The Day I Quit Listening to Joel Osteen


This post is part of a series about prayer, happiness, and God’s plans for our lives.

Be sure to catch these other posts:

The Day I Quit Listening to Joel Osteen

The Day I Quit Listening to Joel Osteen – Part 2

Does God Want us to be Happy Above All Else?

 


Maybe it was his Texas drawl.

Or his huge smile.

Possibly it was the affirming way that he spoke.

Whatever the case, I was a fan of Joel Osteen – for a while.

Is what Joel Osteen preaching about prayer really the truth? Or, is he encouraging people to believe that they can just treat God like a big Santa Clause in the sky? Here's an honest and practical look at what is truth and what is false.

I would catch him from time to time on TV and enjoyed listening to all of the positive things that he had to say.

One day in particular, (about 8 years ago) I liked his message so much that I actually got out my notebook and took notes.

He was speaking on this topic: “God really wants to bless you. He wants to give you your heart’s desire.”

Who doesn’t like sermons like this!!!

So, I pulled out my notepad and wrote out all sorts of great quotes and suggestions from this preacher in south Texas. Everything he said was so encouraging!

At one point in the message, he told a story.

In this story, he shared how his wife had found a certain house that she loved. She began to pray that God would give her this particular house.

Each time they’d walk by the house or drive by the house, they’d claim it as their own, knowing God was going to give them the house.

And, God did!

Joel closed his message by suggesting that everyone listening to the sound of his voice do this same thing.

He said,

“Ask God to give you your heart’s desire. Invite Him to bless you with those things you most love and want. He wants to be good to you. He wants to bless you.”

So, I took those words to heart.

I liked how they sounded!

For you see, we had left our dream home after ONLY living there 11 months.

We’d planned the home, consulted in the construction, and chosen every item from the light switches to the trims to the dimensions of the rooms.

That beautiful home sat on a wooded one-acre lot in the most quaint and peaceful community.

We hoped to grow old in that house.

But, God had very different plans.

He moved us from that dream home to a very small apartment in a large city with no yard. This apartment sits in the middle of a loud and busy area. It was quite a change!

And, on that Sunday morning, I took what Joel Osteen said to heart.

Is what Joel Osteen preaching about prayer really the truth? Or, is he encouraging people to believe that they can just treat God like a big Santa Clause in the sky? Here's an honest and practical look at what is truth and what is false.

If God could give HIS WIFE the home of her dreams, He could do the same for ME.

So, I began to pray for a new home. 

I fasted in prayer for that home.

I asked friends to pray for that home for us.

I asked God for a home. I begged God for a home.

I believed God for a home.

No home came.

God didn’t answer our prayers as He’d answered Victoria Osteen’s prayers.

We knew He wanted to bless us, but He did not choose to bless us with a house.

In fact, we’ve now lived in this little apartment for over 8 years without even the prospect of a change in address.

God has not said, “yes.”

God has invited us to wait.

We still have the desire for a home, and we still pray for one.

We now take to heart the advice of Dr. Adrian Rogers,

“Pray until God gives you what you want or until He changes your want-er.”

Is what Joel Osteen preaching about prayer really the truth? Or, is he encouraging people to believe that they can just treat God like a big Santa Clause in the sky? Here's an honest and practical look at what is truth and what is false.

He is God, and He can do whatever He wants to do.

He knows best.

He is all-wise.

He is completely sovereign.

Charles Spurgeon expressed it this way:

“Remember this… had any other condition been better for you than the one in which you are in, divine love would have put you there.”

Is what Joel Osteen preaching about prayer really the truth? Or, is he encouraging people to believe that they can just treat God like a big Santa Clause in the sky? Here's an honest and practical look at what is truth and what is false.

And, that’s why I’ve stopped listening to Joel Osteen.

He is only sharing one side of the story – the very positive side of the story. He shares the things that all of us love to hear.

Yet… if I search the pages of my Bible, I find that the central focus is not us, but His will. It is in His will that we are truly blessed. There is good news in the bible and there is bad news in there too.

We aren’t promised perfection, material wealth, perfectly sunshiny days, and blue skies.

Sometimes, life is hard.

Sometimes, prayer goes unanswered.

Sometimes, the rains and the storms come.

Is what Joel Osteen preaching about prayer really the truth? Or, is he encouraging people to believe that they can just treat God like a big Santa Clause in the sky? Here's an honest and practical look at what is truth and what is false.

So, now that I’m not listening to Joel Osteen, how am I praying?

It’s pretty simple really.

We are still asking God for an earthly home of our own. Each night before we doze off, we pray together and ask the Lord to bless us with a house.

However, we pray a little differently these days. We got this prayer idea from Jesus as He was praying on the night He was betrayed:

Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me.

Yet not as I will, but as you will.” (Matthew 26:39)

And, you know, I think maybe modeling my prayers after Jesus is a little wiser than modeling them after Joel.

And, because I’ve gotten so much reaction to this post – both positive and negative, I’ve added a follow-up post to this one.

You can read “The Day I Quit Listening to Joel Osteen – Part 2” by clicking HERE.



What do you think?

How have you been praying?

What have you been asking God for desperately?

How can I pray for you today?


Were you encouraged by what you read today?

Would you share this article with a friend, co-worker, or family member?

Maybe you can send it to a friend or family member?

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About helloredds@gmail.com

Blessed wife of Randy for over 25 years, mom to two great college students, blogger, women’s ministry coach, speaker and author who is amazed by God’s grace-

179 thoughts on “The Day I Quit Listening to Joel Osteen

  1. A wise, encouraging word, Melanie. Thank you for sharing from your own testimony and reminding me that it’s more about getting my desires to align with His (and watching Him change my want-to!) than insisting His will align with my desires when my desires may not come from Him, or I may have a less perfect sense of timing than He has:).

    1. Thank you, Amanda!
      It’s hard to surrender our greatest desires to Him and trust them with Him! But, I do believe He knows best.
      Praying that He will give you the desires of your heart and sustain you in the interim!
      You bless me!

      1. I understand where you are coming from but just because Joel likes to preach positively does not mean he is wrong. No one wants to here bad things in church. Just because you didn’t get your home that does not anything to do with Joel and the way he preach. Maybe you was not ready for that home, maybe God had something better for you. I don’t like the fact that you are trying to make MY PASTOR look bad. Go and pray about your ways lady.

        1. It is not about the house, it’s what we want vs. what God wants for us. I don’t think any nefative thoughts about Joel Osteen, I admire the man, but hard times are ahead for us all, we must prepare.

    2. Congratulations! You have been given a gift from The Holy Spirit, the gift of wisdom, to be able to discern between Jesus Christ’ teachings and that of a false prophet! Even though I believe Osteen to be a great motivational speaker, he is not teaching you how God wants us to be taught.

      1. Hey Southern Lady,
        Thanks so much for stopping by to leave a kind word! I appreciate you and your visit!
        And, I pray that many people’s eyes will be opened – as mine have been!
        Hope you have a blessed day~
        Melanie

      2. You are so right. Whenever I’ve tried sharing this about him with others I get negativity. I live in Houston so I know many people who are being or have been deceived. He is a great motivational speaker. He is not a pastor or minister of God’s Word. He has said he believes there are many ways to God. This by definition is a false prophet. As there is only ONE WAY, The Way, The Truth and The Life!

  2. Oh my goodness, Melanie. This one goes under the heading, ‘posts I wish I wrote’ — or in my case, the one I wish I was BRAVE enough to write. Like you, I enjoyed Joel’s messages for some time. They were always very encouraging and uplifting. But the more I listened the more I realised that it was more motivational speaking than sound biblical truth. I’m proud of you for taking this stand and standing on the solid ground of God’s complete word. You go girl!
    Marva | sunSPARKLEshine

    1. Thanks, Marva!
      This was a hard one to actually publish because I really like don’t like conflict.
      But, I thought maybe some others were falling for some of the same half-truths that I had been.
      It is easy to be misled, isn’t it!
      So appreciate you and your affirming words!
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  3. I absolutely love this. Thanks so much for sharing your heart & taking a stand! Your writing gave me chills. 🙂 Love you, dear friend. You are the biggest encouragement and lead with such wisdom.

  4. Encouraging speakers such as Joel Osteen are good for us to hear once in a while. But, they are so misleading to the unsaved because they are being taught that it is all about them and what they want. If they don’t get what they want then they doubt that God loves them because Joel has taught them that God gives them what they want.

    Thank you for the kindly reminder that our prayers and our lives are to be focused on God’s will. That is where the true blessings can be found and where life is the richest.

    1. Pam,
      You are so right. We do love to hear what we love to hear – don’t we!
      I pray that maybe some others will be encouraged to seek Him first – not what they want.
      Thank you for stopping by and leaving such a thoughtful word!
      Blessings to you,
      Melanie

      1. Thank you so much for being God’s faithful watchman on the wall sounding out warnings in this unfaithful generation! As an older woman, I have watched the name it and claim it gospel grow by alarming rates! Everyone wants the easy way and everything THEY want and aren’t at all concerned about what our Savior who gave His life on the cross wants to do or wants for us. We all seem to have bought in to that entitlement idea – like God owes us something. He doesn’t owe us – we owe Him! Scripture tells us we are not better than our Master and He told the disciple who wanted to follow Him, foxes have holes and birds have nests, but the Son of God has nowhere to lay His head. Don’t get me wrong, I believe our Heavenly Father does indeed want to bless us just as it says in Matthew that if we being evil know how to give our children good gifts, how much more does He want to give good gifts to His children. But just like any good parent, He does what He knows is best for His children and it’s not always giving them everything they want. The Lord has walked with me through many things, good and bad, and He has ALWAYS been faithful, sometimes even when I wasn’t! Looking back there were times He was silent and times He even allowed me to make a complete mess of things, but it was to grow me up and mature me spiritually. God is always on our side, we just need to learn to praise Him and thank Him even when things aren’t going as we’d like because He has a plan (Jeremiah 29:11) and He knows best! Thanks again sweet lady!! Keep sounding out the truth!

        Cheryl

        1. Thank you, Cheryl, for stopping by to leave such a thoughtful and wise comment!
          I really do appreciate you and your words of wisdom.
          God is faithful, and He will continue to be faithful!
          It’s so good to connect with you.
          Please stop by again and share your thoughts.
          The doors are open and you are so welcome here!
          Blessings to you,
          Melanie

    2. Hi. I completely understand what your saying. I use to attend Lakewood.. But, if I may. I realized Joel serves a purpose. For me I realized that just in the Bible as it says, ” you go from milk to meat.” So, I realized that I needed more meat, so I left. However, I know plenty of people who still go there…including my father-n-law. He is one of the most faithful, spirit -led people I know. He has been a member for over 30 years. In my opinion, I believe it is up to us to personally seek out God’s word individually as well as collectively as the body of Christ. I still listen to Joel, but I am reminded to also be led by the Holy Spirit. I am glad your growing in the word of God. Be careful how you speak. I say that because not everyone is receptive to hearing the word. Joel gives a message of hope. God bless you.

  5. Well, well, well, no wonder we are friends! A short story, in our “church hunting” years ago, we attended a local church where the pastor was a huge Joel Osteen fan and from there on, we never attended again. My husband and I have very strong feelings about Joel Osteen and his prosperity preaching. There was no way we could be involved in a church that supported that kind of thinking. God doesn’t always give us what we think we need nor want, but like you wrote, how we pray is everything and HIS WILL will be done. Even if it does not line up with what we want. I wanted a healthy baby 25 years ago, God had other plans…and the stories go on. God is still God and is so good.

  6. When I think of prosperity preachers I always think “ear tickling.” There is so much wisdom in your post and it’s told in a gentle and kind way. Way to go my friend. Praying like Jesus not Joel Osteen . . . good advice! Blessings!

  7. Love this! I understand why you felt you needed to share this and why it is heavy on your heart.

  8. Very well said, Melanie. It’s much better to model our prayers after Jesus’ example. I too, listened to the prosperity brand of preaching a long time ago. It’s dangerous.

  9. Excellent post! I love how you call him out on the falsehood without being insulting or arrogant. So many people are in these type of posts.

    You know, there is a place in the Bible where the whole wonderful world was offered “if you’ll bow down and worship me.” But it wasn’t God who was offering it. That’s something to think on!

    1. Hey Christina,
      Thanks so much for stopping by to leave a good word today.
      I really appreciate you and your visit. And, it is my prayer that my words by kind.
      Hope you have a blessed day.
      Melanie

  10. Thank you for the courage you show in your insightful assessment of Joel Osteen. Luxury possessions are not what God wants us to “love” and if that’s the direction we are going perhaps we should ask God to change the object of our “love”.

      1. We listen to God’s word and He only can guide us in things we need.we submit ourselves to God,we obey Him and He will give us the desire of our heart if it goes according to His will.Joel Osteen should know it better than others.He must follow the Bible and not his human instincts.Hopefully by God’s grace you and your family will be blessed and receive what you need.

        1. Thanks, Daniel.
          I appreciate your comments and your visit today.
          And, you are so right, the Bible is our authority on all things.
          Thank you for your encouragement~
          Blessings to you,
          Melanie

  11. Wow…What a poignant and eloquently stated post Melanie! I could not wait to read it. After the stroke, I had lots of time while recovering to listen to different preachers along with Joel Osteen and it was not long before I moved on from them. I was hungry to hear and learn more about God’s word and coming from a sales and marketing background, it was like hearing self motivation stories in a church setting. I am thankful for all my brothers and sisters in Christ but I especially enjoy learning and growing when I listen to Dr. Charles Stanley, Pastors:David Jeremiah, Robert Jeffress, and Chuck Swindoll to name a few. Thank you for sharing what God has put on your heart and the courage to publish this. This post is such an inspiration to me! I hope you have a wonderful weekend and may God continue to bless you and yours!

    PS. If God does bless you with a new house…it will be the best house EVER:)

    1. Thank you, Horace! You bless me!
      And, aren’t you grateful for the many faithful teachers out there who are proclaiming truth and the whole counsel of God! I pray that we will do this as well!
      You have encouraged me with your kind words!
      Hope you and your family have a wonderful weekend~
      Melanie

  12. I, too, stopped listening to Joel Olsteen and a few others who proclaim that God will give me what I want. God knows exactly what I need. Many times what I want matches what I need, others, it doesn’t.

    Thank you for having the integrity to share this.

    Blessings to you and yours!

    Marie

  13. Thanks for this wisdom, Melanie! What a great testimony. I had no idea you live in an apartment in the middle of a city. (So do we in Izmir!) God’s plans for us can be different than our own, such an important distinction! Subscribing to your blog today!

    1. Hey Betsy,
      Thanks for sharing with me about where and how you live. Isn’t it amazing how God puts us in similar situations with our brothers and sisters in Christ!
      And, I really appreciate you signing up to follow my blog today. That means a great deal to me.
      I hope you and your family enjoy a refreshing weekend.
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  14. The day I needed this encouragement it showed up in my inbox. We are coming up on our 7th anniversary, have 3 kids and still no house. It is HARD. I often joke that we are really good at buying businesses (we’ve owned a Subway restaurant,a Pharmacy and now we are buying a commercial plaza! And we are only in our 20s!)). But I want a house, especially with us having to move out of our dream house since we can’t buy just yet. Life is hard sometimes but God is in control even in the hard times.

    1. Thanks for sharing your story with me, Ana. I know better how to pray for you!
      It does sound like you own quite of a few things!
      I will pray with you that God will give you the grace to wait for His perfect timing on that house.
      I DO understand!!

  15. Absolutely! ! Also just want to say that prayers don’t go unanswered…it’s just that sometimes the answer is “no”, or even “not right now”. He sees the whole picture that we don’t see. Like any good and loving parent He looks out for us and knows us better than we know ourselves. He gives us the best every time…just not always what we think is best. Blessings to you for speaking the truth in love. Keep it up girl!!

    1. Thank you, Susie!
      I really appreciate you stopping by to leave a good word.
      God is wise, isn’t He! I’m so glad that He knows what is best for us!
      Hope you have a wonderful Sunday~
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  16. Great cautionary tale, however I think Osteen’s messages are intended to be used as motivational material. A quick pep talk. Nothing deeper. I read his daily devotional on the bus ride to work each morning, but I also belong to a bible study group where we go much deeper into the word and the realities of living a Christ-filled life where it’s not all smooth sailings.

    1. Hey JM,
      I appreciate your visit today.
      And, I agree with you that Osteen is a great motivator. He has some wonderful things to say.
      However, I think he does sort of shy away from the harder/deeper stuff. As a pastor, I wish he would share the “whole counsel of scripture” – not just the sweet stuff. It sounds like you have found a great way to balance his devotions with your Bible study group.
      Thanks for sharing.
      Glad to connect with you~
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  17. Okay people, I think you’re missing what is happening with the Joel Olsteen ministry. Those people who follow him live in a lost world that seems hopeless. The most likely don’t have a lot of Bible knowledge. Some don’t have jobs, or kids out of control, or have a relationship falling apart or just something so dreadful & hopeless. Joel gives them what they need to hear. I’ve heard him called the “cotton candy” ministry. So what’s so wrong with that. God is love. All of us don’t have to do EVERYTHING God want’s us to do. Oh, but maybe you do! I’m not trying to be critical but the sanctification journey to growing in our relationship with Christ has MANY parts. I used to listen to Joel. EVERYTHING he said made a difference in my life. I was in an abusive relationship with an alcoholic …. and then a divorce …. and then stalking. Life was at it’s bottom. But Joel gave me what I wanted to hear. Don’t ever be critical of someone sharing God’s word & work according to scripture. You just might be missing that “one” message intended for YOU. I don’t follow him anymore but I now have a very personal relationship with Jesus. But Joel put me on that path. One just doesn’t wake up and know who Jesus is !!

    1. Hey Linda,
      Thanks so much for stopping by to leave your comments today. I really do appreciate what you have to say.
      And, I’m so thankful that God used Joel to point you to Jesus. That’s awesome!
      I pray that God will continue to encourage you.
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  18. I love this balanced perspective on Joel Osteen. I love how you didn’t say he was lying, but only telling part of the story. It’s been hard to put into words why he’s not the best preacher to listen to, this explains it exactly.

    1. Thanks, Elaine!
      My heart is not to hurt Joel or his ministry. I’m sure he’s a great guy.
      I just want to gently speak up about the other side of the coin that can’t be ignored.
      Appreciate you stopping by to leave a kind comment today.
      Blessings to you,
      Melanie

  19. I may be in the minority here but I feel like I need to respond..I listen to several pastors and teachers each day because if my desire to learn and grow.My husband and I listen to Joel every Sunday morning while getting ready for church. I attend a great church that teaches the bible is the word of God.over the years I have heard and read criticisms of Joel Osteen and this is what bothers me.. I believe just like the church has many members and is the body of Christ And everyone has different purposes but just as important as the next person ,I believe God uses preachers in the same way. Joel may not teach the way you like or agree with but I gaurentee there have been many people who have accepted Christ under his teaching.. More than you or I will ever reach. I know people that aren’t Christians who have told me they tune him in sometimes because they like him. I know myself there are certain styles of preachers I can’t listen too. I don’t like preachers that yell and sweat while preaching.. Nothing wrong with them.. Just not for me.I believe Joel draws in those who otherwise would not have tuned in a tv preacher and have accepted Christ.. We have watched Joel and have been convicted by the Holy Spirit of wrong attitudes and asked God to help us to do better.. I also listen to Joyce Meyer and Andrew Wommack so no one can accuse me of “wanting my ears tickled” as I have heard people use that scripture for Joel( that verse is referring to people who want their ears tickled, not talking about pastors who want to tickle ears)yes.. We need to hear some tough things sometimes but give Joel the grace to think that maybe his job is to be a part of the body that might not be what you need but for someone else he’s exactly what they need for the time in their life right now.

    1. Hey Kathy,
      Thanks so much for stopping by to leave a comment today. I really appreciate your opinion and your time.
      And, I am sure you right – many people have come to know Christ because of Joel. I know he reaches so many folks, and I am grateful for that.
      It’s good to connect with you, and I hope you will stop by again.
      Blessings to you,
      Melanie

    2. Thank you Kathy for speaking out for many of us who didn’t have the nerve. I too like Joel but also listen to several others to learn from them. I think, like in life, we need a lot of different views from others to make good decisions. Everyone has their likes and dislikes for preachers but what upsets me most is “why all the hate”. No one asked you to like him but to treat someone (anyone) like what is being done is not what God would want us to do. I think it is time to move on and go to more positive matters. If you taught more of your view on religion you my bring greater understanding to the people. I hope that no one treats you the way you have treated Joel Osten, And…by the way I won’t be reading your comments in the future. May God bless you..

    3. I am very saddened that you feel the need to unfollow Joel Osteen or any evangelist for that matter. Take the BIBLE teachings and not that of a person. I also feel maybe you have taken some things out of context.
      As far as Joel’s comment of Gods wife, I feel he is using us as a whole being Gods wife and not literally His wife . Don’t feel as if I’m putting you down or being negative as I don’t know your whole story but I do have a question; were you prayed up and have the means to build your dream home ? I know some circumstances don’t always go as planned and HE does want us to have the desires of our heart but he expects us to have the knowledge to back up our financial wants. I also realize WE sometime try to acquire material things instead of spiritual blessings.
      I pray you will soon get your Dream Home but I also know it will be in God’s timing.
      May GOD richly bless you when HE is ready.
      I would appreciate your comment or did I miss something in you blog ?

      1. Hey Peggy,

        Thanks for taking the time to stop by and leave such a thoughtful comment. I’m sorry to be slow in getting back to you; I read and respond personally to all of the comments, and sometimes it just takes me a day or so.

        I’m not exactly sure what you are asking. I did write a second post as a follow up to this one. You can read Part Two here: https://www.melanieredd.com/day-quit-listening-joel-osteen-part-2/

        If you are asking for more details about the housing and budget situation, I’m not at liberty to share more publicly due to the nature of our ministry. However, as far as prayer, we have thoroughly prayed over and budgeted for each home that we’ve owned.

        My heart has been through these articles to remind folks to consider what Paul calls in Acts 20:27, “The whole counsel of God.” My lack of agreement with the Osteens pertains to the name it and claim it “version” of Christianity. I believe we have to position all scriptures in line with other scripture. And, sometimes there is a unique tension of balance between two passages.

        For example, the Bible tells us to “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” in Matthew 7:7. But, we are told in Psalm 115:3, “Our God is in heaven; he does whatever pleases him.” These two things – my pleasure and His – may not always be in sync.

        Thank you for your ideas, questions, and blessings.
        I pray God will bless you as well.
        And, please stop by again~
        Melanie

    4. Well said. I have a problem with pastors who want to put tv preachers down saying things like “I’m not going to preach a prosperity gospel while having a pearly white smile and wearing a $3000.00 suit.” I listen to different preachers and try to take something good from them until they criticize others. Then I’m pretty much done with them. Another put down wearing Christian t shirts. How can bible verses on a shirt be bad? I try to stay close to God and mind my own business. In Mark 11:24 it says to ask for what we desire. God is in control and has the final say and I’m fine with that. His word says we can still ask. Without faith we can’t please God. He knows my heart. Also I find that I’m judged no matter what church I attend so most of the time it’s me God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit. I’m fine with that. I love Joel and I need to be uplifted and encouraged and if he is wrong he is the one that has to face God about that. The bible is there to teach me and guide me and give me discernment. It’s God’s word which is alive! God bless!

  20. So I hear what you are saying. My question is what preacher do you know that preaches the whole truth? Every one of them has his or her own slant. I personally love Joel. After being in a strict legalistic Assembly of God church for 25 years, I finally heard about Grace from Joel. Can you believe it? I think what Joel is trying to get people to do is to believe for good things and there is nothing wrong with that. People need hope. God is the giver of all good things and he is pleased when we come to him in faith. There is however, the issue of God’s will. God knows the motivation of our hearts. Are you happy with the place you live now? Are you thankful? Or are you holding onto the house as an idol? Just thoughts to consider. I agree with Kathy’s comments. Joel is reaching thousands of people. Joel may not be right for you, but God put Joel in this position of authority so who are we to judge? He will be held accountable for his teaching, right? And teachers are held to a higher standard, right? Blessings to you and may you find peace in His great grace.

    1. What a great question, Patricia!
      I do love the grace that Joel preaches, and I wish more preachers shared this grace.
      Thank you for your reminders to be grateful and content. That is my prayer.
      I appreciate you stopping by to leave a thoughtful comment.
      Hope you will visit again.
      Blessings,
      Melanie

    2. I understand, but most people believe good things are “due” to them. Life is about being content with what you have, be an agent of change, help others, do your best and make your local world better around you. I have a hard time with Joel Osteen telling people “believe, pray and God will give it to you”. No, sometimes, you won’t get it, it won’t happen. You were meant for something else. Deal with it. Joel Osteen is a motivational speaker making millions, because nowadays, people want to hear that it will get easier and they deserve the best… Life is hard, but it’s our job to see the moments of happiness.

      1. Hey Sandy,
        Thanks so much for stopping by to leave a thoughtful word today.
        You are always welcome here, and your comments are really appreciated.
        I hope you have a blessed Monday~
        Melanie

    3. I don’t believe that God put Joel in this position of authority. This is what Joel chose to do, he leads you to believe that he is preaching God’s word. But I find no where in the Bible (God’s Word) that God say’s he will give us everything we pray for. God hears his children’s prayer’s but the answer is not always what we want it to be. God know’s what is best for his children and it is not alway’s yes. It is our responsibility to search God’s word for the truth ourselves, Joel Olsten will not get you into heaven. All of us will stand before God on judgement day and account for what we have done in this life. There are many false teacher’s out there and the Bible warns us to be aware of wolves in sheeps clothing. I pray that we all continue to search God’s word for his truth and his truth only. The Bible also say’s we are not to add to or take away from his word.

      Have a wonderful day.

  21. Hi Melanie! It’s been a while since I last visited, and I’m so glad that I’m back. Thank you for this post. I soooo appreciate what you’ve shared here and I am so glad that you had the boldness to write it. I agree with you 100 percent. I can’t believe how this kind of “gospel” has crept into the church. Believe it or not – once upon a time I brought into it. Thank God that I am no longer into name it and claim it teaching. This is an American gospel that is being preached that is void of the true message of the cross. Thanks again.

    1. Hey Tiffiney,
      I’ve missed you, girl! It has been too long since we’ve connected. I’m so glad you stopped by and left a kind word!
      And, it is scary how easy it is to get into the “name it/claim it” group. Maybe we do this because it sounds so good!
      I pray that God will lead more people to see the truth and to realize there is so much more to the Gospel than prosperity!
      Hope to connect again with you soon.
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  22. We had the same dream. We have a home, but we wanted to move to a different area. We prayed and prayed. We found out that we were not listening very good. He kept telling us no, but we wanted to move so bad, we didn’t listen to Him. To get our attention, he “slammed the door in our faces”, so to speak. I admittily was very disappointed, but have come to realize the reason He didn’t want us to move away from where we live. It’s okay, we still pray about moving, but we are where we are suppose to be. We just needed to learn to listen better. I agree totally about maybe our ” new area” will be heaven.
    We live about 1 1\2 hours from where the Osteen’s live and worship. Personally we have never listen to him.

    1. Hey Carla,
      Thanks for stopping by to leave a comment today. I’m so glad you did.
      And, it sounds like you have had to learn about laying down your dreams as well. Surrender is tough, but there is no place that I would rather be than completely surrendered to Him.
      I’m praying today that God will encourage you and meet every single need that you have.
      Blessings to you,
      Melanie

  23. I hear ya Girlfriend! Just the other day something Joel said struck me as off. Then I saw the picture of his house(Mansion) and I believe (not judging though as it could happen to any of us) he has succumbed to the greed of money, power and status rather than being a true servant of God . Because a true servant of God never charges money for the Truth, it is given away freely. Jesus gave it away for free so why are we charging for it? Just my thoughts…..

    I have been praying for a new Van with comfortable seats and working AC since I have a heart condition ( I did not get the new van but the axles and CVC Joints on our old van were replace…Praise God!!!)

    I have been praying for a specific Tiny House for us so that I could have my own Craft Room. I found the exact one I want and fell in love with, but they are not in the State where I live yet due to another manufacturer already being here whose product is flimsy compared to the one I love and with less amenities as the one I want for way more than the one I love….Go figure! With my math it would still be cheaper to purchase this Tiny House I want instead of paying the monthly rent we have been paying over the years and we would see such a profit in the long run and the short run ……

    I have been praying for the past 10 years to be healed of my Physical pain and Chronically painful illnesses and to heal my heart. Not happened yet, but I am emotionally healing, mentally healing, and spiritually healing which I believe is the beginning process, yes? But perhaps this Thorn in my Flesh is just the thing to keep me Compassionate, Loving, Gracious and Merciful to others….hmmmm.

    I have been praying for a comfortable desk chair with a high back with lumbar support, thick cushioned short seat and cushioned arms for a year now as my chair’s back is broken. As well as a couple of Blue, Green and Orange Slipper chairs so I can finally have some company over and to replace the lift recliner that is also broken, the back and the footrest are broken on it. As well as a thick memory Foam Mattress Pad for our bed. We cannot afford any of these things due to me and my Shopping Addiction which I have confessed to God, my Sis-in-law and only halfway to my husband as I am afraid of his anger.

    But I guess God is trying to teach me to learn to be Content with whatever I have and I am for the most part, but my back and hips sure hurt something fierce!

    I miss being able to walk in the mountains with my hubby and camping and cleaning my apartment on my own (Yes, I am the weird one I love cleaning!!!) For me it is so relaxing as it is my Service for my hubby unto God.

    1. Hey Karen,
      Thanks so stopping by today and sharing some of the things you are praying over.
      I think it’s great to be praying about all of these things. One of the truths that we are coming to understand is that God gives us all that we need. We can keep on asking and praying over issues. And, when we need a particular item, God does give it to us.
      Praying that He will provide everything that you and your family truly need.
      Asking Him to encourage your heart today!
      Blessings to you,
      Melanie

  24. Thank you! I’m from Texas and at one time I also like listening to Joel Osteen. But my eyes were also opened to his partial truths. I’m just glad to have the Word of God to guide me in His truths.

    1. Hey Mercedes,
      Thanks for stopping by to leave a good word today.
      Isn’t it sweet when God opens our eyes? And, I’m thankful for guidance of the Bible as well.
      Hope you have a blessed day~
      Melanie

  25. Thank you so much for writing this post. I couldn’t agree more. In fact, I have often wondered if some people have believed his prosperity doctrine and then become disillusioned when the things they wanted did not materialize. I pray that no one has lost their faith because of it. And I do not say this to speak ill of , or insult Mr. Osteen, but out of concern for the Bible being misrepresented. Nowhere in the Bible does it say that we are going to be given large incomes, beautiful homes, and expensive cars. We will be given exactly what we need to grow in our faith and our relationship with the Father. 🙂 God Bless you for speaking the truth in love.

    1. Thank you, Ellen!
      I really appreciate your affirming words.
      I do pray that those who are discouraged will be given fresh hope today!
      Thank you for stopping by to visit and leave a good word.
      Hope you have a great day today~
      Melanie

  26. Melanie, a while back about 2009, I wanted a truck. not just any truck, a 2005 chevy ssr. new they were $45000 +. Every day I pulled one up on the internet that was for sale and would drool over it. I couldn’t afford it. My wife never yelled and screamed that I was crazy. she lovingly sat and watched. so here we are now,in 2016, and one came up for sale. Not many for sale in the united states. they only made about 15000 I think. I went down to the dealer, drove it and bought it. I was so happy, it was crazy to like something this much. here I was, 69 yrs old, kinda broke, with way more bills than I could handle. got way in over my head with IRS.. had the truck 2 weeks when one night, I tossed and turned, thought about the payment of 700 per month. way too high for me. so my wife agreed that I should take the truck back. so I did. drove down to car dealer here in sand springs, walked in, and the finance man said, sure, fine, here is your down payment back, and voided the deal. I couldn’t believe it. in the past I was turned down at the same agency and was forced to keep a different truck and finally couldn’t afford it and let it go back and ruined my credit. point is….why did God let me have this SSR? because he knew I loved it, and he knew I couldn’t afford it. And, he let me see the goodness and kindness of the the finance manager. that was the only reason I didn’t cry as I left the car dealership. I saw
    God in the finance manager.

    1. Thanks, Fred, for sharing your story with me!
      It is hard to walk away from things that we really WANT and think we must have!
      But, you were so wise to walk out of the dealership that day.
      You will make it without your truck, and I will make it without my house – because we really do have all that we need.
      Your words encourage me.
      I pray that God will give you and your family ALL that you truly need.
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  27. Hello Melanie,
    I saw your post on pinterest, im reading all these post and wondering? is this really about how Joel is preaching, or how Mel wants her blog some attention. Let God convict Joel. I dont think God wants us to create division?
    You sound just like him in your responses. If you have concerns about Joel
    tell him personally and pray for him. Dont make it like your helping people, its called division. Now tell me how you appreciate me stopping by…. See you in Heaven with Joel and Victoria and your beautiful homes.

    1. Hey Margie,
      I had to take a little extra time to ponder and pray over your remarks. Your words did sort of feel like a punch in the gut.
      But, as I’ve had time to reflect on your comments, I can say that I appreciate your honesty. And, I can see how you might think I was trying to beef up my site “hits” with this title. Although your words stung, I am thankful for your cautions. I will take to heart the things you have written.
      I do hope you will stop by again to read other things that are on the site.
      And, I hope you have a blessed day.
      Melanie

    2. ON POINT MARGIE! #salute
      Thank you for your message “Tell him personally & pray for him”
      Good on you Margie #twothumbsup

  28. You are absolutely right. I fear for the people Joel Osteen leads astray. Many times Gods answer is no and that is what faith is, believing God knows what is best for us. God healed the blind, made the lame to walk. he did not give people houses and diamonds. Ministers who have multiple houses and wear big diamond rings should be ashamed. That money should be going towards Gods work. If these ministers are truly christians they should be protesting the decisions the government is making about our religious liberty

    1. Hey Patricia,
      Thanks for stopping by to leave a comment today.
      And, I do think lots of people are led astray by teachings like these. I believe I was. We just want them to be true!
      I appreciate your ideas and remarks.
      Hope you have a blessed day~
      Melanie

  29. Dear Melanie,

    I can only imagine how it must feel when someone questions your motives or questions your kind of preaching. We are all aiming for the same thing to give God the Glory! I’m sure your blog can help people understand God more or encourage them to move forward. I would hopei it’s not at the expense of someone trying to do the same. There is so much hate in the world, let’s love one another. That is what God commands us to do. I hope you’ll forgive me as I’m sure Joel has forgiven you.

    1. Hey Margie,
      Thanks for stopping by again.
      I do take every single comment to heart. Your words have been strong, and I have pondered and prayed over what you have shared.
      Thank you for taking the time to share your perspective. I think I “get” where you are coming from, and I appreciate your honesty.
      And, I hope you will stop by again and read future posts.
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  30. I do get the message that you shared here , but I am saddened that as a believer in Christ you would publicly put down another believer in the very same God we serve. Rather than put Brother Olsteen down or speak ill of him aren’t we all as Christians supposed to build each other up rather than criticize ? You are no more encouraging in your words for solely mentioning the Olsteen’s. I don’t claim to be perfect , no where near it , but it saddens me that you felt the need to point the finger at the Olsteen’s rather than just merely state your opinions or beliefs . Dear Sister in Christ , perhaps this could be the reason you still have not received the full blessings of Gods will for your family?

    1. Hey MJ,
      Thank you for stopping by to leave a comment. And, I do take comments to heart – both good and bad.
      I hear your concern over my “calling” out Joel. It may seem severe and critical to you.
      For what it’s worth, I think Joel is a gifted communicator and speaker; however, I am concerned that he only tells the good side of the story. When we speak of heaven, we must also speak of hell. When we speak of grace, we must also speak of sin.
      Thank you for your cautions and warnings. I will prayerfully consider them.
      I hope you will stop by again.
      Melanie

  31. I completely disagree, Joel Osteen is a phenomenal speaker. He preaches hope but also guides us through the rocky times. So many people stand in judgment of great men of God thinking their own theories are more biblical. Not only does he have the proper training, he has an anointing on his ministry.

    1. Hey Dawn,
      Thanks for stopping by to leave a comment today.
      Joel does preach with great hope and encouragement. He is very gifted.
      My hope is not to judge him but to challenge my readers to see both sides of this coin. You can’t only teach that God is love. Preachers must also teach that sin is wrong and hell is real.
      Joel is well-trained and a great communicator.
      I’m just praying that he will begin to teach the whole counsel of scripture.
      I hope you will stop by again.
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  32. While I do not listen to Joel personally, I have known several friends and family members who have prayed to accept Christ upon listening to Joel, including my sister, who I prayed for a long time. I agree is doctrine is more about feeling good as a Christian, but I think we should not discount his ability to lead someone to Christ.

    1. Hey Melissa,
      It’s great that many have accepted Christ while listening to Joel. Awesome about your sister.
      And, I don’t discount his abilities. I think he is very gifted and capable of reaching so many people for good.
      My prayer is that he will balance the good and the bad and teach the whole counsel of scripture.
      Thanks for stopping by today to leave a comment.
      I hope you will come by again.
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  33. I saw this posted on Pinterst this morning and it bothered me all day so after about 30 minutes of searching I found it and I’m happy but saddened by it. I think sometimes we get so caught up on what should be given to us that we miss the part where we have to do our on homework. I listen to Joel quite often and find that he’s very uplifting and he will push my mind enough to have me to read my bible on the scriptures and stories he speaks of. No one can expect church to feed and give you the depth of what you get when you STUDY the bible. Church is to fellowship with like believers and is meant to give you motivation and something to hold on to for another week but that alone will not give the foundation needed to know the word of God for one’s self. You can’t blame that on Joel or any other pastor – that’s bible study and home study.

    Also – my sister always says she wishes she had my faith, because I see it, believe it and it comes to fruition. In every prayer , “if it is your will”, should be in it – but Joel shouldn’t have to tell you specifically how to pray during a church session – . And here’s the bigger picture we don’t always see, are we praying for something with fear in our hearts? The reality is when you lose something you call your “dream home” how confident are you that it won’t happen again? Yes praying for the home is essential but also having direction and realizing when he’s sheltering you from a potential storm is even better. So although we may really, really want things and think we are ready God sees the full picture and you can’t blame Joel for that.

    1. Hey Tamera,
      Thank you for stopping by to leave a comment today. I read and consider each comment that is made.
      And, I agree. We have to follow up with our own Bible study after listening to a preacher.
      Joel is uplifting and tells amazing stories. I do think he is quite gifted, however, I am concerned about the fact that he does not teach anything hard, challenging, or negative from the Bible. As for the house, I am still praying for God to do His will and to send that home if He desires.
      My biggest prayer for Joel is that he would use his influence while teaching the whole Bible and the entire counsel of scripture.
      I hope you will stop by again. Have a blessed day,
      Melanie

  34. I read your blog and many of the comments. I listen to Joel and he is a great motivator and he doesn’t preach the fire and brimstone messages. There are sometimes when I don’t need a “heavy” message. There are times when all I can handle is someone telling me the goodness of the Lord and feed that hope. If that is his calling, thank God for him. As we grow in the Lord, our desire to learn more will carry us into those deeper depths and understanding of God’s Word and will and the Lord will guide us to those preachers and teachers who will take us deeper. I don’t listen to Joel weekly, but I am glad to know that there is a messenger of hope out there.

  35. Good thing God has woke you up. What people don’t realize is Joel Osteen basically teaches the law of attraction. Look up the secret or New Age Movement. A lot of preachers are teaching this. That’s why it is important to read your bible. Jesus did say this would happen. False prophets will be on the rise. I pray that his followers and he himself will change his ways. In Jesus Name

  36. I totally agree with you. I’ve never heard Joel really preach on sin or call it by name. Like you, I heard a message on how God wants to bless us and it doesn’t matter how the worldly economy is but the economy in heaven is doing just fine. I was so inspired, but every message can not be uplifting. As his seem to be. And the Bible clearly stated that God doesn’t bless sin. Also, my husband was paralyzed 5 years ago and I have prayed for healing since then. Did his accident mean I had done wrong or am still doing wrong since he hasn’t been healed? Absolutely not, the rains falls on the just and unjust. Job was an upright and perfect man, he went through more than I could ever stand. My opinion is if yoy have 30,000 followers, you are preaching to itchy ears. Thank you for this article. Joel is definitely a prosperity preacher.

    1. Thank you, Jessica!
      Sure do appreciate you stopping by to leave a thoughtful word today.
      Praying that God will give you and your husband much grace and joy.
      Your words affirm me today!
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  37. Melanie, sounds like God has grown you up in one of His characteristics: Wisdom. Wisdom comes from a true relationship with God, listening to Him, and accepting His will over our own. No where in scripture is it written that God has to please us for our relationship to grow with (in) Him. However, if we want to grow with (in) Him, we do need to need to please Him, accept that His will is better for us than ours (after all, He can see the end from the beginning), and love Him.

    1. Thanks for stopping by to leave a good word today, Aggie.
      And, I agree that wisdom comes from spending time with God and in His Word.
      Aren’t you thankful that He knows best?
      Glad to connect with you.
      Hope you have a blessed day~
      Melanie

  38. God works in His own timing. God does want us to have our hearts desires and our “wants”. Because you know “ask and it shall be given”. Just remember when listening to speakers you take what you want to hear. I heard this same message and received a completely different perspective from it. May God work in your life in His timing with your hope of getting a place to call home. God bless.

  39. Hi, I really like your article. About 14 years ago I lived in Houston and attended original church Joel Osteen was at, something woods. The times I went it he seemed more of a motivational speaker ALWAYS touching on the subject of wealth. Even his wife Victoria mentioning how she should start a ministry in the Galleria, since she spent so much time there. ? Then they moved to the compact center!! They were asking the congregation for $1,200 for a seat in their new church. Thank you!!! The church I now attend speaks from the Bible, the only truth!

  40. I think you’ve hit the mail on the head here. Thank you for the reminder that His will is to be done.

  41. He does seem to have a feel good ministry that’s for sure. I was discouraged about how well he lives. Modesty (like Billy Graham) really commands my respect. I must admit that I couldn’t pray for things like a house without prefacing it with if God wills it. I remember pray bargaining as a teen once when my dog was ill. I told God that if he let my dog live I wouldn’t ask for another boyfriend! Yes, my dog lived and I didn’t gripe about boyfriends for a long while! I always believed, however I was saved at age 30 on December 28 when I found out that the guy I was dating had drowned. That is when I hit rock bottom and got to know Jesus. My life has definitely been filled with a lot of trials and tribulations since my Christian walk began. I can say that Joel Osteen’s views are too rosy, because God does his best work in the hardest of times. My faith has increased because of those rough times and I wouldn’t take anything material in it’s place. I really admire the humble Christians who have endured many tests and yet their faith perseveres. I don’t put much thought into those who seem to get everything they want. That’s not what it’s all about. I have truly enjoyed reading your article and all the responses! I love to talk about Jesus! I’d love to share this via reference in my blog. It’s been nice visiting your site! Mickey Goad

    1. Hey Mickey,
      Thanks so much for stopping by to leave a comment. It’s great to connect with you!
      I really appreciate your thoughtful comments. It does sound like you’ve been through some tough experiences.
      And, I do agree. Rough times grow our faith in ways that easy times can’t!
      You are welcome to share any posts for reference that you’d like to share on your blog.
      I’m going to stop by soon to visit you!
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  42. In a World filled with half truths, you are a beacon of light. There is great deception in Churches today. Not very many Pastors discuss topics that Jesus himself did. Such as Remarriage with first S]use still living is Adultery in God’s eyes. Why won’t Preachers warn people? If they did, half the congregation would walk out. Jesus makes it plain in the 3 Gospels and Malachi. If you marry a DIVORCED woman you commit Adultery in the eyes of Christ. It took 15 years for me to see the truth that was right in front of me. It is a hard truth but I had to repent of it….I cannot pick which scriptures make me warm and cozy and ignore the rest.

    May God give you peace as he directs your Path. Thank you for standing up for Truth of his Precious Words.

    1. Thank you, Rachel, for stopping by today to leave a thoughtful word.
      I really appreciate you and your visit.
      Praying that God will lead us all to trust Him more and to know His Word better.
      May He open our eyes to see wonderful things from His Law!
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  43. This is an “American gospel.” What about our brothers and sisters in Christ who live in poverty at the lowest levels in other parts of the world? Would this gospel work for them? No it wouldn’t. Which proves that this “Gospel” is not true. God has more for us than giving us everything we want. Like working on our characters which is much more important. I don’t listen to him either. He’s a fake.

    1. Amen, Debbie!
      We do live with an American gospel, don’t we!
      What a thoughtful word.
      Praying that we will focus more on what He can do in and through us than what He can do FOR us!
      Blessings to you today!

  44. I! Love! This! When my husband and I were new Christians we were all about Joel. We bought his first book, and we even went to see him one Friday evening when he was in Columbus, Ohio. The following Sunday morning we announced to our Sunday school class that we had went to see Joel Osteen on Friday. The room grew very quiet, you could have heard a pin drop on the carpeted floor. Talk about awkward! No one said a word, the Sunday school teacher just pointed to the next person that had something to say. We wanted to crawl under our chairs. We were just so baffled as to what we had done wrong. After class, we asked the teacher and he explained to us what Joel was all about and stated that he didn’t want us to get the wrong impression from people who preach on prosperity, and don’t bother to fill in the gaps. He went on to say pretty much the same thing as you said, that Joel is a great guy and he loves the Lord, but just doesn’t preach the “whole truth”. I was so grateful once he explained to us, and gradually was able to see he was so right. So thank you for being so brave to write this post. It is important for new believers to know the truth! 🙂

    1. Hey Rachelle,
      Thanks so much for stopping by to share your story today! It’s great to comment with you.
      And, it sounds like you are blessed with a very wise Sunday school teacher!
      All of this is very subtle and very easy to miss.
      My prayer is that believers will seek to be balanced in all that they do – learning all that the Bible has to say about money, blessings, and prosperity.
      Your words are so affirming and kind! I hope you will drop by again and share your thoughts.
      Blessings to you,
      Melanie

  45. The Bible says that we are to rightly divide the word of truth. God is loving, merciful, and compassionate. But He is also severe. He wholeheartedly wants us to wholeheartedly obey His word.

    Thanks for sharing your heart and gentle warning to the world. Blessings to you.

    1. Thank you, Erica, for stopping by today.
      I really appreciate you and your thoughtful words!
      Oh, to speak the truth in love – that is one of my greatest desires right now!
      Hope you have a blessed day~
      Melanie

  46. Dear Melanie,
    I’m so glad you are sharing this. We were never promised an easy life as a Christian. Actually much the opposite. Look at followers through the ages and what they have gone through. Try to share that prosperity teaching with brothers and sisters losing their lives in the middle east for their belief in Christ and unwillingness to give that up for any reason.
    Like you said, I’m sure the Osteens are lovely people, but according to my bible they are not giving the whole story either. Actually the hard places seem to be where we grow the most. No flower grows only with sun. It also needs rain. God bless you. I’m glad you are sharing this with us.
    In His love,
    Em Mckinney

    1. Amen! Thank you for stopping by to leave a positive and thoughtful word today, Emily. I’m grateful for your visit!
      And, isn’t it true – we seem to grow the most in those dark and difficult places!
      It’s great to connect with you.
      I hope you will drop by again soon~
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  47. Melanie….I was encourage to read this because from the first time I heard Joel I didn’t like his sermon style. It was too much fluff fluff….no real substance. I don’t like how he pulls out scripture and distorts it to use in his message….yeah he’s all about the feel good but not about the nitty gritty of being a Christian. Thanks for your article.

  48. Hello, dear Melanie. I appreciate your speaking the truth in love. It’s not easy, is it? Some people will be offended by that, and always will be. Others may be offended for a time, but the seed of truth has been planted. There has been many times I have bawked at the truth of God (unwittingly), because it went contrary to my emotions, at the time.
    Our goal as Christians is to rightly handle the word of truth and thereby “In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God will peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth;” (2 Tim. 2:25)
    Thank you for standing up. May God bless you in all you do.

    1. Thank you, Gleniece.
      And, yes, this post has ruffled some feathers, but I couldn’t let it go.
      So, I pray that the truth will prevail and that God will use my words to encourage many.
      Appreciate you stopping by to leave a kind word!
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  49. Hmm, a better convincing article wouldn’t have added books to a site that you are getting paid from. You are using Joel Osteen’s name to get readers and ultimately buyers. tsk tsk tsk

  50. I could not agree more! When someone posts a J.O. Quote I inwardly roll my eyes. Like (too) many famous evangelists, I believe his intentions started out good but ‘getting that dream house’ and yacht and vacation and car became much more important. I feel like he is in the business of making people feel good and looks past many truths in the bible. Great post!

  51. An amazing post, Melanie. Thank you for having the courage to write. “Name it and claim it” is such a gimmick. Jesus said, “Father, thy will be done.” That is what we should be praying. So beautifully written. I hope you got your dream house again. <3 Blessings!

  52. Melanie, I found this article through Pinterest – first time on your site. I did enjoy and agree with your post. But I think I learned even more reading through the comments. I feel like I’ve just had a first-class lesson for a newbie blogger on how to graciously answer many different kinds of comments with humility and charity. If it’s possible, reading your comment responses blessed me even more than the post itself! xoxo

    1. Thank you, Lynna!
      Your words are very kind and encouraging. Thank you for taking the time to stop by and leave them.
      I will tell you that there have been sometimes I’ve wanted to react strongly to comments. But, God wouldn’t let me. I’ve even had to delete some of my comments after I’d posted them.
      Blogging with grace takes a lot of prayer and many deep breaths. But, I wouldn’t want to do it any other way.
      I wish you great joy and favor as you start out your blogging! There is so much to learn and so much good you can do!
      Let me know if I can help you in any way.
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  53. So well said, Melanie! Thank you for helping us to see what Scripture really says, not what we want it to say. The Prosperity Gospel is dangerous on so many levels: it leaves you believing that if God’s not blessing you materially, your faith is weak, or worse, that if God IS blessing you materially, that you must have immense faith! I’ve known many poor, faithful Christians and many rich, weak ones, and vice versa. Material possessions are not an indicator of faith. We need to simply say with Job: “The Lord gives and takes away – blessed be the name of the Lord.”

    1. Thank you!
      I really appreciate your visit and your kind words!
      And, He does give and take away, doesn’t He.
      I think the true test comes when He takes away.
      Praying that we will be found very faithful!
      He is God, and He is good~
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  54. Thank you for this. Though I’ve never listened to Joel Osteen or had anything to do with his philosophies, your story resonates with me as I’m in a similar situation – living in a tiny apartment with our growing family and desperately searching and praying for a house. Your encouragement was much needed by me, and it helps to hear the perspective of someone else who knows the disappointment I’ve been experiencing. I believe that God is using this trial to strengthen my faith, and though I feel discouraged with every offer that falls through, I will never lose hope or stop praying.

    1. Amen, Belle!
      It sounds like you are dealing with some of these same issues. It is hard when it happens day after day after day.
      Praying that God will answer our prayers one day and give us grace to continue on in hope and faith!
      I appreciate your visit and your kind comments today.
      It’s great to connect with you~
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  55. ? this article saddens me because even though everyone has their own opinion we still are brothers and sisters in Christ. It’s unfortunate that I see more division in the body of Christ then those out in the world. Even if this is what you think, does it make it right before God to speak against a fellow believer, especially when it’s obvious how much God is doing through that ministry. My family and I really appreciate and honor the Osteens, the family is a wonderful caring family. Many just see what they see on a 30 minute segment or a couple of services and feel to pass judgement, do you personally know them? In fact they walked through many trials themselves just like all of us. I am thankful the ministry is impacting many for God all around the world, who can speak against that? I come from a family of pastors, raised in church and served in many aspects of ministry and the times I have heard P. Joel minister it has been a blessing in my life, even through my trials that I had to walk through. Remember that no matter how long a Christian you are, most times the most basic commands that Jesus gave, like Love your neighbor as yourself, people just struggle. Know that each of us have different giftings and anointings and just operate in that what God has given you, and honor those around you in the same way. When others start to compare if and why God does something for others and not them, which was an unfortunate perspective in this article, that is a dangerous place especially when Faith plays a big part. In the end it’s ALL about JESUS, honor one another…. Blessings

    1. Hey Carla,

      Thank you for stopping by to share your heart and your thoughts. I really do appreciate your time and your perspective.

      It sounds like you have been greatly blessed by the ministry of the Osteens. I think that is wonderful. And, I do believe God has used them to encoruage many folks.

      It is not my heart to be cruel, unkind, or offensive to the Osteens or to any other minister. However, I am concerned that ministries like this one can become one-sided and somehwat misleading. My reason in writing this post was to question and consider these lopsided theologies, not to impune or discredit any particular ministry.

      My prayer is that all ministers will speak the truth (the whole truth) and do it in love.

      I do consider, read, and pray over every comment I receive. And, I will do so with yours.

      Blessings to you,
      Melanie

  56. I love the verse you referenced not because He promises to give us all that we want, but rather because as we delight ourselves in Him, He changes our desires and then gives us those. Thanks for sharing this bold post, Melanie!

  57. I loved reading your testimony! It is great to see that not all that have listened to those of the mega churches can still come out to hear what Jesus is truly saying. Please checkout this pastor from Los Angeles and get back to me. He is on YouTube, the page is thehouseofgoodnewz or thelastword2013

    1. Thank you for stopping by to leave a comment today.
      I really appreciate your visit. And, I will try to stop by and listen to your LA pastor. Sounds interesting.
      Blessings to you,
      Melanie

  58. Melanie,

    I’m a little late to the party, but I was fascinated by all the responses, as well as, your honest assessment of Joel Osteen. While I don’t question his motives, that’s between him and God and I can’t know his heart, I agree 100% that his teaching is not sound. As a biblical counselor and as someone with family members who were steeped in that doctrine (one couple attended his church for many years), I can tell you it isn’t harmless. Because when you’ve been taught to believe that God always wants you healed, financially well off, and that He blesses us all the time … and when that doesn’t happen, people can get angry at God and decide He may bless others, but He isn’t blessing them. Some even walk away from God altogether. One sweet lady I know, who had been a believer for many years, had a stroke and spend the last few years of her life angry and bitter because, as she said, “God promised to take care of me and He didn’t!”

    I believe you did it in an honest and loving way. You are a watchman on the wall. Thanks for the courage to speak the truth in love.

    Blessings,
    Donna

    1. Thank you, Donna!
      This has definitely been one of the most controversial pieces I’ve ever written!
      However, my goal is always to lovingly speak the truth from God’s Word.
      Sure do appreciate your words of encouragement and your comments today!
      You bless me~
      Melanie

  59. Hi there.
    I happened to see your post about Joel Olsteen and decided to see what you had to say. Unfortunately, I feel you post uses Joel’s name to help you advance your own self intentions. When you point a finger, there is three pointing back. It was a very judgemental post with very judgemental comments with self-serving intentions. I have listened to that sermon and from my point of view Joel was giving a message that we should keep faith and embody our thoughts in abundance and you shall find abundance. The house was an example.

    1. Hey Teri,

      Thanks for stopping by to leave a comment today. I appreciate your views and your visit.

      Respectfully, I must assert that there is no way that you can know the intentions of my heart. In fact, none of us can know our own hearts. (Jer. 17:9-10). However, I do not believe it was NOT my intention to judge the Osteens but to warn others to be careful of blindly following everything that they teach. Abundance may be financial, but it may not. God may bless us with what we ask for; He may not.

      My concern is that this type of teaching causes people to “expect” financial prosperity. When it doesn’t come, they lose hope in God. Joel and Victoria build up promises of great wealth and tangible blessings – which may or may not come.

      Maybe it would help you to understand what I was trying to convey if you would read Part 2 of this series – https://www.melanieredd.com/day-quit-listening-joel-osteen-part-2/

      Blessings to you,
      Melanie

  60. Thank you for this Melanie. There are two side to every coin, and to only talk about or preach one side is very misleading. Many blessings!

    1. Thank you for stopping by to leave a good word!
      I appreciate your visit and your affirming comments!
      And, you are right – it’s a mighty thin pancake that doesn’t have both sides!
      Blessings, and Merry Christmas to you and your family~
      Melanie

  61. I just stumbled across this post on Pinterest and I want to say something to you sweet sister in Christ . . . KEEP SPEAKING THE TRUTH IN LOVE!!! Heaven is real but so is hell, and any person that calls himself a pastor and doesn’t preach the whole gospel is a tool of the enemy. A watered down gospel doesn’t call sinners to repentance. The “sinners prayer” is just empty words without repentance, and yet many preachers, Joel included, are telling people that if they say a few words and just do the best you can you’re saved. Grace is free, but it wasn’t cheap. My Jesus died on a cross so that I could be forgiven, but only if I repent and live my life for Him. One of the commenters said “we don’t have to do EVERYTHING the Bible says.” Uh, YES, WE DO. We can not pick and choose what we like and don’t like. There are lots of scriptures I wish weren’t in the Bible. But they are. And just because I don’t like them doesn’t mean they aren’t true. The Bible says the gate is straight and the way is narrow and there will be FEW that find it. Attending church on Sunday morning does not save you. Owning a Bible does not save you. Being “good” does not save you. The only thing that saves us is Jesus. And preachers that preach you can do whatever you want just because we’re under grace are leading millions to hell. If the desire of Victoria Osteen’s heart was the mansion they live in, then her heart isn’t where it should be. And that’s not my opinion, that’s Biblical. People are dying and going to hell and Victoria Osteen is praying over a house that most of the people in their congregation couldn’t pay the taxes and insurance on? Wake up people. God is real. The devil is real and eternity is forever. These people who call themselves pastors and don’t preach the truth will one day stand before God and answer for misleading their flock. Sadly, that won’t be an excuse the flock can use when they stand before God and He will say “I never knew you.” So dear lady, please ignore those comments that have criticized you for daring to speak against Joel Osteen. Joel Osteen, while probably a really nice guy, is NOT of God. Jesus NEVER promised an easy road. He promised we would have trouble, but reminded us that HE had overcome the world. Prayers don’t always get answered. But God is on the throne. Of that I have no doubt. Bless you sweet lady!! Praying over you and your family today! Blessings from Missouri!

  62. Not all of Joel Osteen’s messages advocate using God as an ATM. It’s not logical to base a decision to completely stop listening to Osteen bases on this one sermon.
    I may not agree with everything he says, but I do believe that he has a message that should be heard and I’ve never heard of anything he said that isn’t biblical.
    If Satan can get Christians to fight about petty stupid things amongst themselves instead of focusing on the main goal of Christianity (telling the world about a Saviour who loves them and wants to save them from their sins), then the house that we represent will fall.
    You may not agree with everything he says, but your attack on unjustified and unwarranted and it seems as though you are stirring up strife and dissension.

    1. Hey Tamara,
      Thanks for stopping by to leave a comment today.
      I appreciate your visit and your honest feedback. I always prayerfully consider every comment that a person takes the time to leave. And, I will pray over the things that you have shared.
      I don’t believe I attacked the Osteens, but I have respectfully disagreed with them on some significant theological differences.
      For more on this topic, you may want to read the second article that I wrote… https://www.melanieredd.com/day-quit-listening-joel-osteen-part-2/.
      Thanks so much,
      Melanie

  63. Wow! I was moved by your article, showed me that not everyone just wants their itching ears scratched.. because then it becomes too good to be true.

    One day my Pastor, he preached a sermon titled, “Sometimes God Says ‘No’!”. This was really helpful for me, as I was going through a rough time believing God on why my prayers for my cancer ridden father were not answered. I believed myself to be a very confident woman of God and thought God has answered all my prayers up til then. God had something else in mind for my Father.. something better but I was selfish thinking only of myself at the time.. wanting my dad to get better and I would still be able to visit him, etc.. I wasn’t thinking of how much better off he would be without the suffering of cancer. Even if he would have been healed would I pray like I did before? So, my prayers were answered no, while my father’s were, yes. All my father wanted to do was go home to Jesus. The sermon was, Just because we want it, doesn’t mean it’s what God has planned for us. Living for His will is better off for me.
    Thank you again for this!!

    1. Hey Rachel,

      Thank you for taking the time to stop by today and leave an encouraging word. It’s good to hear from you!
      And, sometimes God does say, “No.” In fact, I can think of many instances in the Bible when He told people, “No.” Sounds like your pastor is a very wise man!

      I’m very sorry to hear about your dad’s cancer. It sounds like your father is in a better place – whole and cancer-free. However, I’m sure you miss him. It’s so hard to let the people go that we dearly love.

      I will pray that God will use you and all that you have lived through for His glory and for your good. May He further use you to comfort and encourage others who are walking through dark valleys. You have much to offer! I read great wisdom in your words!

      And, I agree… living in His will is the only place to live!
      Please stop by and visit again.
      Blessings to you,
      Melanie

  64. I love what you have to say and your experiences with prayer. Everything you need to know is in the Bible. You do not need anyone to tell you how to act, how to pray, how to listen, how to love…because God gave it in His words and demonstrate it through Jesus.

    I used to always just ask because it says that if you need something, want something, just ask and God will give you…but what I did not realize at the time is that God does things His way, He knows what’s good for you. If He gives you what you desire but does not look at what comes after that, it could be damaging to you. So, I learned to pray for what I want but only according to His will, and if it isn’t so, for Him to take the desire away. But I also trust that what He has planned for me is bigger and better than what I want for myself for God wants to bless me and give me the best.

    🙂

    1. Hey, Vangelina,
      Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment today. It’s great to have you visit.
      And, you are so right. God does know what is best for us. I love knowing that we can trust Him to provide for us exactly as He wishes.
      Your faith inspires me!
      I pray that God will bless you sweetly today~
      Melanie

  65. I understand your point of view on this post, but you shouldn’t encourage people to stop listening to Pastor Joel because you didn’t get something you prayed for in YOUR timing. He didn’t say that as soon as you pray for something, God will always give it to you. Sometimes it works that way, but other times it doesn’t. I’ve been praying for something for 7 years and it still hasn’t come to pass and I go to Lakewood Church (Joel’s Church), but just because it hasn’t happened doesn’t mean that I’m just going to stop listening to him. I stay in faith and trust that if it’s God’s will, it will happen someday. And I know that you aren’t necessarily bashing Joel Osteen like most would, but the title is very misleading. You are telling people to stop listening to Pastor Joel’s positive messages if their prayers do not get answered right away and I don’t believe that’s right. He preaches with positivity because who would listen to a negative sermon telling you “you’re never going to get what you want, stop praying for it”? Miracles happen everyday and just because our miracles haven’t happened yet, doesn’t mean that someone else that heard his sermon won’t get their miracle soon because they prayed for it. And I agree with you that we should pray Jesus’ prayers and not Joel’s. Our whole LIFE should model after Jesus, not any human being no matter who they are. Jesus is perfect and although Pastor Joel is one of the kindest people in the world, he’s not perfect. It’s your choice to not listen to his sermons, but I don’t think it’s kind of you to make a blog about why people shouldn’t listen to Joel Osteen because of something that happened to you. Please don’t be like the rest of the world that doesn’t know him and assumes things. He’s a wonderful person (with great intentions) on the platform and off and you should come by Lakewood Church and see for yourself. 🙂 God bless and I pray you get that dream house someday!

    1. Hey Mallory,

      Thanks so much for stopping by to share your heart. I really appreciate your feedback and your sweet spirit.

      And, I’m glad that you love your church and love your pastor. I’m sure he is a wonderful person, and I’m not against him personally.

      However, I am concerned (after reading several of his books and listening to many of his messages) that he is not telling the whole story.
      I wrote a follow-up piece to express my specific concerns. You might want to check it out here: https://www.melanieredd.com/day-quit-listening-joel-osteen-part-2/

      I pray God will bless you and I appreciate your kind words~
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  66. Joel Osteen may cause many to cling to the faith…..and then release it, permanently, in confusion and despair. Unfulfilled needs and wants, can leave us feeling neglected by God. But for God, how else to mold us except through experience to make a change permanent? I am not good with money, so I pray for it, yet I remain in financial distress…until I “get it”…..and I DO MY PART, what I can do and quit being a baby Christian, but a adult. Then God may assist in another area of my life. People should remember too, that all conditions are NOT what God wants for us…Satan tempts us and tries to create havoc. We need to be watchful and prayerful and take responsibility for our own actions. Though we can be tempted or blessed, we are ultimately accountable for the actions we take. That is why we are rewarded or doomed by following the life we chose.
    Remember too, mentoring accounts for our conditions in life. “Coping skills” in all areas of life. A millionaires son who is taught money skills, will live a different life from mine, ..I was not taught financial skills by my family…as they had none to teach. So please, seek on your own and in prayer for the skills you may lack in each area of need…… And may God bless you and help you contribute to the Great Commission of helping others be saved so they can see Heaven and know God is our creator!

  67. I would like to add that I’m so glad that I don’t rely on people for my salvation. Thank you Jesus for all you have done and to God be the glory for all you have done for me in the precious name of Jesus! Amen

  68. Hello Mrs Redd,

    I do agree with you %100. I do believe that some “Pastors” are what you call materialistic ministers who use the ministry like a business, rather than a humble passage to teach the word of God. They fill their sermons with success stories, preach nothing about the everyday battles we ‘Average Christian” faces and fail to teach the masses that no one’s life and experience with God is the same. My mother fell in this trap years ago. What she did was focus less on what they said and concentrate more on what the Bible says. You see what they fail to tell us as Christian is that life will not be perfect and we will not get what we want all the times, some of the times or even most of times. God is not a Santa Claus or Amazon for that matter, we don’t just request things and we get it. But does God loves us any less? No. Just like you, I discovered that I sometimes don’t always get what I pray for. But by asking the Lord to grant his will and if it is his, let it be done in his name. I want nothing I desire, but what God desires for me.

    Thank you for encouraging people and inspiring people around the world. We need more evangelists to preach the word of God to the world. I will definitely share your articles with my brothers and sisters back home in Jamaica.

    God Bless!

    1. Hey Fallon,

      It’s so good to hear from you! Thank you for stopping by my blog today and leaving a good word. I really appreciate you and hearing what you have to share.

      And, I’m with you. I want nothing more than what God desires for me. He knows best. And, He always gives His best to those who leave the choice with Him!

      I do hope you will share my articles with your brothers and sisters in Jamaica.

      You have encouraged me with your kind words today.
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  69. Everything you said is so true. God wants to bless us, but with Himself, His glory…if He truly did preach during His time on earth that He just wanted to bless us with material wealth, I think the early apostles probably would have had a bone to pick with Him once they saw Him again…but they understood that He was after so much more than that. 🙂 I think Joel Osteen’s ministry is dangerous for this very reason. Nonbelievers or new believers hear these things and try them out, and when they don’t come to fruition they come to the conclusion that God is either not good or not real. I’m glad your faith was strengthened rather than crippled by all of this!

    1. Thank you, Jenna.
      I’m so glad that you stopped by and left such a thoughtful word. And, you are so right… God wants His nearness to be our good. He wants us to love Him above all else.
      And, yes, the Prosperity Gospel can be so misleading and harmful, can’t it?
      You’ve encouraged me with your words today.
      Blessings to you,
      Melanie

  70. Isaiah 43:1-3….. Fear not for I have redeemed thee I have called thee by thy name thou art mine. When thou passest through the waters I will be with thee and through the rivers they shall not overflow thee, when thou walkest through the fire thou shalt not be burned neither shall the flame kindle upon thee. For I am the LORD thy God The Holy One of Israel thy Saviour….. (KJV)

    Jeremiah 29 :11-12 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of Peace and not of evil, to give you an expected end.

    Lamentations 3: 33 For God doth not afflict willingly nor grieve the Children of Men.

    Blessings – Anne.

  71. Agree with you Melanie!

    God has promised to meet all of our needs and not all of our desires. What a vast difference that is! I do believe that God wants to bless us but that might look different to Him than it does to us.

    I’m so glad we serve a God who knows what is best for us!

  72. I stopped watching TBN for the same reason you stopped listening to Joel Olsteen. I watched, I gave, I prayed, then I studied God’s Word. Our purpose is to do God’s will. He desires our worship, our obedience, our relationship with him. He called Abraham his friend because he believed God. He said David was a man after his own heart because he was merciful, and sang his praises. We have two gates through which things can enter our heart. They are the eyes and the ears. We are tempted through the eye gate. We are lead astray through the ear gate. Remember he said they will have itching ears. I have learned to let the Holy Spirit be my teacher and the Bible my textbook. Thank you for sharing your experience.

    1. Hey Patricia,
      I’m so glad you stopped by today and left a thoughtful comment.
      And, you are so right… God wants our whole heart, doesn’t He!
      May He bless you and continue to make you more like Jesus as you study the Bible and stay pressed in close to Jesus!
      Blessings,
      Melanie

  73. I am sorry to read this article. Your focus was not on what God wanted but on what YOU wanted. Joel inspires us all to follow what scripture promises. And God DOES SAY He will give us the desires of our heart, but this is the beauty of our devotion, that the desires of our hearts should be GOD’S DESIRES, It wasn’t in your divine plan to have what you wanted when you wanted it. It is not Joel’s message to blame. He provides examples to encourage us, the rest is up to God and to us!

    Quit blaming him. And also, the big bold header of your article has been done in such a way to gain popularity for your site.

    FOLLOW THE SCRIPTURES AND YOU WILL BE BLESSED!

  74. Thank you for confirming what I have felt in my heart but could not articulate. I have tried listening to Joel Osteen, and there is always a feeling of something being just a little off. God has given you both wisdom and boldness, which is both awesome ans scarey at the same time. God bless you!

  75. Thanks for sharing your perspective. However, what Joel said isn’t heretical or unscriptural. Jesus taught the disciples to believe for the impossible, and that they would have what they say. So, the idea is consistent with Scripture. It also true our prayers should align with God’s will for our particular life purpose/plan/ journey. Sometimes what we want and what God has planned may not match. At the same time, Scripture says, God will give us the desire of our hearts. So, it is a matter of spiritual balance that comes from an intimate relationship with Christ, hearing His will for our lives. No doubt, Joel emphasizes the positive and fundamental teachings, but that doesn’t make what he says false. He’s no more guilty than others who’s teaching is lopsided in another way. It seems, historically, The Church goes through cycles of teaching topics / themes. Often, preachers take them to an extreme. So, while Joel may be guilty of being generously positive and motivational, his Bible basis is Scriptural. At least, nothing you said you heard was false, just unbalanced. The idea of praying for the desire of your heart is valid, but we should certainly pray that our heart is connected with the heart of God for our lives. You will ask what you will and it shall be done…. as long as it is God’s will

  76. This is really sad and I feel sorry for you. I don’t understand where it says in the Bible that you are to point fingers and publicly humiliate another believer.
    The greatest commandment is to the Lord God with all your heart, mind, and soul, and the second is to love your neighbor as yourself. We are suppose to pray for our brothers and sisters in Christ, not write “negatively” about them. What makes this matter even worst, you are angry about something material thing. You can compare his life with yours, and it is so sad that you did. There is no way God lead you to write this, it is plainly an act of your flesh. This is not encouraging and edifying, the is the exact opposite.

  77. Remember, too, that the Osteen have MILLIONS of dollars to pay the mortgage on the house God ‘gave’ them! They have their reward in this life.

  78. I do love your blog. However, do not agree with this article. This is why we put our trust in God and not man. We should study the word for ourselves. No preacher is a perfect preacher. They fall short daily just as we all do. We however, should not point fingers at others it’s not biblical to do so. People attack Joel because of his preaching, his mega church and money. He is blessed and inherited his blessings from his earthly Father and our Heavenly Father. I believe he preaches with good intention and a good heart. He tries to lift people up when they are down and that’s what we should be doing. We’re supposed to be happy right where we are while waiting on God. God Bless You

    1. Hey April,
      Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment today.
      I appreciate your thoughts and I take to heart everything that is shared with me.
      I know many people have benefitted from Joel and his teaching, and it’s not my desire to attack him.
      Rather, I’ve tried to point out some ways in which his preaching is only sharing one side of things.
      Perhaps you might enjoy reading the follow-up post in this series: https://melanieredd.com/day-quit-listening-joel-osteen-part-2/
      Hope you have a blessed day,
      Melanie

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