October 26, 2007

Joel Osteen

Posted in christian tennis, Christian Tennis Player, Faith, scott paschal, Scott Paschal Tennis, Uncategorized tagged , , , , at 10:16 pm by Scott Paschal

joel-osteen.jpgI mentioned Joel’s book in a recent blog entry. And somebody felt the need to warn me that Joel is Satan himself, the wolf in sheep’s clothing mentioned in the Bible.

According to a report in Outreach, a magazine for church leaders, Joel has the largest church in America with 47,000 regular attendees. Needless to say Joel has turned some heads and stepped into the spotlight. His critics often say he has weak theology, that he trends towards positive, not fire and brimstone.

Why do I like this book? I have witnessed firsthand how Joel’s book has been able to reach unbelievers and new Christians in a way the vast majority other Christian books can’t.

I have seen this book be used by God to reach a suicidal tennis player and help her see hope. I have witnessed this book be used by God to open the eyes of a new Christian to want to delve deeply into the Bible.

My parents knew Joel’s parents, and apparently he and I hung out together in our diaper days. John Osteen laid his hands on me back in the day and told my folks God would use me to do something special in ministry.

I’m not smart enough nor do I have a good enough handle on God’s thoughts to know exactly what Joel’s life is supposed to accomplish for the Kingdom. Deeper than that, I’m just pretty busy trying to figure out my own ministry, much less Joel’s.

Joel’s ministry has seemed to have really grown these last few years. My hope would be that he is authentic. Yet, whether he is or not, his book is helping people.

Firsthand, I have seen this book be used by God as a ladder to help hurting teens and young adults take a step out of their suicidal graves. It has also helped new Christians gain curiosity in reading the Bible to learn more about Jesus. Maybe that is God’s audience for Joel. Maybe God’s purpose for Joel isn’t to reach the ministry leaders and longtime churchgoers. Maybe God knows what His plans are for Joel’s life a bit more than we do.

Maybe the book isn’t perfect. Maybe Joel has flaws, too. Maybe his volleys aren’t very crisp, and he has a tendency to forget the score! I don’t know. But, I do know this book, even during the last 7 days, has helped a hurt junior tennis player see hope… she saw Christ reflected through Joel caring enough to write.

So, to the anonymous person… no hard feelings, I just have a different viewpoint on the book. And I look forward to purchasing his next one, which just came out!

As for Joel being Satan, I guess I’ll ask my mom to give him a call just to make sure he’s still playing for the home team! But, I have a feeling the answer will be, “Bad volleys, yes… Satan, no!”

God bless, Scott Paschal

International Christian Tennis Association


1 Comment »

  1. Billy said,

    Bless you for your work!!! Your insight on Joel is very good and true. I can vouch for the impact he and his writings have had on personal friends and myself included. It’s exciting to hear that John Osteen spoke prohetically over you as a young child. It appears this word is coming to fulfillment… praise God!
    I hope you have a great christmas and if you get lonely up in Palm Coast with just you and your dog, you are welcome to come down I-95 about 50 miles to Titusville and enjoy a meal with my family. We would be honored 🙂

    We’ll keep praying for you………

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