In recent days it was reported that a safe at Lakewood Church in Houston was robbed of more than $600,000; which were the donations paid in person over the services of the two-day weekend. People immediately got their calculators out and wrote articles such "Joel Osteen's church theft opens can of worms: Jaws drop as folks do the math" to express their shock and awe.
However, just as in the real world, there are two distinct sides to every story. Yes, more than half a million is raised over a two-day weekend for Osteen's ministry. But what is the overhead in running a facility as massive as the former Compaq Center? Consider the electricity, water, custodial, staff member, payroll taxes, purchasing of broadcast time on television stations, and basic day-to-day business activities.
For anyone that has honestly run their own business, they will know first hand the concept of overhead.
What struck me about the feigned indignation in this article was not how much money had been raised, but how many people have been helped?
A quick search on Wikipedia discloses that Osteen's ministry reaches more than 7 million viewers weekly in more than 100 countries....and that comes down to less than nine cents per viewer. These are just the television broadcast viewers; there are thousands more that watch his weekly message via online and that will bring that $0.09 down even lower.
For less than a thin dime, viewers have the ability to watch a preacher that is upbeat and positive, who has been a beacon for thousands of souls that felt lost or abandoned by the mainstream religions.
Karma is a real thing and the culprit will have to pay for his or her role in this theft. And, on Osteen's side, it's important for viewers to keep in mind that most of them do not donate any funds whatsoever to Osteen's ministry yet he appears each week spreading a message of positivity, health, happiness, and hope.
There's more to living a healthy life than simply counting pennies; one must also take into consideration nourishing their spiritual life. Ten cents is a very small price to pay for all this.