The 61-year-old opened up about his own crushing experiences while sitting for the popular ABC podcast, Journeys of Faith with Paula Faris.
“Life has a lot of ways to crush us,” he said. “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.”
Interesting enough, one of the most difficult crushing experiences, according to the Bishop, was dealing with daughter Sarah Jakes Roberts‘ pregnancy at 13. She has since come far from that, now a successful businesswoman and minister. However, Bishop Jakes said at the time, being a minister and dealing with the controversy of his daughter being a teen mom, he felt like it was “the worst thing in the world.” Still, when asked what “crushing” looked like for him, he ran down a pretty long list before even mentioning Sarah’s situation.
“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?” he said. “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.”
He said all those happenings, crushing experiences in general, help to build up your strength in this life.
“It is the struggle that makes you strong. It’s resistance, weight-training,” he said. “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.”