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I Was Wrong: The Untold Story of the Shocking Journey from PTL Power to Prison and Beyond Paperback – Abridged, October 4, 1997
"Children of Blood and Bone"
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Jim Bakker, due to his notoriety, was tortured and abused in prison and Tammy Faye divorced him. He was prosecuted for over- selling space in the hotels and received a long sentence as a result. Unfortunately for him, the government erred in their calculations and it turned out that the hotels could accommodate all of the people who bought time shares (although not everyone who invested would be able to stay during Christmas and Easter, but they knew that at the time they invested) at Heritage USA, but by the time the errors were discovered, the lives and reputations of Jim and Tammy Faye were ruined. Jerry Falwell took over Heritage USA and the television ministry Bakkers built, but failed miserably and Heritage USA closed.
Bakker's book is the story of his ministry, but unlike many who are accused and imprisoned, Bakker doesn't blame everyone around him, but takes perhaps more than his fair share of the blame for what happened to both himself and the ministry. Bakker is still a minister as is his son, but he has "gone back to his roots" again, not being involved with ministering through medias.
While many people felt that Jim and Tammy Faye were phony "Christian believers," their lives following the fall of their television ministry and Heritage USA prove otherwise. Tammy Faye, a small woman with a beautiful, powerful voice, died of cancer, but even on the day of her death was blogging about her strong belief in God and it being God's will that she was dying and her belief that she was going home to be with her Lord. She was very supportive of the gay community and particularly loved going to see the performances of drag queens who appeared as Tammy Faye. She was also known for hugging AIDS patients, and said that God put her on Earth to hug, so she hugs. Tammy Faye admitted to disliking Jerry Falwell even at the time of her death, and her sense of humor about the criticism she received for the amount of makeup she wore and the manner of her dress was wonderful. She said that she figured that God had more to worry about than how much makeup Tammy Faye was wearing or the clothes she wore.
When you see the DVD "The Eyes of Tammy Faye," it's particularly sad to see what's become of Heritage USA thanks to government error and prosecution of innocent people -- decaying buildings, land overgrown with weeds, graffiti -- a mini version of today's Detroit. I have to admit that over the years I have become an admirer of both Jim Bakker and Tammy Faye Bakker Messner as rather than being bitter about the rise and fall of their ministry and the imprisonment of Jim, they learned from the experience and again found their place in ministering to others. I have donated copies of this book to various jails and prisons as the populations of those facilities are filled with people who don't accept the fact that their behavior and attitudes have put them behind bars, and this book is an example of the growth and strength one gains (even in personal relationships) when they can admit they were wrong. If you refuse to accept or recognize your role in the negative life events you experience -- instead blaming everyone else, then you don't learn from your mistakes and you risk making the same mistakes over and over again.
He is forthright and humble - unafraid to admit when he was wrong. Unbelievably, his last trial in his journey to freedom proved beyond a shadow of a doubt he was innocent of any wrong-doing. He was wrongfully imprisoned. At that time, he had enormous plans to expand Heritage USA and provide for his donors everything he had promised. Fellow ministers took him down. How sad is that?
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I have learned a lot! And will pass.Read more