Surviving the Wilderness

WOW Club WellMichele, Judah and I have just returned from one of the best weeks of ministry we have participated in over the past couple of years.  We spoke at the Pulaski Church of God near Roanoke, VA and then traveled with Austen Owens (our summer intern from Regent University) to the Prepare 2016 Conference in Washington, NC.  This was a great conference where the Lord poured out a fresh anointing on me as the band and I led the Morning Glory worship session.  Words cannot express how joyous and refreshing this session was for me as a fresh anointing fell upon us, launching us into this NEW season that God is opening to us.  We then traveled to Virginia Beach to meet with many of our monthly partners and ministry leaders.  We had around 50 leaders that joined us as the Founders Inn where we shared how God has helped us to survive this wilderness season, but also to share what we believe God is saying as we look ahead to 2017. And finally, we wrapped the week at Kingdom Life Ministries in Chesapeake, VA leading worship for their revival.  What a blessing to lead worship with Jason & Kelli Bare, and Jason & Shelly Ratliff, and especially our son Judah, who joined us on the frontline vocals.  Michele and I are so proud of our son and our spiritual sons and daughters.  We are truly blessed!

As I have shared with you in previous letters, we encountered a wilderness experience that began in June of 2014.  It has been a road that I wish we all could avoid, yet one I believe we all will face at some point in our walk with Christ.  Therefore, I believe that the Lord has called me to be as transparent as possible to share this experience with as many as He leads me to, and to impart seven (7) major keys that helped us to survive this dreaded season.  I believe that our sharing this will be one of the keys for our entering into this NEW season of ministry.

II Corinthians 3:18 says, “But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.”  -KJV

As I read this, I feel as though Paul is speaking directly to the worshiper…the one who stands in worship looking into the glory of the Lord.  As we continue our gaze, God transforms us from Glory TO Glory.  From the Best He has created us to be, TO the Best He is calling us to be.  It is this “TO” that I believe marks a wilderness encounter.  It is the place found between two seasons, and because it exists we must recognize what it is and how to survive it to get to our NEW season.

This month, I would like to give you seven (7) themes that may help you define or recognize the wilderness.  These will be markers or indicators for you as to where you may be as you read this, or they may help you recognize they “WHY” for where you are right now.  Over the next couple of months, I will unpack these 7 keys that helped me survive, and I believe will help you during this season.

I’M LOST!
The first theme often portrays the wilderness as a place of threat, chaos and alienation.   It is barren, and nothing is familiar.  There are no markers or indicators or road map to help you know where you are.  All you know is that you have no idea how you got to this place, but even worse….you do not know where to go from here or how to get out!

I FEEL WITHDRAWN FROM EVERYONE
In the developing Christian tradition, the Wilderness is a place or state of withdrawal from the world to face the reality of God, oneself and one’s neighbor, and to overcome the power of evil.  We recognize this as the place where Jesus withdrew to and was tempted of the devil.  We must be careful with this one though to ensure that God has led us to this place of confrontation with God, and not us simply withdrawing as a result of depression or anxiety.

TRANSITION & CHANGE
The wilderness is a place of Transition and Change.  The children of Israel experienced this during their time in the wilderness.  They were being transformed from slaves to a free people in the Promised Land.  Of course, Jesus began his ministry after his time in the wilderness overcoming Satan, the evil one.  It is the place where one season ends and the next begins.

REVELATION
The wilderness is a place of Revelation.  This is perhaps the most prominent theme.  This is the place where God reveals himself in the burning bush, and through a pillar of fire and a cloud.  Of course Mt. Sinai is the central place in the wilderness revelation.  This is the place where EVERYONE saw, felt and heard the power of God on the mountain.

TESTING & JUDGEMENT
Israel faced judgment after pivotal revelation and rebellion at Mt. Sinai.  The church has always known that the desert is a place of temptation.  We must remember that the enemy will try to isolate you and I to get us to fall prey to temptations.  This can be a very dangerous place as you believe that you have lost everything, so you have nothing else to lose and therefore surrender to the lies and temptations that the enemy places before you.  God’s desire is that we overcome the temptation and walk in the power of HIS might, even when we feel we have no more fight within us at that moment in time.

VICTORIES ARE WON
In the wilderness, we will face conflicts, but great victories are gained.  Just as the Children of Israel encountered hostile enemies in the wilderness, these battles were only successful when they were obedient to the instruction of the Lord’s command.  And that is how you and I will win our great victories….when we are obedient to the instruction of the Lord.

A PLACE CREATED BY GOD
Perhaps the hardest lesson is to realize that the wilderness was created by God, not by Satan.  All things that were created were created by HIM.  Therefore, since it was created by God for a purpose, it is important for us to know how to survive our time in the wilderness.

In the next few months, I will unpack seven keys that God revealed to me during my wilderness encounter.  It is my prayer that God will use what He has shown me to help you where you are in your journey.

I have discovered in my sharing that numerous ministry leaders hit a wall similar to mine in 2014 and encountered this wilderness experience.  Oftentimes, simply knowing that others are going through what you are can provide a healing realizing that you are not alone.

Today, I encourage you keep your eyes continually fixed upon God.  Take one day at a time, and do not allow this wilderness to overcome you and fall by the wayside.  You are on your way From Glory “TO” Glory.  God’s best season for you is waiting on you, just ahead.  Keep pressing on and answer HIS Call upon your life.

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.

2015: Transformation & HOPE!

2015

January 1st marks the beginning of a new year of life. Businesses will close out the books from the previous year. Regardless of their profits or losses, January 1 signals both a fresh start to their business and a new season filled with new discoveries.

As humans, we realize the significance of a fresh new start in our personal lives. We craft our resolutions for the coming year as we hope to make this New Year different than the last.

We resolve to spend more time with our family, to de-clutter our lives and garages, to make healthy changes and choices to assist in the reduction of stress, and of course one of the top resolutions is to lose weight and get in shape. The new gym memberships roll in during that first week of January, only to slowly watch those new members fall victim to the same bad habits and routines that they maintained during the previous year.

As one who has struggled with weight most of my life, I was one of those who began every year with the theme of losing the weight.

In February of 2014, I found myself being rushed to the hospital with chest pains and a possible heart attack. I found myself at the start of a new year lying in a hospital bed in the Chest Pain wing of the WakeMed Heart Center strapped to all sorts of cables and sensors being monitored for 24 hours. I am happy to report that after a stress test and Nuclear Imaging were performed, I had no heart issues, it was all stress.

In June of 2014, I realized that I needed answers from the Lord and so I decided I would go on a fast to seek direction from God. In prayerful contemplation of how to proceed with this fast, I began to follow the Lords direction. As I turned my face toward heaven asking God for answers and direction, I noticed something different not only from a spiritual perspective but also a weight perspective. I began to lose weight.

As of the time of this letter, I have lost 30 pounds. I have dropped 6 jacket sizes and 8 inches in my waist. I feel good and I feel healthy. What began as a fast actually turned into a change in my lifestyle. I began to see that not only was I hearing the word for 2015, but He was allowing me to live it out to understand it more clearly.

I am a visual learner. God uses pictures or images to speak to me so that I can understand more clearly. After several months with these changes to my eating habits and exercise, I see a different me. I am not the same as I was in July of this past year. I have been in a process of TRANSFORMATION.

As I come in contact with many of my friends, they are amazed at the change that has taken place in my weight and body. They know the struggles that I have experienced over my life. I am not that same person who would eat 1⁄2 of a birthday cake in one day.

I am changed. I am transformed. And because people know my past eating habits, and known my struggle with weight, it now gives them HOPE. HOPE that if I can do it, so can they.

While laying in bed one unable to sleep, I felt as if the Lord said that I am now a visual example of what He wants to occur in the body of Christ during 2015. I believe this is the year that: TRANSFORMATION PRODUCES HOPE

THE TRANSFORMED LIFE MUST HAVE EXPERIENCED A TRANSFORMATION

2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; old things are passed away, behold, all things are become new.”

When something is transformed, it no longer looks like its original state. It is different; it has been transformed into something different. Yet we hear so much teaching on grace that if we are not careful, our culture will think that when we come into personal relationship with Jesus Christ, it is OK for us to continue living the same life and making the same lifestyle choices. Friend, if we ever truly encounter the presence of God in the way He desires to reveal Himself to us, we cannot help but experience transformation. This verse in Corinthians (the New Testament) clearly states that some things that we did before Christ, we no longer do simply because we have truly encountered Christ the King.

For me, if I go back to doing the same thing that I did in years past, it would not take very long for me to gain back those 30 pounds…..and then some. And to be honest, I do not desire that. I still have another 15-20 pounds that I would like to lose before I hit my goal. Therefore, I must press and pursue and continue making new lifestyle choices if I will truly walk out my transformation. If not, I have merely gone on another diet and never made any changes to my life.

THE TRANSFORMED LIFE WILL CULTIVATE HOPE

If ever our world needed Hope, today is that day. Countless Christians and non- believers fall prey to burnout and hopelessness because we no longer see change as a realistic possibility. When problems or challenges face us, we look for inspiration from somewhere; some small nugget of hope that we can hold on to. It doesn’t have to be monumental; it simply needs to be real, tangible and accessible.

THIS IS HOW GOD DESIRES TO USE THE CHURCH IN 2015

I believe that what the Lord is revealing is that He desires this to be a year where the Body of Christ, the believers, experience such a God-Encounter that is so real and tangible that it will transform their lives. I sense He wants to do that in my life and yours. Things that have become so normal and familiar to us, I believe He wants to

reveal Himself to us in a way that will leave us in total amazement of who He is and what He can do.

I also believe that when the church experiences God in this magnitude, and when we allow God to bring total TRANSFORMATION to our lives, the by-product of what occurs will shine radiantly to unbelievers which will signal the source of all HOPE….Jesus Christ!

The world is actively looking and seeking for the answer. We search for transformation through enlightenment, through education, through wealth, and even through health. However, the only place to find the answer is in a Transformational Encounter with Christ the King.

This will be our Vision and Goal for this ministry in 2015. We will actively look for ways that we can impact individuals and introduce them to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. We will continue to create safe places for people to Discover, Explore, Practice and Pursue the Presence of God. We are actively in discussions with IT engineers and attorneys as to how we can utilize technology to help us create these opportunities and remain legally compliant. We are very excited about these opportunities as we know the internet will truly enable us to have a Global Impact when we may not be able to actually take all of our team globally, at least at this moment in history. Yet, we remain focused in our passionate pursuit of His Presence, and we ask that you will continue to stand with us during this year of TRANSFORMATION THAT PRODUCES HOPE!

 

Depressed, Hurting, Experiencing Loss and Conflict? Be encouraged today….

The Christmas Holidays are not always filled with laughter and cheer.  For many, it is a great time of loneliness and depression as many are experiencing the loss of a loved one, or have never found that true love of their life they have been searching after.  For others, this time of year comes down to profit margins and losses for the businesses throughout the year thus preventing them the opportunity to celebrate the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ…the Hope of Glory!

Regardless of your situation, I want to offer a word of encouragement from God’s word found in Isaiah 41 verses 10-13.  It simply reads:

Fear not…there is nothing to fear, for I am with you; do not look around you in terror and be dismayed, for I am your God.  I will strengthen and harden you to difficulties, yes, I will help you; yes, I will hold you up and retain you with My victorious right hand of rightness and justice.

Behold, all they who are enraged and inflamed against you shall be put to shame and confounded; they who strive against you shall be as nothing and shall perish.

You shall seek those who contend with you but shall not find them; they who war against you shall be as nothing, as nothing at all.

For I the Lord your God hold your right hand; I am the Lord, Who says to you, Fear not; I will Help You! (Amplified)

Today, whatever you may be facing (depression, anxiety, conflict, job situation, loss, or simply searching for your purpose in life), God says He has a plan for your life.  He says to you today, Fear Not because He will help you!  Simply ask for His help and allow Him the opportunity to work in your situation today.

This is our prayer for you during this Christmas Season.  God bless you and Merry Christmas!

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!

 

Surviving the Storm!

Image

This past weekend, Virginia had some of the most powerful storms which hit between Richmond and where we live in Chesapeake/Virginia Beach.  Thousands were left without power.  Michele and I even had a tree that fell in our backyard and landed on the fence.  Thankfully, no one was injured, and the fence was not even broken.  Praise the Lord!

We have some friends in the Richmond area who have a 16 year old son who recently began driving and had taken some of his buddies to Kings Dominion which is north of Richmond.  We were with them this past week, and the mother began to share this story.  As she shared it, there were many things that the Holy Spirit began to speak to me, and I feel impressed to share those thoughts with you, knowing that many of you are facing some powerful storms in your lives at this very moment.

Deborah (the mother) had been watching the news when she saw the storms which were fast approaching the Doswell area which is where Phillip (the son) had been enjoying the day at Kings Dominion.  She texted Phillip that the severe storms were heading his way and to get to his car, take shelter and stay there until the storms passed by.

Phillip, being 16, could have ignored his mother’s warning based upon what he saw at the moment; it was great weather at the time.  The sun was shining, not a cloud in the sky and they were having great fun.  But Phillip, being the obedient and responsible son that he is, followed his mother’s instructions- even though he saw no eminent danger.  Just as soon as he arrived to the “safe zone” that his mother instructed him to go, the heavens opened up and the storm hit with full force.  Because he heard the instruction from his mother, and because he was obedient to following those instructions, he survived the storm with no danger.

It was the radar which revealed what was coming.  No one in Phillip’s environment was aware of the coming danger, because there were no signs of an approaching storm.  Faced with the choice of continuing his fun in the park or being obedient to his mother’s instructions, Phillip made the correct choice and was therefore safe.

As I reflected upon this story, I was reminded of Noah.

God told Noah to build an ark.  God gave him the specific instructions on how to build the ark- the type of wood; how to pitch the inside and outside of the ark, etc.  What was interesting is that before this period in time, the world had never seen a flood.  Many scholars even believe that people had not seen rain fall from the sky.  Rather, they believe and teach that the dew brought refreshing to the earth.

While Noah remained faithful to the instruction of the Lord, he was ridiculed by his friends and his neighbors.  Here was Noah, building something to preserve and maintain life, yet he was continually ridiculed by the ones whom he was trying to save.  The ark was a constant reminder to these individuals that they had an invitation to come into the ark and be spared from that which was coming upon them.  And when the time came, Noah released the sound beckoning these individuals to come aboard.  Unfortunately, they did not respond to the call and their life was ended as God sealed the door to the ark before the rain began to fall.

Just like the radar shows what is coming (even though there are no apparent signs of the storm right where you are), the radar provides a warning.  It caused Deborah to send the text message to Phillip driving him to safety.  And just like that message, God has given us the Holy Spirit who gives us the ability to discern things coming toward us.

I wonder how many times we choose to ignore the Holy Spirit’s prompting.  We pass those promptings through our filters rather than simply obeying the Holy Spirit.  We miss many opportunities, simply because we relegate them as being thoughts from our own, rather than realizing that the Holy Spirit is leading us and guiding us in many things.  Unfortunately, sometimes the consequences resulting from our incorrect choices can be costly.

So how do we change this dilemma to enable us to make the right choices?

GOD WILL ALWAYS GIVE A WARNING
WE MUST NOT DISREGARD IT

We must remember that the Holy Spirit is our radar, and we must remain tuned in to what He is saying, and watch for what is coming our way.  He will warn us.  Our job is to listen to His instructions and obey them.  Get the text message and move to safety.  Sometimes that means taking a different route home from work, or even delaying our trip by a day or two.  We must be listening and watching and remain tuned into the Holy Spirit, and what He is instructing us to do.

DON’G GET RATTLED WHEN
YOUR PLANS GET CHANGED

I wish this is one lesson that I could say that I have mastered.  Unfortunately, I still wrestle when things don’t go as I had anticipated.  I must be continually reminded that God has a plan, and I want to choose His will, not mine.

When Phillip was having a great time at Kings Dominion with his friends, I am sure that he was upset when he got the text from mom which required him to change his plans.  Perhaps he had been in line for two hours in 100 degree temperatures waiting for the ride, and he was the next in line to get onboard.  Yet, whenever he got that text from mom, he was faced with the choice of changing his plans, or being stubborn and following the instructions after he completed his agenda.  I am not saying that he did not get upset.  But I am saying that he heard the instructions from mom and followed them.

We will walk in less frustration if we realize that God is working on our behalf and therefore He may change, delay or alter our plans.  But remember, DELAY IS NOT DENIAL!

GOD WILL ALWAYS PROVIDE
A PLACE OF SAFETY AND REFUGE

Deborah knew the place of safety, and she gave Phillip the instructions where to go and what to do.  Phillip’s job was to merely respond to the message and in his obedience he would find safety.

Proverbs 18:10 says, “The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.”

Revelation says, “Let him who has an ear, hear what the Spirit is saying to the Church.”  We must continually be listening and responding to what He is saying to us.  He is our shelter in the time of storm.

BE A LIFEGUARD:  TAKE AS MANY PEOPLE WITH YOU TO SAFETY AS POSSIBLE

Phillip was responsible for not only his own safety, but also of those who rode with him.  And just like Phillip’s friends (who were not watching the weather radar), there are people in your life and mine who are not listening to the Holy Spirit or watching the radar warning us of the approaching storm.  But God has placed you and me in their lives to warn, encourage and lead them to safety.

Our job is simply to lead them to safety so they may be saved.  That doesn’t mean we have to be preachy.  It simply means that our lives must reflect to the world that we are listening to and obeying the instructions from the Lord.  After all, YOUR LIFE IS THE ONLY BIBLE THAT SOME WILL EVER READ!

It is my prayer that our lives convey the love of God correctly, and that we continue to remain in Him, walking in the fullness of all He has called us into.

BLESSING, FAVOR, PROTECTION, PURPOSE, DESTINY, AND THE HIGH CALLING OF CHRIST JESUS- THE HOPE OF GLORY!

WATCH, LISTEN AND OBEY, and you will SURVIVE THE STORM!

The Decade of God’s Glory

Happy New Year!

It is difficult to believe that we have already entered into a new decade.  It seems as if it were only last year when we were at the 2000 New Year’s Eve service-gathered in prayer and worship-yet wondering if the power would go out when the clock struck midnight.  There was widespread concern over the “what if” scenarios that Y2K presented as we embarked upon this new Millennium.  And “9-11” were only the numbers we were trying to make sure that our children knew to call in case of an emergency.  So much has transpired over the past 10 years that has reshaped America.  Yet, God is speaking that this is a new season, and it is a new day.  So, as the church, what do we expect this new decade to look like? 

I am convinced as I watch the events of the world unfold before our eyes that we are embarking upon a new season in the spirit of God at warp speed.  And all the hell that you and I have been fighting during 2010 is merely a process preparing us for the greatest days for the Church as we prepare to see the Glory of the Lord revealed like never before.

II Corinthians 3:18 says, “But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.”

I have a plaque hanging in my office that says, “The years tell us what the days never knew”.  And what that means in the life of a Christian is that the experiences we have come through shape and mold our paradigm of life, and prepare us for something greater that lies ahead.  I believe that the church has come out of one season of glory, and we are transitioning into a New Season of God’s glory, but we are stuck in that “to” segment of transition.  And unfortunately, this is the place where not everyone survives and makes the transition into the new season.

For many, we relieve the past.  We coin those moments as the “Glory Days” and we exert much of our energy trying to relive those days.  We set our eyes on those things which are behind of us rather than to lay hold to the future that God has called us to press toward.

We do not intentionally mean to look back to the past.  It is either because our faith is weak, or because we feel as though we are growing older and lose the energy and passion which inhibits us from looking to the future.  We use phrases like, “it is time for the next generation to rise up and begin to lead the church”.  In essence, we forfeit the race.

I want to encourage you- and myself- that we must be relentless in our pursuit of God’s Glory.  We must not forfeit our destiny!  We must not keep looking to the past Glory Days, but we must realize that what we experienced in the past only pales in comparison to this new season of Glory- a season where the Glory of the latter house is far greater than the former.  A season where Habakkuk 2:14 will be fulfilled:  “For the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea.”

You say, “Keith, I have heard this for the past 20 years.  Why should I believe it now?”

My response to you is that we must be like the Sons of Issachar who knew the signs of their day, and the signs of God’s agenda.  We must not only know what is on the heart of God, but we must be spiritually mature enough to see what is happening in our world.  Then you can see that we are on the brink of breakthrough.

You see, there is a great surge of demonic manifestation and fascination with the supernatural that the world is being exposed to.  You don’t have to go to a huge library or School of Theology to discern this.  All you have to do is go to your neighborhood movie theatre to see what is playing.

When I was growing up, the show “Bewitched” aired.  Now as my son is growing up, the Harry Potter series attempts to get this new generation interested in the supernatural.  Then Disney put out a movie entitled “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice” starring Nicolas Cage.  The commercials on that movie made it seem to be a humorous and harmless movie.  However, when you check out the movies for this month you see that Nicolas Cage is now starring in “The Season of the Witch”, which –in my opinion- is not a cute and harmless movie.  Just watching the previews you can discern the onslaught of demonic manifestation and witchcraft.  And if you stay tuned to more previews on the TV, you begin to see other films coming out early this year like, “The Rite” whose subtitle reads, “The making of a Modern Exorcist”.  All you have to do is Google “Movies for 2011” to see a lineup of the movies being released, and it is easy to see where American’s are spending their money.

We must remember that demonic manifestation is the opposite (or what I like to call the counterfeit) of the original.  What is the original?  It is a manifestation of the Glory of the Lord, an invasion upon the earth by the angelic host of Heaven that surrounds the Throne of God! It is when people become not possessed by demons, but consumed by the Glory of the Lord.  And it affects everyone who comes in contact with that person. 

This is the beginning of God’s glory being released upon the Earth. 
This is your season.  This is YOUR DAY!

I believe that this will be the DECADE of GOD’s GLORY!  God is looking for someone who is not afraid to submit their total being to His will for their lives.  He is looking for someone to simply say “YES” to HIS CALL. Will you be that one who will fully submit your whole self to God so that the destiny within you can be not only realized, but released upon the Earth?

Eye has not seen, nor ear heard the things that God has in store for those who say “YES” to Him.  Your best days are not behind you.  They are in front of you.  And the Glory of the latter house will be greater than that of the former.

For this ministry, we believe that 2011 will be a year of teaching, training and imparting as never before.  We are actively scheduling Friday night and Saturday training sessions teaching various models on worship, and how we can prepare for this release of glory.  We are asking churches to let us come in 3 times throughout this year to teach three separate models.  The first model is to establish a baseline for worship.  The second model deals with leadership and the third model deals with Kingdom Principles.  These models involve two hours on Friday night, and 4 to 6 hours on a Saturday.  Maybe you are interested in bringing this to your local body of believers; contact Michele for more information and details on these sessions.

We continue to expand the Throne Zone in 2011.  We will once again host the Charlotte Throne Zone in August of 2011.  We will have more information on that next month at our Throne Zone in Virginia Beach.  We would love for you to be a part of that conference and help us dig the well in the Carolinas.

We are also attempting to utilize the internet as much as we possibly can to raise up worshipers, making preparations for the coming Glory, and becoming an agent of change that will effect a shift in cities and regions.  Our first step is by releasing a monthly video blog.  This will help us to learn the new technology and utilize it to its fullest.  The sooner we learn this technology we will transition into a weekly video blog.  You can follow us on www.youtube.com/keithduncantv and at www.keithduncan.wordpress.com.

Additionally, we are releasing a new Instrumental CD that has an evangelistic appeal.  I will have more information on that next month, as well as releasing our new worship CD entitled, “Welcome In”- which is the most anointed CD we have ever released.  Both CD’s will be available on iTunes and on other digital distribution platforms, as well as the actual CD sales through His Call Ministries.

Your faithful monthly support is valued greatly.  You are making a difference.  By faithfully sowing your seed into the fertile soil of this ministry, you are helping us to prepare the way for HIS GLORY by raising worshipers and leaders who are passionate for the presence of God.  You are helping us to raise up a new generation of worshipers and worship leaders who are not seeking fame and fortune-although that is the by product for some- but they are focused on the purposes and plans of the Father, and how to release His Kingdom upon the Earth as it is in Heaven, just as Jesus prayed to the Father while in the garden.  And for sowing your seed faithfully each month, Michele and I say THANK YOU!

We believe God for your destiny and for the fullness of God’s plans and purposes for your life, and we believe that you will be established in 2011.  We love you and HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Digging the Wells of Worship,

Keith Duncan
His Call Ministries
www.HisCall.org