Steven Furtick - Don't Drop The Mic (A Conversation With TD Jakes)
Steven Furtick: I thought what I wanted to ask you before we sit down.
Bishop TD Jakes: All right.
Steven Furtick: I've been thinking about this for a month.
Bishop TD Jakes: No, I haven't lost any weight yet. About one pound.
Steven Furtick: If you were going to preach right now... let's say a Sunday morning at the Potter's House and Pastor Joel was scheduled to preach. Where's Pastor Joel? But he got injured doing 500 pound bench press. And they say, "Bishop, Pastor Joel is not preaching, and the praise team has finished and Marcus has dragged out the music as long as he can. And you've got to preach". What texts do you preach? I think I know, but I want to see if I'm right. What texts do you preach?
Bishop TD Jakes: You don't know. You don't know. You don't know. For God said she had appointed me another seed in the stead of cane who able slew. My subject is "He'll do it again".
Steven Furtick: No, I didn't guess that one. Have a seat.
Bishop TD Jakes: Yeah.
Steven Furtick: Have a seat, everybody. So that's in the Bible, that verse? How many have ever listened to Bishop Jakes preach and you're like, "does he have the same Bible that I have"? Oh, I was going to tell you this. So my oldest, Elijah, the other day, can I tell him? We're on the porch and I quoted, Bishop quote to him and I said, "well, Bishop always says, one of these little parables that you've spit out, just this beautiful, beautiful, beautifully crafted thing". And he goes, "oh, that's Bishop? I always thought that was a Bible verse". I'm saying to you, you are so loved in the Furtick home that my kids think you wrote parts of the Bible that aren't in the Bible. That's how much you mean to us.
Bishop TD Jakes: I've never been told that before in my life.
Steven Furtick: I can't make that up.
Bishop TD Jakes: That's amazing. I love you all too.
Steven Furtick: What does that feel like to be the most imitated preacher in the last 50 years?
Bishop TD Jakes: I'm not sure that's true.
Steven Furtick: Assuming that it is.
Bishop TD Jakes: Assuming that that would be true, imitation is the highest form of flattery. But if there is anything higher than that and more important than flattering itself is to find the true power of being you. Yeah. Yeah. Why be a cheap copy of a great original when you have the option to be yourself?
Steven Furtick: So when you're starting to preach, people say, "be yourself, be yourself". But when you're first starting to preach, yourself sucks. Not as a human being, but as a preacher.
Bishop TD Jakes: That's true.
Steven Furtick: So then you hear, "oh, don't imitate anyone else". I actually wanted to start the conversation tonight because this book is a gift, and thank you for taking the time at this stage in your ministry to share this. I think it's so relevant, and I've been waiting for this. I think a lot of people have, but I wanted to start not just talking about communication in general, but imitation, because imitation, isn't always a bad thing, right?
Bishop TD Jakes: No. Well, okay. You want me to go past no. Okay.
Steven Furtick: Well, it's preached like it's a bad thing, like it's a spiritual danger.
Bishop TD Jakes: Let me explain what mentorship really means. It means that when Samuel grew up and was brought by Hannah into the House of Eli, he was unable to discern the distinctives between the sound of Eli's voice and God. That is the initial stage that God sounds like the person who mentored you. Gradually, you come to a point that the umbilical cord cuts and you have to go here to lay down the third time before he recognized that it was God talking and not Eli. And he says, Eli says, "when you hear the voice again, go and lay down in the same place and say, 'speak Lord, thy servant here'". So it is my job to gradually lead you from God sounding like me until you can hear that God sounds like God. You see? You see? And so that weening process starts with him being weaned from Hannah. And now he is being weaned from Eli that he might draw the breast milk from the breasted one himself and thereby find the nutrition that he needs. The other thing that's important to realize is that we are looking at a generational passing of the mic from Eli to Samuel, and for Samuel can hear God, but cannot discern him. Eli has lost his ability to hear the voice, but can discern it.
Steven Furtick: Say it again.
Bishop TD Jakes: Okay. Okay. Okay, look. Eli couldn't hear the voice, he was asleep. Okay. Samuel being the young people, could hear the voice, but didn't understand what to do with what they heard. Okay. We have a generation of people that can hear the voice, but they lack the wisdom to understand what to do with what they hear. Eli, on the other hand, has lost his ability to hear his adventuresome proclivity to step out into the unknown. He's playing it safe. His eyes are growing dim. His senses are became, but his discernment is still keen. What Samuel needs from Eli is wisdom and discernment. What Eli needs from Samuel is the adventurous curiosity that allows him to hear the unhearable.
Steven Furtick: This is all in the first seven minutes...
Bishop TD Jakes: It's so funny that you should bring him up because we are on the impetus of a transition now that is similar to the transition of days gone by. God said, I am going to do something through Samuel that is going to cause both the ears of them that hear it to begin to tingle, and he chooses to do it to a person who has yet to learn the confidence to hear the God that is going to do it through him. So the promise of God is bigger than the reality of the individual, and he has to grow into it, just like he had to grow into his mother's coat she brought up every year, not knowing for sure what size he would be. She makes the coat big enough that he can grow into it and greatness must be grown into. Yeah.
Steven Furtick: Okay. So when you're first starting out and you're preaching or you're communicating because this book isn't just for preachers, right?
Bishop TD Jakes: Right.
Steven Furtick: But we'll talk about preaching because we love to talk about preaching.
Bishop TD Jakes: Yeah, let's do that.
Steven Furtick: I want you to know that, by the way, my whole goal for this experience is for you to get a little bit of a taste of, like this would be us on a Tuesday night and three hours have gone by... and Bishop, this is what I wanted to understand about growing into it. When you're inspired by somebody like the way I've been inspired by you, first of all, did you have somebody that you studied the way that I have studied you.
Bishop TD Jakes: I had several and I still do. I listen at every orator imaginable, whether I agree with the message or not. I watch for the delivery, the technique and the style. You can learn from litigators. You can learn from comedians. You can learn from preachers. I know the content I want to deliver, but the vehicle I want to drive at home in is a conglomerate of all of these different styles and the propensity. It's like asking a gospel artist, can you learn anything from a jazz artist? Can you learn anything from a classical pianist? Absolutely. And incorporate all of those different modalities into your style and the more diverse those modalities are, the broader your stage becomes.
Steven Furtick: So what are you listening for when you're listening?
Bishop TD Jakes: Oh, I'm listening at how they connect with the audience. I'm looking at how they enter the room. I'm listening at the rhythm. See, great preaching is almost musical. Great speaking has a rhythm. It has a cadence. It has a voice and flexion and a tone. It has the ability to have a rhythm that is syncopated in such a way that the hearer can hear it in pace and in rhythm, so much so that if you start to speak and you draw the audience into the rhythm of the pace of the speaking through which you are conveying information, and then in the middle of the pace and the rhythm used pause. The pause is what I call the pregnant pause. It's what David calls Selah in the songs. It is a moment for them to ingest, digest and appropriate what has been spoken before. And sometimes the exclamation of the importance of the statement is the silence that you let it ride in on. Does that make sense? Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. And most young preachers are afraid of the silence.
Steven Furtick: Why?
Bishop TD Jakes: So they run to make noise because they need the affirmation that the crowd is still there, but you have to have enough confidence in the material that God has given you, that it will do what it was created to do, and the word of God does not need crutches. And to those that are litigators and prosecutors, and those who are running for election, and those who are applying for a job, truth needs no crutches. If it is true, it is true. And the human ability to sense truth is utterly amazing. It is not just the verbalization of paragraphs and the conglomerates of chapters. It is, we hear with more than our ears. We hear with our eyes. We hear through body language. We hear through voice inflection. We hear through pitch and tone. This is what's wrong with marriage, is that sometimes your mouth is saying something, but your body language is saying something else. And women who are particularly intuitive are not just listening at what you said. They're listening at your body language and the way your eyes flinch and the way you didn't look me in the eye when you were saying it and all of that brings them to, see how the women are clapping. Come on sisters. Come on, sisters. Talk back to me.
Steven Furtick: Holly!
Bishop TD Jakes: And this is how the man gets trapped because he thinks, "I said the right thing", but they don't understand, she's hearing with her eyes. Yeah. She's hearing with your behavior. She's hearing with how you dropped your pitch and changed your tone and looked away and did not look her in the eye, and all of that says that you're avoiding the straight on gaze that comes when you are sure of who you are and what you said... Should I drop it? Where'd it go?
Steven Furtick: No, it's fine.
Bishop TD Jakes: That was a great moment. To understand that as an orator, and every one of us in here are orators, whether we get paid for it or not. We deliver messages to our children, to our wives, to our husbands and our family depends on how adept we are in communicating, and here's the challenge. It is one thing to communicate a fact, two plus two is four. Whatever goes up, must come down. To communicate a fact, is one thing. To communicate a feeling... some people have not made a connection between heart and mouth. The Bible teach is "with the heart, man believeth unto salvation, but with the mouth, confession is made unto salvation". So to be able to articulate, "I'm sad. I'm sad today. I am so sad today, that it feels as if I will never smile again, and I cannot explain to you fully the source of the sadness, but it is as if all the color has been washed out of the earth and water does not feel wet. And though the sun rose, it did not shine. And though I am breathing, I cannot get air. And my soul is sad". To be able to describe a feeling to the point that it conveys...
Steven Furtick: Yeah, I'm kind of depressed, all of a sudden.
Bishop TD Jakes: Or "I love you. I love the scent of your hair. I love the gleam in your eye. I love the way you lay your head on my shoulder, and I love the way you need me and are not afraid to show me". Well, what do you love about me? "I love you. That's fine". What do you love? Some people do not have, they have not worked out in the gymnasium of communication enough to express what they are feeling. It is not that they're not feeling it. They haven't worked out to use the skills that are necessary to communicate what is in the heart. And so many marriages explode for the lack of something that both of them have, but they dropped the mic. They don't communicate effectively one to another what you need. And so you leave this woman who actually had what you needed, but didn't know how to give it for some other woman who knows how to talk it, but doesn't mean it, like the woman you left. And that's also true with the man, irrespective of gender. This is what happens, and this is what happens in our country and in our world where we are talking at each other. Most of the time couples don't really listen. In the book, I talk about listening because I think that the art of being a great speaker is being a great listener. So I listen at you, I listen at you, I listen at other people. I listen to everybody speak. I listen to somebody when I'm counseling. I'm a fierce counselor because I listen at you, and I remember what you said. I draw a line between everything that you shared with me because listening is more important than speaking. If I lose my ability to hear right now, gradually my ability to speak will begin to erode because I can no longer hear. So my speech begins to deteriorate because there is an association between hearing and speaking. So the art of being a great speaker is also being a great listener. Listening at the texts, listen at the texts. "Thou Moses, my servant was dead, but as I was with Moses, so shall I be with you". Listen at a God who Moses dropped and while Israel was still grieving, God turned his head and continued talking to Joshua as if nothing had happened at all. "Now, Moses, my servant is dead, but as I was with Moses, so shall I be with you". In other words, "Nothing important has changed. I am still the same. Moses is dead, but I am still the same and I will continue my purpose irrespective of my vessel, and I am going to do it through you. Not do you want me to do it through you, not would you like for me to do it to you. As I was with Moses", oh, it's a boss move. The text is a boss move. Yeah, it's a boss move. But you can't read it and get that. You have to listen that it. You have to feel the intensity of it. You have to hear the sobbing in the background of a nation of people who have lost a leader, that it has taken them 40 years to love and it will take them 400 to get over. And while they are weeping at the bottom of the mountain, God sheds not one tear over Moses. He knows exactly where he is. He will have him escorted by his angels out of the situation where they last saw him. Rather than to weep, he turns his head and said, "I will continue everything I was doing through you". That's what's happening now. God is turning his head. Great leaders are passing. Great leaders are retiring. Great leaders are expiring and God is turning his head to the next generation and saying, "as I was with Moses, so shall I be with you". Can you imagine being Joshua and being terrified because there's nothing worse than coming behind a great speaker to come behind Moses?
Steven Furtick: Yeah, I've had to preach after you before.
Bishop TD Jakes: Oh, come on, stop. To come behind Moses and to have the responsibility... I wrote Don't Drop The Mic to say to young people, number one: the mic is yours. It's not going to be yours. It's yours. We are still alive, but it is yours. It is your generation that must be reached and touched and maintain relevance today. And I am just telling you that the mic is heavier than it looks. Don't drop it when your feelings are hurt. Don't drop it when you're angry.
Steven Furtick: Can I ask you about that? In, I think it was 1997, Michael Jordan played this game. It was game five in the NBA Championships and he had the flu and he scored 38 points. That's Michael Jordan's flu game. I want to hear a Bishop Jakes flu game story, like a time where you stood.
Bishop TD Jakes: I can't think of a time that I didn't. I can't think of a time. I can't think of a time that I didn't. I had back surgery. They dug into my back four inches between L4 and L5. When I came out of anesthesia in the hospital with a day surgery that they were going to keep me over a couple of days, as soon as I woke up, I slid over to the side of the bed and threw my feet out and stood up on them and started walking. My wife wanted to kill me. The doctor thought I was on crack, but I heard the doctor say that if I could walk to the nurse's station, they would let me go home. It hurt so bad that I started sweating, but I wanted to go home. And the doctor said, let him go. He said, he's not the kind of guy you can keep and let him go home, and I have always been a fighter. Now, watch this. With the pain that came, there's still a certain amount of anesthesia in you after the anesthesiologist has woken you up. You really don't know how fully, how you feel for a day. When I came out of complete anesthesia and the pain is riveting and I had a chance to speak, maybe not that Sunday, but the following Sunday, I sat in a chair in front of the stage to prove to the devil that I don't need my body. I don't need my body to be able to preach. There is something going on between my heart and my head and my mouth that requires nothing of my back. And I sat in the chair with my church packed and I spoke irrespective of pain. This is the tenacity that I passed to you with the mic. The tenacity says "I will override the way I feel and do what I was called to do". Yeah. Yeah. I was prophesied that I was commanded. I did a reconciliation conference years ago while the Million Man March was going on, and I was criticized, and I was threatened, and I had death threats on my life, and they were going to shoot me. And I put my boys in the background because I didn't want their last sight of me to be bleeding. But I walked right down the streets of Atlanta with thousands of people, fully prepared to die for what I believe. If you believe a thing that you are not willing to die over, it is not worthy of your faith. I said this before and I'll share it with you and I want to play this off you. You tell me what you think about it. Thinking is the final frontier of privacy we have left. Our technology has invaded every other idiom of communication we have with each other, that our texts aren't safe, our FaceTimes aren't safe, our phone calls are not safe. The only safe place where there are no drones. Yes, where there are no drones, where there are no hackers is within the confines of my own mind. And with that being my final frontier, I refuse to allow you to tell me how to think because thinking is all I have left. And so once I open my mouth, my thoughts have become public. And once they've become public, they're going to be scrutinized and criticized and ostracized and they're going to alienate me from this group or that group or the other. But that's why I must incubate them in the womb of my mind before I birthed them out of the canal of my mouth. Because once a father's birth, I'm sorry, does it always retract it?
Steven Furtick: I think you said incubate them in the womb of my mind before I birthed them through the canal of my mouth?
Bishop TD Jakes: That's right.
Steven Furtick: No, no, no, no, I want to say something.
Bishop TD Jakes: Is a gross?
Steven Furtick: No, no, it's gross that you can do that without ever thinking about it and just say stuff like that. It's sickening is maddening.
Bishop TD Jakes: The word logos, "in the beginning was the word and the word was with God, the word was God". Logos doesn't begin with speech, it begins with thought. That God is pregnant with thoughts, that He created what He thought, everything we have on somebody thought it, and then they drew it, and then they got the material and they sold it, and then they made it, but it started as a thought. The chair was a thought, the building was a thought, the pulpit was a thought. Everything starts as a thought. In the beginning was the thoughts of God and the thoughts of God was with God and the thoughts of God were God. And out of the abundance of His thoughts, He spoke and it became whatever He thought. Let there be light. What is light? What I think it is, let there be light. It wasn't even a word, it wasn't even a word. See what I'm saying? But it is what I think it is, let there be light and it became what He thought, and it became what He said. But in order to become what He said, it had to be what He thought. And so you become great in your mind before you become great on a stage. And whatever you think you are, you are, and I'll show you, I'll prove it to you. You can be a great preacher and get in the car and the enemy will fight you in your thoughts all the way home because the enemy knows that the thoughts are the birth canal through which preaching comes. And if he can convince you that you are not enough, he can terminate your ministry not because he couldn't shut your mouth, but he shuts down your thoughts, for as a man think of it in his heart, so is he. Talk to me, somebody. Look at some and say, "I can do this". You affirmation spoken over yourself particularly if you're a person that wrestle with insufficiency complexes, the reason you feel that way is because of the way you talk to yourself. If you change the way you talk to yourself, you'll change how your story is. The only thing the woman with the issue of blood did that saved her from dying was change how she talked to herself. She said within herself, not to anybody else, if I may but touch the hem of his garment I'll be made whole. So the greatest sermon starts within you. And so what you are saying to yourself will either make or break what you are doing with your life. So she said, "if I may, but touch", there was no scripture that said if you touch the hem of his garment you'll be made whole, but that was the way she thought about it. Like there was no definition for "light" when God said, "let there be light", but it became what He thought. And there was no definition for her to get healing by touching the hem of his garment, but she thought the thought and she said it to herself until it became what she thought. "If I maybe touch the hem of his garment I'll be made whole", as she crawled through the crowd on her hands... Oh, I'm doing it again. I'm sorry. I'm doing it, I should be just be cool.
Steven Furtick: I'd love to hear this, I'd love to hear, you know, we can have a hard time imagining that you would struggle with those insecurities. The first time I heard you talk about when you used to preach it, put the mic on a stand, because your hands would shake so much that you couldn't hold the mic. And I almost thought "I don't believe him". And I mean that with respect, just to see who you are? What you do? There was a part of me that thought he's saying "I'm sweating through my clothes, I would stutter so bad". And I think it took me a minute to believe that because I couldn't believe that that same voice that talks to me that way talks to you the same way.
Bishop TD Jakes: I'm hearing to you, I scrutinize. I will go home, I will go back to my hotel and scrutinize everything that we said.
Steven Furtick: Still?
Bishop TD Jakes: Yes.
Steven Furtick: Tonight?
Bishop TD Jakes: Because that's the only way to get better. And when you stop getting better, you start dying. When a teacher ceases to be a student they begin to be irrelevant. So to have the courage, to critique yourself and say "I could have done this better, I could have done that better, I could have explained this, I wonder, did they really get what I would say are still the voices that live in my head, but they don't live too loud". See the art of it is not to kill the voice is to cut the volume down. So instead of existing at a 10, maybe it exists at a 3. I don't want to kill it because if I kill it I'll become an arrogant. And if I become arrogant, the Bible says, when you were small in your own eyes, I bless you. And if I become arrogant, I will lose my anointing. So I don't want to kill that voice of dissension that balances my accomplishments. And so God balances my accomplishments with the thorn in my flesh that makes me question myself. So I don't want to him to remove the thorn in my flesh because I need balance for the weight of the glory that he placed in my life. But I don't want that voice to become so loud that it cannibalizes what he has created in me. And so when I say don't drop the mic, I'm passing on to younger, newer, newer, because everything new is a young. There may be somebody who's 40 or 50, who has spent their life doing one thing and yet they're about to be new to going something they've never done before, you understand? So new-ism isn't about chronological age. On the other hand, there may be somebody who's 25 who's stuck on being 15 and refuses to grow up and they're not ready yet and they're not precocious enough to evolve into the magnitude of what God has called them to do. So instead, I'll just leave it a very neutral statement to whoever is new and whoever is next. I want them to understand what's normal with communication and to respect communication so that you don't just say just anything to anybody and you don't become a troll on Twitter because you know that words have power and you don't keep saying things to your wife that you have to apologize for because you let them incubate in your mind. Some of them are boarded at my birth because you find out it wasn't as important as you thought it was because eventually she will get tired of "I'm sorry" and you will lose somebody you need because you drove them away with the acrimonious vicious tone in which you attack who you love. Because we often attack who we love, and we're polite with people we don't love because of... Am I got it? You see this is a problem. Listen, men, listen women, a lot of times when a man thinks you won't leave, he will abuse you because he is frustrated by life and circumstances and he has to be polite to whom he doesn't know, but he feels free to attack you because he is attacking him. You treat your woman like you treat yourself and she gets caught up in the orbit of your reality. She treats you like she treats herself. And so we're two planets connecting and those two orbits come together. And if you are cynical and doubtful and afraid, you have nobody else to vent that on but somebody who you think won't leave. And so what we have to do is to be ride or die enough to stay with you, but not enough to allow my staying to give you license to abuse me, okay? So we can talk about anything, but you can't vent on me because you're insecure about you.
Steven Furtick: So when you said turn it down, I felt every one of us in the room, kind of asking the question how?
Bishop TD Jakes: How to turn it down.
Steven Furtick: It's not like a knob for the internal critic, for the shame and so you turn it down how?
Bishop TD Jakes: First of all, you have an inner circle of people that you trust to reaffirm you. We need each other, we need each other no matter who you are large or small. You need a girlfriend, every woman in here needs a girlfriend who can tell her that that dress is not for you. This is where my wife says it, she says, she either needed a friend or a mirror. You need somebody who needs to tell you that purple lipstick is not your calling, okay? Because you want to try different things and you need somebody who has licensed to be honest with you and who can affirm you when you're just afraid until you're not worried about nothing, you were awesome, you were incredible. And you need to let them reaffirm you. Now here's the bigger problem with turning it down: sometimes we won't let people encourage us because we will reject what they say by trivializing them. "You just saying that because you're my wife, you're just saying that because you're my mother", because you're addicted to pain, you refuse the physician because you're addicted to the pain. And so in order to recover from that you have to let the physician come and bill you and tell you echo what they are saying about you. And little by little, you come into a place where you think not "I can do all things", but "I can do all things through Christ, which strengthens me". And whatever ever I did and whatever style I did it in as long as it accomplished his purpose, not mine, it was about. I was nervous one day and I was going to speak in West Virginia, I was a young man about 20 something. And I was real, real, real, real nervous. And West Virginia was up, I got to heal belly up in here. "Take me home country road to the place I belong West Virginia Mountain mama take home". Well, you know all the words to that.
Steven Furtick: That's the first song I learned on acoustic guitar!
Bishop TD Jakes: Really? That's my jam. Your pastor is crazy, I hate to tell you this, but your pastor is crazy. He's one of my favorite people in all the world I've talked to. He's incredible, he's inquisitive, he's intellectual, he's articulate, he's creative, he's anointed, he's amazing. And part of my call in his life is to turn down the tone of the other voices by saying "that was amazing" and fighting through the propensity all great people have to be self-critical. One of the signs of greatness is to be self-critical because you're perfectionists. And it's people who hang up a coat in and kind of way who can leave a closet in any condition, who cannot not spell check a statement before they release it are telling you that I won't be great because greatness is in details, not platforms. So you don't have to be rich, you don't have to be famous: the more you care about details, the closer you get to greatness. And when your details are wrong you want to correct them immediately because it matters to you. Because the moment you open your mouth you start to teach people who you are. If you and I sit down here and nobody knew us in the room and we sat down in the chair as long as we didn't open our mouthes they wouldn't know whether we were lawyers, or doctors, or gangsters, or drug dealers, they wouldn't know. They would make certain assessments by our clothing. But the moment we utter a word out of our mouth, immediately the computer of their brain begins to scan, to learn about who we are. That's why language is important, because it teaches people who you are, and it teaches people what you need. A lot of times, we're angry with people. Let me confess: I have been angry with my wife, really angry, deeply hidden and angry about something she wasn't giving me that I never asked her for. And it took me a while to realize that women don't read sign language so men tend to talk in sign language. So when we want something we can give you a signal. And the signal is so clear to us that when you miss the signal we get secretly mad that she... Fellows, am I right about it? You can't tell what that meant, that I sent you the signal that that is the signal, and you miss the signal. How could you miss that? And not realizing that I had to learn how to talk, because I was angry with her over something she was willing to give, but she couldn't read sign language. So don't drop the mic on your marriage, don't drop the mic on your ministry, don't drop the mic your career, don't drop the mic on your children, don't drop the mic up the next generation just keep talking. If black folks and white folks keep talking, we will at least get to be as smart as great Danes. You don't see brown, great Danes fighting with black great Danes, you don't see a white Doberman pincher arguing with a brown Doberman pincher. We are the only species that allow the color of our exterior to deny our common experience. If you go deep sea dive and you don't see all the goldfish hanging out on one side and all the blue fisher on the other side, and the blue fisher is smearing that the goldfish talking about "I'm better than you". What does the animal kingdom know about species that the human species has yet to learn? They know that we are the same species, they know that if you start bleeding and I have the same type of blood that you do, the difference in our skin will not stop the transfusion. They know that my kidney will replace your kidney, and your body will accept my kidney even though I'm a black man and you're a white man, we're still men. Why are we still having this stupid conversation about power when we need to allocate power equally and honestly, and fairly, and killing me won't make you king. So you're not any greater by looking down at somebody, you actually become greater by looking up at somebody, because the further you push me, the higher you go. You understand what I'm saying? So these types of things I thought for, can I talk about the Chauvin trial for a minute?
Steven Furtick: Yeah, absolutely.
Bishop TD Jakes: I thought the Derek Chauvin trial taught many things, I thought it taught many things. Personally, I agreed with the verdict, I thought it was quite obvious. You can tie my hands all day and lay me face down on concrete and I will not die and I have high blood pressure. I will not die. I might get a cramp and I might get hungry. I might even pass gas, but I will not die, okay? I will not die. So offering that as an understanding for reasoning of why he is dead seems a little bit asinine to me. However, there are greater lessons to be learned. You had six white jurors, four African-American jurors, and two biracial jurors who when exposed to the same truth drew the same conclusion unanimously. So think about this for a minute, that means that if we're not getting along, we're not being exposed to the same the truth. The Chauvin case is the greatest argument for democracy in the world, it proved that officers could testify against bad officers. And that speaking against a bad officer doesn't mean that you are disloyal to good officers. It shut down every argument we had. What we are at war with is not the police, and we're not at war with each other, we are at war with abuse and wickedness and human depravity and the loss of dignity. We are at war with your son laying down in the street, bleeding out on a sidewalk screaming for his mama. And yes, he is flowed and yes, he has problems, and yes, he has issues, and yes, he may need to be arrested, but he does not need to be tried on the sidewalk, that's all we're saying. We're not saying he's the Virgin Mary, we're not. We're not saying the guy is Mother Theresa. We are saying that when you find something wrong with us treat us like you do when you find something wrong with your nephew and your niece. That's all. I'm going to ask an honest question in here, everybody who's ever been drunk, at least once in your life, would you stand up for a minute? If you've ever been drunk in your entire life? There are as many white folks standing as blacks. There are as many women standing as men. Now, let me ask you a question, did you want to be choked to death for it? No. That's what we're saying.
Steven Furtick: Bishop, we've lost them.
Bishop TD Jakes: You lost some members in it.
Steven Furtick: We've lost.
Bishop TD Jakes: Found out the deacon and hit the sauce at one point, God bless you, brother.
Steven Furtick: I wanted to publicly thank you for your patience and guidance on this. I called you at Mother Emanuel, AME in Charleston. I wanted to speak about it to my church. And you picked up the phone to guide me through it. You could've talked to me, our church, wasn't always diverse. And the more diverse our church became, the more I needed to learn and the more I needed to listen. And you were there for me not with judgment, or how could you be so stupid not to know how to speak to this or to not get it, but it took many conversations for you to help me even understand what I was speaking to, and what my silence communicated. And I wouldn't have known that without you in my life, I wouldn't have known that without you in my life. I also think that a lot of people don't have that kind of relationship where they can admit their ignorance without the fear of judgment.
Bishop TD Jakes: You're right. And so they practice on Facebook.
Steven Furtick: It's true. It's funny but it's true.
Bishop TD Jakes: Yeah, were you can get slaughtered. My advice to all the white folks, black folks, and brown folks in the room is: if you have an idea about a racial issue don't try it out on Twitter or Facebook, find you a couple of people that you want to talk to about it and say, "how does this sound to you"? And it's not that I'm trying to change your opinion, but how do I need to word it where it can be heard? Because how you word it, determines how the other person hears it. And you can have the opinion of your choice, but you need to be able to word it. It's like talking to your wife is how you word it. Does matter handling big in these seats now, isn't it. How you answer this question, determines the next seven dinners that you're going to eat in this house.
Steven Furtick: Evening activities.
Bishop TD Jakes: Yes, every evening activities and everything are going to be deterred for a long time if you don't answer this question right. First of all, you have to know whether big is a compliment to her or not. In one group of communities... Cut the camera and cut the camera.
Steven Furtick: You've been on lockdown so long, this is amazing.
Bishop TD Jakes: You let me out the house, you got to get it wrong. Here's the thing though, it's a funny illustration, but it's a good one. Your cultural background controls what you think is good. So what is bad in one community is a compliment in another community. And so in the book, I talk about studying your audience before you make your statement, because you will know whether you are insulting them by what you're saying or not. And all of this is not just to make better orators. In the Bible, God used the most bilingual people to do the biggest assignments. Moses, who is born a slave on the hit list of Pharaoh, destined to die, hidden in his momma's tent, she built a arc and put him in the bulrushes and sailed him down the now. Pharaoh's daughter picked him up and brought him in the palace. So he's a slave raised like a prince. He is educated like an Egyptian, but he is connected to the slaves. God can use him to go back and speak to Pharaoh because he knows the protocol of the house in a way that a slave would never know. The broader your girth of your experiences, the more diversely God can use you. Now, Peter walked with Jesus the longest. Paul was a Christian killer, but Paul spoke in five different languages and Peter only spoke in one and he was a fisherman and it limited how God could use him. He couldn't send Peter to Mars Hill to speak to them at Athens, because Peter couldn't speak Greek. But because Paul was bilingual, he is responsible for most of the epistles of the New Testament, because of the broadness of his exposure. And so not all people get to be exposed to all the things that I have been exposed to. I went to President Museveni. His wife hosted a breakfast for me and brought in all of the aristocracy of Uganda to attend a breakfast on my behalf. The king of Swaziland threw a dinner party for me and I was a guest of the king of Swaziland. I was entertained by Nelson Mandela's family. I have been in the Oval Office of three Democrat, Republican and Democrat heads of state. I spoke on the National Day of Prayer. I have spoken many times with Larry King, to Oprah Winfrey, to Matt Crouch, to Paul Crouch, to Daystar. I have spoken to Pat Robertson. I had spoken to Puffy. I just did an interview with Jeezy and I just got off the phone, texting Joel Osteen. From Jeezy to Joel is...
Steven Furtick: I like that. Can I ask you one question?
Bishop TD Jakes: Sure.
Steven Furtick: If pastor Steven Furtick and pastor Joel Osteen were both on a boat, and you had to throw one overboard, who would live?
Bishop TD Jakes: Let me find out who can swim the best and I'll answer the question, because I can't afford to lose either one of you.
Steven Furtick: I would get it.
Bishop TD Jakes: See how you get out of it? Did you write that down? That's how you get out of it when he tries to tie you up. My point is: not everybody will get those opportunities. I was on death row with a girl named Erica, right before they were scheduled to execute her. I know what it is to say last rights over somebody before they're terminated. I have bypassed Mongoloid babies, and talked with the family as they let them go off of life support. I spent three days in San Quintin ministering of the gospel where there are no offerings to inmates that have been forgotten about and forsaken. I've had 30,000 formerly incarcerated inmates to go through our Texas Offenders Reentry Initiative. And we were just invited to Canada to appear before parliament, to make a case for reentry programs in Canada. You can't amass that plethora of information and that exposure not affect how you think. I was in the dressing room many times with Aretha Franklin. Her cell phone is still in my phone. I never erased it. I was in behind the scenes with Anita Baker on her final tour and was a personal friend of mine. I have met gospel artists, jazz artists, hip hop artists, some of the greats, some of them are dead. Some of them are passed on. My mother went to school with Coretta Scott King. My mother sang in the choir with Coretta. I had the privilege of having dinner in her home on several occasions. She came to the dedication of our first church. I had Coretta Scott King in the same room with pat Robinson, in the same room with Al Gore, in the same room with James Robinson. That's confusing. That's as diverse and broad as you can go. At the end of the day, all of those experiences helped to inform me. The first thing I did to Dallas, when I came to Dallas was not run a revival. I rented the Dallas Convention Center and threw a party for homeless people and we fed them and we clothed them and we had a job fair. That's how I introduced my ministry to Dallas. 25 years later, we are still doing that. We are still feeding, and clothing, and serving, and giving, and helping the disenfranchised and the marginalized. I don't say that to brag. I am saying: not everybody will go to Buckingham Palace. Not everybody will go to the Oval Office, but when you read what I share, you will gather my conclusions without making the trip and should you go, you will have some preparations for understanding that the language you use in your circle is not the same language you use when you are doing an interview with a business journalist or a conservative talk show, radio is different than doing a morning show.
Steven Furtick: Did you learn that the hard way?
Bishop TD Jakes: I listened? I listened. Everybody is your teacher. My mother told me, "The world is a university and everybody in it is a teacher. When you wake up in the morning, be sure you go to school". Everybody teaches you something. The people who do it wrong, teach you as much as the people who do it right, they all teach you something. My material is best served to people who aren't finished with themselves yet, who still have mountains to conquer, who still have dreams to dream, who still have valleys to cross and rivers to ford. My material is not really good for people who are finished and satisfied and comfortable and the only thing you want to do is lay on the beach somewhere and counter how much sand you can get on your thigh. I want to empower and impart and invest in who's next to lower your learning curve of becoming whatever it is you were created to become. That's what I want to do. My little phrase, don't drop the mic, yes, it's for preachers, but it's for dreamers and thinkers and people who want to write scripts and films and do movies, and people who want to do more than one thing and you're trying to pick which thing to do, and people who have diverse talents and interests, but you haven't galvanized them into one setting because I can relate to that. I was called to preach the gospel. I live to preach the gospel. I'm never more alive than when I'm preaching the gospel, but I was also called to produce films. I just did two movies on Lifetime
Steven Furtick: Lust and...
Bishop TD Jakes: Lust and Envy.
Steven Furtick: ...Envy.
Bishop TD Jakes: Yeah, Seven Deadly Sins, and I was able to share our faith on Lifetime's platform. That's an amazing opportunity. It was a powerful opportunity. You only get innovative opportunities when you give up on being traditional. That's a quotable right there. You only get innovative opportunities when you give up on being traditional.
Steven Furtick: Now make it a sermon, but a scripture to it.
Bishop TD Jakes: Oh wow. That, I haven't used yet. Ruth leaves Moab, which is tradition to follow Naomi into the unknown, not knowing what she will have to do or what she will have to become. As she travels on her donkey down the path into the unknown, she makes a commitment, "Thy God shall be my God, Thy people my people and where thou dwellest, I will dwell and where thy diest, I shall die". But she had never seen Bethlehem. She was just courageous enough to walk into the unfamiliar and had the dexterity of thought and the nimbleness of mind to say to herself, "I'll figure it out when I get there". So I feel excited. I feel excited like I'm feeding somebody. There's a feeling I get when I'm feeding somebody that is in this room right now. I'm feeding somebody. I don't know who it is, but I can tell. I can feel it in my spirit. I can feel it in my belly. I am feeding somebody in this room. I could feel it in my soul. You don't fit the pattern. You broke the mold. You're out of the box. You think differently, you got ideas and concepts that you're afraid to share with anybody because they don't get you. And God sent me here to tell you: you're not crazy, that you can be this and that. You can produce film and preach the gospel, and write books, and write op-eds and do commentaries and that you can do more than one thing, that you can be an architect and an accountant, that you can open up a donut shop and do hair, that you don't have to be locked up to a prison of how people describe you. There is more inside of you than what you have discovered yet. I don't know who talking to, maybe they'll stream it online. Maybe they'll reach it from across the water. But God sent me her to say "Don't Drop The Mic"! Keep on talking about it. Keep on dreaming about it. Keep on fighting for it. Keep on saying it, even if you don't have nobody to hear you. Walk around the house talking to yourself, talking to yourself, telling yourself, "If I made my touch, if I made my touch, if I made my touch, thy him or his garment, I will be made whole". If you have to crawl for it, and if you have to get money for it, and if you have to press through the crowds of people who don't think you deserve to be that close, then push on in there anyway and get your touch from God. Most people who have greatness inside of them are the last to know it. And when you talked earlier about the many times we've had conversation, it was often times to help you see what is obvious to everybody but you. If it were not obvious everybody else, they wouldn't be in. But what they don't realize is that you can see everybody, but you, and that's what I tell people about me. I can see all of you, but I can't see me. So if my shirt isn't hanging right or my collar's up, when I see the picture, I'll hate myself. But the reason my color is up and my pocket square may not be straightened and maybe my socks are rundown is because I cannot see myself. Now catch this. The way that is true about my appearance is also true about my gifting. When you are truly gifted, you often cannot see it. So you could be gifted and see everybody's gift, but your own, and what I was telling you was being a mirror so you could see "that was great. That needs work. That was awesome. That was not your best shot". That trust between us creates mentorship, because I know you have a blind spot like I have a blind spot where you cannot see yourself. You have a blind spot and if you're not careful, your blind spot will always leave you thinking that you are not enough. That you're not tall enough or short enough or thin enough, or handsome enough or cute enough, or smart enough or bright enough or gifted enough. But even the greats question themselves. I've met them. They have the little voice that run home with them too. They double think themselves too. The difference between them and us is that they feel the fear and do it anyway. They feel the fear and do it. This is why I love coming to you. This is why I will spend my opening night with you, because there is an energy in this place of transparency. Then you get to have the most intimate, intelligent conversations, because you draw intelligent thinking people. Not everybody who's spiritual is also intelligent. Crazy people love Jesus too. (You can cut that out, I probably shouldn't have said that). You have something to live for, to go for, to evolve into. I don't care if you're 70. If God was finished with you, you'd be dead. There's still something in you to contribute. And whether you are seven or 70, don't drop the mic. Don't let the enemy talk you into dropping the mic because all of us have a commission to do in the earth. And to do that thing that you were created to do is what makes your soul dance. It's what makes creativity spring up like flowers in spring time and decorate the canvas of a ground that has never been plowed. Have you ever noticed that some of the most beautiful flowers were never planted? They just grew up arbitrarily because the season was right and I'm going to say to you that amidst all of the craziness and chaos and confusion in the world today, that it has just broken up the soil for the season to be right, and I think we have an obligation to tell what we learned, how it felt, what we know and what we do not know to you. So you don't waste time taking my classes to jumpstart you to go to the next dimension. And for me, the book is a legacy piece. For me, the book is to say to you, "I know you're scared. I know you overthink things and I know sometimes you don't think you're enough. Sometimes you feel like an imposter because you know all sides if you don't line up with the best of you. Work on yourself. Improve yourself. Repent, confess, cry, crawl, take classes, courses, do pilates, whatever you need to do, but do not drop the mic because it's your turn and it's your time". I prayed when I was a young man, young man, pre-20. I said, "Lord, if you ever blessed me, don't ever let me be no any young man's soul. Let me live a life so fulfilled that when David comes, I can clap. I don't want to get old and get jealous". So that if I digress from playing the game, I can always coach and be just as fulfilled because I lived everything in its own season. You see? And this is the goal you want to set for yourself in life is to live everything in its season so that when the season changes, you're not living in the past trying to recreate what is gone and to do you the way you do you and enhance that and grow that by your exposure. Every book I ever read, every mood movie I ever saw, every staff meeting I have ever been in, I have got to be in the staff meetings of some of the sharpest people in the nation, not to brag. See, we get in the room and we do selfies. That's dumb. Get in the room, pass the selfie, get the experience. Show me you were in the room by what you do with your life, not by what you post with your picture. If you do that, if you take more notes than you tweet, then you won't feed the house and starve to death because when you tweet, you feed the house. When you take notes, you eat yourself. So be sure... I'm not saying don't tweet. I want you to tweet to my #dontdropthemic. Back home, y'all hear me? #dontdropthemic. Watch it online. Hey, I said, don't drop the mic. #Dontdropthemic.
Steven Furtick: What's that hashtag again?
Bishop TD Jakes: #Dontdropthemic. Yeah, do all of that. There will come a day that this room will not be possible but you were here. I sat with Maya Angelou and had her to be a guest at Mic Fest. I was sitting not too far from her when she quoted her poem at President Obama's inauguration, I was sitting right behind Aretha's hat and beside Colin Powell on the stage in the freezing cold at the inauguration. I was there. That moment will never happen again. I rode over with Rick Warren. That moment will never happen again because some of the people that it would take to recreate it are not even here. So cherish every moment.
Steven Furtick: I was just having a flashback Bishop that the first time that we spoke at a meal, somebody came to the table and shared with me how the church had changed their life. You did this thing because I think the greatest sermons that you have preached to me have been something that was never on YouTube and I think that's something people should understand about you is that your best sermons, usually aren't recorded. It's the way you live your life and minister to people. I remember when the guy finished telling me, "This is where I was and the church changed my life". And you said you did that the thing that you do with your eyes, where you look past my sternum into my guts, and you go... I remember this, you had a steak knife and you were pointing the steak knife when you said this. So it was very, very effective communication tool. And you said, "That's an amazing moment" and I was like, "Yes, sir". We had just been talking about critics and controversy and you said, "Don't let them have your moment. That's your moment". And then the knife is still here. I'm just trying to recreate it for you. You said it about four or five times, "What moments have you allowed to be stolen that you wish you could take back"?
Bishop TD Jakes: I was invited to write op-eds. Sally Quinn, who was with The Washington Post, who ran the On Faith section invited me to write op-eds for the On Faith section of The Washington Post and I've wrote about three of them. I got on and read the comments beneath them and they so discouraged me that I gradually quit. And when I saw Sally again, she said, "Why have you stopped submitting your updates"? I said, "Well, I thought I wasn't very good at it because when I read the comments beneath them, I thought they don't like me". And she looked at me and burst out laughing. She said to me, "The average reader of The Washington Post has a master's degree and the average person in the comments can't spell". I then realized that I had allowed people to talk me out of a platform who weren't even a part of the intention of the founder. The reason I stress that to you is that if you're not careful, you'll let somebody who has never been in your seat talk to you down from the place that God has given you. You'll let somebody who can't run a barbershop critique you on how you run the church, and you will go home hurt and humiliated because they insulted and told you what you are to do with the platform that God never gave to them. You don't seem to realize that if God likes your plan, he would have given you the platform. But you have to know that, even if you don't say that, you have to know that so that you don't fool around and walk away from a master's level opportunity because of a mediocre comment. I lost that opportunity. I lost that opportunity.
Steven Furtick: And I think about... I texted you a few weeks ago about a sermon that you did on shame.
Bishop TD Jakes: Yes.
Steven Furtick: "He still wants you".
Bishop TD Jakes: Yeah.
Steven Furtick: And when I watched you preach that sermon, I think I actually called you and said, "that was amazing". And then I said "that sermon looked expensive". You said it was expensive. Can you talk a little bit about the expense of that kind of ministry?
Bishop TD Jakes: I think that I am best at preaching texts that somehow resonate with the repertoire of my own experiences. I think that you cannot preach about Mephibosheth if you have not been dropped by someone you trusted. I don't think that you can talk about him adequately until your cripple has a cause that was out of your control. I don't think just studying commentaries and Hebrew words would adequately enunciate what drives a prince to Lo Debar, and makes him be carried out and lay flat on the floor. And for a prince, the child, the grandchild of a king to say, "I am a dead dog". That kind of depletion and loss of pedigree can only come within the gaze of someone who can relate to that kind of experience of a basement in your life. That is a part of preaching that can not be taught. That must be caught, and it must be personal enough to you that you are talking about him, but you are drawing from you. Until you and he have become so fused together that getting him up off the floor is getting you up off the floor. You do this to me. You do this. Why do you do this? I've preached this in London. Years ago, my boys were little. One of my sons is here tonight, he was there. And I was crawling across the floor trying to make it from the floor to the chair, and then dramatizing the approach of Mephibosheth who was laid on the floor like a thing, but called to a chair like a king. And the space between the two realities in his life, I started crawling. Because in order to get yourself up off the floor to the chair, you have to crawl to get there. And as I was crawling and I was almost there, the crowd crumbled, and I was glad they crumbled so that they couldn't see me crying. Because I was preaching about him, but I was also talking about me. And I lost it. And I hope pastor Matthew sees this tonight. I literally lost myself in the message, because there's a point where you are the message. You become someone with the message until John 1:14 materializes on that stage, "And the word was made flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld the wonder of his glory. The only begotten of the Father, full of truth and grace". Until the word is made flesh and you are willing to pay the price of the kind of investment that personalizes the deliverance of the text, until you are really that that you are declaring, you will always be impotent. Potency that penetrates the human soul is connectivity. And as you extrapolate from the text, the facts are nice to know, but if you're not willing to invest your own pain, your own tears and your own struggle, if you're not willing to re-examine who dropped you and what you would have been had they not dropped you, and how you ended up in Lo Debar when you should have been in the succession of kings. And here comes a second chance that by bloodline you deserve, but by situation you can't imagine, and yet you started crawling. That crawl brother, is what got you to this day. That crawl is what got me to this day. That crawl is what gets everybody to wherever they're trying to go, crawling against the resistance of the adverse winds and the gravitational pull to mediocrity. Let me say this. I know we're running on time, but this is important for you to get. Failing is easy. If we're climbing a rope, all you have to do to fall is let go. You don't have to study books on failing. Falling is simple, just let go of the rope. The gravitational pull will always take you as low as it can until there is an obstruction. If the floor gives way, it'll take you lower. If the ground gives way, it will take you lower. The gravitational pull is never satisfied at how low it will take you. And the only thing standing between you and it, is the grip you have on the rope. And so though your body weight is heavy, maybe not as heavy as mine, but heavy, and maybe it's hard to pull the weight up higher and your arms are aching and you're sweating and you're tired of everything and everybody drawing off of you, all you have to do is look down and remember that if you let go of the rope, your fate is sealed. And that's what makes you keep climbing, that's what keeps you on the wall, and that's why you can't drop the mic. I want to say one other thing to you. You don't realize you have not met all the people that you're talking to. And the book talks about my ancestry and the antiquities of my faith and the ancestry of my bloodline. And my ancestors were in what is now Nigeria, and they were from the tribe of Igbo. And they came as a couple and survived the tempestuous middle passage and did not throw themselves overboard in an attempt to drown themselves rather than to be penalized with the next 400 years of slavery. They chose to withstand the atrocities of the times and continue, and that's why I'm here. And all of them are sitting in this chair with me. My grandmother and my great-grandmother and grandma Nancy Jakes who was born a slave and died a free woman that I remember, she's sitting here tonight too. And her father and mother are sitting here too. And my great-grandfather Willie James Smiley, whose brothers who lived on the other side of the street were called Williams because you got the last name of who owned you. And though they were full blooded brothers, the street that separated them, changed the name that defined them. And I cannot find them all, but they are all sitting in this chair with me today. I am saying that we are the sum total of everything that happened to all of those who came before us. That your grandmother is not dead, she's still living down inside of you. And your a great grandmother, though you may not remember her, has some morsel of wisdom in the way you think and drink and process and move and live. And I am saying that on the blood of all of those who went before you, you cannot be the generation that drops the mic. You cannot. You cannot. Can I stand up? I want to say to you, if you're a white American and your people came over on a boat with much of nothing, running away from Great Britain, and came to the possibility of another country, the wow foreboding tempestuous opportunity to break away from the domain and the dominion of Great Britain, and bear to establish a different kind of republic that promised freedom and Liberty and justice for all. In spite of the fact that it didn't fully live up to the promise, it dared to make the assertion. And if they on wagons with perils of death and sickness and destruction, pressed their way into the inner fibers of this nation, and took something and built something and became something out of nothing, with no running water and no plumbing systems and no highways and no trains and no buses and no ovens and no microwave and no Apple phones and no emojis and no Twitters and nothing like that to help them, and were drawing water out of wells and walking for miles and cooking over live rocks and stones that were placed on wood instead of ovens. If they survived, how dare you sit here with all this stuff you got and let anybody make you think that you cannot make it, that you cannot take it, that you cannot rise above the fray and be something bigger than yourself. If they survived cholera and disease and death and pneumonia and plague and freezing cold and bears and lions and prey, and built their houses out of logs, then how dare you sit in your nice brick house and your jacuzzi in the back and say that life is not worth living? I stuck my hands in the claw marks of the Africans whose claw marks are still on the walls of Elmina where they were fighting not to come to America. I ran my fingers down their nail prints. I smelled the stench of their body fluids that are still existing in the Spanish castles where they were held hostage, waiting on the next ship to come. I stared at the church that was above it, then noticed that the missionaries were also masters who raped their daughters while they sang Amazing Grace. And I listened against the waters beating against the rocks and thought, "What kind of stuff my ancestors must have been made out of, to withstand all the perils and injustices, and still insist on surviving". If we got up at 4:00, and we were in the cotton fields by 6:00, and we picked until the sun went down, with bleeding hands and aching feet for days and days until we died and never knew what a paycheck was, ever. We were the first people to come to America with the sign we'll work for food. And the food was the pot liquor that the master left. And we'd eat what we'd eat because that was all we could have, was the feet of the pig, and the neck of the pig and the chitlins of the pig, because all of the finer cuts went to the master and still we lived. And still we lived. And not only did we live, we sang. We sang. While our fathers were hung and our mothers were raped, we sang. Haven't gotten long to stay here. We sang against oppression and death and destruction from the Edmund Pettus Bridge, with dogs turned loose and water hoses beating us down. We sang. We sang as the charred bodies of dead little girls were bought out of burning churches. We kept singing where they shot the 39 year old Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in the head. We sang while we cried and we made it. If we survived colored bathrooms and extra water fountains and survived the separations of having to learn in the basement of the churches that they were burning down by the KKK. If the Black Wall Street was burned down in Tulsa, if we had to endure a Rose Wood and we still made it, you cannot sit there with your Apple watch and your black skin, and tell me you can't make it. There ought to be enough fighting down here. There ought to be enough fire down here. There ought to be enough triumph down here that connects us come hell or high water, upon the blood of all of our ancestors. I will not be the one whose drops the mic. I will not get here and let it die. I will not drop this mic. Say it. "I will not drop this mic". Say it again. "I will not drop this mic". Say it again. "I will not drop this mic". Give him a praise. If you survived the Holocaust, if you survived adversity, if you survived The Great Depression, if they survived the plagues of the past at all of the pneumonias and all of the diphtherias, and all of the polios, and all of the diseases, then COVID will not take me out. I will do whatever I have to do, and I will fight whatever I have to fight, but I refuse to let it take me out because I had too many ancestors who survived to get here and die without doing what I was created to do. I'll let nothing separate me from the love of God. Neither height, nor depth, nor powers, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come. So this is my little down payment, don't drop the mic. It's just my little way of saying "don't you let nobody turn you around". That's the way we would say it. "Don't you let nobody turn you around". That's what they were singing on the Edmund Pettus Bridge. They had the water hose on them, they had the dogs bite them, they were bleeding, and the hoses were cutting into their flesh. And all the while they were bleeding, they kept on singing that song. What? I can't hear you. I can't hear you. Not arthritis, not hip replacement, not back surgery. This is America. This is America. Can we do it one more time? You all want to help me?
Steven Furtick: Bishop TD Jakes, everybody.
Bishop TD Jakes: You got this for me? It's over.
Steven Furtick: It's you.
Bishop TD Jakes: We done?
Steven Furtick: It's over.