In a new episode of ABC News’ Journeys Of Faith With Paula Faris, Bishop T.D. Jakes opened up about some of his life’s darkest moments and how they strengthened his faith in God.
Referring to his new book, Jakes says, “Life has a lot of ways to crush us. And the reason I wrote the book is that in the process of the crushing, there’s always the gift of wine that flows out of it, that you come out of it stronger and in another form.”
He added, “It is the struggle that makes you strong. It’s resistance, weight-training. If you don’t have the resistance, you won’t build the muscle. And so I wrote ‘Crushing’ to help people make sense out of the parts of their lives that are not working or didn’t work or didn’t turn out the way they thought, and to make them look for the gift in it and try to have a more positive attitude about it and wait for that gift to ferment. And sometimes the wisdom of the aged only comes through the failures of the youth.”
Jakes admits he went through his own “Crushing” process, detailing some of the tragic moments of his childhood and adulthood.
“You mean, other than being born in between two dead babies and my father getting sick when I was 10 and dying when I was 16, or my mother dying in my arms at 40 of Alzheimer’s and living in my house until she died?” Jakes asked host Paula Faris. “You mean, my daughter getting pregnant at 13 — and the daughter of a minister? And she’s such a great example of my book. She should have written the book. She probably could have written it better than me. I thought that [the pregnancy] was just the worst thing in the world that could possibly happen to me. And now that same daughter is ministering all over the world.”
Jake also has a belief on what the current role of the church is today. “The No. 1 role for the church in America is to stop pestering the members and start pestering the city,” he says. “To reach beyond the parameters of your constituency and care about people who may not ever come to your church. And not always try to fix them and make them good enough that they fit within the elite society of your belief system.”
You can listen to the full episode here.