Become a Better You: 7 Keys to Improving Your Life Every Day

Joel Osteen, Author . Free Press $25 (379p) ISBN 978-0-7432-9688-5

Megachurch pastor and bestselling author Osteen follows up Your Best Life Now with this disappointingly unoriginal Christian self-help book. The seven subtitular steps to improvement include instructions to develop good habits, better relationships and an inner life. Osteen balances mind-over-matter pep talks with claims that God wants to bless faithful people with successes. The future is always promising, because “God never performs His greatest feats in your yesterdays.” At the same time, in order to receive God's blessing, one must back up prayers with action, obey, maintain a positive attitude toward life and “do the right thing with the right motives.” Some of Osteen's advice is sound; for example, he suggests that if you are forgiving and kind to colleagues and friends, they'll cut you slack when you have crabby days. Other suggestions—like writing down a big goal and posting it on your mirror or desk—are unremarkable. Laced throughout are anodyne first-person vignettes; Osteen struggled with frustration when his favorite restaurant announced a 45-minute wait. The hurried Osteen went to a nearby burger joint, only to have a brief encounter that changed another customer's life. Voilà—God turned Osteen's disappointment into blessing! Though this book is destined for strong sales, it offers nothing innovative. (Oct. 15)

Reviewed on: 08/13/2007
Release date: 10/01/2007
Genre: Nonfiction
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