Joyce Meyer Leads Her Father to Faith

by | Apr 30, 2002 | Charisma Archive

The popular Bible teacher recently baptized the man who she says abused her when she was a child
Most people don’t realize when they watch the petite, sassy-talking evangelist Joyce Meyer walking across the stage in her high heels and fashionable clothes that they are looking at a former victim of long-term sexual abuse. Yet when the charismatic preacher talks about miracles these days, it’s with a renewed passion because she has seen God’s power change the life of the one who caused her pain.

From the time she was very young until she was a teen-ager, Meyer was sexually molested by her natural father. When she speaks about him, and about what he did, her voice carries great emotion, but a tone of compassion as well.

“He was born in the hills–way back in the hills. In his family, incest was just part of the culture,” she says.

Meyer, who grew up in Missouri, was 9 years old when she first told her mother what was happening. Frightened by it, her mother did nothing.

“I guess on some levels, I can understand that. It is easier to believe your 9-year-old daughter is a liar than it is to believe that the man you married could be capable of something so awful,” Meyer says.

But something that ultimately made the difference in her situation also occurred that same year. She made a decision that she wanted to be saved.

“I was going to get saved,” she said, recalling her youthful boldness and determination, which now are hallmarks of her personality and message. Yet even at church in those days she needed both qualities to get what she needed from God.

“Wouldn’t you know it, the pastor didn’t give an altar call that night. I sat there in my pew as long as I could, then I grabbed my two cousins’ hands and dragged them up with me–‘Come on, we’re going to get saved!'” she said.

Through tears, the young Meyer stammered to the surprised pastor, “Can you save me?” As she prayed, she felt the cleansing forgiveness of Jesus.

“I always felt dirty. I was always washing, bathing, trying to get clean. And in this one moment, Jesus washed me, and He never left me,” she told Charisma.

A verse she had heard–Isaiah 61:7–came to mind: “Instead of your shame you shall have double honor, and instead of confusion they shall rejoice in their portion. Therefore in their land they shall possess double; everlasting joy shall be theirs” (NKJV).

But afterward she still had to return home–back to the abuse. When Meyer was 14, her mother actually walked in while it was occurring.

“I thought: Thank God. Now she’ll put an end to it,” Meyer said. “But she didn’t. She picked up her purse and walked out the door–away from the nightmare.”

Meyer says her mother simply did not know what to do, so she did nothing, but Meyer doesn’t blame her mother. A few hours later, when her mother returned, Meyer held her breath, waiting for the fallout.

“But she walked in and never said one word,” she said.

Only adulthood removed Meyer from her father’s assaults. But the abuse was a cloud over the family that never went away.

“We never talked about it. I never confronted the issue,” Meyer said.

That was 40 years ago. Meyer has since married, raised children and founded a ministry that today spans the globe, preaching the gospel through television, radio, tapes, books and conferences. She learned early in her ministry that she had to forgive her father, totally and unconditionally, which she says she did.

But two years ago, while he lay on a hospital bed weak and frail, he told her: “Joyce, I am sorry you feel I hurt you. But I still don’t understand what was so bad about what I did.”

Meyer says that with incredible sadness she left the hospital room not knowing if her father would live through the night and certain that if he died he’d go straight to hell. God told her that she was to move him close to her house and take care of him.

It was a very difficult act of obedience. Meyer’s husband, Dave, strongly disagreed with the plan, but it soon was confirmed that God had spoken to Joyce, and Dave agreed to follow His leading.

Every chance she got, Meyer showed her father she loved him. Every need he had, she met. She bought clothes and food and made sure all his basic needs were met.

One day, Meyer’s mother found him crying. He called Joyce, asking her and Dave to come over right away. When they arrived, he broke down in tears again.

“I am sorry for what I did to you. I have wanted to say this to you for a long time, but I didn’t have the guts,” he said. Then he looked at Dave and began to weep again. “Dave, I am sorry for what I did to you, too. I am sorry I hurt your wife. Please forgive me.”

Meyer knew in that moment that the miracle of salvation was there for her father. She knelt beside him, and together they prayed the sinner’s prayer.

A few days after, Meyer came back to the house after her mother reported that he was doubting his salvation. She used God’s Word to encourage him. He then asked Joyce to baptize him.

Meyer baptized her father on December 2, 2001, in front of hundreds of onlookers at the Dream Center that Joyce Meyer Ministries started in the inner city of St. Louis. Though her father’s health remained frail at press time, Meyer reported that his soul is “healthier than it’s ever been.”

Meyer has never mentioned her father’s name in public. In order to protect him, she also has chosen not to release her maiden name.
Mary Hutchinson


Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


Have We Departed From the  Simplicity of Christ?

Have We Departed From the Simplicity of Christ?

Recently I heard a pastor say the following: "When I was pastoring and saw little fruit, I began to call those with potential to reach others for Christ to our home and to mentor them one on one. That's where massive growth happened in the people." Local pastors and...

Take the Fight to the Enemy, Before He Strikes at You

Take the Fight to the Enemy, Before He Strikes at You

Read Time: 3 Minutes 7 Seconds “When the Philistines heard that they had anointed David king over Israel, all the Philistines went up to seek out David; and when David heard of it, he went down to the stronghold,” (2 Sam. 5:17). When David heard that he was under...

Joyce Meyer: Becoming a Prisoner of Hope

Joyce Meyer: Becoming a Prisoner of Hope

Read Time: 3 Minutes 56 Seconds God is good. And He has a good plan for each of our lives. No matter what may be going on right now, God’s plan is unfolding. In the meantime, Romans 12:12 tells us to “be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer,”...

Victimized By Gaslighting? 5 Steps to Finding Freedom

Victimized By Gaslighting? 5 Steps to Finding Freedom

Read Time: 2 minutes 26 seconds The term "gaslighting" has gone viral across social media this year and Merriam-Webster chose it as their word-of-the-year, saying searches for the word spiked 1,740% in 2022 alone. We're breaking down what the Bible has to say about...

WATCH: Vlad Savchuck: Life, Health and the Bible

WATCH: Vlad Savchuck: Life, Health and the Bible During a recent visit to @HungryGeneration, Pastor Vlad Savchuk asked Bill Wiese to comment on his personal experience applying the Word of God to his own life and health. These same principals hold true for all who read and...


Miraculous Divine Intervention Birthed by Thanksgiving and Praise

Read Time: 4 Minutes 2 Seconds When I first became a believer in 1970, my mother was one of my first “converts," giving her heart to Jesus as soon as I shared with her the beauty, the power and the...
I’m Going Defcon G on the Enemy

I’m Going Defcon G on the Enemy

Read Time: 1 Minute 32 Seconds The last six years have been the best of times and the worst of times. I’ve seen more death, destruction, disease and devastation than I care to remember. I’ve also seen the hand of God move in extraordinary ways. Indeed, sometimes I...

Prophetic Vision: ‘Now is the Time of Your Healing’

Prophetic Vision: ‘Now is the Time of Your Healing’

Read Time: 3 Minutes 41 Seconds I was remembering a time when my husband and I were praying over friends who had been in a situation for many years that had caused deep trauma to their souls. As we were praying for them, I became aware of an angel standing over them...

5 Ways to Improve Your Emotional and Spiritual Health

5 Ways to Improve Your Emotional and Spiritual Health

Read Time: 4 Minutes 50 Seconds Do you believe the Lord is concerned about your emotional and spiritual health? He is. He wants you to know how to improve your emotional and spiritual health to be resilient in turbulent times. One of the most powerful things you can...

Pin It on Pinterest