Global Day of Prayer Lebanon 2009
Monday June 15th 2009, 11:28 am
Filed under: Lebanon,Middle East

What a timing for a global day of prayer to be held.  At a turning point in Lebanon, just a week before the parliament elections.  Political battles were raging, every party slandering the other, accusing the other, bribes were common ground and political banners were raised all over the country.  But the believers in Lebanon chose to raise another banner: the banner of our Lord Jesus Christ.

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We started 2 weeks earlier by reading the whole Bible through from cover to cover proclaiming the Word of God over our land.  On the 31st  of may the believers gathered in an open field  and praised the Lord declaring him Lord over Lebanon and over the earth.

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 The scriptures we used were mainly from 2 Chronicles 7

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But we followed also Joel 2 with a call for fasting, gathering the children, gathering the youth, repenting of our sins, singing the high praises of God and calling for the Father that He will pour out His Spirit over all flesh including the government and people in authority. And we also lifted the elections and the whole land.

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The youth were not forgotten! After they performed a dance, we passed the torch to this new generation praying that the hearts of the fathers would be turned to the sons and the hearts of the sons to the  fathers.

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Children and adults sang along side each other.

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Children prayed.

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Pastors and priests stood along side each others repenting for the sins of the nations and for the sins committed against each other.

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High praises were lifted.

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And prayers were raised.

The Lord was present, He sealed this time and we all believe that a wind of change is coming!

To all who were not with us, know that a prayer was lifted for you too!

Be richly blessed by the Father.



Ben Ward on Lebanon
Monday June 15th 2009, 11:27 am
Filed under: Devotional,Lebanon,Middle East

Ben Ward accompanied Keith last year to minister in Beirut.  Here are some of his impressions from the trip posted on his blog.

Lebanon – One Year Later

It’s coming up on one year since I went to Beirut, Lebanon and I realized I haven’t done a proper wrap-up post. It’s actually kind of nice to have some time and perspective on the trip. So much has happened since last summer and so much had happened leading up to it. It is really amazing.

I had just left the church in Peoria after a dizzying chain of events that I still can’t quite explain. We saw God do amazing things most notably by selling our two-month-old house in four days for more than we paid for it. He really wanted us out of there! But we didn’t know where to go. No job, no house, no prospects, really. So Olivia’s Dad, Keith Curlee, felt like the Lord wanted him to take me to Beirut on his next trip. He has a ministry there (Triumphant Mercy Lebanon) that partners with local believers. In 2007 they opened a prayer and worship center in a mall called the Tent of Praise, or TOP. We went for a month and stayed with the family that leads the TOP and ministered with the precious people there.

It was great to just be a part of what God is doing in the Middle East. I played bass in the worship times (I had never done that before — they were short a bass player), I spoke at the youth meetings, and conducted some music clinics on songwriting, playing, etc. I was even honored to lead worship one night at the TOP (in English, of course :). I got to experience a lot of the Lebanese culture (you can look back at the older posts for stories).

What struck me the most was the power of the Holy Spirit to make vast cultural differences so insignificant. When it came down to it, we were brothers and sisters in the Lord and that made us fast friends. We still keep up with each other on Facebook and I hope I get the opportunity to go back. When I think about Lebanon, I get a strange feeling that I’ve struggled to define. Like any “mission trip,” there is great spiritual fire that happens and you long to be back in that place of seeing God use you and seeing people’s live changed in amazing ways. But this is deeper – the Cedars have a strong effect on you.

New Songs, Nations, Young People

I wrote these down before I left. I felt that these words summed up what God had shown me in Lebanon. In fact, I’ve already seen the fruit of them here in NYC.

Nations – There is no other city in the world that has so many nations represented and living together. The nations are truly represented here. I believe that’s one of the things God has placed on my heart – to reach out to the nations; to minister His power in different cultures. To not only help bring change to the nations, but to be changed by the nations.

New Songs – Since I’ve come to New York I’ve written more songs in a short time than at any other time since I started writing songs. I’ve probably written twenty or thirty this year. Not all of them are keepers, of course, but I have been overwhelmed by the inspiration. Many are spiritual/worship in nature, but many are just about life and relationships. In Lebanon, I feel the Lord cemented the fact that I am a writer of songs by allowing me to teach others how to do it.

Young People – I remember a prophecy I received at IHOP back in 2007. The guy said that the Lord was fascinated at how I loved young people. This struck a chord with me because I do. I feel God has given me a heart for the young. To see them go further in their gifts and further in their relationship with Him. I haven’t seen as much fruition of that yet, but my awareness is surely up. I’m waiting for God to bring opportunities to work with and encourage young people.

So, that’s just a few of the impressions and insights the Lord gave me in Lebanon and since. I’m even more thankful than last year that Triumphant Mercy paid for me to go (not an inexpensive endeavor) and that I got to be a part of something much larger than me: God moving in the Middle East.

Here’s a video of him singing one of his songs as well…



New Year’s Resolutions
Wednesday January 14th 2009, 6:34 pm
Filed under: Devotional,Teaching

Saints of the most High God; the God of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and the Church of our Lord and King Jesus Christ, there is so much being said concerning the new year.  Resolutions, prophecies, and best wishes abound in the world and in the Church.  Everyone is hoping for a better new year with prosperity for all.  I have found that for me, instead of resolutions and soulish declarations, that repentance from dead works should be my basic foundation.  Everyone wants to move forward, but the key for us as believers is repentance from dead works.

Paul says in Hebrews 6:1, “Therefore let us leave the elementary teachings about Christ and go on to maturity, not laying again the foundations of repentance from acts leading to death.”  The Word of the Lord is so simple and uncomplicated, yet so contrary to our thinking and flesh.  He says that if we are to move on, we must leave the elementary teachings.  The question is: have we ever really got the basics?  

Repentance was the first declaration of the coming of Jesus on the scene by John.  “Repent for the kingdom of God is at hand.”  Israel had piled up a lot of dead works that had produced wickedness in the land.  The call was to repent!  We see repentance in light of moral acts and ignore our dead works and excuse them as mistakes.  We cannot continue to approach the new year hoping God will somehow bless the same empty confessions of past years.  We must repent and bring these dead works before him in utmost truth.  This will free us into the new year and change our direction.  So many times we pray for new direction, but we are going the wrong way.   Repentance is the key to changing direction and perspective.  It is deception and humanistic reasoning that justifies these dead works and efforts.  Meaningful moves of God always start with the seeking of Him and the repentance of people who see their hearts in the light of our Glorious Lord.  

Lately, because of the condition of our country, we hear ministers once again calling on the people of God saying, “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”  (2 Chronicles 7:14)  Resolutions are not the answer for our condition.  Pundits and advisers admit that the greatest majority of resolutions fail in the month of January.  I heard a very influential person say the other day that she no longer makes them — she was tired of failure upon failure.  We in the Body of Christ continue to pile up these resolutions doomed to failure, which result in a mountain of discouragement and condemnation. Such a graphic picture of a continual admission of mistakes, rather than calling it what it is: sin.  Paul calls these “dead works leading to death.” Many of our dead works seemed right and justified in the beginning, but did not lead to the end we hoped for.  Paul says in Hebrews 6 — therefore let us leave.  If we are going to move on, the way to move on is to repent.  

Consequently, we continue to prop up these works that have no life in them.  Self help, more counsel, and even encouraging words will not bring these works into fruition.  The word “IF” signifies probability and potential of the promise.  If we do not go beyond it and meet the conditions we are doomed to failure and not resolve.  If who?  My people.  What people?  Who are called by My name.  Will what? Humble themselves, pray, seek my face, and turn (repent) from their wicked ways.  Here is how God sees dead works:  these are not mistakes or misjudgments, this is missing the mark, or sin.  Repent from the bad shots as the flesh reasons, “at least I took a shot or tried.”  The flesh can be so noble in its reasoning.  Remember Paul writes about the works of the flesh.  Notice these are the same words he uses in Hebrews — dead works.  We cannot will away these dead works that so easily beset us.  We are setting ourselves up for constant defeat and self-examination that brings no life to us.  The continual voice of the prince of darkness will bring us to despair and hopelessness but the power of God, the Holy Spirit, wants to bring life and liberty.   

Resolutions are on the wrong side of “if” and do not give real steps to get results.  Repentance is a gift from God and this gift only comes from Him.  Not our will but His will.  Humility is the action that causes the gift of repentance to be released in our lives.  The acts of humility come through a process of praying and seeking the face of our God.  This is where we will receive the power, or the gift of repentance, to turn and go the other way.  Turning from the dead work moves us towards Him who brings us life.  Resolutions are full of I will, I can do it, and more I, I, I, that keeps us on the wrong side of the “if.”  Let us repent for the kingdom of God is at hand. He will hear from heaven and will forgive our sins of resolutions and heal us and our land.  May it be so according to His Word.



Pictures from The Tent of Praise Lebanon
Saturday December 20th 2008, 6:56 pm
Filed under: Lebanon

Here are some new pictures taken at an event recently.  The banner above the musicians reads, “A place to meet God, engage in His presence, and be empowered by His Holy Spirit.”  The logo was designed by Norah Curlee.



ABC May Regret This One
Friday November 21st 2008, 9:21 pm
Filed under: USA

Saints, please read this and forward to as many as possible.  This is blatant disregard for the basic freedoms that our country was established on.  Some years ago, I stood in Plymouth, Mass. at Plymouth rock.  While I was looking at it, I felt the Holy Spirit say this, “This country was not established on the freedom of religion, but the freedom of worship.”  There is a vast difference between religion and worship.  Religion is a form of godliness that denies the power thereof.  Worship is the expression of a love relationship between our Lord and King and His bride.  He is worthy! The brothers who came here, were so committed to the Lord Jesus, that they left their homes and came to such a strange land.  Suffered great hardship, because of a Holy Spirit unction deep in their spirits to be free to worship the one true God.  This ungodly response by ABC is profane and void of any respect for freedom, much less flat wicked.  The media has become the mouthpiece of the beast, and this is a precursor to the behavior of the anti-christ who will come on the scene with a total assault of blasphemies, and profanities, against the most high God.  Brothers and Sisters we are in a war of words, and we cannot keep silent.  The words of Jesus are spirit and truth, and we must not only speak what He says, but speak it the way he did, by the Spirit.  Put on the whole armor of God, and begin to wield the Sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God.  The scripture goes on to say, “the Word of God is living and active, sharper than any two edged sword.”  Be instant in season and out of season, declare, declare, and declare again.  

Begin forwarded message:

Jim Neugent is a coach in Childress , Texas .

Jim writes: 
 
My name is Jim Neugent. I wrote to ABC (on-line) concerning a program called ‘THE PRACTICE.’ In last nights episode, one of the lawyer’s mothers decided she is gay and wanted her son to go to court and help her get a marriage license so she could marry her ‘partner.’ I sent the following letter to ABC yesterday and really did not expect a reply, but I did get one.  

My original message was:  

ABC is obsessed with the subject of homosexuality. I will no longer watch any of your attempts to convince the world that homosexuality is OK. ‘ THE PRACTICE’ can be a fairly good show, but last night’s program was so typical of your agenda. You picked the ‘dufus’ of the office to be the one who was against the idea of his mother being gay, and made him look like a whiner because he had convictions. This type of mentality calls people like me a ‘gay basher.’ 


Read the first chapter of Romans   (that’s in the Bible); and see what the apostle Paul had to say about it…. He, God and Jesus were all ‘gay bashers’. What if she’d fallen in love with her cocker spaniel? Is that an alternative life style? (By the way, the Bible speaks against that, too.)  
–Jim Neugent 

Here is ABC’s reply from the ABC on-line webmaster:  

How about getting your nose out of the Bible (which is ONLY a book of stories compiled by MANY different writers hundreds of years ago) and read the declaration of independence (what our nation is built on), where it says ‘All Men are Created equal,’ and try treating them that way for a change!  

Or better yet, try thinking for yourself and stop using an archaic book of stories as your lame crutch for your existence. You are in the minority in this country, and your boycott will not affect us at ABC or our freedom of statement.  

Jim Neugent’s second response ! to ABC: 


Thanks for your reply. From your harsh reply, evidently I hit a nerve. I will share it with all with whom I come in contact. Hopefully, the ArkansasDemocrat Newspaper will include it in one of their columns and I will be praying for you.  

– -Jim Neugent- – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –  

Note: Wouldn’t Satan just love it if people stopped using the Bible for a crutch?  
Please resend this to everyone in your mailbox. 
 

Jim Neugent  

I wonder if the person from ABC considered how many people would read this e-mail! 


This is one we should definitely pass on.



Lebanon July 2008
Thursday July 17th 2008, 6:24 pm
Filed under: Lebanon

Friends of the Bridegroom, Greetings to you, and the blessing of God to you and yours.  I just returned from my 10th trip to Lebanon.  As you know, Moses when he saw the promise land, saw into South Lebanon, clear to Sidon and Tyre.  I believe he saw to the Latoni River.  Now, South Lebanon is occupied by Hezzbolah, who is lead by Hassan Nasralla.  A radical Shi’ite who is dedicated to the destruction of Israel.  They now have two ministers in the cabinet, that is newly formed, and control the South of Lebanon completely.  This last civil skirmish was over the control of the airport, where they tried to fire the security officer, who is sympathetic to Hezzbollah, and was accused of looking the other way while weapon were beign smuggled.  The injustice to the Lebanese people with factions of PLO sponsored by Alquaeda to the North, thousands of PLO refugees, with many camps, and now 10,000 Iraqi christians in a camp is amazing. Beirut and surrounding christian communities and in a vice, between the north and south factions.  The Orthodox Catholics, Merionites, and Greek Orthodox communities are literally carrying the financial burden for the infra structure of Lebanon.  Hezbollah, backed by Iran and Syria, do not pay for electricity and other fees, and taxes.  The collectors are afraid to go down into the south to collect, so the burden falls on the central part of the country.   While, Iran and Syria, send weapons and financial help to the Hezbollah Militia. A well trained terrorist force.  There was an eerie calm while I was there this time.  Qatar had brokered the peace, obviously paid off government officials, and the people wait to see what is next.  We continue to support believers and works in Lebanon.  We are able to minister from house to house in the south, and have friends and allies that welcome us there.  Michel and Nuna Matar, TMM Lebanon, and Tent of Praise, have had a tremendous ministry there for some 18 years.  They have had a prayer meeting in their home every Wednesday night for this long.  Many people have been lead to the Lord and have gone on into ministry through this prayer meeting.  When God speaks of His beauty, he always refers to Lebanon.  It is my belief that the reason for the strife and years of war is because it is part of the Land of Promise.  Now with the South infested with hate for Israel, unless the Lord of Glory moves, Lebanon will become an Islamic State.  In scripture, we see the invasion of Israel coming from the North through Turkey from Russia.  Geographically this is directly North of Israel.  Turkey recently elected a Islamic Prime Minister.  Non the less, the Lord is moving on the believers and we saw many come to the Lord, be filled with the Holy Spirit, delivered, and healed.  The Kingdom Gospel is being preached.  The presence of the Lord is strong, and great conversions are being seen.  I will post pics in the next couple of days.  This is just a quick update.



Radical Islam tightens grip around Israel.
Thursday July 17th 2008, 6:21 pm
Filed under: Middle East

In the last two weeks another objective of radical Islam has been attained.  Radical Islam being defined as its objective the extinction in Israel and Christianity.  When I first began going to Lebanon in the mid 90’s the grafiti written on the bullet strewn walls of war torn Beirut said, “first the Saturday people then the Sunday people!”   One of my mentors over the years always said, “The beginning of a thing determines the end.”  The west is so naive to think that the Islamic beginnings are not rooted in spiritual darkness and violence.  Now  we have another country bordering Israel who’s objetive is to see Israel annihilated.  The Hezbollah Party, led by Hassan  Nassralla, backed by Iran,  has leveraged its way into the Lebanese Parliament to now have such a position that they will be able to control Lebanon by constant leverage of violence if their political will is not acted upon.  Sout Lebanon has beome virtually a militarized zone against Israel.  In 1998 I met with a Syrian Senator concerning water purification problems in his country.  After talking business, he wanted to talk about politics.  Politics and religion are inseparable in the Middle East,  They are intrinsically married to each other.  He told me that if it was not for the United States, Israel would dissolve like sugar in water.  I asked him if he knew how old the US was.  He said yes, about 200 years old.  My response was if the US is so young what has preserved Isarael for some 3,000 years. Being outnumbered by Arabs why are they still here.  Now, Israel is surrounded by her enemies.  The Lebanese government has acquiesed and settled for peace at any price.   Iran and Syria have so disrupted the Lebanese nation that the will to be free is no longer there.  The battle for Lebanon not only is strategic for surrounding Israel, but Lebanon is part of the promised land that Moses saw when the Lord took him up to view the promise.  When God speaks of His beauty in the scriptures He compares it to Lebanon.  She is called Israel’s sister.  Lebanon for years has been the gateway into the middle east.  Lebanese business men have help the west do business all overt the middle east for years.  The gospel, bibles, and literature have gone in through Lebanon for years.  Last week was a setback for Israel and the west, and now an army that the political west would not let Israel deal with Hezbollah, last year, has established itself in a most strategic place the border of South Lebanon.  Even though with the Syrian occupation during the civil war gone, the vacuum left has only embolden the radical terrorists, Hezbollah, and they have filled the vacuum and grew with its support from Iran and Syria where there influence has gained  control.  In a couple weeks I will be going back to Lebanon for my tenth ministry trip.  The brothers and sisters need our prayers and support.



Update from Lebanon
Tuesday June 24th 2008, 8:32 am
Filed under: Lebanon

Greetings from Lebanon.  Keith Curlee and Ben Ward travelled to Beirut June 16, 2008 and are seeing the Lord move in mighty ways.  They are staying with Michel and Nouna Matar and family in Broumana.  There are powerful meetings at the Tent of Praise (TOP) in Beirut — a place of praise and worship.  Check out the pictures below for a small taste.  Look for mp3s and videos soon!



Global Day of Prayer 2008 Photos
Thursday May 15th 2008, 6:17 pm
Filed under: Lebanon

Here are some photos from the Tent of Praise Lebanon’s Global Day of Prayer 2008 Event…