Hip-hop star Kanye West made shockwaves when he began to hold his now-infamous "Sunday Services." What has been described by some as a "pop-up church" with lots of music and a little preaching sprinkled in has drawn vehement criticism.
I'm not really surprised about the criticism. Kanye has been known to spark controversy. Remember some of his antics? He said, "George Bush doesn't care about black people," interrupting Taylor Swift's award speech (I think you get the picture). So I wasn't surprised about Kanye drawing criticism for his professed faith in Christ.
Should we really be that surprised about Kanye's conversion? Let's be real—one of Kanye's early double-platinum singles was Jesus Walks. It didn't take a rocket scientist or a prophet for that matter to figure out even back then that Kanye had a calling on his life.
I remember when I first heard Jesus Walks. I was with one of my classmates, Calvin, from Fuller Theological Seminary. We were at his house in the San Fernando Valley outside talking. His son Ryan, very excited, walked up to us with his iPod (you remember those) and said, "Dad, you need to listen to this song!"
Calvin listened to the song. And then I listened to it. I remember sensing the presence of God on that song. Despite a few unnecessary profanities mixed in, I actually felt the anointing on Jesus Walks. I thought to myself then that this guy, whoever he was, was performing for the wrong audience. It wasn't until later I found out his name was Kanye West and that he was a hip-hop artist.
So, I guess I wasn't too surprised about Kanye's conversion. What did initially set me off guard was how upset a lot of church people—especially those with influence—seemed to be about Kanye's bold proclamations of faith. Kanye's declaration for Christ has drawn huge attention from the entertainment and non-Christian community alike.
I understand why non-church people are mad. It's like having someone play on your basketball team and they decide to leave your team and play for someone else's. I get it. What I couldn't understand was, why were church people so mad about Kanye getting saved? It just didn't make sense to me. And then some church people religiously said things like, "Well, I'm going to sit back and watch first before I celebrate or congratulate." This makes absolutely no sense to me.
Please pardon the analogy, but I kind of see Kanye like one of your relatives who gets saved—your Uncle Joe who had a drinking problem or your cousin June Bug who was "out in them streets." They go up to the altar and get saved and you celebrate and congratulate them. You recognize that because they are babes in Christ, unless they are discipled, Uncle Joe or June Bug will probably backslide. But you don't stand back with your arms folded with a wait-and-see attitude before you congratulate them for their conversion.
Instead, you celebrate their newly made confirmation for Christ and you believe the best for them. I think this is the attitude the body of Christ should take toward Kanye. Let's celebrate his conversion, congratulate him and believe God for the best.
As I considered the whole Kanye situation, the Lord reminded me of a prophetic word I administered at the beginning of 2019 at my "New Year? New You" conference. In the prophetic word, the Lord says that He is raising up people out of the world like Kanye and putting His Spirit on them to provoke His church to jealousy.
New Year, New You Conference Prophecy
Jan. 5, 2019
And God says, "I'm raising up people who have an ability to see and to perceive and to hear the Word of the Lord. I'm removing the cloak from off the eyes of the people. I'm going to cause your areas to shift from the inside out." For the Lord says, "It will be the people, the people of your community; the people, the parishioners; the people in the pew who will put pressure on the leadership to make the shift. There's a hunger that's burning on the inside of people and they're wanting to move away from the status quo. They're wanting to move away from traditional Bible stories with no practical application."
And the Lord says, "I'm going to shift the minds of the people. I'm stirring up a hunger in the people. It's the hunger of the people that's going to put pressure on the leadership to change. Many of the leaders in your city will find themselves becoming dissatisfied as they notice that there's no longer any grace on what they're doing and they'll cry out to Me and say, 'Oh Lord, what must I do to be saved?'"
For the Lord says, "They are seeking a salvation from old, tired ways and old, tired tricks and ways in which they use My Word to motivate people to do things for their own selfish interests. I'm causing even the leaders, many of those now in the forefront, to become dissatisfied with their own ways.
"In your community, I'm going to raise up an army and it's going to be an army of people. And this army is going to be a great offense. It's going to be a great offense to the local bodies because these people are going to be an army of people who are being raised up who did not grow up in the church, but they're going to get a lot of attention and a lot of notoriety."
And God says, "I am putting that attention on them. I am putting that notoriety on them because I'm going to provoke my people to jealousy. And as this army begins to rise up, there will be many who will come into conformity with what I'm doing because upon this army is going to rest a very strong prophetic grace. And this will be another way that you know that I am doing this: Many new prophets—not new to Me, but new to you—are going to rise up within your cities. And it's going to seem like they came from out of nowhere. And these prophets are going to rise up and they're going to speak things and they're going to declare things and you're going to see those things come to pass."
So, the Lord says, "Look and see My grace upon this people in a new way. And look and see as I rest My spirit upon the leadership in a whole new way. I am gathering people! I'm gathering people. I'm gathering My people for change!" says God.
Kyle T. Miller, a licensed and ordained prophet with Christian International's Apostolic Network founded by Bishop Bill Hamon, has been called to the marketplace as a musician, play producer and educator.
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