- (Photo: Zachery Tims Ministry via The Christian Post)
Bishop T.D. Jakes, chosen to eulogize Zachery Tims at the Florida minister's funeral, had more to say after leaving the pulpit Saturday.
Jakes reached out to his followers on Facebook and Twitter, thanking them for their prayers of support. The bishop also reflected on the difficult task of eulogizing Tims, the senior pastor of New Destiny Christian Center (NDCC).
"Thanks so much for all of you who prayed for me. I have completed my assignment in preaching for New Destiny and the Tim's family," Jakes said on Twitter.
The bishop, pastor of the Potter's House in Dallas, Texas, also reflected on Facebook about his trip to Orlando.
"I am just returning from a difficult day. The mourners of Dr Zachery Tim's (sic) life included his family, his church New Destiny, and countless leaders and people from across every denomination," Jakes wrote.
He continued, "It is my hope that believer's everywhere will continue to lift them all up in your prayers. He is gone but not forgotten! Let's pray the right decisions are made in the aftermath of this sad day!"
Jakes was chosen by church administrators and family members to speak about Tims at his friend's funeral on Aug. 20 at First Baptist Church of Orlando.
Tims, 42, was found dead Aug. 12 in a room at the W Hotel in New York City. He was reportedly in the area for a speaking engagement.
At the funeral, attended by thousands of mourners and supporters, Jakes compared Tims to the biblical Jacob, who was later renamed by God to Israel.
In his eulogy, Jakes said "Dr. Tims" was different from "Zach."
"I thought I was the only one who knew how unhappy Zach was, how broken he was, how afraid he was if anybody was to see any flaw in him. He tried hard to heal himself, to fix himself," said Jakes.
"I don't know what happened in that room in New York," Jakes said, "but I can only hope that as Zach was dying, Dr. Tims stood up."
Tims, who battled a drug addiction before turning to Christ, was very open about his struggle with substance abuse and his violent youth.
In his book, It's Never Too Late, Tims thanks Jesus Christ for saving him and for using his life as a testimony to let others know that "God is in the recycling business and can change a messed-up life and make it beautiful."
According to his biography on NDCC’s website, Tims was “miraculously saved, instantly delivered from drug addiction, and called into ministry.”
An autopsy conducted on Tims was inconclusive, but reports surfaced Aug. 15 that a small glassine envelope holding white powder was found on the pastor.
Sources close to the investigation believe the substance may be narcotics and might have played a part in the 42-year-old preacher's death, according to various media reports. Officials were awaiting toxicology results to shed light on what may have caused Tims' death.
Investigators were also reviewing surveillance videos to ascertain whether anyone might have visited Tims in his hotel room.
Tims, born in Baltimore, Md., was laid to rest at Woodlawn Cemetery in Orlando.
Tims, who often hosted TBN's "Praise the Lord" program and appeared on various other radio and television programs, founded the 8,000-member NDCC in 1996 with his then-wife, Riva Tims. The couple has four children.