper’s “last convert.”

Harper’s last convert was won by Harper’s last words, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.”

I had no idea that there were actually eight ministers aboard the Titanic, all of whom were lost at sea.  But thank God for this wonderful account of George Cavell giving his heart to God.

Concluding the actual ceremony, people will be given tours throughout the ship.  In the final exhibit, there will be cards printed up with scriptures just like Acts 16:31.  People from around the world will hear of this story, be able to read the scriptures, and without a pulpit or church setting, thousands of people will be introduced to the scripture, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.”  How amazing God is.

Please know that as you continue to sow your seed into the fertile ground of this ministry, you are impacting lives.  God is opening doors to us that quite honestly are somewhat intimidating and overwhelming at times.  Yet, we believe that as He opens these doors, our responsibility is to walk through these doors and watch what HE does, and how HE does it.

Without your faithful support each month, Michele and I would not have these types of opportunities to share the love of Jesus, and help lead people to the Throne Zone dimension of God’s presence.  For that, we say a very special THANK YOU!  Always remember that each of these souls we are touching will be added to your account as you are helping us to go the distance as we continue to answer HIS CALL.

We love you very much and believe God has great things in store for you.  Just like this Titanic opportunity, it may not look like what you think it should look like, and it may come at an unexpected time.  But always remember, He opens doors that no man can shut, and closes doors that no man can open.  Our job is simply to walk through every door that HE opens, trusting that it will lead you and me to His perfect will for our lives.  Be ready, be positioned, and walk through the open door!

The winter is now past, and your spring time has come!

SAVE THE DATE: 
August 2-4, 2012- Throne Zone Carolina
Check out www.HisCall.org for more information

A Special Word from Michele

Blessings in the midst of transition

Sometimes we simply forget to count our blessings!  We should all be thankful for so many things that we take for granted on a daily basis; our family, our friends, our jobs, our church, our home, and the list goes on.  God has given us so many blessings that we simply overlook.  Why is that?

Our lives are full of things that constantly take up our time. Things that we should be able to put on hold, but for some reason these things seem to fill our days with empty, endless, time consuming nothings.  Yet we have little time for things that matter most in life; God, prayer, family, and taking care of ourselves.  These are the things that we seem to always put on hold for another day.  We will start the fast tomorrow, or the diet, or the prayer journal, or maybe it’s simply taking our children to the park for a walk.  Things that are of true importance, we never seem to have enough time to actually do.

God has designed something called day and night.  The World has a schedule that seems to fill those days and nights with everything that it deems important, but in the end, these are things that waste our time, preventing us from the things that mean the most.  We must realize that Gods plan for our lives doesn’t work on the “normal schedule”.

As you know, we recently left Charlotte where we had lived for the past 8 years.  I must say that those eight years were not the most memorable.  But they were eight years of being settled in one place, or at least as settled as a traveling ministry family can be. 

Moving to Virginia Beach has proved to be a wonderful thing!  A much needed time of rest for our family;  a place for Judah to belong, learn and strive in his studies; a church family that we love and need; friends that are close enough to visit and spend time with.  The list truly could go on for the duration of this letter!  So why am I having such a hard time with this transition? It’s the best thing that has happened to us in years!

Transition is a place that means we are changing or something around us is changing.  Webster’s states that transition is passage from one state, stage, subject, or place to another; or a movement, development, or evolution from one form, stage, or style to another.  Let’s take some time here to let that sink in!  A PASSAGE from one STATE, stage, subject, or PLACE to ANOTHER; or a MOVEMENT, development, or EVOLUTION from one FORM, stage, or style to ANOTHER!  Once you pick yourself up off the floor, we can move forward!

My “PASSAGE” from one “STATE” to “ANOTHER”- or my “MOVEMENT” or “EVOLUTION” from one “FORM” to “ANOTHER”- means many different things in my life.  It means that I am no longer a homeschool mother.  I now have to live under someone else’s schedule for school, dinner, and bedtime.  That is a huge change in our life! 

My home is set up differently, and therefore my treadmill is upstairs which prevents me from walking every night while my family and I watch our nightly episode of “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman.”  Two months of no walking equals 5lbs of weight on short Michele!  Although these things may seem small or indifferent on the larger scale in life, they have been absolutely insurmountable obstacles for me to overcome the past two months.

I find myself in the “evolution forming” definition of the word transition.  I am “evolving” if you will into the new mom, wife, and woman that God has intended for me to be in the midst of this transition.  That means that my life is changing for the good.  And yet, I am having a hard time with the blessings that He has given me in the meantime. 

What’s my problem?  Why can’t I just be thankful and move on?  Transition changes us, and we are creatures of habit.  Like it or not, most of us have a hard time with change simply because it is different.  That means that we can miss the blessings in the midst of the transitions due to our lack of or inability to handle change!  We MUST move on!  When God has blessings awaiting us, if we don’t move on, we will never recognize the totality of who He wants us to be or all that He has for us to accomplish!

God loves each of us so much that He will allow situations or circumstances in our lives to make us uncomfortable so we can TRANSITION to the new place and position that He has destined us for.  So come on people!  Let’s count our blessings in the midst of the transition that we find ourselves in.  I promise that they will far outweigh the discomfort that you think feel.  Think of it like this, there is a sometimes difficult transition from childhood to adulthood.  But if we never become an adult; we never grow up, have a family, take on responsibilities and set the course for our future.  After all, it’s the circle of life!

I am more convinced than ever that when we feel uncomfortable in life’s situation, it’s nothing more than the Lord “TRANSITIONING” us to our next step in life and ministry. 

Transition is simply promotion!
Bask in it, love it, live it!

My prayer for you is that you take time every day, in every situation to count the blessings that the Lord has given you.  Write them down and you will see His handy work all over the wall!

Happy Thanksgiving!  Let’s enjoy all our blessings while in the Midst of Transition!

Digging the Wells of Worship,
Michele Duncan
www.HisCall.org

There’s a Shaking Going On!

Who would have ever thought that a major earthquake and hurricane would have hit the East Coast as it did last month!  I have often heard it stated that God uses the natural to reveal the supernatural.  When we see the earth quaking, we know that there is a shift going on beneath the very ground that we are walking upon.  Something that is not quite so obvious to our eyes is movement going on below the surface of that which we can see. The winds of change are blowing and the waters of renewal and refreshing are rising

The same is true with what God is doing in your life!  There is movement in areas that you are not able to see.  There is a shift taking place for you, but you are not able to see it…..YET!  There comes a time when everything standing close to that point of shifting is forced to shift.  That is what causes the quaking.  And I believe that is what is going on in your life even as you are reading this letter.  There has been a shift in the spirit realm of your life, and everything around you must move with that shift.  

Unlike the smoothness of your car shifting gears, this type of shift causes a shaking and bumpiness all around.  Why?  Every time a shift occurs, there is a new “normal” that emerges.  And this is true in the spirit as well.  Just when you think you have things figured out and begin to find that comfort zone in your walk with the Lord, He orchestrates this “Shift” for your life.

God has great things in store for you.  And many of the divine appointments require you
to get out of your comfort zone and be ready when He calls for you.

Michele and I know this first hand.  We have spent the last 19-1/2 years attempting to follow directive He has given to us.  We have traveled from Carolina, to Virginia, to Texas, to Tennessee and then back to Virginia……and then back to Carolina.  And in looking back on our journey the past 19 years, we see how God divinely orchestrated each appointment and season.  At each move, we both received great deposits from him and other mentors in our lives, while also making great deposits in many other’s lives.  And now, once again, we have experienced this “Shift” in our lives.

On July 3rd, I was ministering at one of my previous Board Member’s church where he pastors.  During lunch, he simply turned to Michele and I and asked if we would ever consider returning to Virginia.  To which I quickly replied, “No”.  We were comfortable in Carolina and really liked our home. We had learned our way around the city (which is no small accomplishment for Michele- LOL), and were so convenient to everything that we needed.  Or so we thought.

Following that lunch, I saw a look in Michele’s eyes that I had not seen in quite some time.  It had been 7 years since I had seen that look, and I knew what was stirring.

As we drove to Virginia Beach, there were a great number of doors that connected in a sequential order.  It was very obvious that God was trying to speak to us, but I was trying not to listen.  However, we knew that it was God and so we knew what was ahead of us.

While in Virginia Beach, knowing that God was calling us to relocate back to the area, we found a school for Judah that had high academic accolades and would be workable with our travel schedule.  We applied, and after a couple of weeks, we received the letter of acceptance.

Now, we had only one small problem.  I had a home in Carolina that I was not able to get out of, and I had none to move into.  So, I began to pray my “IDIOT-PROOF” prayer.  I told God that if He truly wanted us in the area, He would have to bring someone for my home, and He would have to provide a home in the Virginia Beach area- one that we could afford.  We had looked at a few rental homes and knew that we would not be able to afford the area.  BUT GOD!

Within one week of listing our home on the market, we had two contracts on our home.  The first was ready to take possession in less than two weeks, and the other simply was a back-up contract in the event the first one fell through.

So, we had the school taken care of.  We had the house in Charlotte taken care of; but all we needed was a home in VA that would be able to accommodate putting our offices inside of the home.  I didn’t want to have to rent two places as we had in Charlotte.  We were looking for a home where we could put everything under one roof, and still stay within our budget.

Well, as only God can do, I received an email from one of my current Board Members.  She told me that there was a couple in her church that had a property that was on the market for sale, but they have not been able to sell it, and they would consider renting it to us.  But we knew that the home was so nice, and having shopped the area, we knew about what the cost would be and we knew that we would not be able to afford it.  But don’t you know when God is in something, He works all sides of the equation out for everyone’s benefit.  And as it turned out, they met us at the price we had budgeted for.

Now, you must understand that when God works things out, He takes care of all details.  He leaves no stone unturned.  Judah had asked God for three specific things, one of which was a pool!  And of course, I had ruled that option out because I did not think we would find that within our budget.  BUT GOD!  This home has all three of those specific items that Judah had prayed for, including a pool!  Go God!

Why am I sharing all this with you? 

You must understand that when you say “YES” to HIS call for your life, you become HIS ambassador.  That means, that when He gives you an assignment, He will give you everything that you need to accomplish that assignment.  Additionally, it means that His resources will provide everything that you have need of.

Regrettably, I tried to say “NO” to the provision of the Lord.  I tried to say, “Lord, this house is too big”.  “Lord, we don’t really need a pool”, “Lord, what will people think?” “Give me something smaller and simple”.  And then I realized, how many times do we reject the provision of the Lord because of what either we think, or what other people may think.

Friend, I have chosen to say “YES” to HIS call, and I have purposefully decided to receive “ALL” of His provision because He knows more than I do.  My job is to simply report for duty and do what He tells me.

That is all He asks of you.  Simply say “YES” to what He is speaking to you.  It doesn’t matter how comfortable you are at this point in life.  You must envision what the future looks like as you say “YES” to Him.

You must not delay when He speaks.  Don’t procrastinate and say, “One Day I Will….”  Tomorrow is never promised.  He knows the specific time when you are to come on the scene and fulfill all He has promised to you.

You must not say, “I can’t do that!” or “I can’t afford that”.  You must simply say “YES” to what He places before you to do, and trust that He will handle all the details.  Do not turn away your blessing or provision like I was trying to do.  Simply embrace it and recognize it as a source.  For me, I am renting this house, not purchasing it.  That means God has given me a place to land for right now so that I can get busy with all that He has placed in my heart.  And this house will remain ours until which time He provides another.  And this is how you must look at your situation during this season of transition in your life.

Your time is NOW!

This is your moment.  You have prepared all your life for this opportunity.  Now, don’t shrink back.  Keep moving forward, not looking back.  Embrace all that God has placed before you whether you understand it or not.  Remember, God has only required us to obey, not understand.

Your best is set before you.  When you have submitted yourself to the stripping, then God can bring the restoration to you which will prepare you and others for the coming Glory!

THE SHIFT IS NOW!  TAKE THAT STEP BY FAITH! 
YOUR DESTINY AWAITS YOU!

Stripped, Restored and Prepared for Glory

I apologize for the lateness of the letter this month.  As you know, we just completed the Throne Zone Charlotte.  All I can say is, “WOW”!  The power of God swept through the church and countless lives were changed by the presence of God. 

We thank Pastor Marvin & Shelley Tennant and their congregation at the Christian Assembly Worship Center in Lancaster, SC for being wonderful hosts for this gathering.  Pastor Marvin went to such great lengths to making us feel welcome into their house, and gave us full liberty to flow as the Holy Spirit leads.  Thank you Pastor Marvin & Shelley!

Our conference theme was, “The Restoration of All Things:  All things made New”.  The Lord gave me a powerful word on Saturday night before our time of impartation, and I would like to take just a moment to cover the highlights of this message as I believe it is a timely word for you today.  It is titled, “Stripped, Restored and Prepared for Glory”.

There are many that are going through some of the toughest times they have ever experienced.  It seems that as soon as they overcome one challenge, they are faced with another obstacle.  Pressure abounds on every side and the warfare has not relented but seemingly has intensified.  It is as if the heat has been turned up.

Perhaps you have faced these challenges.  Maybe you have been dealing with a health issue that you just cannot overcome.  Perhaps you are undergoing financial duress that has almost pushed you into panic attacks, or maybe has caused your blood pressure to become elevated.  You may be facing a situation with a family member or friend that seems to be doing everything other than listening to your council in their lives.  It seems that the more you talk with them to encourage them, the further they go from the truth.

Friend, the battle you are in may not be warfare from Satan, but it may be that God is using some of these circumstances to strip away some things in your life.  Now, I do not mean things like sin or disobedience.  Rather I mean sometimes we allow things to surround us to safeguard us much like the husk protects the ear of corn.  There are several layers that guard and protect the development and well being of the corn.  According to Joel 2:25, God sent the locust and the cankerworm to destroy and strip away from the land.  As many times as I have heard sermons on this scripture, I had never seen the part where God said,  “…this great army which I sent among you.”  When I came across that part of the scripture, the Lord spoke to my heart that He sent the locust and cankerworm to eat away the husk, the protective layers that surround and protect the corn.  But my question was simply, “WHY?”

I believe the Lord showed me that we have allowed our blessings to put us into a comfort zone to such a degree that we unknowingly put up protective walls not even allowing the Holy Spirit access to certain portions of our lives.  We put up walls for self preservation.  We allow our career and our financial blessings to define us.  All the while God continues to say, “I am not looking to your successful career, nor am I looking at your large 401K that you have accumulated.  But rather, I am looking for the fruit in your life that I can serve within MY Kingdom as I desire.  Therefore, He allows the stripping away of the things we think He is looking for in order to expose the one thing that He desires in your life.

The stalk is good, the roots are fine.  The soil is nicely fertilized.  The Lord is looking for corn, not husks.  Not silk.  Only corn that He can use.  However He desires.  Remember, that corn will never be used in His Kingdom if it remains hidden behind the husks.

If you continue to read, you will find encouragement because God didn’t want to just rip everything away from you because He had nothing better to do.  He didn’t allow things to happen to your finances because He gets a kick out of your struggle.  Rather, He knows that when the heat is turned up, we will shift our focus off of our securities and posture our hearts and faces toward Him.  And when we do, we can re-read this passage to hear, “I will restore to you the years”.

Friend, I don’t care how long you have been in this battle of having things stripped away from you.  I don’t know the extent of what has been stripped from you, but I do know that God promised in His word that HE WILL RESTORE THE YEARS THAT HAVE BEEN STOLEN FROM YOU. 

I am reminded of Job.  Job lost his children, his houses, his servants his animals- everything but his nagging wife and disbelieving friends (LOL!).   However, when you read the last part of Job’s life, you discover everything that was taken from him was restored to him…better than before.  His new children were more beautiful and obedient than the ones he lost.  He had more servants and sheep and cattle than he had before.

When you submit to the stripping of God, you can expect to live in the RESTORAION OF GOD!

Before there can be a restoration, there must be a stripping away.  Before there can be a miracle, there must be a problem.  Before there is a testimony, there is first a testing.  And beloved, this is where God has you.  You are being set up for DIVINE RESTORATION!

It is not about getting your money back, your job back, or any other great lyric from a country song.  It is about the restoration of God.  And this restoration is not the end in all.  Rather, it is only part two of this three step process of preparation.

“PREPARATION FOR WHAT?” you might ask.

Joel 2:28 shares what this process is all about.

“And it shall come to pass afterward that I will pour out My Spirit upon all flesh…”

When is this outpouring of God’s Spirit going to happen? 

AFTERWARD!

After what!

After this time of stripping away, and the time of restoration!

Before God releases and entrusts you with His Glory, He is going to make sure that you can handle it.  You see, if things are not in proper alignment within our lives, the Glory would kill us.  But God doesn’t want it to kill us.  He wants us prepared to walk in the weightiness of His power and Glory.

YOU MUST NOT GIVE UP NOW!!!!!!!

Realize that where you and I are right now in this moment in time is merely a season that is preparing us for the end-time revival and dispensation of God’s Glory being released upon the earth.

God wants you to be a Carrier of His Glory.  But before you can carry His Glory, you have to be cleansed and prepared.  Just like the priest had to prepare for his annual visit behind the veil, God wants us to prepare ourselves when He draws us into His secret place to download all that is in His heart for your life and mine.

Don’t give up.  Submit yourself unto God a living sacrifice.  Holy and acceptable- not conformed but transformed by His power and glory at work in your life!  Friend this is not the end for you, it is merely the beginning.

Great things are in store for you, but you must not give up!  Stand, and having done all to stand…….STAND!

A Personal Invitation to the Throne Zone

The excitement continues to build as we prepare for our 8th Annual Throne Zone.  In one week, we will meet at the Founders Inn for a much anticipated time worshiping around the Throne of God.  I truly believe that many who come are in need of Rest, Refreshing or Renewal, and to that end we are focusing all of our energy and effort to meet them at their point of need.    We hope that you will make plans to join us February 3-5, 2011 at the Founders Inn Conference Center in Virginia Beach, VA for the Throne Zone! 

All who are in need of being in an atmosphere charged with the power and presence of the Holy Spirit….we hope you come.

For more information on location, schedule, guest speakers and times of worship, please visit www.HisCall.org

Please help us share this invitation with your Facebook and Twitter friends.  Thank you for helping us share this special invitation. 

PS:  The night services are free and open to the public (as space allows).  A registration fee does apply to all the daytime session.