He was so proud, and so happy as he showed the chart of how his church was run. "It's very simple, really," he said. He showed me how his church was set up. He explained that it was run like a company and joined to other companies like it was a corporation.
"This is the most efficient way to do things. Our officers are all under control of a central headquarters. Like a lady comedian used to say, 'Don't fight it John, it's bigger than both of us.' Since we came under the influence of one central head we are unstoppable."
"Sounds like some form of communism," I told him.
"Communism, Fascism--what's the difference? As Soviet General Secretary Nikita Khrushchev explained it, 'People are like dogs on a leash. The only difference in your system is that the leash is a little longer.'"
"Wow," I told him, "I'm not sure I want to be on a leash."
"But what if you were the one holding the leash?" he countered. "We like to break up into small groups. It gives people the illusion of autonomy. We call them study groups."
I realized how massive and pervasive this system could be.
I had entered the word "Joel" into Google, thinking I could get some information on this Biblical book. Silly me! What I got instead was screen after screen of "Joel Osteen". Finally I entered "Book of Joel" and got what I was looking for.
His eyes sparkled at the mention of Osteen. "Now there's a man who understands the system."
I was afraid to ask who the one at the top of the chart was, though I thought I knew. "What about the bottom bracket?" I asked.
He gave me a look of contempt. "Don't worry about them. They're just the ones who pay for it all."