Faith Covenant Church

Faith Covenant Church

From The Desk of the Bishop...

"The Blessing of Holy Curiosity"


The Blessing of Holy Curiosity
Memory Verse:
"And when the LORD saw that he [Moses] turned aside to see, God called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said, Moses, Moses. And he said, Here am I."
Exodus 3: 4
This verse jumped out at me one day in my devotional time.
This was a destiny moment for Moses, a moment that all of heaven was observing with bated breath. This was the instant for which all of his life heretofore had been preparation. God had orchestrated the staging of this encounter down to the most minute details. No doubt, the Almighty had posted an angel at this one particular shrub from its germination up until this day of days to be sure that no desert windstorm would uproot it, that no hungry wild mountain goat would devour it.
The divine stage was set. This would be a moment that Moses would never forget; a calling that would be indelibly etched into his consciousness. Finally after centuries of waiting, the chosen deliverer had been born. After a lifetime of preparation, he who will be know as the "law-giver" is ushered onto the scene. The Glory of God alights on the bush. Moses chasing a stray lamb comes around an outcropping of rock into the mountain clearing noticing the burning bush as he rushes over to pick up the stray. The host of heaven watches in silence. It's time for God to speak.
But strangely, God draws out the dramatic moment a little further. He doesn't utter a word. He won't. Not until Moses turns aside to see what many men in their busyness, haste, or even in their fear of fire, might have missed -- the fact that although the bush is ablaze it is not being consumed. Moses turns aside...God speaks...The rest is history.
I believe God orchestrates moments of wonder in our lives, times at which He sets the stage to speak to us in extraordinary ways. I can't help but wonder how many of them we miss because we arrive at a phenomenon for which we have no rational explanation, but instead of "turning aside" to see how it can be. Instead of investigating to see if God is hiding somewhere in the mix, we continue on about our business. We haven't the time nor the inclination to "turn aside." We are lacking in what I call "Holy Curiosity." Maybe we even lack the powers of observation to realize that something supernatural is going on.
There are "burning bushes" in each of our lives, things that according to the laws of nature and logic should not exist. The doctor told some of us years ago that we wouldn't make it, or that we would have diminished capacity, yet we are here alive and more well than medical science can account for. We have been through fires that couldn't consume us. We have gone through deep waters, but didn't drown. We have had less and done more with it....Need I go on? Could it be that God has been trying to pique our "holy curiosity," that He has been trying to get our attention so that He can reveal our destiny.
The stage is set. Heaven is watching. Destiny awaits. Will you "turn aside" today to see what God is saying?
LORD, forgive me for the times that I have been too busy to notice or investigate the "burning bush." Open my eyes, Dear LORD. Give me a hearing ear, and an understanding heart. Deliver me from being so busy or jaded that I continue about my business when destiny is trying to call me. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
Thoughts for your journal:
1. As you look back over the last year or two, are there any "burning bushes" (sacred moments) that you failed to take time to consider?
2. In light of this devotional thought, what changes might you make in how you look at and approach life?
Prayer Focus:
  • Pray that God will continue His cleansing work in your life and in the church.
  • Pray that God will cause you to be more sensitive to His movement in your life and to His voice.
  • Pray that God will send a spirit of revival and refreshing into our church as never before.
For our Atlanta family, let's come to church tomorrow expecting nothing less than the miraculous hand of God in our midst!  Remember - Altar Prayer & Intercession at 9: 30 a.m., Morning Worship at 11: 30 a.m., Altar Prayer at 5:00 p.m. & Sunday Night Alive at 6 p.m. with Special Guest, Pastor Hart Ramsey of Dothan, Alabama!!!
Love and Blessings,
Pastor Moore


"When God Stops Listening"


Memory Verse :
"And she said, The Philistines be upon thee, Samson. And he awoke out of his sleep, and said, I will go out as at other times before, and shake myself. And he wist [knew] not that the LORD was departed from him."
-- Judges 16: 20
This is one of the most heartbreaking and tragic verses in the entire Old Testament. Samson "wist not," he did not know that the that the LORD was no longer with him as He had been in the past. He awoke from his sleep thinking that God was with him only to find that he was alone and powerless before his enemy. Samson didn't know...
He apparently didn't know the consequences of having betrayed his calling in God. He didn't appreciate the significance of having been set apart to God from birth. He took his awesome, God-given strength for granted, thinking that it was his own and could be used as he pleased. And because he didn't know, he allowed himself to be robbed of the sign of his special consecration to the Lord, his hair. The heartrending consequences of his indiscretion? He who had been the hero of Israel ended up bald, blind, and bound -- shamed before the very adversaries he had effortlessly defeated in the past.
Samson didn't know that he was sleeping with the enemy. The most dangerous enemy is not the one from outside. We can build defenses against those enemies from with-out. What of the enemies within? Samson was sleeping with the agent of his own destruction. The LORD's champion lays asleep and helpless in the arms of a treacherous paramour. Countless men and women of destiny have been brought low by becoming intimate with the wrong people. But can we go a little deeper? It is possible to "sleep with the enemy" alone and in a single bed. Sometimes my greatest enemy is "in-a-me." How often we blame others, or the devil for things that we have brought upon ourselves. There can be no deliverance in our lives as long as we play the "victim card" and refuse to take responsibility for our own sins and failures.
Samson didn't know that he was sleeping too long. I have at times been kidded and at other times chided by friends and loved ones for a tendency to sleep behind the wheel of a car. I confess (and I hope not to hear this again) that there have been times in the past when I have been so tired that when I arrived home, I couldn't remember the drive. God has been awfully good to me. At times when I have dozed off, He never let me sleep too long. He has always awakened me before I could go off the road or into oncoming traffic. Merciful God. Disaster results from sleeping too long at the wrong time. As in the natural, so it is in the spiritual. Destinies are devastated, ministries are undermined, entire churches have been shipwrecked because people "sleep" through warning after warning from on high. One preacher preached, "Lord, Shake Me, Wake Me, Don't Let Me Sleep Too Late!"
Perhaps the most depressing image in this verse is that of Samson shaking himself as he had at other times, but to no avail. He was "going through the motions," doing what had worked before only to find that it was in vain. Can you imagine the smirks on the faces of the Philistine soldiers as this man who had been such a powerhouse now shakes himself but with no results? Could it be that Samson thought that his strength would come from how he moved or positioned himself before the enemy? He had reduced the favor of God down to a formula: "I will go out as at other times before, and shake myself."
This verse, Samson's dismal downfall, is enough in and of itself to evoke tears. But I hope you know as I do, that this verse is not just a commentary on Samson's folly. Its about us too. Tragically, the people of God throughout history and even up till now have too often relived and repeated Samson's mistakes -- betraying our destiny by following our own fleshly agendas, sleeping with the enemy, sleeping too long, and going through meaningless motions thinking that God is somehow obligated to continue to bless our mess. Paul speaks of the danger of " having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof..." (2 Timothy 3: 5). Going through the motions with God...
Did you know that it is possible, through our own folly and disobedience to find ourselves in a place where praying is pointless and even fasting is futile? Business as usual becomes no longer acceptable with God! Sometimes we take the grace of God for granted, and feel that because He has favored us in the past, He will continue to strive with us. Not so. The Lord reminded me last night and this morning -- from two poignant examples from His dealings with His chosen people -- that God can lose patience with our "going through the motions" devoid of true obedience, repentance or amendment of our ways.
In Isaiah, the LORD speaks to His people in harsh terms: "Stop bringing meaningless offerings! Your incense [prayer] is detestable to Me...I cannot bear your evil assemblies...When you spread out your hands in prayer, I will hide My eyes from you; even if you offer many prayers, I will not listen. Your hands are full of blood" (Isaiah 1: 13, 15, NIV). The people of Israel felt that they could manipulate God with their fasting, prayer and offerings. But God was not impressed. On the contrary, He says, "I will hide My eyes from you..." The reason? Their fasting, prayer, and giving was from sinful, disobedient, and unrepentant hearts. It was just "going through the motions." Fasting and prayer with unchanged hearts are nothing more than religious "witchcraft" -- charms, spells or incantations to control the heavens! And so it is even today.
We can't fool God. We can only deceive ourselves. In Jeremiah, God warns against that kind of self-deception when He says,
"Trust ye not in lying words, saying, the temple of the LORD, The temple of the LORD, the temple of the LORD are these....But go ye now unto my place which was in Shiloh, where I set my name at the first, and see what I did to it for the wickedness of my people Israel. And now, because you have done all these works, saith the LORD, and I spake unto you, rising up early and speaking , but ye heard not; and I called you, but you answered not....Therefore pray not thou for this people, neither lift up cry nor prayer for them, neither make intercession to me: for I will not hear thee" (Jeremiah 7: 4, 12-13, 16).
False prophets were telling Israel -- just as false teachers are telling people today -- that God would not send destruction and judgment for their sins because of the church (temple) to which they belonged. Because God had wrought miraculous deliverance in the past (2 Kings 19: 32-36), they felt that He was obliged to again overlook their ongoing rebellion against Him. Isn't it amazing how people even today, feel as if they can tie God down to one place, one people, one pulpit? The people of Jeremiah's time were vainly going about saying, "This is the temple of the LORD." In other words, "God has to overlook our sinful behavior because His house is here."
God's response to their religious arrogance must have been shocking. He invited them to another place where His name had also been attached, ancient Shiloh. Jeremiah's listeners immediately understood what God was saying. Shiloh lay in ruins. It had been destroyed by the Philistines -- God's judgment upon the wickedness of His people. In other words, God was saying that His name having been invoked upon a place was no deterrent to His judgment coming because of sin and disobedience. Even more shocking, even more disturbing is the injunction that the Lord places in Jeremiah 7: 16 against prayer and intercession. The Almighty says that He will no longer hear prayers on behalf of this proud and rebellious people. His ears are closed. He is no longer listening. In such a case, to pray, to cry, to intercede -- all of these are just meaningless "motions" based on empty emotions.
Ancient lore? Irrelevant today for New Testament believers? I think not. Jesus on more than one occasion spoke of the danger of going through the motions -- "...They think that they will be heard for their much speaking"...."Not everyone that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven"...."This people draweth nigh unto Me with their mouth...but their heart is far from me" (Matthew 6: 7; 7: 21; 15: 8). Is there a more catastrophic waste of time than fasting, praying, giving or worshipping without obedience and personal transformation? What could be worse than doing all the right religious 'gyrations," only to find that God has stopped listening?
God, deliver us from "going through the motions," thinking that because we are "shaking ourselves" like Samson, God is with us. May we determine today that we will not waste time and energy "playing church." Let us make a solemn commitment that we will not engage in pointless prayers and futile fasting in the face of our own disobedience, but rather that we will truly amend our ways and to 'seek the Lord while He may be found.' No more unheard prayers!
Thoughts for your Journal :
1. In what (if any) ways have you used prayer, fasting, giving, worship or service as "good luck charms" to manipulate God?
2. What areas are you being called to revisit and repent of or come into proper alignment in?
3. In what ways have you been guilty of putting God in a box -- as to what you feel He is obliged to do?
Prayer Focus for Today :
  • Lord, help me to realize that Your Spirit will not always strive with man. Forgive me for using my acts of consecration as acts of manipulation. Search me, try me and change!
Bible Reading Plan :
  • Proverbs 8
  • Isaiah 1
  • Jeremiah 7
  • Matthew 7
Blessings in all you do,
Bishop Mark Moore


"Lord, I'll Go For You!"


Lord, I'll Go for You!
Memory Verse:
"Also I heard the voice of the LORD, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me." -- Isaiah 6: 8
Over the past couple of days we have been dealing with commitment from the standpoint of Isaiah 6. We have discovered that only when we are fully committed to grow and fully committed to give ourselves completely, are we fully ready to move to the next step -- ready to go for Him as ambassadors of God's Word and of His Love.
And so, we now stand with the prophet Isaiah on the brink of destiny as he answers the call of God and says, "Here am I; send me." In a few short moments in the glory of God, he has been transformed and has fully committed himself to God. Now he stands ready to be sent.
I was meditating on God's call to Isaiah, and I notice several peculiarities:
  • God's call -- "Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?" -- offers no information as to where the Almighty intends to send His volunteer.
  • God's call offers no insight as to whom He is sending His volunteer to -- will they be foreign or local? hostile or friendly? far nor near?
  • God's call gives no hint as to a job description or title.
  • God's call makes no reference to a compensation or retirement plan.
Who in their right mind would answer a call like this? A man who has grown in faith to the point of being able to say, "I trust God that He will do right by me no matter what!" And one who has given himself totally over to the Master to the point of saying, "I am not my own; He can use me as He sees fit."
So easy to say. So hard to do. So necessary. I believe that each of us is called at some point in our lives to an encounter with destiny, perhaps a once in a lifetime encounter. We will be challenged by God -- "Can I send you?" What will we say? Will we say, "Lord, can you give me a little more detail about this assignment; can I pray a while on it?" Or will we say, "Lord, I don't care where you send me -- be it near or far; I don't care to whom you send me; I don't care what you ask of me to do or if a title comes with it or glory; I say here and now, that as long as I know that it is You, my answer is yes, unconditionally!"
When we arrive at that point, we experience the truest meaning of abundant life. It seems as if scales fall off our eyes. The sun shines brighter, the world takes on a greater beauty and grandeur than we had ever before noticed. And we seem more alive to it. In fact it seems as if we are only now truly alive. When we arrive at that point of full surrender, we are undergirded by a joy that makes the attendant trials and persecutions bearable.
I am reminded of the words of this old hymn we used to sing:
If Jesus Goes With Me
It may be in the valley, where countless dangers hide;
It may be in the sunshine that I, in peace, abide;
But this one thing I know -- if it be dark or fair,
If Jesus is with me, I'll go anywhere!
If Jesus goes with me, I'll go anywhere!
'Tis heaven to me, where'er I may be, if He is there!
I count it a privilege here, His cross to bear,
If Jesus goes with me, I'll go anywhere!
It is not mine to question the judgment of my Lord,
It is but mine to follow the leadings of His Word;
But if to go or stay, or whether here or there,
I'll be, with my Savior, content anywhere!
-- Charles A. Miles (1908)
Lord, I'll go for you!
Thoughts for your journal:
1. Reflect on what it really means to be willing to "go" for the Lord. Are there areas in your life where you have put off obeying His call because of the need to grow more or to give Him more of yourself?
2. Ask the Lord to show you any remaining areas of unforgiveness, bitterness, or other sins or hindrances that you have yet to fully place before Him.
Prayer Focus:
  • Pray as this fast draws to an end, that you will never go back to "business as usual" in your walk with Him.
  • Pray for a mighty outpouring of the Holy Ghost with signs following at church.
Final thought:
"Jesus said to His followers, 'Whosoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock' (Matt. 7:24) You have heard His word, you have obeyed. And you are victorious!"
-- Jentezen Franklin
I want to thank you for joining me on this journey of faith. Thank you so much for every praise report and prayer request. You don't know what an impact you have had on me. I am keeping your name on my prayer list. Let's commit today that we will hold on to the horns of the altar as never before in this year! Can we be partners in prayer?
I will look forward to continuing devotions as I am able.
Expect a mighty move of God on tomorrow at Church!  I will be preaching in the morning, and Prophet Jamil Willis will be ministering tomorrow evening in Sunday Night Alive! Remember too that tomorrow is the day that we are to bring our bills/debts (copies only please) to church to be prayed over.  Also, continue to pray about how you can bless the Work of God financially with an Impact Seed or First Fruit Offering, as we conclude this mixed with prayer and fasting makes for powerful results! Put God to the test. Think what a blessing we would be to the work of God if we gave sacrificially on one accord.
Love and Blessings,
Bishop Mark Moore


Lord, I'll Grow and Give For You! Part II


Lord, I'll Grow and Give for You! Part II
Memory Verse:
"Also I heard the voice of the LORD, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me." -- Isaiah 6: 8
After Isaiah committed to grow ("Woe is me..."); after he fully committed to give himself ("Here am I..."); he finally was ready to go ("Send me."). I think this is a biblical pattern for leadership development. In order to become effective leaders in the Kingdom of God, we must strive for mastery in each of these areas -- we must grow in the Lord, and His Word. We must fully give our very lives to the cause of Christ, being willing to make any sacrifice He desires. Only then are we ready to move to the next step, ready to go for Him as ambassadors of His Word and of His Love.
I don't want to belabor the point; but I was reflecting about how many ministerial shipwrecks would be avoided, if only this generation of ministry would heed this message -- "Called" doesn't mean chosen or commissioned! Or to say it another way, just because the Lord has called you, doesn't mean that He is ready to send you yet. If you go before you grow, it is a sure recipe for disaster. One who is unbroken, un-mentored, undisciplined, and uncorrected is unready to be in charge of others. I don't know how many are even taking the time to read these words today, but I wish I could share this message with all ministers and "wanna-be" leaders... I know what it is to be called and anxious to go, to get out and be about fulfilling my call. And there is much that a newly called minister can and should be busy doing in the local assembly -- where he/she can be supervised and mentored. That season of mentoring and correction, even sometimes painful or embarrassing correction, makes all the difference between being "called" and being "chosen."
As I look back through the lenses of almost 27 years in full-time ministry, I am so glad that I was not allowed back then, to do all that I thought myself capable of. I thought that I was ready for a lot of things that I really wasn't ready for...Thank God for more experienced wiser voices that told me, "You're not ready for that, wait on God." At the time, I sometimes thought that I was just being held back -- to be honest, even by God, who didn't let me go when and where I wanted to. I can see now that if I had been released to do what I thought I could, it would have been disastrous, not only for me, but for all involved. You've gotta grow before you go!
Just as important as allowing God to grow us as ministers/leaders is coming to the place of totally giving ourselves to God -- no strings, and nothing withheld. Brothers and Sisters, that is far easier said than done. When I truly give myself to God, no commitment that He would ask is too much for me. When I really give myself to God, it revolutionizes the order of everything else. If I am a head of household, it radically transforms my family time -- sometimes family-time must revolve around serving God time! Can you imagine the priests and prophets of old telling the Lord, "Sorry, Lord, but I can't make it out tonight, I gotta get the little ones in bed..."? No, the way you raise a generation of "priests and prophets" is you bring them along with you and teach them the commitment that is involved in following the call of God! When they are small, put them to sleep in church -- wasn't it little Samuel who first learned to hear the voice of the Lord, as a child sleeping at the house of God? Take them out and feed them at church(not in the sanctuary). Teach them to love and fear the Lord at church. Teach them how to respect adults, and treat others at church...I promise you, it will pay off in rich dividends! If they learn these lessons at an early age in church, they will carry them far in life.
I credit my upbringing in church with who I am today. Church and serving the Lord was our whole life! I used to actually feel sorry for my neighborhood playmates and classmates because their life appeared so two dimensional and dull -- school and home. We had such a richer world -- school, home, and church! Church is where all our best friends were. Church is where our Dad worked and loved to be; and consequently, because he and Mom took us with them, so did we. Church was where we had laughter and affirmation. Church is where we saw God at work. I and my wife are witnesses, that if you raise your children right, going to church will never be a punishment; being left home from church will seem like punishment! Although, our parents took time with us and played with us and took us many places outside church too, Church and serving the Lord, was the center of our universe! It became a part of our very identity,we were a family called to serve the Lord and His people...And that didn't keep us from succeeding at school or in other activities (as long as they didn't interfere with our commitment to God). This little "church-boy" graduated high school with honors, and went right from the church pew to one of the nation's elite colleges -- Harvard College -- again, graduating with honors. I lay any successes I have achieved at the feet of my dear parents who gave themselves and their children to God, and had an undying commitment that said, "As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord."
Because I came from a lifestyle of giving to the Lord -- even of giving up all for Him -- I have also been privileged to see the kinds of rewards that God gives to those who truly step out in faith and leave all...I don't want to ride this "hobby horse" into the ground, but just let me say, if you want to play in God's "Big Leagues," you "gotta pay to play" -- Jesus said, "Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for My sake and the gospel's, the same shall save it" (Mark 8: 34, 35). The old preacher taught us, "if you're going to teach faith, you've gotta live faith." He said that in context of our giving in the offering, but it has wider application to be sure. In other words, don't get up and preach commitment then show by your actions, that you aren't really committed! Folks, this is applicable not just for ministers/leaders, but for all who want to live for God and be able and available to go when and where He sends. Until you are willing to give your all, you aren't ready to be sent!
Remember: 1) You gotta grow before you go! 2) You gotta give (your whole self) before you go.
Thoughts for your journal:
1. In light of the last couple of "Manna Messages" are there any areas that come to mind where God might be trying to grow you in preparation for what He wants to do in your future? Have you been resistant to His correction in any areas? What are you going to do to rectify it?
2. In what ways has either your upbringing or your current family situation helped or limited your ability/willingness to give yourself to the Lord?
Prayer Focus:
  • Pray for the Lord help you to grow and give in 2011 in such a way that this year you will see the difference in your life and ministry.
  • Pray for a mighty outpouring of the Holy Ghost with signs following this weekend at church.
Prayer/Worship Opportunities this Weekend:
Today and Saturday - Noon Prayer
Tonight - Meet me for Impact Crusade Revival at 7:30 p.m. as together we conclude our Impact Consecration.
Sunday Morning - Altar Prayer and Intercession at 9:30 a.m.
Call friends and family today to join you at church for a Holy Ghost Explosion all day Sunday!!
Final thought:
Congratulations on the commitment and tenacity that has brought you this far. You have been changed in ways that will only be fully revealed in days and weeks to come! One writer called fasting, "the private discipline that brings public rewards" (Jenetzen Franklin). Please know that God is not through blessing you as a result of having chosen to honor Him in this consecration!
Please continue to consider and pray about how you can bless your church financially as we conclude this mixed with prayer and fasting makes for powerful results! Put God to the test. Think also, what a blessing we can be to the work of God if we gave sacrificially on one accord. We should sow a seed toward the church fulfilling it's vision debt free. It might also be the very seed that moves you toward being debt free.
Finally, if it is alright with you, I am going to maintain this Manna Mailing list, and will try to send Manna from time to time to bless you! I have enjoyed this journey with you!
Love and Blessings,
Bishop Moore



Lord I'll Give For You


Lord, I'll Give for You!
"Also I heard the voice of the LORD, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me." -- Isaiah 6: 8
Isaiah not only made a commitment to grow as we have already discussed, but he also made the commitment to give. A commitment to grow and a commitment to give should always precede the commitment to go.
How did he commit to give? I submit to you that when he said "Here am I..." he gave God the greatest gift that anyone can give -- himself. Many Christians, even those who are generous in tithe and offerings, never get around to giving the greatest gift of all, themselves. In 2 Corinthians 8: 5, Saint Paul commends the Macedonian church who even though they themselves were in dire straits of poverty and affliction gave lavishly to bless others. The key to their being able to give beyond their own ability? They "...first gave their own selves to the Lord."
We modern Christians tend either to use money as a substitute or as an excuse. Those who have money and don't mind using it, often throw money out as a substitute for giving ourselves. We send money where we ourselves won't or don't want to go. Sometimes as parents we lavish our children with gifts in order to pacify them, when in reality they need our attention (undivided, undistracted attention) far more than they need the latest expensive gadget or sneaker. We throw money at missions -- and giving to missions is extremely important -- so that we can rest easy knowing that we never have to get our hands dirty by going on a missions trip. What if God wants some of us, not just to send our money overseas, but to take it overseas? We throw money at the church projects -- and that's important -- so that we won't be expected to actually show up and roll up our sleeves and go to work. The point is God doesn't just want your money, He wants all of you. He wants someone who will say "Here am I," not "I gave at the office."
We also use money as an excuse for not doing the Will of God. A lot of us echo the words of Peter at the Temple gate looking at the man in need of healing, "Silver and gold have I none..." (Acts 3: 6). But of course we never take it to the next level of saying, "...but such as I have give I unto thee..." Instead, we rest on our lack of money as our alibi for never venturing forth into our divine destiny, for never making the difference we are called to make in the world. Lack of money as an excuse makes an appearance almost everywhere. We blame lack of money for not furthering our education. We blame it for not being a better spouse, or parent. We blame it for not pursuing our ministry as we should. Forgetting all the while, that we have within us a power greater than the power of silver or gold. If we can't give money, we can always give of ourselves. If we don't have money, that doesn't mean that we can't begin to walk toward our has a way of following vision. Vision never follows money.
Isaiah gave God himself. When we give ourselves, really give ourselves to God, He has our everything. There is nothing that I have that I will hide or withhold from Him when I have truly given myself. That is the most frightening of all commitments. It will cost me everything, even my life. Oh, but life from that moment will become a glorious adventure as I trust God in and for all things. Let's eavesdrop on a conversation between Jesus Christ and one of his disciples, that rugged, brash fisherman Simon Peter:
"Then Peter began to say to Him, 'Lo, we have left all and have followed Thee.'
And Jesus answered and said, Verily I say unto you, 'There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, and lands, for My sake and the gospel's,
But he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time houses and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands,with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life.'" -- Mark 10: 28-30
No matter how you wish to interpret this, it is an exciting and fulfilling promise! God will never let us be better to Him than He is to us! Yes, there will be persecution; there will be pain along the way, but there will also be unspeakable joy and indescribable blessing that goes along with the submitted life.
LORD, help us to be committed to grow and give even before we attempt to commit to go.
Thoughts for your journal:
1. In what areas of your life have you either used money as a substitute or as an excuse in place of giving yourself?
2. List ways in which you can be more giving?
Prayer Focus:
  • Pray for the Lord will enable you to be more giving in every way in 2012.
  • Pray for a mighty outpouring of the Holy Ghost with signs following tonight and tomorrow at church.
Remember to take advantage of the corporate prayer/worship opportunities:
Today: 12 Noon Prayer
Tonight and Tomorrow -- Impact Crusade Revival - I will be preaching at 7:30 nightly! Please bring someone!!!
Final thought:
Although the fast is almost over, this is no time to relax your vigilance. Stay in touch with accountability partners; keep each other encouraged.
Start thinking now of how you can bless your church financially as we conclude this mixed with prayer and fasting makes for powerful results! Put God to the test. Think also, what a blessing we can be to the work of God if for once we gave sacrificially on one accord. We should sow a seed toward the church vision being fulfilled in all areas!
Love and Blessings,


Renovate For Growth!


Renovate For Growth!
Memory Verses :
"Enlarge the place of thy tent, and let them stretch forth the curtains of thine habitations: spare not, lengthen thy cords, and strengthen thy stakes;
For thou shalt break forth on the right hand and on the left; and thy seed shall inherit the Gentiles, and make the desolate cities to be inhabited."
-- Isaiah 54: 2 - 3
Most people renovate and enlarge as a result of growth. In our text today, Israel is instructed to renovate and enlarge in anticipation of growth. When I read these verses, I think of how a pregnant woman (along with her husband) prepares the home for the arrival of a new family member. Except in this case there is no pregnancy, just a promise.
I am reminded of the story that is told concerning the healing ministry of the late Smith Wigglesworth, a powerful British evangelist of the early 20th century. Wigglesworth was known as a man of great faith whose methods were sometimes unorthodox, yet he saw many miracles. In one instance Wigglesworth prayed for a man with no feet. After praying, the evangelist told the man to go to the local boot maker and buy some shoes. Over the boot maker's objections, the man told him to put shoes on his stumps. When the boot maker went to put the shoes on the stumps, brand new lower legs and feet appeared to fit into the shoes, and the man could walk again. I wonder what size shoes the footless man ordered. When he was rolled into the shoe shop, he had a promise, but no growth. Growth only came as a result of preparing for the promise before he could see any evidence of it. His faith became his evidence! (Hebrews 11: 1).
And so it is in our text. The Lord speaks an incredible promise into an impossible situation. He gives instructions to a woman who is not only barren, but widowed. He tells her to do a "home renovation," enlarging her dwelling place to accommodate miraculous growth. He promises her that He is about to "flip the script;" that she who has been bereaved, barren, exiled and rejected shall soon have more children than the wife who has been in a fruitful marriage all along (Isaiah 54: 1, 3). An incredible promise for an impossible situation. But is it practical? Does it make sense? Wouldn't it make more sense to hold off on the expansion project until she is again married and with child? Or at least engaged to be married?
The barren woman in the text represents exiled Israel. But I suspect that she also represents you and I at certain points in our lives, as we struggle to come to grips with God's incredible promises for our impossible situations. The first lesson we must learn is that God's promises and processes may not always be practical from our point of view. "His ways are not our ways..." We say, "I'll believe it when I see it." He says, "You'll see it when you believe it." We say, "I'll expand when the growth comes." He says, "The growth will come when you expand." We say, "I can't afford to tithe or to sow extravagantly." He says, "You can't afford not to tithe and sow extravagantly." His way is not practical, but it is proven. His word never falls to the ground. His instructions, when followed, always bring the desired results.
So then, what are His instructions? What is the Lord saying to us today?
A. Praise Him for the promise before you see the provision! "Sing O barren woman...burst into song, shout for joy" (Isaiah 54: 1 NIV). In the Near East, barrenness was considered a disgrace, a cause for embarrassment. What a place from which to praise! The challenge to us today is can we praise even in our place of disgrace? Can you praise even out of your brokenness and embarrassment?
B. Enlarge and renovate your life before the promise comes to fruition! "Enlarge the place of your tent, stretch your tent curtains wide, do not hold back; lengthen your cords, strengthen your stakes" (Isaiah 54: 2 NIV). In other words, we are called to start "living large" (mentally and spiritually) before we become "large." Our thinking needs to change before our address changes. My grandfather used to say "You have to start the way you expect to end." Some churches never grow beyond a certain number because they stay stuck in a small church mentality -- doing things the way a small, struggling church would do it. Some people never grow to their potential because they allow themselves to become stagnant, stuck in a comfort zone. I believe that God is calling us to reinvent ourselves; to change our paradigm. He is calling us to "renovate for growth." If we will do the renovation, He will send the augmentation!
Thoughts for your Journal :
1. Renovation often requires demolition. What areas of your life is the Holy Spirit saying need to be removed to make room for the growth that God is promising?
2. Take a few minutes and prayerfully write down the answers to the following questions: What has God promised you? What has God promised Faith Covenant (in your understanding)? Take time today to praise Him for those promises.
Prayer Focus for Today :
  • Lord, open the 'womb' of FCC, so that she may bring forth spiritual children! Lord, give us fruit that will remain. Father, help us a church to enlarge our 'tent' so that we will be ready for the Harvest that You have promised.
Prayer and Worship Opportunities:
M - F: Noon Prayers
Thursday/Friday: Impact Crusade Revival Services Nightly - Bish. Kevin Legette and Bish. Marc House, Speakers.
Saturday: Noon Prayer and Healing Service
Sunday: 9:30 - Altar Prayer and Intercession
            11:30 - Morning Worship
             5:00 - Prayer and Intercession
             6:00 - Sunday Night Alive w/Pastor Hart Ramsey of Dothan, AL
Bible Reading Plan :
  • Proverbs 26
  • Isaiah 43: 1-7
  • Isaiah 54
Blessings in all you do,
Pastor Mark Moore


Persistence in Prayer: "Give Him No Rest!"


Memory Verses :
"I have set watchmen upon thy walls, O Jerusalem, which shall never hold their peace day nor night: ye that make mention of the LORD, keep not silence,
And give Him no rest, till He establish, and till He make Jerusalem a praise in the earth."
-- Isaiah 62: 6, 7
I for one, struggle with this whole issue of persistence in prayer. To keep asking God for the same thing over and over, seems to me to be an insult to Divine Intelligence and an admission of my own lack of faith. The Scripture clearly teaches that God knows what we have need of before we even ask (Matthew 6: 8), and that if we pray in faith we can expect even mountains to be removed (Mark 11: 22 - 24). I have heard and read leading proponents of the 'faith movement' who seem to agree with me. They say that if you truly believe God, pray and ask for what you will and don't ask any more, but instead just thank Him for having already done it.
Why then, does it seem as if we are enjoined time and time again in scripture to keep persistently praying about unanswered petitions? In Luke 18: 1 - 8, the Lord goes as far as to compare the believer's perseverance in prayer to the persistence of a widow petitioning and unjust judge. The lesson seems to be that if an unworthy judge -- one who feels no constraint of right or wrong -- is compelled by persistence to deal justly with a helpless individual, how much more will our Righteous God answer the persistent prayers of His children! The entire purpose of the parable is to teach us to pray without giving up (Luke 18: 1).
Praying without giving up, persistent prayer. Frankly, I wrestle with it because this kind of importunate prayer brings to mind the unrelenting appeals of a whining, spoiled child determined to get his way at all costs. Today's text from Isaiah, however, permanently dispels that image. For here we see why persistence in prayer is a pleasing thing to God.
God says, "I have set watchmen upon thy walls...which shall never hold their peace..."
These prophetic watchmen have been stationed on the walls for the primary purpose of waiting and watching for evidence of the Lord's return to and restoration of Zion (Isaiah 52: 8 - 9), but here in our text they are given two other specific and essential activities: a. they are to allow themselves no rest ( "...keep not silence...") as they continually cry out for the restoration of Jerusalem; and, b. they are to give God no rest until He establishes and makes Jerusalem a "praise" in the earth.


As I read this text, a light bulb comes on and I realize that persistent prayer is not about "twisting God's arm" to get Him to do something that He doesn't want to do; it is all about coming to an ultimate level of agreement with His "passionate" intent. We persistently pray for what we already know God has promised to do (Isaiah 62: 1 - 4). In so doing, we demonstrate to God that we desire Him to do a thing as much as He desires to do it. Two simple, perhaps even silly examples come to mind:
First example. I still remember several years ago, my daughter Sharon's 11th birthday. Her sole birthday request was for a family outing to Six Flags Over Georgia, the famous amusement park. With game faces, rumbling stomachs, and aching heads her mom and I (along with her 2 brothers) strapped ourselves into "thrill" ride after "thrill" ride. Several times as we waited warily for a ride to begin, our teenaged ride-operator would amuse himself/herself by challenging all of us that if we were really ready for the "fun" to begin, we needed to shout our "enthusiasm." Although in each instance my shouts lacked the conviction of the younger riders, the general idea being communicated was clear -- the ride-operators wanted us to demonstrate that we indeed wanted them to do what they all along intended to do, start the ride.
Second example -- this one nearer to my heart. In the African American preaching tradition, it is not uncommon to hear preachers elicit a desired audience response with words like -- "Somebody tell me to go ahead!" or "I wish someone would tell me to preach!" I am guilty of doing this, so let me speak for myself. Without exception, every time that I have said this, I already fully intended to "preach." But I have found that the entire experience is immensely more satisfying for all involved when the congregation demonstrates that they want to hear what I came to say as much as I want to say it. In fact, I will venture further to say that my ability to preach is magnified and enhanced by the excited, vocal agreement of the congregation.
It is from this perspective then, that we come to appreciate the value of persevering, persistent prayer. God is inviting us to labor with Him in the manifestation of His promise in our lives. What an opportunity! We are buckled in for the ride of our lives, but before it can start, God challenges us to show Him that we are as ready for the thrill of fulfilled purpose as He is. Do we truly long for transformation and restoration, or are we just going through the motions? He already knows, what we often fail to discern or admit, the real state of our ardor toward Him.
And so when I read these verses from Isaiah, I am convicted anew by the divine invitation to demonstrate the intensity of my desire for God through my consistency and fervency in prayer. Maybe the image of a determined child coming to his parent is not so far from the mark. No one is more shamelessly relentless than a child with a promise from her parent. A child with a promise is impassioned to the point of pressing beyond his own weariness; he doesn't "keep silence." A child with a promise is emboldened to the point of giving her parent "no rest."
Today, we are the heirs to great and precious promises from our Father. Will you come into agreement with His desire to fulfill His promises in your life? Are you childlike enough to continually cry out to Him? Are you determined enough to "give Him no rest"? Jesus said, "...unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven" (Matthew 18: 2, NIV). Well, since He put it that way, I think that I will accept my new role as "God's spoiled brat." I will "give Him no rest" until I experience the transformation and restoration that He has promised! Will you join me?
Thoughts for your Journal :
1. Are there any promises that God has yet to fulfill in your life because your desire and His intentions are not in agreement?
2. If the "proof of desire is in pursuit" what does your pursuit of the things of God say about your level of passion for the things of God.
3. In what area are you being challenged today to be shamelessly persistent in prayer?
Prayer Focus for Today :
  • Lord, teach me to have a childlike obsession with seeking and crying out continually for everything You have promised me. Father, forgive me for the many time that I have "fainted" (given up) concerning things that I know You promised me!
Bible Reading Plan :
  • Proverbs 30
  • Isaiah 62
  • Luke 18
Prayer and Worship Opportunities:
  • Monday - Friday  Noon Prayer
  • Wednesday Morning Glory Prayer - 5:30 a.m.
  • Thursday/Friday - Impact Crusade Revival - Bishop Kevin Legette and Bishop Marc House
  • Saturday - Noon Prayer and Healing
Blessings in all you do,
Bishop Mark Moore


"To Death"


Commitment: "To Death"
Today I want to share from a pastoral "E-pistle" that I wrote some years ago. I hope you are challenged and blessed by these musings from a pastor's heart...


When I was growing up, it was fairly common to hear people say something like this: "I love you to death." It was a figurative way of expressing deep and abiding affection, a way of saying, "I really mean it, when I tell you that I love you." Like many popular expressions that fall into disuse, you don't hear those words as much any more. Maybe that is a reflection of the world in which we live. People love, but not quite that deeply. Few people love anything or anybody "to death" anymore. In fact most marriages are entered into with no thought of permanence. I wouldn't be surprised if in the next few years the words, "Till Death Do Us Part" are dropped from the wedding vows entirely.



Anymore, loyalty has become a lost concept. Most people nowadays go through a parade of jobs, homes, cars, relationships, and even churches in a lifetime. We have become so "consumer minded" that we evaluate everything we are involved in strictly in terms of "what is in it for me?" And if we determine that the return doesn't justify the investment, we are "out of there" in a flash -- whether it is a job, a relationship, or a church. We tend to evaluate people on the basis of what they "bring to the table." And so our own worth is also measured in the "currency" of our talent and ability more than our loyalty or stability.



Unfortunately, as I have already implied, this mentality often bleeds over into our relationship with God. We have an attitude that says, "Wherever God guides, He provides," which sounds good to our modern ears. The flip-side of the statement is, "If His isn't providing, He must not have been guiding." This in turn gives us an out when things become difficult in our lives of serving Him.



But is that statement really true? The life and testimony of St. Paul who writes about suffering lack and hardship in the service of the Lord, would cause me to doubt the truth of that expression. Just a look at Paul's life and struggle seems to indicate that sometimes it is possible to be in the will of God and yet suffer hunger and deprivation, even shipwreck. The witness of the martyrs in Hebrews 11 also seems to undermine that thought. For the record shows that these were people some of whom were destitute and even naked, but perfectly in the will of God..."To Death."



Yes, where the Lord guides, He does provide...but not always in the ways in which we expect or even desire Him to provide. He refuses to be locked into a strictly transactional relationship in which we say, "Here is what I am bringing to the ministry, the way, what have You done for me lately?" Believe it or not, He is not impressed by our talent, intelligence or anything else you or I have to offer Him. He is impressed by one all important thing -- our loyalty, our decision to be faithful to Him and to His cause no matter what, even when it doesn't seem to be paying off in rich dividends. He is looking for folks who love Him..."to death."



And that brings me to the word that He placed in my spirit to share with you. I heard the Word of the Lord whispering in my ear, "Be ye faithful unto death, and I will give you a crown of life." We may not all be able to sing or preach or touch the masses. We may not all be "five talent" people. We may not all be in the public limelight. But we can all choose to prove our love for Him by being faithful. That means placing His agenda above my expectations, putting His purposes at the top of my priorities, and placing His cause above my own comfort. As long as I am seeking to save my life or placing the American Dream above the Vision of the Cross, I don't get it.



The question we must ask ourselves is this: "Do I really love Him? Do I love Him with all my heart? Do I love Him to Death?" If I do, there is only one way to prove it. I must take up my cross and be "faithful unto death."


He loved you..."To Death."


Thoughts for your journal:
1. On a scale of 1-10 (and this is totally between you and God) rate your commitment level to God? What is the basis of your score?
2. Reflection: in what areas do you most need to step up your commitment to God?
Prayer Focus:
  • Pray for the Holy Ghost to give you a fresh revelation of the kind of commitment that God is calling for in your life in 2012
  • Pray for a corporate revelation of the level of commitment that God is calling for.
  • Pray for a mighty outpouring of the Holy Ghost with signs following this week at church.
Prayer and Worship Opportunities:
M - F: 12 Noon Prayer
Tonight: City-Wide Monday Night Prayer and Praise with Special Guest: Min. Eric Vance! 7:30 p.m.
Wednesday - Morning Glory Prayer - 5:30 a.m.
Thursday/Friday: Impact Crusade Revival - Bishop Kevin Legette & Bishop Marc House
Saturday - Noon Prayer and Healing Service
Final Thought:
Often as I reflect on the kind of commitment that God is calling for from us, my eyes fill with tears. I am moved to weeping when I reflect on what the church as a whole has lost -- even in the short 38 years that I have been saved -- in terms of real old-fashioned commitment to God. Everyone seems to want to be an overnight wonder. Many aspire to greatness in God's Church, but are unwilling to pay the cost of sold out lives. Commitment isn't real unless it cuts into your flesh. It isn't real unless it pushes you to the point of exhaustion and beyond. It isn't real unless it results in sacrifices of time, talent, and treasure that seem to be imprudent and outrageous. I hear the Lord speaking in my spirit that only those who are willing to make that kind of commitment will experience the Supernatural in their lives.
My heart is so full. I have so much to say to you that time and space won't allow. Tune in tomorrow...But in the meantime, can I count on you to pray for me as I pray for you? I pray that I will see you tonight!
Love and Blessings,
Pastor Mark Moore, Sr.

Arriving At Conclusions


Arriving at Conclusions
Memory Verse:
Philippians 3: 13, "...forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus."
It has been said that every new beginning starts with an ending. So it is with the transformation that God wants to bring in our lives. Today and tomorrow, I want to draw your attention to the fact that God's beginnings sometimes require conclusions. I believe that the Lord has shown me that conclusion comes in two parts: 1) my part; and 2) God's part. Let's look today at the part we have to play in preparing for our new beginning.
It has been said:
"If you don't like your present life situation, you don't have to stay attached to it. Just put a period at the end of your current life experiences and bring this chapter of your life to a close. Get ready to write a more exciting chapter tomorrow. All you have to do is employ that wonderful punctuation mark that signifies completion. A period indicates the old is finished. A period signifies the new can now begin...It is easy to stay attached to something even though it no longer benefits you. The path of dogged but unrewarding effort is well traveled. You can easily fall into a rut and stay there. After all, doing nothing is often the path of least resistance. It is also the path of passivity and death. It takes courage to bring the old to a close. It takes imagination and effort to create the new."
Have you noticed that it is almost impossible to really reach toward the future while tied down to the past? In order for some things to come in your life, some other things have to end. Decide today, right now to let go of what is holding you back. Here are some things that you might want to consider letting go of:
  • The Past -- good or bad, the fact remains that it is over. Someone said that people who are caught up on past obsessions are unable to respond to what is happening now; they're too busy revisiting and trying to revise what happened then. Even constantly reliving past accomplishments can soon become a hindrance to future conquests. Decide to let go of the past with its pain and pleasure. Your greatest days lie just ahead. Go for them!
  • Guilt -- a lot of people don't realize that there is a difference between guilt and remorse. Guilt is a totally useless only makes you feel bad and tempts you to more bad choices in the attempt to drive it away. Remorse is akin to biblical repentance. It leads to resolution -- not to repeat the same errors and sins again. How to deal with guilt? Confess your sins; bite the bullet, make apologies and restitution where possible; resolve to go in another direction.
  • Resentment -- Nothing ruins your happiness, your future relationships or your decision making power as much as easily as resentment. Has someone hurt you? Let it go and focus on what you can do to make things right, or simply distance yourself, if need be from the aggressor. But by all means refuse to be a prisoner of resentment and bitterness. Resentment is like guilt, its all about you and your own "righteousness." It tricks you into a never ending cycle of pain as you constantly replay the past. You don't need a continual, constant reminder of how much it hurt.
  • Revenge -- The old saying goes, "revenge is a dish best served up cold." The truth of the matter is that revenge is a dish best thrown away. Was nursing an obsession with getting even part of your original dream of how your life would be? Did you sit and daydream years ago about a "golden" future filled with revenge? It has been said that revenge only reinforces the original hurt, creates another enemy, warps your judgment, and takes your focus away from where it should be: on fulfilling your destiny in God! Revenge will lead into a cycle of actions and behaviors that will ultimately cause you to hate yourself as much as you hate the one who hurt you. Decide now. Let it go!
I could go on and on, but the point here is that you need to make the list of what to let go of your own. What do you see missing from this list as pertains to your life? Bad habits? Sins of the flesh or spirit? Laziness? Prayerlessness? A covetous spirit -- the unwillingness to tithe or give to God? Pride? Self-righteousness?
Listen to God today. Really listen. He is waiting to usher you into a wonderful time of "newness" in Him as you bring resolution, conclusion to your past.
Thoughts for your journal:
1. Make you own list of things that by God's help, you want to bring to a conclusion in your life.
2. Reflect on which relationships need to be revisited in order to bring closure and conclusion. Do you need to make things right with anyone? Are there some relationships that are not conducive to your walk with God that need to be ended (I am not speaking here of ending a marriage, or getting rid of your children)?
Prayer Focus:
  • Pray for the light of the Holy Spirit to reveal the things that you need to conclude or let go of, in order for this to be your greatest year.
  • Pray for a mighty outpouring of the Holy Ghost with signs following this weekend at church.
Prayer and Worship Opportunities :
Sunday - Altar Prayer/Soaking in His Presence - 9:30 - 11:00 a.m.
           - Morning Worship - 11:30 a.m.
           - Evening Sacrifice Altar Prayer - 5:00 p.m.
           - Sunday Night Alive - 6:00 p.m.
M - F: 12 Noon Prayer
Monday - City-wide Prayer and Praise - 7:30 p.m.
Wednesday - Morning Glory 5:30 a.m.
Thursday/Friday - Impact Crusade Revival - 7:30 p.m.
Final thought:
"...You see that is true life. Life is found in death. It is found in dying to self and living to Jesus Christ. In recognizing that the very meaning of life was shown to us through the life of Jesus and saying, "God, that is how I want it. Please live your life in me." The question before us now is, do we want to live life as God intended, or do we want to continue on our own, to search for it in the futile corners, in the tidbits that the world would throw us? That may make us happy or fulfilled for the moment, only to find emptiness; but we find true meaning and happiness in life by giving it to the Lord, surrendering our lives to Him. Contemplate, and don't be afraid to come to conclusion and closure and say that from this time on I want to live life as God intended it."
-- Lee R. Lescano
I am praying for you today. Please plan to join me for the services throughout this coming week...and be prepared for a deep work of God in your life!! Also, don't forget to refer to your Weekly Faith Activities Guide to further enrich this Consecration for you. As always,
Blessings to you!
Bishop Mark Moore, Sr.

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