The Journey

Keith Duncan-8

I believe that we flew past Spring and jumped straight into summer. May was a blur, with a massive flurry activity within the Duncan household and His Call Ministries. I was blessed to celebrate my 48th birthday in May, and Judah completed his sophomore year with straight A’s; allowing him to exempt all of his exams, for which he is extremely thankful for. Additionally, he was able to get his driver’s license, and now is skirting about town on his own. (Pray saints pray!)

May was also filled with ministry opportunity every weekend during the month. We kicked the Mother’s Day weekend off by ministering at Campmeeting Ministries in Critz, VA, and then were blessed to speak at Pastor David & Cindy Bryant’s church in Danville as the keynote speaker for Mother’s Day. We then traveled to Maryland to minister and celebrate with Dr. Caretha Crawford at her 5th Year Gala Celebration for In Pursuit of His Presence Ministries. It was a rather spectacular evening giving the Lord praise for all He has accomplished through their ministry efforts. What a wonderful blessing to sow back into the lives and ministries of these our cherished Kingdom Covenant Partners.

We rounded out the last of the month by pulling together another great team of worship leaders, which I have worked with throughout the years, for a special Pentecost Celebration with Cornerstone Television Network in Pittsburgh, PA. God has given us great favor with the President of that great network, and we have several more weeks worth of ministry coming up throughout the rest of this year, as well as several weeks of taping for INSP with David & Barbara Cerullo. This seems to be a great year for television ministry opportunities.

I continue to be amazed at how God opens doors for me to minister to individuals through the Real Estate opportunity. Michele and I have prayed with many of our clients, and God has often given a word for their lives…and they have received it. God has used this season to help us better articulate God’s plan for people’s lives who are not churched and are not familiar with the Church lingo that we often surround ourselves with.

As I reflect not only over the past year of our life and ministry, I can look over the past 23 years or ministry with Michele and realize that with each step of our journey (regardless of whether it made sense at the time or not), God was teaching us a nugget that would add to the sum total of who we are.

Oftentimes, if we are not careful, we will overanalyze every opportunity set before us and can talk ourselves out of an opportunity that God has placed before us; especially if it is one that does not make sense. Unfortunately, when in pursuit of God’s plan and purpose for our lives, we are not allowed the opportunity and luxury of knowing the

“Why” to each door. It merely requires us to listen to the voice of the Lord at each cross road and move according to His direction.

  • What is God Speaking to you today?
  • Is it hard to hear what He is saying?
  • Does it make sense to you, or are you wrestling with it making sense?
  • What is holding you back from moving forward?

Each of these are key questions for you to ponder and consider as you are earnestly seeking for clear direction from the Lord. So, let me give you four things that may assist your journey.

ASK

First, with each opportunity it is important to ask God if this is an opportunity from Him, or a distraction.

Often, the enemy will use something as a mere distraction to prevent you from walking out what He is calling you to. But when you pray and earnestly seek His will, He will give you a green light to keep moving forward.

TRUST

As you move forward, you need to trust that He will direct and guide you. You need to continue walking forward until He illuminates a Red light, and if He does not, keep moving forward. This is part of the Faith walk required by each of us .

Trust in the Lord with all of your heart, and lean not unto your own understanding. In all of your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths. –Proverbs 3:5

OBEY

Obedience is a tricky one. This is the place where our thoughts and reasoning often interfere with what God has told us to do. This is what happened when King Saul made a sacrifice before going to war because Samuel was delayed in his journey. Saul thought the sacrifice was the ultimate requirement to victory, yet it violated God’s protocol with Samuel the priest making the sacrifice.

Often, we get in a hurry and try to figure things out and “Make It Happen” with our resources, giftings, and skill sets. Yet God still requires us to obey His plans that He has prescribed for our journey.

ENJOY

When you follow each of these steps on your journey, the Lord promises His provision for you. When you ask for His direction, when you step out in faith and Trust Him to guide you, and then when you choose to obey His voice and direction, then He plans for you to enjoy the fullness of that which He has purposed and destined for you.

Sometimes, especially in the Charismatic circles, we feel it is not OK to enjoy a season. We feel guilty, or we feel that we should not feel happiness. If we are not careful, we will waltz right past the blessing and not enjoy the season of rest that He has provided for us.

This state of enjoyment is not our final destination. Rather, it is the place that He provides to us beside the still waters. A season of rest, refreshing and ultimately re- enlistment for the next leg of our journey.

I have learned that life is not about a final destination, but rather of sequence of life events filled with moment along the journey that make us who we are called and purposed to be. The key is sharing those moments with others along our journey to assist with where they may be on their journey.

Michele and I are enjoying a season of rest from the stress and strain of executing our Throne Zone conferences. For 12 years, we have subjected ourselves to the pressure of raising the budget and executing an event with a great level of excellence. It has been very rewarding, yet very draining mentally, emotionally, and so God has allowed us this year a Sabbath rest for which we are very grateful.

In this season we are learning how to better and more effectively reach people with the message of the good news that Jesus brings to us; how He provides hope for individuals, and how He has a plan for their life.

He is exposing us to new technology to better enable us to reach people, better understanding the times and how to effectively reach and impact lives of individuals in this season on planet earth.

Today, I encourage you on your journey. Ask God what He has for you. Ask Him to begin to open and close doors for your life. As He begins to open doors (and close them), Trust that He is in control and take the first step toward that open door. Listen to His voice with every step, and continue moving forward until you get a “Red Light” or a “NO” from God. When He speaks a word to you, be quick to respond with a “YES LORD” and walk with relentless obedience to the voice of God. And finally, ENJOY the seasons of rest. Don’t push past that season, but abide by the still waters as long as He allows you to, knowing that He will soon be opening other doors to you leading you to the next leg of your journey.

Michele, Judah and I love you greatly and thank God that He has brought you into our lives to journey with you during this season of your life and ours. We believe He has great plans and purposes for you, but we also know that it may be a bumpy ride. Let us therefore covenant to encourage each other along the way. Speaking to one another in Psalms, Hymns and Spiritual Songs keeping our eyes focused upon the prize of the High Calling in Christ Jesus.

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The Two-Dimensional Worshiper

ImageIn the August partner letter, we discussed the One-Dimensional Worshiper.  I shared how that this individual is singularly focused, and that focus concentrates on their individual preferences.  This is not always from a wrong perspective.  I know many individuals who love a particular song, and they don’t feel their worship expression is complete if that song is not released.  As a worship leader, I know that I personally have certain songs that enable me to connect to the heart of God easier than with other songs.  Or, a memory of an encounter with God is triggered when I hear a certain song, and as a result it brings me comfort.  But it is very dangerous for us to stay in this One-Dimension because the focus of worship remains upon “us”, what worship does for “us”, how it makes “us” feel.  And if we never transition away from “us”, our worship can transition from spirituality to sensuality.  A great concern!

As the Praise and Worship industry has exploded, two streams of thought have emerged that deal specifically with this segment of our worship service.  It has caused a great divide in many ministry circles, and as such produced a new paradigm of ministry known as the “Seeker Sensitive” movement.  Please know, I am NOT intending to malign this paradigm, although several years ago I was somewhat troubled by it.  In a worship service that I was ministering, I was singing “Jump into the River” when I heard the Lord speak to my heart.  He rebuked me for being religious and judgmental reminding me that in the vision of the River, the main point was not whether people were waist deep, over their head, or barely wading in the river.  The point of the vision to concentrate and focus upon was that the people get into the river…regardless of the depth of the water. (I will save this for another partner letter).

When we speak of characteristics of something being two-dimensional, we usually reference the height and width of an object.  And these are the characteristics that I would like us to focus on regarding

THE TWO-DIMENSIONAL WORSHIPER

The first area to concentrate upon deals with Height.  In many churches, the priority of worship becomes how “BIG” we can make our worship experience.  From this posture of leadership, we begin to make the worship encounter a Production, causing us to shift from our focus and attention from being where it should be, upon our King and what HE likes and desires from our worship.  Nonetheless, we concentrate our efforts on sound systems, moving lights, haze machines and lighting.  We spend more of our rehearsal time marking our lighting cues and ensuring that they align with our click tracks, that we easily lose our focus.  This results in driving each weekly service to be better than the last service.  And if we are not careful, we will begin to judge the worship leader upon the delivery of his performance and end up forfeiting a potential divine God-encounter moment. 

Please do not misunderstand because I do enjoy nice lighting and the various resources we have at our disposal to help create that moment for people to connect with the heart of God.  But if we are not careful, we can focus upon the Art of Worship rather than the very Heart of the Worshiper.  As a worshiper, we must not settle for smoke and lighting and a great sound system.  We must be passionately pursuing more of God, His character, His attributes, resulting in Godly Transformation in our lives.

The second dimension is akin to the first and it deals with width.  Let me explain.

The fundamental teaching that we, the followers of Christ, have been mandated to accomplish is to go into all the world and preach the gospel to every living creature.  The Heart of the Father is that none should perish but that all come to repentance.  And when we realize this passion of the Father, we endeavor to reach as many people as we possibly can with the message of the gospel.  But in today’s society, I am concerned with this emerging concept that in an effort to reach as many people as possible, we forget the very message we are endeavoring to share.  Our focus shifts off the message of the Father’s love, to the methodology of the day, and in so doing we discount the message relegating it to a lower priority than our method.

This is the constant challenge with us as worshipers, worship leaders, ministry leaders and pastors. 

WE MUST FIND BALANCE.

I have experienced a vision of stadiums filled with worshipers.  But these were not concert groupies.  These were people passionate for the presence of God rather than a slick performance of a man.  For me, I continually struggle with this balance because this prophetic vision is Big.  It requires sound, lighting, cameras.  Yet, that can never be the focus and priority of the worship encounter.  These must merely be vehicles that help to communicate our passion for the manifest presence of God.  And hopefully, they will help to translate that encounter across the masses.  But if my focus becomes more on the technology at my disposal rather than my passion for His presence which brings transformation to my life, then I am out of balance and need recalibrating from the Holy Spirit.

As two-dimensional worshipers, we need to find a way to make His praise Glorious.  We need to utilize various tools and resources to help us communicate the love of the Father to as many as we possibly can, believing that the Holy Spirit will convict of sin and transformation can take place in the lives of these individuals.  But through all of this, we must have accountability measures in place to ensure that we remain balanced and not lose focus of the prize of the high calling which is in Christ Jesus.

As a worshiper, we must NOT settle for big productions which appeal to the masses yet never usher people into the presence of God prohibiting transformation from taking place in the lives of all present. 

Through your faithful monthly financial support, you are helping us to have these type of conversations with worship leaders, pastors and people hungry for more of God.  I cannot tell you how many worship leaders and other individuals who contact our office each month hungry for more and simply don’t know how to get there.  Your seed makes this possible.

Not only are we continuing to dig the wells of worship, creating safe places for people to discover and practice the presence of God, but we are also offering teaching, accountability and conversation to leaders helping them to do the same in their local congregations.  And as you continue to sow each month, the more opportunities I have to meet a worship leader at Starbucks, or host a Coffee-with-Keith, and create opportunities to provide conversation to challenge leadership not to remain two-dimensional worshipers, but to press into that 3rd Dimension which I will share next month.

Until then, keep sowing the seeds of praise into the Heavens believing God to establish an open Heaven over the region you are sowing into.  Michele and I love you and pray Christ’s richest and most abundant blessings upon you and all you in the Kingdom.  Keep digging those wells of worship!

Worship F.I.T. for the King- The Conclusion

Happy New Year and Welcome to 2013!  I believe that this year will be one that causes us to reflect, yet propels us into new dimensions of God’s presence.  The BEST is yet to come!

For the past two months, I have been sharing on the subject, “Worship that is F.I.T. for the King.”  I have shared that the “F” deals with Frequency- how often we worship, but also asking if we are tuned in to the frequency of Heaven.  Are we focused and tuned into the worship that transpires around the Throne of God in Heaven as described in Revelation Chapters 4 & 5.  If not, I challenged us to tune into the sound of Heaven and release that sound upon the earth.

In December, I shared that “I” must not deal with “ME” focused worship, but on the Great I AM.  More specifically, when we realize the access that God has given us to the very Throne Zone Dimension of His presence, we must be “INTENTIONAL” in our worship services to press past the praise zone, continue through the worship zone, and enter into The Throne Zone.  As worship leaders and worshipers, we must not settle for anything less than The Throne Zone and God’s Glory.

Now as we enter into this New Year, I want to share that the “T” must deal with “TRANSFORMATION”.

The theme of our upcoming 10yr Anniversary Celebration of Throne Zone is “Honoring the past…..Embracing the future…….Anticipating His Glory.”  I believe this is our theme not only for the conference, but what God desires for this coming year.

As I share with many congregations, and will share in a unique way on Thursday Night of Throne Zone (which you do NOT want to miss), as we enter into the worship zone- our worship shifts from being horizontal in its expression and begins to shift vertical.  It is during this worship zone where we are being drawn by the Holy Spirit closer to the Throne of God.  It is also in this place where we begin to see ourselves as God sees us.  He sees our sincere hearts, He sees our hunger for more of Him, He sees our insecurities and shortcomings and every other component within our lives.  Knowing what transpires in this “Worship Zone”; many people choose to conclude their journey because they grow uncomfortable and desire their worship experience to be more celebrative than confrontational.  Yet, this is a very strategic step in our journey to The Throne Zone.  It is a step that cannot be circumvented.  You cannot enter to The Throne Zone through a shortcut somewhere…..there is no other way.  Amid all the clatter being broadcast on TV, radio and the internet, there still remains only one way by which man can be saved, and that is through the blood that Jesus shed on Calvary.  Of course you and I know this very well, but the world is sending mixed signals and many believe the lies being propagated by the world today.  Therefore, it is imperative for us to honor the past.

When we honor the past, we remember the past victories that we won, and we remember how they were won.  We remember what God did for us and how He rescued us from some of the worst moments of our lives- whether that be in sin, or a life-threatening moment- but something happens when we stop and are intentional in remembering.

When we remember and acknowledge the work that Jesus Christ did in our lives, we can then look ahead and know that if He was faithful to bring us through our past victories, then His is MORE THAN ABLE to preserve us and help us overcome the challenges and temptations that lie ahead.  And because we remember His past provision & protection, my faith becomes strengthened and I can begin to move forward and Embrace the Future.

But, if we choose to stop in that Worship Zone and not allow the Holy Spirit to do within us what He needs to do, we prevent the Holy Spirit from bringing TRANSFORMATION into our lives.  This prohibits us from moving forward and therefore will inhibit us from entering into the Glory God is releasing in the Earth. 

This TRANSFORMATION will transform us spirit, soul and body.  It will cause us to change the course and actions of life we are pursuing when He challenges us.  I do believe in GRACE, but I do know that when we say YES to God, there are things we must turn loose of that will hold us back and prevent our access to the FULNESS of HIS PRESENCE, and prohibit us from entering into The Throne Zone.

When we truly have an encounter with God, we will not act the same.  Moses didn’t even look the same.  He had to wear a veil over his face because it shined so brightly.  The woman who pressed through the crowd stopped bleeding immediately and resumed life healed and made well as a testimony.  The man who lay by the pool at Bethesda changed the location of where he stayed once Jesus came and healed him.  No longer did he need to hang out at the pool waiting for his healing. 

Too many of us have established relationships from hanging out at the pool that we want to stay after we have been healed because these are the only friends we have made.  But transformation causes us to pick up our bed, walk into the unknown future, and forge new relationships sharing what God has done for us.  This is TRUE TRANSFORMATION.

When we experience TRANSFORMATION in worship, it will give us a new focus & clarity on this next season of our lives.  We can embrace the future and ultimately anticipate His Glory.  He desires to position you and me in our correct places of authority so we can be ready to be “RELEASERS OF HIS GLORY” in our lives and ministry.

This Transformation is not always changing sinful behavior.  Transformation may deal with strategies and business plans.  God is having me speak to many marketplace ministries and entrepreneurs regarding these downloads that God wants to give them in The Throne Zone of worship.  I believe He is giving business plans, marketing strategies and clear revelation how to move into this next season.  I believe He is doing that in your life, your business and your ministry.  That is why I am passionate about getting people into that Throne Zone dimension.  If they can tap into that dimension, people will discover their place, get in their place, operate in their God-orchestrated place, and therefore walk in favor, blessing and exponential results.

I am asking you to prayerfully consider partnering with us for another year.  As we share this vision, it will take financial resources to accomplish this vision, and I would like to be able to count on your monthly support as we move ahead.  Therefore, I have enclosed another partner card for you to pray over.  I will collect your cards at our reception.  We are also asking God for 100 additional $25/month partners to join us at this year’s conference.  We will be asking new partners to join us during the Friday night service, and then provide a reception for new partners following the service.  Please help us pray.

Our mission is sure, our vision is great.  We can only move forward with your help.  Remember, what you do for others, God will cause to be done to you.  As you bless this ministry, God will raise up others who see your vision and support your vision.

2013:  Honoring the Past……Embracing the Future……Anticipating His Glory!

The Power of Worship

2008 not only marked the beginning of the Economic collapse in America, but it also marked a time of great division within the church as we faced a new election.  Countless churches split as pastors endeavored to safeguard the Christian values that America was founded upon 400 years earlier.  Unfortunately, some Pastors took the opportunity to turn their pulpit into a Political polling station on both sides of the political divide producing results which surprised many.  Many pastors were simply trying to remind their people to vote to safeguard the religious freedoms and principles which America was founded upon.  Yet, many of those pastors experienced hardship as some of their congregations misinterpreted their comments.

Yes, 2008 marked the beginning of a downward spiral for the unity of the church, and spawned Anti-Semitism no longer geared toward the Jews alone, but expanded its focus against the Christian Church.  As the world and liberal news media scrutinized the church, it exposed leaders living a double lifestyle and seized every opportunity possible to chip away another layer of Godly values and principles that we the church have both embraced and taught.  And with every passing month, it seemed as if another moral failure or financial scheme was exposed, thus devaluing the influence of the church on modern society.

I am not endeavoring to throw my voice into the political arena, nor persuade you to vote one way or another.  I am not a politician.  However, I AM A WORSHIPER and would like to share a few comments on the power of Worship, and why it is a priority for today!

Worship UNIFIES US
I recently watched a movie with Judah called, “The Avengers”.  It is a movie about super heroes coming together to overthrow the plan of Loki (the enemy) to rule the earth.

In the movie, Loki comes to the headquarters of the Avenger super hero group and causes division.  He knows that if he can get these super heroes fighting against each other, he can execute his plans to take over the earth.  Fortunately, the super heroes realize this plan, and they lay aside their differences and begin to work together as a team.  When they do this, they overthrow their enemy and realize each other’s strengths and no longer their weaknesses.

This is what worship helps us to accomplish.  It gets the focus off of us and our problems or wrong-doings, and helps us focus on God.  When we truly enter into worship, there is nothing else that gets attention.  Rather, the focus is exclusively upon God.

Worship is perhaps the greatest example of unity.  It is when an entire congregation joins as one voice in song, releasing the same words, at the same time, all directed toward the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.  That is extreme unity.  This is why Satan fights worship so hard.  He does not want one person praising and glorifying God.  He for certain does not want an entire congregation singing praise to their God and King Jehovah!  Scripture tells us what happens when we join as one voice singing the same song at the same time:

  • The Cloud fills the tabernacle and no one can stand to minister
  • Walls crumble to the ground
  • The camp of the enemy turns upon themselves and kill each other
  • It fills a house where 120 believers are gathered and fills them with the Holy Ghost and Fire

If you want or need unity, then encourage worship!

Worship HEALS US
I would like to share this testimony that I just received about a healing in a marriage.  This is from someone who watched me on Sid Roth’s “It’s Supernatural” program in Ft. Worth, TX.

When listening to Keith Duncan music I can enter into the throne room supernaturally. Or just humming the words of his songs from the CD’s the angles and the spirit of God are all around you.

I was humming the words from one of his CD’s and a sweet fragrance filled the room as the presents of the Lord covered me.

I got so excited, I played his music to a couple that had been having trouble for 10 years in their marriage.  Within minutes, the husband fell on his knees and began crying out to God to forgive him for all he had done to his wife and asking God to forgive him for all his sins. He was transformed by God instantly!          –Lynda R.

 

Worship REMINDS US

It reminds us what God has done for us in the past.  It reminds us that even though we had to walk through some bad times, God was with us and brought us through it.  Even though we may have lost our job, our loved one, we went through bankruptcy or even had our home foreclosed upon, God was faithful to bring us through that season, and by His grace is helping us to build again, or love again, or helping us find a better job than we had before.

As we sing about what God did for us in the past, it automatically begins to build our faith for the future.  If He was able to do it then, He can do it again!

 

Worship DISCIPLES US

When we remember who God is and what He has done for us, we want to make sure that we continue to live a lifestyle that will bring glory and honor to Him.  If our focus is the world, we want to live our lives to please the system of the world.  But, when we focus upon God and His Glory, it reminds us “What Would Jesus Do”, before we actually do something or say something we shouldn’t.

One of the former pastors I worked for used to say, “Our Focus Will Determine Our Flow”.  If we are focused upon the world, our lives will revolve around the things of this world.  Where the head turns, the body goes.

But when our eyes are steadfastly upon the one who gave His life for us, the things of this world begin to grow strangely dim.  We become more concerned about Him and His Kingdom rather than my kingdom.

Worship FOCUSES US

When our eyes get out of focus, everything becomes blurry.  When Judah’s soccer team is not focused, they make many mistakes and usually lose the game.  But when the team gets refocused, they begin to play like some great players and win the game.

Worship helps us to remain focused upon the “Why” of our existence.  Worship helps us to get into the Throne Zone where we discover our purpose and our passion is reignited.  It helps us to realize the lyrics to the old hymn, “This world is not my home, I’m only passing through.”

Joseph Garlington says it this way, “We are not human beings having a temporary spiritual experience.  We are Spiritual beings having a temporary human experience.”

I still reference Matthew 6:33

“But seek FIRST the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.”

Worship helps us to keep the main thing the main thing.  Worship must be focused on seeking God and His righteousness.  As long as that remains our focus, then all the other things in our life will fall into proper order.  It is when our focus is on this temporary earthly experience that things begin to go wrong.

I am reminded of the song, “In the Presence of Jehovah”.

“In the presence of Jehovah

God Almighty, Prince of Peace.

Troubles vanish, hearts are mended

when we’re in the presence of the King.”

 

The answer remains not with a political party, but with the presence of God.  Do everything within your power to enter into the presence of the Lord, and continue to seek first the Kingdom of God and His Righteousness, knowing that everything you need will be taken care of by the King of Kings and Lord of Lords!