For what seems like a millennium, apologists and biblical purists alike have been clamoring that Joel and Victoria Osteen are a bit of a microcosm of what’s wrong with the Church today – all glitz and glamour, no substance and vigor.
This movement of “God-lite” seems to have a birthplace in Houston, Texas, and the lien holders of that monstrous real estate have been shouting, “Oh no! We really know tons about the Bible but we use a milquetoast approach to point others to Your Best Life Now and to Become a Better You.”
Anywhoo, those pundits and preachers have an unlikely source to back their play, VICTORIA OSTEEN! Huh?!
In her new book, “Love Your Life,” Victoria Osteen tells the following story. When she and her husband, Joel, were courting, he came over to her house for dinner. She knew he was the son of a prominent Houston pastor and she, a nice Christian girl, was hoping they could talk about Scripture while she prepared the meal.
“Joel began flipping through the pages, but before long, he put the Bible down,” she wrote. Victoria was disappointed and complained, “I thought you’d be a spiritual giant.”
“Joel said nothing and just grinned at me as we carried on with the evening.” Later, he joked with friends that she’d called him a “spiritual midget.”
Seriously?! With wives like this, who need a dominatrix? You realize what happened as we prier into this courting moment of the Osteen clan… and if I was writing a chapter in that rag, it would go like this [cue harp music]:
So, you got this kid all Brylcreamed up. His dad just happens to be an icon in Christianity, missions and dogmatic principle, so you know Joel is bound to get a little of that splattered upon his freshly-coifed self. Enter Victoria Osteen (nee Iloff) who wants to impress so she sets up a quaint dinner discussing the pragmatism of the scriptures.
Now, that’s dating material, boy! Sign me up. All brushed up on her Sunday school lessons about how many days it took to make the world, the parting of the Red Sea and the whole immaculate conception thingy, Victoria was ready to rock Joel’s pre-pubescent world. Then, without intent, she puts the young lothario on the spot.
“Joel, honey. Explain to me your deep thoughts on the Kenotic Theory.”
Young Joel began tripping! “Where did she get that from?… Where’s my Dad?… Um, is that Obi-Wan Kenosis?… Ah, I just need to talk TV lingo, she will never know the difference.” With Dippity-do flinging everywhere, Joel decides to take a different approach on theology. He puts down his Bible, saunters over, flashs his pearly whites and whispers in that cutsy Texas twang of his, “Let’s talk about discovering the champion in you.” [End harp music. Begin smooching sound effects.]
Since then, their personal take on the Gospel message has “emerged” and they have become “sensitive about seekers.” All the while, Joel’s bethrothed has been holding on to that one secret – she believes he has a Napoleon complex as this Lilliputian tells his jokes, serves up biblical Happy Meals and creates absolutely no conviction in the hearts and minds of the 1000s that fill “Six Flags Under Jesus” in Houston.
While you are at your booksignings, hold a warm spot for Tammy Wynette as Vicky throws up those one-finger salutes and shouts, “Hey girl. Have your man stand by this!”