I fall in line at Joel Osteen’s book signings not because of me but more because of my sister, Ofie, who actually introduced me to his body of work. I see him as a life coach more than a pastor or a televangelist. I watch him occasionally when I catch him on TV on Sundays, but I don’t particularly seek him out. Today, he’s signing his latest release: Break Out!: 5 Keys to Go Beyond Your Barriers and Live an Extraordinary Life.
I find his teachings inspirational maybe because while he teaches from the Bible, his words are relatable. I don’t feel like he is preaching from the pulpit above me — but rather that he is talking to me from across the table perhaps.
The line has snaked around 46th from the 5th Avenue storefront and I’m part of the latter half of the line. I continue to see people walking past me towards the end of the line clutching books to be signed. They had a 2-book limit, so I simply got one for myself and one for my sister.
Someone walked past and loudly said “They’re selling dreams.”. I think not. People are always drawn to messages of hope. We all look for affirmation that we’re okay, that we will be okay or that we can be okay. And I don’t think that is a dream. I think that’s true for everyone of us.
This is already my third time to fall in line for Joel Osteen, and the last two times, I’ve had the good fortune of shaking his hand as he walked into the store. This time around, he got off closer to the far end of the line and walked down the sidewalk shaking everybody’s hand. No photo op except to snap him up as he walked past, but he shook the hands of the people who forked up the money to help his book make it up the bestseller lists, and who are now standing in line for his John Hancock. That makes him a rock star in my book.