Joel Osteen, televangelist of Lakewood Church, has often been accused of misunderstanding the Christian faith, and, following several incidents of being struck by lightning, many commentators are speculating that God Himself is unhappy with Osteen’s wildly wealthy ministry.
Osteen was reportedly walking to his mailbox yesterday afternoon at approximately 2pm when a storm rolled into the Houston area unexpectedly, and rained almost exclusively over Osteen’s gated private neighborhood. Osteen was then struck by several bolts of lightning in succession.
In the aftermath of the storm, weather experts described it as an atmospheric anomaly because the weather yesterday in Houston was sunny and entirely cloudless both preceding and following the sudden lightning storm.
Osteen recovered from the lightning strikes in his driveway, but was admitted to a hospital for a checkup as a safety precaution. The only lasting effect of the lightning strike was a sizable burn mark on his back that nurses said looked like a Satanic pentagram.
Osteen responded to the event with the following recorded message posted to his congregation on social media:
“Hi, everyone, I’m sure you’ve all heard I was struck by lightning again. It’s become such a cliché, hasn’t it? This time was special, though. It was the tenth lightning strike! Can you believe it? What a coincidence that in no way relates to my business practices or net worth! But, while I was in the hospital, I got an idea: I should write a new book! It’s going to be so Christian it will blow your mind! I’m going to put my name on it, real big. The cover will be a giant photo of my face! And the book will be all about me! Because the way I feel I can really honor Jesus and spread his message is to continue obsessively building my own personal brand! I’ve written fifteen books, and none of them mention Jesus in their titles or have a picture of Jesus on the cover! It’s all about me! My next book won’t break that trend! I think Jesus would want me to get more plastic surgery for this book cover, don’t you think? I know everything happens for a reason, and that God has a plan for everyone, but I just feel His plan of making me naturally age is a mistake! Even though Heaven is totally real and cool and whatever, I am really afraid of death, and there is no limit of money I will spend to keep my face devoid of any hint that I am getting old and my pending mortality is approaching. But a new face costs a lot! Hence the new book idea!”
Osteen took a brief pause and rubbed his hands together before continuing.
“And just like my other books, it will be a self-help book where I describe how everyone should live their lives like I live mine! I’m rich, so my life is incredibly amazing and easy. Everyone should want to be like me, right? And I made my life so incredibly easy and amazing by writing all these self-help books. Doesn’t everyone want that? So my new book is all about how to live like me. Chapter one is to have a father who starts a church so that you can inherit it. That made things so much easier for me than having to build my own church from scratch. Then, milk your congregants by branding all kinds of products to sell them. Remember that your church is not so much made up of congregants, neighbors and friends as much as your customers. And the cool thing about a church is that very religious people are really easy to guilt into doing things en masse because of the guilt that’s naturally associated with even the faintest hints of legalistic religious belief. My church members are awesome because if one member doesn’t buy all of my books, the others judge them until they do. And books are a great item to sell. I learned this from the scientology people. That religion was basically a vehicle to sell books. Genius!”
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