Bishop Lorenzo Watkins III was led to start an independent ministry where he could preach the unadulterated word of God and operate in the gifts that the Lord has given him. The Lord gave him the name “LIFE DELIVERANCE MINISTRIES” along with a mission to “win the lost at any cost and encourage the redeemed by Godly means while building people of faith, power and praise.”
Life Deliverance Ministries was first organized in 1993, holding its first business meetings in local community centers and various churches. With about 15 people, a ministry was born.
Bishop Watkins’ first divine instructions were to purchase a tent. While he did not have the funds to purchase the tent, he was led to hold a pledge drive that resulted in nearly $16,000 in pledged financial support. Bishop Watkins was then able to purchase the tent, some chairs, a PA system, a U-haul truck, generator, lights and other things needed to hold LDM’s first tent revival.
The first tent revival took place May 12-14, 1994 at the North Florida Fair Grounds. Many people were truly blessed, saved, delivered and restored by God those nights. Conducting services under the tent set the atmosphere for God to move greatly and pour out a strong anointing during every service. Throughout the remainder of 1994, Life Deliverance Ministries held several Sunday services and tent revivals around the Big Bend area. The revivals drew large numbers of people looking for an opportunity to commune with God freely and openly. The revivals even drew the interest of other well-known evangelists such as Evangelist Betty Hudson and Pastor Charles Brantley.
As the Lord continued to draw people to the revivals and Sunday services, He impressed upon Bishop Watkins to find a building for the growing ministry. In March 1995, LDM secured a location at 4827 Crawfordville Road in a storefront building. Despite the location, membership increased steadily after the doors were opened. For most services, attendance was at building capacity.
Officially incorporated on January 31, 1995, the church purchased 26 acres of land in 1997 to build a new facility. The official ground breaking ceremony was held on November 14, 1999. The brothers of Life Deliverance Ministries worked on different phases of the building, however much of the work done on the new church was done by Bishop Watkins and two other men. Meanwhile, the women of Life Deliverance provided meals, words of encouragement and prayers for the men as they built the church.
With the vision provided by God and the determination of Bishop Watkins and the members, Life Deliverance Ministries opened the doors of the new church on December 11, 2004. December 12, 2004 marked the official dedication of the new facility to God. It was also the day the Church logo was officially changed from the Statue of Liberty to the Bald Eagle.
Today we occupy the CHURCH THAT FAITH BUILT. There are numerous testimonies of how God showed favor throughout the entire building process. Pastor’s first message delivered in the new church was entitled “Ever Increasing Faith: Positioning Your Faith for Exceptional Increase.” Since the building of our new church, the faith level of the membership has soared. We still believe God for exceptional increase in every area of our lives.
In obedience to God’s command, Pastor Watkins expanded Life Deliverance Ministries to include a second location in Thomasville, Georgia. On October 10, 2010 the first service was held at the Thomasville location.
Moving forward in faith, with a clear vision from God, Pastor Watkins opened a child care facility. LDM Academy held its grand opening on October 31, 2011.