“Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever. Amen!” Ephesians 3:20-21
It’s “Duck Dynasty: The Last Call” as A&E is titling this last and final season. Our first episode aired March 21, 2012, and our series finale will air this Wednesday, March 29, 2017. Five years! Where has the time gone? Surreal doesn’t even begin to describe the ride we’ve experienced. My head and heart are so full of hundreds of stories and emotions that I want to share with you, but summing up this chapter of our lives in one article is going to be extremely difficult. No one could have predicted or remotely expected the impact that a normal American family (well, somewhat normal) could have on literally millions of people. Please understand that this is not a way to brag on our achievements. Quite the contrary. I am writing to show just what God has done through a bunch of people who found each other, committed to their spouses, fought through numerous hardships, disappointments and battles and continue to hold on tight to our hope in Jesus Christ.
When the very first producers came to visit us at Phil and Kay’s house in the spring of 2011 to discuss the possibility of this show, most of us were very open to it. However, Phil and Jase both had major reservations. Jase spoke up, “I’m just not sure how this is going to work. The reality television I know about thrives on drama, discord, fighting, lewd behavior and cursing. As Christians, we strive to live exactly the opposite.” The producers told us that they had seen enough on our previous series, “Benelli Presents: Duck Commander” on The Outdoor Channel to take a chance on us. After the producers left, we had a long family meeting discussing the pros and cons of this new venture. How would this change our lives? What if it actually was successful (1% of pilots make for a successful first season of television)? How will this effect our children on a daily basis? Will we be able to stick together as a family? And most of all, how can we stay true to our Christian values? This was going to take much dedication from each and every one of us. We decided to go for it. Phil prayed after our decision and asked God for wisdom as we moved forward. He also asked God to hold us accountable. I’ll never forget him saying, “Father, if you see that we are not using this opportunity for your glory, take it away.”
Wow, what a statement!
The above scripture is one I have been able to recite by heart for over 30 years. I actually learned it as a song in church youth group. However, it has never meant more to me than over the last five years. The most powerful way has been through my prayer life. I used to talk to God about things I was only aware about. That’s seems plausible, right? How can you talk to someone about something you have no indication of? Read that scripture again. It’s not our power. It’s His. We can’t even imagine what God can do in our lives. If we can’t imagine it, how can we even talk to Him about it? My prayers changed from, “God, fix this or that” and “help me with this and that” to “use me however you can” and “God, I’m open to whatever opportunities you send me, just keep me on track to glorify you”. God has no limits, so why was I limiting him? Not anymore. If God can do what he did with our crazy family, I can’t wait to see what he does next. It’s actually quite exciting!
From morning talk shows, to hosting awards shows, to presenting an award live at the CMT’s, to making our very own platinum-selling Christmas album (eek!), to filming episodes in beautiful Hawaii and Scotland, to finishing runner-up on Dancing with the Stars, to writing books, to walking red carpets, to designing clothing lines to encourage modesty and class, to launching a jewelry business to help women coming out of addiction and sex trafficking, to starting charities to promote adoption and help children born with cleft lip and palate, to adding 5 new family members (2 by adoption and 3 by marriage) to appearing in almost 12 million homes in one given night, to speaking in front of hundreds of thousands of people in the hopes they will give their lives to Christ. These are only a few of the things God has used for his glory through our family over the past 5 years.
No one could have predicted even one of these things.
But God knew all along.
Ephesians 2:8-10 says, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”
One last thing I want to say is “thank you”.
Thank you to our fans for watching us each week. Without you, there would be no Duck Dynasty.
Thank you for supporting us when we speak up for Christian values.
Thank you for supporting the Mia Moo Fund and ultimately cleft children born in the US.
Thank you for praying for our family.
On that initial day with the producers at Phil and Kay’s house, we gathered around Kay’s kitchen island with food covering every square inch, put our arms around each other and bowed our heads while Phil lead us in prayer. After the prayer, one of the producers asked, “Do you always do this, or is this special just for us?”. We laughed. Yes, we always do this. Yes, we always pray to our Almighty Creator before we eat. Yes, we eat together quite often. No, this is not a special occasion. He then said, “I think we might could use this in the episodes.”
The statement I most hear in my travels is, “Thank you for praying at the end of every episode.” But, you see, the cameras had nothing to do with that part of the show. We may have moved from the kitchen island to a set table with matching plates, matching cups (except Si’s) and tablecloths, but the fact that we pray before each and every meal is not staged, and no producer tells us what to say in those prayers. Thank you to our amazing on-set crew for loving us for these past five years and showing us respect for our values. We will truly miss you.
My last Thank You is to A&E. It was and continued to be their decision to show our family praying, and not just at mealtime but during weddings, when Mia was in the hospital and numerous other occasions. They took a big chance in today’s anti-Christian society to put that on national television and keep it there night after night, even after much controversy. You see, God used them for his glory also. Again, “more than all we can ask or imagine.”
“What will you do next?” is a question I am hearing a lot lately.
Romans 8:28 says, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”
Duck Dynasty: The Last Call may be what A&E is titling this end to an era, but we know that our final calling comes from God Almighty. So, I shrug my shoulders and respond, “whatever God calls us to do.”
Have a limitless week!
Catch the final episode of Duck Dynasty on A&E Wednesday, March 29th, 8pm CST!
For more information regarding the Mia Moo Fund or Missy's jewelry line, please visit: