It’s Sunday evening and it’s still 100 degrees. I’m keeping cool in my little house and I’m watching Joel Osteen on 60 Minutes. I’ve been marginally interested in him for a while now and I’m learning why. His message is pretty much the message that we love to pass along at breathe books. Your life can be better. You can be healthier. You can be stronger and totally in control of your life. You can be wealthy. You can be happier than you ever imagined – just imagine it! It’s in your hands. It’s in your attitude.
And I was surprised to learn that in Joel’s latest book (which I have not carried) he never once uses the word Jesus.
This is so interesting to me. Joel Osteen is head of one of the largest churches in the U.S. – a non-denominational Christian Church based in Houston. And he never uses the word Jesus. He quotes some scripture, but there’s not much religion there. No crosses. No Bibles. Old or new. (and surprisingly, no collection plate. Not even an 800-number to call to donate!)
I have to tell you – I think this man is preaching Esther Hick’s Abraham teachings. I think he’s teaching Louise Hay’s affirmations. I think he’s teaching The Law of Attraction. I like it. What he so fervently calls God, I would call my higher self (her name, by the way, is Sophia). The God that Osteen refers to could just as easily be the Source Energy that Wayne Dyer illustrates as a glowing orb in his PBS shows. I believe Source Energy lives both inside me and surrounds me in the Universe. That’s Osteen’s God. It’s just language. “God” is too heavy for some of us. The word carries too much weight. But God’s not too heavy for Osteen and by using “God” he is making the Laws of the Universe so much more acceptable to thousands of people who aren’t comfortable with the notion of not using the word God – and god-forbid (!) calling it channeling (wasn’t the Bible channeled? I know The Book of Mormon was!).
Even Oprah relegates “channellers” to her web site and radio programs. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I think she has hosted Esther Hicks on the radio, but not the TV show. The vibrational frequencies of the universe are called The Law of Attraction in The Secret – no mention of where they come from!
I’m not sure where this is all going – but it’s kind of fascinating that people call what Osteen “preaches” Christian – perhaps as a way to make people comfortable with it. I think I’m just happy that so many people are getting this message. Whether one is saying God Loves You or The Universe Loves You or just I Love You! it’s all a good message. The more we teach that there is no wrathful God, no malevolent force in the Universe out to condemn us and judge us, the better off we are. The more hear that we are good from birth, that we are here to teach and learn and to make Humanity better one person at time, the better off humankind is. I like this message.
I may just sell Joel Osteen’s books. I’m just not sure what section to put them in.