Joel Osteen – Biography
“Choosing to be positive and having a grateful attitude is going to determine how you’re going to live your life.”
“God’s not mad at you; He’s on your side; He’s got a good plan for your life; and when we obey what He wants us to do, we’re going to prosper.”
These are the quotes of American preacher, televangelist, author Joel Osteen. The minister was born in a Protestant family on March 5, 1963 in Houston, Texas. He was one of the five children from Dolores Pilgrim and John Osteen. His father was formerly a Southern Baptist pastor who founded Lakewood Church in 1959. He served as the preacher until he died in 1999. His mother assisted her husband in his teachings. He current serves as had at serves as head at the Lakewood Church as well as appears on television with Osteen Sunday Sermons.
Joel attended Oral Roberts University in Oklahoma, the largest Christian University. But he didn’t complete his course there. Actually he wasn’t interested to fill in father’s foot steps. He wanted to work in TV production and marketing. Abandoning his university education he produced a television ministry, the weekly Sunday service for Lakewood Church for fifteen years. The program was broadcast by local television at Houston in the beginning, but later on a cable network Family Channel also aired it. The program enabled John to reach a greater mass. Joe helped his father in the missionary, travelled with him but never actively participated in delivering sermons. But after demise of his father in 1999 he undertook the responsibility. An interesting matter of fact is that he had preached just once before the death of his father, that too when father was too weak to deliver the Sunday sermon.
Today he is the head of Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas. The church was relocated to the Compaq Centre, the local meeting house in 2005 in order to capacitate more attendants. The church is the largest church in the United States with the congregation of 30000 members. His preaching reaches over seven million in more than 100 countries all around the world. Joel Osteen show is broadcast by various channels including such as TBN as well as cable channels such as ABC Family, BET and others.
Joel is a modern time pastor. His preaching is less Biblical, more inspirational. He defines his teachings are “simplified versions of Bible lessons”. He motivates people to be optimistic, advocates in the favor of love and serenity of mind. He helps to solve the practical life problems. Instead of concerning on doctrines, he teaches; “How to have a better married life?”, “How to forget the bitter experiences in the past?” He doesn’t talk about sin, Hell, God’s wrath. To reach the diversity of congregation he has small ministries each for teens, seniors, singles which assist them to solve their marital, family and even financial problems. He travels place to place delivering sermons. His programs which also features includes music are termed as “A Night of Hopes”. He is nicknamed as Smiling Preacher and his words as Words of Faith. He has travelled to many countries including England, Northern Ireland, Canada, Israel, India few to mention.
Osteen has reached even larger mass through his books. His first book titled Your Best Life Now: 7 Steps to Living at Your Potential released in October 2004 made to the New York Times bestseller in November and became the fastest selling non-fiction book in the publishing history. Following the success of his first book, he released another book “Become a Better You: 7 Keys to Improving Your Life Every Day” in October 2007. Four million copies were printed at the first print. With excessive selling this also advanced to New York Times best seller.
He is fifty years of age. He is a married man. He married to Victoria Iloff on April 4, 1987. They have two kids, son Jonathan and daughter Alexandria. His wife, children and mother are always present beside him during his sermons. He wants to remain away from politics and runs non-denominational programs. He was featured as one of the ABC News’ “10 Most Fascinating People of 2006” and was named Most Influential Christian in America in 2006 by The Church Report. Osteen is living his life happily in Tanglewood section of Houston.
Other information, his biography and his details can be obtained from wiki, his official websites and other reliable sources.