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Your Best Life Now: 7 Steps to Living at Your Full Potential

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In this remarkable New York Times bestseller, Joel Osteen offers unique insights and encouragement that will help readers overcome every obstacle in their lives.


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In this remarkable New York Times bestseller, Joel Osteen offers unique insights and encouragement that will help readers overcome every obstacle in their lives.

30 review for Your Best Life Now: 7 Steps to Living at Your Full Potential

  1. 5 out of 5

    JoJoTheModern

    People come down hard on Joel Osteen. By the religious he's accused of preaching a prosperity gospel (he doesn't). By the secular he's accused of having too much money (though he *shares* that wealth, and encourages others to do the same). Joel Osteen just can't stay out of trouble, but he is the head of the largest church congregation in America (http://www.sermoncentral.com/articleb...), with books on best-seller lists, so not everyone is critical of him. I'm not. "Your Best Life Now" simply te People come down hard on Joel Osteen. By the religious he's accused of preaching a prosperity gospel (he doesn't). By the secular he's accused of having too much money (though he *shares* that wealth, and encourages others to do the same). Joel Osteen just can't stay out of trouble, but he is the head of the largest church congregation in America (http://www.sermoncentral.com/articleb...), with books on best-seller lists, so not everyone is critical of him. I'm not. "Your Best Life Now" simply tells the truth: God wants to bless you- not just with financial success, but also happiness and companionship- but you have to be positive enough to accept those blessings. If you're going to keep turning down opportunities or refusing to look up when good things come your way, then you won't be blessed in those areas. God won't force on you that which you refuse to accept. Pastor Osteen also outlines an individual's responsibilities to others- when you are blessed, give of your blessings. If you are lonely, so is someone else- help them out. Look for ways to be good to others. Let go of past pains. Choose to be happy. In this book, it isn't just about what you can get out of God. It's about being a *part* of things. It's not a prosperity gospel. It really is about living *your best life now*. Good for both Christians and non-Christians. I'm not Christian anymore, and I still found Pastor Osteen's words encouraging, inspiring, and at times convicting. The book has changed my outlook, and motivated me to think better of myself and try harder for good things rather than only worrying that nothing will ever change. I suggest this book for everyone, regardless of belief system, age, or place in life.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Bradley Koch

    I read this book because it is central to my dissertation research of the Prosperity Gospel. Had it not been, I never would have picked it up, and I cannot recommend it, either. Most of the views put forth by Pastor Osteen are at best heterodox to what most would consider the core of traditional, orthodox Christianity; at worst—and probably more correctly—they are heretical. The self-centered focus of the “steps,” not to mention the title, of this book place it outside the teachings of the histo I read this book because it is central to my dissertation research of the Prosperity Gospel. Had it not been, I never would have picked it up, and I cannot recommend it, either. Most of the views put forth by Pastor Osteen are at best heterodox to what most would consider the core of traditional, orthodox Christianity; at worst—and probably more correctly—they are heretical. The self-centered focus of the “steps,” not to mention the title, of this book place it outside the teachings of the historical Jesus and his apostles. While it is well-written and a quick read, it is deceptively perilous in its content.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jami

    I tink that Jole Osteen is more of a motivational speaker. I belive he has a love for GOd, please don't get me wrong, however I do think that he is to focused on positive thinking. He says over and over again that if you think it, and believe it enough, than God will provide it. I don't necessarily belive that to be true. There are many bad things that happen to good people, and I belive there is a purpose and a plan for everything under HEaven, just like the Bible says.... you have to take the I tink that Jole Osteen is more of a motivational speaker. I belive he has a love for GOd, please don't get me wrong, however I do think that he is to focused on positive thinking. He says over and over again that if you think it, and believe it enough, than God will provide it. I don't necessarily belive that to be true. There are many bad things that happen to good people, and I belive there is a purpose and a plan for everything under HEaven, just like the Bible says.... you have to take the good with the bad in life... I guess this book just depends on your own religious views!

  4. 5 out of 5

    Emmanuel

    The book is heretical, non-biblical, satanic, and repugnant. It's teachings pathetically attempt to do away with God's word by using verses out of context and by arrogantly neglecting the attributes of the living God seen in scripture. Mark my words, this man blatantly deceives. Jesus is merely a footnote that satisfies his critiques. Indeed, Joel Osteen denies the holy God of the bible by portraying a god he made up that flocks to "satisfy" all his fleshly desires, namely, temptations. I would not re The book is heretical, non-biblical, satanic, and repugnant. It's teachings pathetically attempt to do away with God's word by using verses out of context and by arrogantly neglecting the attributes of the living God seen in scripture. Mark my words, this man blatantly deceives. Jesus is merely a footnote that satisfies his critiques. Indeed, Joel Osteen denies the holy God of the bible by portraying a god he made up that flocks to "satisfy" all his fleshly desires, namely, temptations. I would not recommend this book to anyone. Please, seek the truth of God's word. Here is link that shows of the truth of God's word, the gospel. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zafCd...

  5. 4 out of 5

    Sister Pam

    Osteen presents a Christian lifestyle very different from that lived by Jesus. In a time and culture where greed reigns supreme, it doesn't surprise me that his prosperity gospel and belief that being Christian grants one privileges, including a favored position in the checkout lane at the grocery store. He delivers a message that people want to hear, not that which Jesus preaches. Osteen presents a Christian lifestyle very different from that lived by Jesus. In a time and culture where greed reigns supreme, it doesn't surprise me that his prosperity gospel and belief that being Christian grants one privileges, including a favored position in the checkout lane at the grocery store. He delivers a message that people want to hear, not that which Jesus preaches.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Josh

    One needs to have mastered the Dark Tongue of Mordor to curse this book properly. There simply are not words in the English language to describe how awful, heretical, and ridiculous this book is. The gospel is never presented. Joel assumes all his readers are God’s children, and never tells them otherwise. Wealth and health are worshipped, not God. God is small and limited. We are autonomous by our words and thoughts. Faith is grounded in whatever I want to dream, not what God has revealed. No Scriptur One needs to have mastered the Dark Tongue of Mordor to curse this book properly. There simply are not words in the English language to describe how awful, heretical, and ridiculous this book is. The gospel is never presented. Joel assumes all his readers are God’s children, and never tells them otherwise. Wealth and health are worshipped, not God. God is small and limited. We are autonomous by our words and thoughts. Faith is grounded in whatever I want to dream, not what God has revealed. No Scripture passage is ever interpreted in light of its context. Being negative or positive replaces sin and holiness as the primary categories of the “abundant life” and “old/new man.” A simple change of mind for being positive replaces the mortification of sin unto holiness. Alas, there are not enough stars to rate this book—negative stars that is. I give it one star because when I hover over the first star GoodReads tells me this means "I did not like it." Indeed, I didn't like it—but that is an extreme understatement. May this book and its heresies be plunged like the ring that was altogether evil into flames, flames of the eternal hell hotter than Mount Doom.

  7. 4 out of 5

    India Celeste

    I was a college student going through one of the worst years of my life when a friend gifted this book to me with an inscription. It was EXACTLY what I needed at that time, and since then I have been a loyal Osteen supporter. I disagree with people who down this book and Joel by saying that he doesn't speak about the negative or not getting your way. They are missing the message. This book advocates that you can't use the bad stuff that happens as an EXCUSE to stay on a negative course or stop f I was a college student going through one of the worst years of my life when a friend gifted this book to me with an inscription. It was EXACTLY what I needed at that time, and since then I have been a loyal Osteen supporter. I disagree with people who down this book and Joel by saying that he doesn't speak about the negative or not getting your way. They are missing the message. This book advocates that you can't use the bad stuff that happens as an EXCUSE to stay on a negative course or stop fighting the battle of overcoming bad circumstances, like so many people do. This book gives great examples of scripture and true stories to demonstrate how doing your part to act on your faith can lead to great things, even if they aren't the things you planned or it takes a long time to happen. Even his own dad died due to illness, so of course Joel knows that bad things happen to good people! This is a great book to read or reread when you need a strong push in faith or in taking action!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Jeremy

    -Not- Okay I was tempted to give two stars to this book because of some biblical wisdom principles and some moving illustrations. But two stars translates to, "It's okay." And it's just -not- okay for someone who claims to be a Christian to tell others how to live up to their created potential without telling them the gospel. That is, for people to reach their potential they must be restored to a right relationship with their Creator, and that can't happen without rudimentary knowledge of the ans -Not- Okay I was tempted to give two stars to this book because of some biblical wisdom principles and some moving illustrations. But two stars translates to, "It's okay." And it's just -not- okay for someone who claims to be a Christian to tell others how to live up to their created potential without telling them the gospel. That is, for people to reach their potential they must be restored to a right relationship with their Creator, and that can't happen without rudimentary knowledge of the answers to two questions a child could ask: "Why did Jesus have to die?" And "What does it mean to follow him?" Obviously that's not the book the author intended to write, but, given his Christianity and his topic, it should have been.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Jo

    Horrible writer. Very repetitive. Self-focused "spirituality". I get the impression that he hasn't lived enough to understand what he's trying to address in a way that won't seem light-weight or condescending to those whose lives have been harder than his. Horrible writer. Very repetitive. Self-focused "spirituality". I get the impression that he hasn't lived enough to understand what he's trying to address in a way that won't seem light-weight or condescending to those whose lives have been harder than his.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Tim Jones

    Two things: 1. Anyone who tells you there are 7 steps to blah, blah, blah is selling something. 2. The overarching word-of-faith theology that informs this book is biblically flawed and ignores a good bit of truth.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie S

    Blah blah blah more of the same from Osteen. A friend dragged me to one of his services in Houston years ago and it was very disquieting -- had a modern Jim Baker (sans tears) feeling. I think he's laughing all the way to the bank. I don't trust this individual in the slightest. Blah blah blah more of the same from Osteen. A friend dragged me to one of his services in Houston years ago and it was very disquieting -- had a modern Jim Baker (sans tears) feeling. I think he's laughing all the way to the bank. I don't trust this individual in the slightest.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Scott Worden

    I hope one day Joel Osteen realizes that praying to God and reading the Bible doesn't always translate into material possessions. That's not what Jesus preached. I hope one day Joel Osteen realizes that praying to God and reading the Bible doesn't always translate into material possessions. That's not what Jesus preached.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Tomas Perez

    A book about how to treat Jesus like he's a personal genie and not your Lord and savior. Whoever doesn't preach the WHOLE gospel, doesn't preach the true gospel. A book about how to treat Jesus like he's a personal genie and not your Lord and savior. Whoever doesn't preach the WHOLE gospel, doesn't preach the true gospel.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Patrick

    Joel Osteen is leading people to hell. The gospel that he is a preaching is a self-centered, God is my genie who grants wishes gospel. With that being said... I read one review of this book that said something along the lines of "This entire book could be summed up in a pamphlet." I completely agree with that comment. I'll be honest, I started speed reading about halfway through the book because he was repeating himself over and over. The first few chapters explain what he is trying to say. A lot Joel Osteen is leading people to hell. The gospel that he is a preaching is a self-centered, God is my genie who grants wishes gospel. With that being said... I read one review of this book that said something along the lines of "This entire book could be summed up in a pamphlet." I completely agree with that comment. I'll be honest, I started speed reading about halfway through the book because he was repeating himself over and over. The first few chapters explain what he is trying to say. A lot of the things that Osteen says are very true! This book is not filled with blatant lies. Rather, the lies are more subtle. The underlying theme of each chapter is that if we have enough faith, God will bless us with lots of things on earth. He claims that the reason why we are going through difficult times is because WE ARE LIMITING GOD. Think about that statement. WE are the ones who control what God does. According to Osteen, God wants to give us lots of things but is prevented from doing that by our lack of faith. This is just not true. The gifts that we receive on Earth has little to do with the amount of faith we have. We see in the book of Ecclesiastes that life is not fair. There are going to be unrighteous people who gain many rewards in this life and there will be many righteous people who suffer greatly. There is a vanity that takes place on earth, that there are righteous people to whom it happens according to the deeds of the wicked, and there are wicked people to whom it happens according to the deeds of the righteous. I said that this also is vanity. –Ecclesiastes 8:14 God has given common grace to all people. That means that some wicked people will have many blessings. Is this a reward for their works? No! On the flip side, Jesus promised us that those who follow Him will suffer greatly while on earth! (John 15:20, Matt. 16:24) Our best life is NOT now. Our best life will be in heaven with Jesus Christ. Another thing that stuck out to me was a story that Osteen told about his father. His father was also a pastor. One day a man in his (Joel's father) congregation came up to him and gave him a check for $10,000. What a gift! What did Joel's father do with that? He put that check right back in the offering so that it would bless the poor. This was an extreme act of generosity. One that should be commended and repeated! But how does Joel Osteen view it? As his father's "biggest mistake." He said that his father should have kept the money and that he was "rejecting God's blessing." For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, for it is made holy by the word of God and prayer. -1 Timothy 4:4-5 Those verses clearly say that it is okay to receive gifts as long as we are receiving it with a spirit of thankfulness to God. However, there are many passages that also talk about being generous by sharing the gifts that God has given to us (1 Timothy 6:17-19, Proverbs 19:17, Acts 20:35) . If God has given you wealth or skills, those are not for you to keep to yourself. Those things are to be used to glorify God. What we recieve we give right back to God. There are also many passages that warn us to not make possessions our idols. But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs. - 1 Timothy 6:9-10 We must be careful to be focused on material possessions. The gospel that Joel Osteen is preaching sounds like a “worship money/possessions gospel.” Jesus said, “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves.” (Matt. 7:15). Joel Osteen is a wolf in sheep’s clothing.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Angie

    Joel is the pastor of Lakewood Church here in Houston. My father was a big fan of his father's - John Osteen, and our whole family would pile up on Sunday and drive out to hear him preach. Now Joel has taken over (John Osteen passed away) and his following is about 45,000 strong every Sunday, and he broadcasts around the world. This book is very uplifting and Joel tells us how God wants more for us than our minds are allowing, and how we can change that. Joel is the pastor of Lakewood Church here in Houston. My father was a big fan of his father's - John Osteen, and our whole family would pile up on Sunday and drive out to hear him preach. Now Joel has taken over (John Osteen passed away) and his following is about 45,000 strong every Sunday, and he broadcasts around the world. This book is very uplifting and Joel tells us how God wants more for us than our minds are allowing, and how we can change that.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Erin

    Before reading this book, I had a hard time with my family. I also had many discontent in my life. Especially, I have studied in order to go to school in USA for getting a master degree. Whole procedures were not easy for me to move forward with positive attitude. I'm allways nervious about my future and my result of test. I had no confidense and I'm crying all day with negative image. I almost thought a bad action. Whenever I face a barrier, I just try to avoid this circumstance. That was my li Before reading this book, I had a hard time with my family. I also had many discontent in my life. Especially, I have studied in order to go to school in USA for getting a master degree. Whole procedures were not easy for me to move forward with positive attitude. I'm allways nervious about my future and my result of test. I had no confidense and I'm crying all day with negative image. I almost thought a bad action. Whenever I face a barrier, I just try to avoid this circumstance. That was my life before meet with Joel Osteen. Even though some people are saying about negative message about him, for me, his ward, ward from god make me happy and give me new energy to think about my life in a running mode. I hardly focus on my life for a long time. Every moment and every time, I'm afraid about my challenge and I hate many people who don't listen to my opinion. Sometimes, God is not existed for me because I couldn't read any message from him. However, this book stand me up and give me confidence how to live and how to love. I'm happy now. I received a message from god and finally understand his plan. I don't afraid about my future and I don't concern about my family any more. God definitely understand and know my status and has seen my tears and weekeness. I try to move forward with his message and everymoment I take a consideraton his ward in deeply. I love my life and I love my God. Without any effeorts from me, there is no change and no bless. 1. Enlarge your vision 2. Develop a healthy self-image 3. Discover the power of your thoughts and words 4. Let go of the past 5. Stand strong against opposition and adversity 6. Live to give 7. And choose to be happy

  17. 5 out of 5

    Matt

    I listened to this audiobook at night- a little bit every night before bed. I found it a cross between a self-improvement, motivational book and a religious one. This is the first time I've ever read/listened to this author before. I had only seen hum 1 or 2 times while flipping through the TV channels on a Sunday. He's a smooth talking preacher who gives you advice on how to improve your life through prayer and self motivation techniques. He sounds a lot like Tony Robbins in that respect. I gue I listened to this audiobook at night- a little bit every night before bed. I found it a cross between a self-improvement, motivational book and a religious one. This is the first time I've ever read/listened to this author before. I had only seen hum 1 or 2 times while flipping through the TV channels on a Sunday. He's a smooth talking preacher who gives you advice on how to improve your life through prayer and self motivation techniques. He sounds a lot like Tony Robbins in that respect. I guess what I'm saying is that I wasn't really impressed or unimpressed with the message- more like I am wary of the intentions of the messenger. I recall how during hurricane Harvey that he wouldn't open the doors to his church to help the people of Houston and that action disconnected me from him and the words of the book. I don't want to say he was hypocritical with his actions but... it sure seemed that way.

  18. 5 out of 5

    George

    I read this to laugh. I laughed.

  19. 5 out of 5

    M.M. Strawberry Library & Reviews

    Much of what is said here can be found in pretty much any other inspirational/self-help book and/or is common sense. The rest is just self-centered interpretation/skewing of the Bible in a shameless attempt to grub money. Joel Osteen simply does not understand or embrace Jesus's message. He uses religion to his own end, not for any love of Jesus or his fellow man. Much of what is said here can be found in pretty much any other inspirational/self-help book and/or is common sense. The rest is just self-centered interpretation/skewing of the Bible in a shameless attempt to grub money. Joel Osteen simply does not understand or embrace Jesus's message. He uses religion to his own end, not for any love of Jesus or his fellow man.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Brandon Clay

    In beginning this review, I will acknowledge that I followed the messages of Joel Osteen's father, John Osteen for many years. He was part of the first wave of word-based preachers (sometimes referred to as prosperity preachers) who gave a new generation of Christians a different outlook on God, the Bible, and the possibilities for their lives. It is obvious to see the great impact and love that Joel has for his father and the things he accomplished. When the senior Osteen passed, the son took th In beginning this review, I will acknowledge that I followed the messages of Joel Osteen's father, John Osteen for many years. He was part of the first wave of word-based preachers (sometimes referred to as prosperity preachers) who gave a new generation of Christians a different outlook on God, the Bible, and the possibilities for their lives. It is obvious to see the great impact and love that Joel has for his father and the things he accomplished. When the senior Osteen passed, the son took the mantle. Lakewood Church has grown leaps and bounds, now occupies the old Staples Center, and Joel Osteen has become a household name in Christian circles as well as secular. This is his first book entitled Your Best Life Now – Seven Steps to Living at Your Full Potential and is a direct reflection of how he teaches each Sunday. I understand that he is considered more of an exhorter and inspirational speaker, and that some consider him "lite" on exegetic teaching. But just as there is Mark, Matthew, Luke, and John there is a place for his approach. Based on his popularity, the size of his congregation, and his worldwide popularity, this message is one that is needed. As a student of the success classics, and more contemporary works in the genre, Osteen has actually combined his core elements of spirituality and Christianity with the scientific elements of success. He begins in chapter 1 by encouraging you to Enlarge Your Vision. Subsequent chapters include Choosing the Right Thoughts, The Power In Your Words and Reprogramming Your Mental Computer. These are the types of chapters you would expect to find in most secular success books. Of course, they are universal truths that don't require you to suspend your belief system - in fact, they support them! Of course he addresses many of the aspects of specific Christian living with chapters such as God Has More In Store, The Purpose of Trials, Showing God's Kindness and Mercy and The Seed Must Lead. Osteen does a great job of putting these elements together and making them seamlessly applicable to your life. It feels like an extension of his Sunday messages, which by his own admission in the beginning of his ministry, he wrote them out word for word and memorized them for delivery. Thus, the book reads very conversationally and it is easy to relate to how he is trying to transfer the information. Because of my history following his father, I can see that Joel is living the life that was planted in him by his father. The genuine smile, compassion for people, and a passion for service cuts through very clearly in this book. And while many believe he is living a Pollyanna life, there is no doubt that what he has learned and what he is trying to convey to the reader through hard-fought challenges test and trials. Myself, as a writer of sales, success and life mastery books, know that being branded an "eternal optimist" means people believe you are out of touch with hardships. The reality for me, and I believe Osteen, is that we are so in touch we have figured out how to rise above it in every circumstance and situation. If you are someone looking for a more fulfilled life, and want to find answers for how to live joyfully and completely, I would highly recommend this book!

  21. 4 out of 5

    Jin Kok

    Joel Osteen really writes from the heart! I really like that he does not sugar coat in the novels, he admits even though as a Pastor, he's not free from imperfections. I like that raw honesty. His patience was tested on a few times when he's car got scratched after the wash and when a pizza operator was impolite to him. Yes he knew then he could act then to ruin someone else day, but, he knew God was giving him a lesson he could learn. Perhaps is patience or perhaps being kind to the pizza operat Joel Osteen really writes from the heart! I really like that he does not sugar coat in the novels, he admits even though as a Pastor, he's not free from imperfections. I like that raw honesty. His patience was tested on a few times when he's car got scratched after the wash and when a pizza operator was impolite to him. Yes he knew then he could act then to ruin someone else day, but, he knew God was giving him a lesson he could learn. Perhaps is patience or perhaps being kind to the pizza operator because someone else was rude to her. I learned that is possible to turn every situation to a learning experience. The beauty of his words are written in simple and easy to follow format. I really like his thoughts on acquiring abundance in life. To have abundance, in let's say in wealth or happiness, is to help others first, perhaps is to volunteer to help others improve their English to be a writer. Or if you want to be wealthy help out someone in need. There's a law of return and God wants to give you back in abundance for the action you did. Other points I learned: God keeps tab of how have you been doing. And is helping you to arrange to reach your best life. Continue to be a person of integrity and accountability. Also be committed to excellence, as you would never know when one day, that one day you work for others could be hand delivered back to you. I like it how does a story of a wealthy businessman gave a project to a contractor to build a beautiful house, And the contractor decided to cut corners so that he can pocket the money. But in the end, the business man gave him the house! And he regretted it! Because his house wore out quickly and the money that he pocketed has been in the end used as maintenance! So it's very important to do any task right for the first time. So give your best! Because every extra effort that you exude out would pay off! Finally is definitely excitement and enthusiasm that would inspire people. Be a beacon of enthusiasm, as you may just change and alter someone's future! Since your infectious enthusiasm impact others. As your attitude, would guide your thoughts, your thoughts would lead into your action and your action to your destiny. Finally to hang out, because from what he quoted from the scriptures. Proverbs 13:20. "Walk with the wise and become wise!" What's more, this book inspired me to be the wise walker who ca bring joy, friendliness and enthusiasm to people's life!

  22. 5 out of 5

    Carrie Ann

    I picked this book up out of curiosity; I've grown up hearing all kinds of bad things about Joel Osteen. So I braced myself, and began with a very skeptical attitude. Which meant that I was not prepared for the blessing that I received in reading this book. Taking just this book, out of the context of Mr. Osteen's life and how he preaches and leads his church - not that I know anything about it, so I'm not suggesting anything - I found it to be not only very uplifting, but also surprisingly very I picked this book up out of curiosity; I've grown up hearing all kinds of bad things about Joel Osteen. So I braced myself, and began with a very skeptical attitude. Which meant that I was not prepared for the blessing that I received in reading this book. Taking just this book, out of the context of Mr. Osteen's life and how he preaches and leads his church - not that I know anything about it, so I'm not suggesting anything - I found it to be not only very uplifting, but also surprisingly very convicting. With the same rigor that he pushes positivity and smiling, he also pushes high standards for Christian living. There was one story in particular in the chapter on living with integrity that convicted me to the point of changing my actions -- his father forgets to pay for his dry cleaning and it sits unpaid and forgotten until about 20 years later! His father remembers, is convicted, and tries to find the company to pay them back, but they don't exist anymore. He tries to contact the owner, only to find out that he died some years back. But instead of giving up, he searches until he finds one of the owner's children, and not only pays them back the price of what he owed in current value of the dollar, but with interest! There's a real purity of heart in many of the stories that I suppose are what grabs people and makes this a popular book. So after having a positive interaction with the book, I had to ask myself where did all the criticism come from? And upon further reflection, I do find one glaring fault hidden beneath the warm-fuzzies. It's subtle, but the aim is always your happiness and your prosperity, not God's glory. I can see where people who are not mature in their faith, and built their faith on this book, or the philosophy of this book would end up with a very warped faith. It also isn't able to reach into the most complex and disturbing aspects of life like pain and suffering and death, but I suppose I can't blame it for that since it doesn't seem to be made for that. I think it has a very particular place in Christian thought and a good one, but not to be mixed up with more foundational truths.

  23. 4 out of 5

    David Santos

    My only negative comment to this is that everything in this book is from his sermons. If you've heard his sermons than you wont fin anything ne win this book, but its great stuff. His sermons are about living a better life with Jesus. Finding happiness with Jesus, how to include Jesus in your life and how to enjoy life Jesus' way. This book actually inspired me to start writing. My first manuscript was a preachy type book like this one, but somehow it fell into the paper shredder while I was sle My only negative comment to this is that everything in this book is from his sermons. If you've heard his sermons than you wont fin anything ne win this book, but its great stuff. His sermons are about living a better life with Jesus. Finding happiness with Jesus, how to include Jesus in your life and how to enjoy life Jesus' way. This book actually inspired me to start writing. My first manuscript was a preachy type book like this one, but somehow it fell into the paper shredder while I was sleeping. It's amazing how God uses someone. Here we have a guy who did not want to preach at all ever. God called him one day, he answered and look at what has become of him and what he has done. Makes you wonder what God can do with you, once you answer his call.

  24. 4 out of 5

    James McTyre

    "God helps those who help themselves." If the irony of this statement is lost on you, you'll love this book. I read it as prep and interpretation of my visit to Lakewood Church, which I very much enjoyed. A pleasant visit notwithstanding, the book is the verbal embodiment of the Feeding of the Five Thousand. Osteen takes a small amount of nourishment and stretches it, repetitively across a vast number of pages. Of course, he doesn't care what I or anyone else think, because he's basking in the p "God helps those who help themselves." If the irony of this statement is lost on you, you'll love this book. I read it as prep and interpretation of my visit to Lakewood Church, which I very much enjoyed. A pleasant visit notwithstanding, the book is the verbal embodiment of the Feeding of the Five Thousand. Osteen takes a small amount of nourishment and stretches it, repetitively across a vast number of pages. Of course, he doesn't care what I or anyone else think, because he's basking in the proof that God wants him to be a champion, giving him the largest church in America, publishing deals, and a 24-hour channel on SiriusXM radio. Great work, America. You get what you deserve from your God and your #1 preacher.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Cray Allred

    Puke, gag, weep, evil, tragic, stunning. Longer lament forthcoming.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Crystal

    I recently watched a few different interviews with Pastor Joel Osteen and I was impressed by his positivity and he also talked about something that really stuck with me. He mentioned how to always stay positive with our attitudes and that our words really do have power. I've heard both of those things time and time again, but this time I was ready to receive it and needed it too. He was talking about how when you say things like ,"Today is such a bad day".....or "I'll never make anything of my life I recently watched a few different interviews with Pastor Joel Osteen and I was impressed by his positivity and he also talked about something that really stuck with me. He mentioned how to always stay positive with our attitudes and that our words really do have power. I've heard both of those things time and time again, but this time I was ready to receive it and needed it too. He was talking about how when you say things like ,"Today is such a bad day".....or "I'll never make anything of my life"...etc that those words have power and continue to keep you down. If you simply change your attitude and think of things a little differently, then you can reflect positivity. By saying instead, "Things may be hard, but they can only go up from here", or even if you're having the worst day ever, you can say: "It's been a difficult day, but it's slowly going to turn around" then you project that outward and remain positive. I have to say that I didn't make it all the way through this book, only to about page 150, but I gained a lot of great quotes/lessons from it that I would like to share. It's the same way with us. We have to conceive it on the inside before we're ever going to receive it on the outside. If you don't think you can have something good, then you NEVER will. If you see yourself as unqualified, insignificant, unattractive, inferior, or inadequate, you will probably act in accordance with your thoughts. If your self-worth is low, you will imagine yourself as a born loser, a washout, unworthy of being loved and accepted. Tough times come to all of us. Jesus said, “In this life you will have trouble, but be of good cheer for I have overcome the world.” He wasn’t saying that troublesome times wouldn’t come; He was saying that when they do, we can choose our attitudes. We can choose to believe that He is greater than our problems; we can choose the right thoughts. Our words become self-fulfilling prophecies. If you allow your thoughts to defeat you and then give birth to negative ideas through your words, your actions will follow suit. That’s why we need to be extremely careful about what we think and especially careful about what we say. Our words have tremendous power, and whether we want to or not, we will give life to what we’re saying, either good or bad. Beware of associating with or adopting the attuitudes of people who, through their negative outlook and lack of self esteem will rob you of the greatness that God has for you. Understand that you are not a cosmic accident, wandering randomly and aimlessly through life. God has a specific purpose for your life. He didn't intend for you to go through life miserable, depressed, lonely, sick, and defeated. You may be so beaten down by the struggles in your life that you've grown accustomed to being discouraged. Perhaps you've been deceived into accepting a life that is far less than God's best. Maybe at one time you had a good image of yourself, but now you see yourself as simply a survivor. When you accept that warped image, you open yourself to depression, poverty, or worse. If you are not careful, before long you will begin thinking that the image you see in those cracked mirrors is a true reflection of the way life is supposed to be. You won't expect anything better. You won't expect God's blessings and victories. You will drift through life haphazardly, accepting whatever comes along, spinning your wheels until you die. The Bible compares the tongue to the rudder of a huge ship. Although that rudder is small, it controls the direction of the entire ship, and, in a similar manner, your tongue will control the direction of your life. If you habitually speak words of failure, you are going to move in the direction of a defeated, discouraged life. If you want to change your world, start by changing your words. Learn to guard your mind, We live in a society that loves to make excuses, and one of our favorite phrases is: “It’s not my fault.” No, the truth is, if we are bitter and resentful, it’s because we are allowing ourselves to remain that way. We’ve all had negative things happen to us. If you look hard enough, you can easily find reasons to have a chip on your shoulder. You may have gone through things that nobody deserves to experience in life. I don’t mean to minimize those sad experiences, but if you want to live in victory, you cannot use past emotional wounds as an excuse for making poor choices today. Nobody—not even God—ever promised that life would be fair. Quit comparing your life to somebody else’s, and quit dwelling on what could have been, should have been, or might have been. An important factor in seeing yourself God's way is to understand your intrinsic sense of value, whether you make the right moves or the wrong moves. Your sense of value should be based solely on the fact that you are a child of the Most High God. As His unique creation you have something to offer this world that nobody else has, that nobody else can. When you are tempted to get discouraged, remind yourself that according to God's Word, your future is getting brighter; you are on your way to a new level of glory. You may think you've got a long way to go, but you need to look back at how far you're already come. You may not be everything you want to be, but at least you can thank God that you're not what you used to be. God knows your value; He sees your potential. You may not understand everything you are going through right now. But hold your head up high, knowing that God is in control and He has a great plan and purpose for your life. Your dreams may not have turned out exactly as you'd hoped, but the Bible says that God's ways are better and higher than our ways. Even when everybody else rejects you, remember, God stands before you with His arms open wide. Certainly, other people can pray for you, they can believe for you, they can quote the Scripture to you, but you must exercise faith for yourself. If you are always depending on somebody else to keep you happy, somebody else to encourage you or to get you out of trouble, you will live in perpetual weakness and disappointment. You must make a decision that you are going to be a believer. Take charge of your life and decide, "No matter what comes against me, I believe in God. I'm going to have a positive outlook for my life." No matter how many setbacks you've suffered, God still has a great plan for your life. You MUST get your hopes up. If you don't have hope, you won't have faith. And if you don't have faith, you can't please God, and you won't see his Power revealed in your life. Keep hope alive in your heart. Don't ever give up on your dreams. Don't allow discouragement or other setbacks to keep you from believing what God says about you. Each of us should have what I call an “I Don’t Understand It” file. When something comes up for which you have no reasonable answer, instead of dwelling on it and trying to figure it out, simply place it in your I Don’t Understand It file. In the meantime, you must muster enough faith to say, “God, I don’t understand it, but I trust You. And I’m not going to spend all my time trying to figure out why certain things have happened. I’m going to trust You to make something good out of it. You’re a good God, and I know You have my best interests at heart. You promised that all things will work together for my good.” That is faith, and that is the attitude God honors.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Bethany White

    Although it may sound silly, I found this book quite responsive in terms of guidance and encouragement. As this has been an extremely hectic semester, I was unable to read this as hungrily as I would have intended. However, on those rare quiet evenings when I had somehow managed to finish my homework early, I would pick up this book and read a little before bed. What a wonderful book to wind down with, to inspire you, and to refresh your spirit. Sure enough, whatever I was struggling with at tha Although it may sound silly, I found this book quite responsive in terms of guidance and encouragement. As this has been an extremely hectic semester, I was unable to read this as hungrily as I would have intended. However, on those rare quiet evenings when I had somehow managed to finish my homework early, I would pick up this book and read a little before bed. What a wonderful book to wind down with, to inspire you, and to refresh your spirit. Sure enough, whatever I was struggling with at that moment, that would be the exact content of the chapter for that evening. I felt that it was written just for me. I understand that not everyone is religious, and my last intention is to preach to others, however I do firmly believe in the importance of believing in something bigger than your self. This book offers a new perspective as well as scripture to assure you that this is not something you are meant to be caught up in; there is more beyond your fear or anxiety. I hope to maintain this in my everyday life, as well as maybe write something so inspiring in the future.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

    I was always told that if you wanted to learn how to do something, find someone who is way better at it than and learn from them. If you don't know how to make every little second in life to be fantastic, and I am sure I don't, then Joel Osteen would be the man to read. This book definitely helps you to keep your eyes off of yourself and your problems and keeps you focused on the bigger picture. Does it really matter in the grand scheme of my life if there are dishes in the sink and the kids are I was always told that if you wanted to learn how to do something, find someone who is way better at it than and learn from them. If you don't know how to make every little second in life to be fantastic, and I am sure I don't, then Joel Osteen would be the man to read. This book definitely helps you to keep your eyes off of yourself and your problems and keeps you focused on the bigger picture. Does it really matter in the grand scheme of my life if there are dishes in the sink and the kids aren't fed and down to bed at exactly the right time? Not worth getting upset over. There is always someone who is walking in shoes that are much more difficult than yours. He makes it seem so easy to find the happiness in even the darkest day. Yes, it is a "self help" book, but it is very encouraging and shows you that everyone can find something to do for another person and to find something in their day/life to be enthusiastic about.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Kevin Rodriguez

    Though I read this book second after Osteen's "This Is Your Time" woke me up to the fact that I needed to stop being so hard on myself, this book still had some practical steps to walking in the Christian faith. It's somewhat of a retread of the aforementioned book, and the book fails to stress that bad things will still happen and offer advice with how to deal with those situations, but the basic truth that faith and love in Christ will lead to great things is still here. I don't believe your l Though I read this book second after Osteen's "This Is Your Time" woke me up to the fact that I needed to stop being so hard on myself, this book still had some practical steps to walking in the Christian faith. It's somewhat of a retread of the aforementioned book, and the book fails to stress that bad things will still happen and offer advice with how to deal with those situations, but the basic truth that faith and love in Christ will lead to great things is still here. I don't believe your life will the perfect life this book sometimes makes it sound like you'll have once you start following the steps, but the steps are very basic, common sense steps you must make everyday in your walk with Christ. Overtly optimistic but with a lot of truth to it.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Scott Bingham

    Pastor Osteen's book caught me at just the right time. A guest in our home accidentally left it behind and I picked it up on an impulse. Joel's words have given me a bit of the old spring in my step. If you are "spiritually-oriented" like I am, don't take this book literally. Substitute "God" with "The Universe" or "Buddha" and all of a sudden the positive metaphors about synchronicity and faith fly. It's a good, easy read, taken in small doses. Search out the passages that resonate...and then r Pastor Osteen's book caught me at just the right time. A guest in our home accidentally left it behind and I picked it up on an impulse. Joel's words have given me a bit of the old spring in my step. If you are "spiritually-oriented" like I am, don't take this book literally. Substitute "God" with "The Universe" or "Buddha" and all of a sudden the positive metaphors about synchronicity and faith fly. It's a good, easy read, taken in small doses. Search out the passages that resonate...and then re-read and reinvest in their messages. There are good, golden affirmations to mine. I'm always searching for life lessons and learning to gain new perspectives (or renew old ones) for a more fulfilling, vital and balanced life. Joel Osteen's words are helping me.

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