Joyce Meyer (born Pauline Joyce Hutchison) is a Charismatic Christian author and speaker and president of Joyce Meyer Ministries. Meyer and her husband Dave have four grown children, and live outside St. Louis, Missouri. Her ministry is headquartered near the St. Louis suburb of Fenton, Missouri.
Meyer was born in south St. Louis in 1943. Her father went into the army to fight in World War II soon after she was born. She has said in interviews that he began sexually abusing her upon his return, and discusses this experience in her meetings.
A graduate of O’Fallon Technical High School in St. Louis, she married a part-time car salesman shortly after her senior year of high school. The marriage lasted five years. She maintains that her husband frequently cheated on her and persuaded her to steal payroll checks from her employer. They used the money to go on a vacation to California. She states that she returned the money years later. After her divorce, Meyer frequented local bars before meeting Dave Meyer, an engineering draftsman. They were married on January 7, 1967.
Meyer also reports that she was praying intensely while driving to work one morning in 1976 when she said she heard God call her name. She had been born-again at age nine, but her unhappiness drove her deeper into her faith. She says that she came home later that day from a beauty appointment “full of liquid love” and was “drunk with the Spirit of God” that night while at the local bowling alley.
‘..I didn’t have any knowledge. I didn’t go to church. And I had a lot of problems, and I needed somebody to kind of help me along. And I think sometimes even people who want to serve God, if they have got so many problems that they don’t think right and they don’t act right and they don’t behave right, they almost need somebody to take them by the hand and help lead them through the early years.’ –Joyce Meyer
Meyer was briefly a member of Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in St. Louis, a congregation of the Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod. She began leading an early morning Bible class at a local cafeteria and became active in Life Christian Center, a charismatic church in Fenton. Within a few years, Meyer was the church’s associate pastor. The church became one of the leading charismatic churches in the area, largely because of her popularity as a Bible teacher. She also began airing a daily 15-minute radio broadcast on a St. Louis radio station.
In 1985, Meyer resigned as associate pastor and founded her own ministry, initially called “Life in the Word.” She began airing her radio show on six other stations from Chicago to Kansas City.
In 1993, her husband Dave suggested that they start a television ministry. Initially airing on superstation WGN-TV in Chicago and Black Entertainment Television (BET), her program, now called Enjoying Everyday Life, is still on the air today.
In 2005, Time magazine’s “25 Most Influential Evangelicals in America” ranked Meyer as 17th.
In her broadcasts, Meyer speaks humorously, sharing with her audience her own shortcomings and taking playful jabs at stereotypical church behavior. —Wikipedia