February 16, 2009

What Can Be Learned From T.D. Jakes' Son's Arrest?

From the Dallas News:

The son of Bishop T.D. Jakes, pastor of the Potter’s House, faces a charge of indecent exposure related to an incident in a southern Dallas park last month, Dallas police said.

Jermaine Jakes, 29, is accused of exposing himself in front of an undercover Dallas police vice detective at Kiest Park, near West Kiest Boulevard and South Hampton Road, on the night of Jan. 3, police said.

Over at Box Turtle Bulletin, Jim Burroway weighs in with a very thoughtful essay. Here's an excerpt:

Young Jakes grew up in a church that condemns homosexuality, and in a culture which is quite homophobic. People who don’t have the personal freedom to be out often turn to less legitimate outlets for sexual contact. In this case, a public park. The overwhelming majority of people who are picked up in these kinds of sweeps are those who claim to be heterosexual, and most of them are married. They are desperate to conceal their homosexuality, which is why anonymous sex in public parks is so appealing to them. Take away the need to conceal, and the public sex will diminish drastically.

This isn’t to excuse what Jermaine did, but it does explain a lot why he and others like him do what he did. I hope he takes this episode as the impetus he needs to break free from his trap. After all, what is there left to conceal now?

This continuing condemnation and rejection is toxic. It entraps people who don’t experience the safety of being true to themselves. As long as that continues, there will be more Jermaines making the news. Jermaine screwed up. He’s responsible for what he did. Nevertheless, I can’t help but feel bad for Jermaine’s humiliation. He’s not only being humiliated locally where this sort of exposure is normally limited, but his humiliation is nationwide. And that national exposure is strictly because of who his father is, and because of the message of exclusion and condemnation his father preaches.

Which is why I don’t feel sorry for T.D. Jakes. Those are his chickens he’s seeing in the morning paper, each and every one of them coming home to roost.

While I do have some sympathy for T.D. Jakes (it hurts to see your son arrested, regardless of how much your actions may have been a factor), I think Jim makes some excellent points. When people are taught that actually living in the life that God gave to them with their sexual orientation is evil, they often aren't going to grow up the most well adjusted people and act out in a destructive manner.

Hopefully both of the Jakes' can learn the importance of a person not denying who they are and finding their place in Christ in the process.

1 comment:

  1. Very Sad, but very true.. It all comes out in the end doesnt it? When will the TD Jakes of the start telling that truth that they have got to know deep down but do not dare speak for fear of losing their ministry. Our sons and daughters are gay. Our congregations, our worship leaders are gay..and.. drum roll.. they love God just as much as you.. and bigger drum roll.. God loves them too and has not excluded them..