Pastoring a church of 30,000 members comes with its own complexities and stresses but this can be multiplied many times over when your teenage daughter gives the news that she is pregnant.
After nine years, megachurch Pastor T. D. Jakes of The Potter’s House in Dallas, Texas is opening up about how he handled the news of his then 14-year-old daughter’s pregnancy.
“Shocked, crushed, emotionally devastated, and yet there was something down inside of me and in her mother as well, that said we have to rise above the trauma,” Jakes said on the Roland Martin Report describing his first reaction to the news.
After expressing his initial feelings of disturbance over the incident, Jakes concluded that “love overrides everything.”
When news of the pregnancy spread, the prominent pastor also encountered difficulty emanating beyond his home.
“We got letters, we got blogs, we got stuff that was lies and garbage told about us. We had the press swarming the church.”
With various media coming to the church to further report on the story, Jakes commended his congregant’s integrity, refusing to say anything and telling the press that it was a personal matter that they had nothing to do with.
Despite the pressure, Jakes stood by his daughter keeping her as his chief concern and not his image.
“It wasn’t about being embarrassed, it wasn’t about protecting my image. I cared nothing about that. I cared about what you see sitting right here,” referring to his daughter, Sarah Henson, as he placed a hand on her back to comfort her.
When asked if she felt as if she had let her parents down, Henson said
“I think I did. I mean, I knew they had high expectations for me as their daughter and I felt like I did let them down but the grace of it all is that we have a faith that teaches us no matter what you’ve done, there’s always a way back onto the right path…”
After having her son Malachi and embracing motherhood, Henson went onto graduate high school at 16-years-old, attended Texas Christian University and is now married.
Jakes believes that although the pregnancy was a difficult time, it was “the best thing in the world that could have happened.”
Reflecting on a letter that his daughter wrote him, Henson expressed being sorrowful for the pain it caused her parents but that it was “worth it all” because through it she could see how much he loves her.
Source: Breathecast | Jessica Brooks