T. D. Jakes  (1957-alive)

     In 1996 T. D. said, "I found out the things that hurt us the most can become the fuel and the catalyst that propel us toward our destiny. It will either make you bitter or it will make you better. I wanted to be made better, not bitter."
     By 1993 T. D. had endured grief and poverty in full measure. Drawing on that and the power of Jesus he became a superb counselor, especially to hurting women. His reputation spread among Pentecostals. A pastor friend in Pittsburgh asked him to come there to counsel women. T. D. agreed and named his conference - now well organized - after the miracle in 13th chapter of Luke: 'Woman, Thou Art Loosed!'. The pastor in Pittsburgh spread the word about the conference for women who were hurting, wounded, anguished, abandoned.
     When T. D. arrived in Pittsburgh he was flabbergasted to find 1300 women registered! He had to rent an enormous hotel ballroom. Many of the women were unchurched. They were so hurt they came to him in desperation. T. D. met the challenge by abandoning church rhetoric but not the message of the saving power of Jesus.
     "Hidden inside of you is a great woman who can do great exploits in His name," he exhorted them.
     After the conference T. D. was deluged with praise. Even the city of Pittsburgh blinked. Who was this black Pentecostal minister who could draw a crowd of 1300 women? T. D. then took a very daring step. With what little money his family had he paid Destiny Image to publish his conference as a book. In a frenzy of creativity he wrote the text and had 5,000 paperback copies printed. The word about his wonderful counseling must have become widespread because within three weeks all 5000 copies of
Woman, Thou Art Loosed! were sold. And for a long time it continued to sell as fast as it could be printed.
     
Woman, Thou Art Loosed! launched T. D. Jakes Ministries as a national presence. The book sold over 2,000,000 copies. The conference itself became so popular it had to be held in stadiums where it drew over 50,000 participants!

[sources: Charisma magazine article by Ken Walker, 1996, and
Woman, Thou Art Loosed! by T. D. Jakes, 1993]

T. D. Jakes Evangelist

In 1997 T. D. Jakes baptized four Dallas Cowboy football players at his Potters House 'mega-church'. Looking more like a football player himself at 6 feet 3 inches and 300 pounds he thundered, "Look at what the Lord has done!"

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C. S. Lewis  (1898-1963)

     'He does so many things he does nothing well' could not be said about C. S. 'Jack' Lewis. His conversion to Christianity in 1931 loosed an avalanche of writing. In spite of a heavy teaching load at Oxford he finished in 1936
Allegory of Love, acknowledged by English-speaking academics as a masterpiece in literary criticism. The London Times lauded it as "scholarly, fascinating and original." In 1938 came Out of the Silent Planet, a science-fiction novel whose sophisticated metaphysics reviewers acknowledged vastly superior to most science fiction. The same year John Masefield, Poet Laureate of England, praised Jack's long narrative poem Queen of Drum. In 1940 Lewis explained in The Problem of Pain why an all-powerful and good God would allow suffering. Scholars ignored it but the public liked it. So did BBC radio and persuaded Jack in 1941 to broadcast a series explaining Christianity. He was also writing satirical newspaper installments about a retired devil advising a young apprentice devil how to tempt humans.
     In 1942 he published
Preface to Paradise Lost, an important academic work, Broadcast Talks, the print version of his Christian apologetics and The Screwtape Letters, a compilation of his newspaper satires on devils. All three found different audiences. All three were lauded. But The Screwtape Letters was an international sensation. The London Times called it "brilliantly successful". American critics praised it too. It sold so well and created so much interest in Lewis that all his earlier books had to reprinted. In six short years he had became 'popular', something he abhorred. But it gave him an immense platform for his three modes of expression. From 1936 to his death in 1963 he published to an ever eager audience - adults and children - about one million words of 'imagination', another million of high-powered literary criticism and yet another million of Christian apologetics. Nearly 40 years after his death his books still sold one million copies a year!

[sources:
Jack by George Sayer, 1988, and C. S. Lewis by A. N. Wilson, 1990]

Lewis wrote thousands of letters. To a young girl in 1956 he gave five basic rules of writing well:
     Make what you mean so clear it could mean nothing else.
     Always pick simple words, not 'utilize'but 'use'.
     Use concrete nouns, not abstract nouns.
     Make the reader experience a feeling, don't try to convey the
          feeling with an adjective.
     Don't use exaggerated rhetoric; it is tiresome and nothing is left
         for the climax of the story.

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David Livingstone  (1813-1873)

     In 1856 Livingstone returned from his three years of exploring the African interior to a hero's welcome in England. It was several years before Lincoln became well known, so Livingstone was then the most famous man in the world. In December 1857 Livingstone electrified his audience at Cambridge University by shouting at the end of his droning speech, "Do you carry on the work I have begun? I leave it with you!"
     Yet some who felt missionaries were meddling, ineffective do-gooders remained unconvinced of his worthiness. England's best-loved novelist Charles Dickens intensely disliked missionary work, so many were curious how he would react to Livingstone. And in 1858 Dickens finally voiced his considerable opinion in his 'Household Words' periodical. He had just read Livingstone's
Missionary Travels and Researches in South Africa and wrote:
               I have been following a narrative of great dangers and trials,
          encountered in a good cause, by as honest and as courageous a man as
          ever lived...The effect of it on me has been to lower my opinion of my
          own character in a most remarkable and most disastrous manner. I
          used to think I possessed the moral virtues of courage, patience,
          resolution and self-control...I find that (these) turn out to be nothing
          but plated (instead of solid silver) goods...my self-esteem oozed out
          of me.
               Dr. Livingstone's sensible independence of all those mischievous
          sectarian influences which fetter so lamentably the exertions of so many
          good men; and his fearless recognition of the absolute necessity of
          associating every legitimate aid, which this world's wisdom can give,
          with the work of preaching the Gospel to heathen listeners, are merits
          without parallel in the previous history of Missionary Literature....

[source:
David Livingstone: his life and his letters by George Seaver, 1957]

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"as honest and as courageous a man as ever lived"

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