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Joel Osteen Says He Follows the 'Billy Graham Rule' to Keep Accountability in #MeToo Era

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In an age where Hollywood producers, politicians, and even pastors are accused of sexual misconduct, mega church pastor Joel Osteen says he's relying on the "Billy Graham Rule" to keep him out of hot water.

The “Billy Graham Rule,” which is also touted by Vice President Mike Pence, tells men to avoid spending time alone with women they are not married to.

"I do and I always have, and my father did too," Osteen told The Christian Post. "I think the key for me on that is to start every day – I take the first half hour of every day to search my own heart to ask God, 'Am I on track and doing this for the right reasons? Am I following what you want me to do?' To me, you can have a lot of accountability and that is important. But I think you can hide things too."

Osteen believes it's ultimately a heart issue.

"I think it's important to be honest before God every day and check the reasons why you are doing what you are doing. To me, when I stand before God having a pure heart, I can go out and be my best," he said.

The Houston, Texas-based pastor also touched on mental struggles and loneliness some pastors can face. In August, news of a young pastor's sudden suicide rocked the faith community.

"I know it can be very lonely because as a pastor, you are busy and there is always something to do," he said. "I would just encourage other pastors to take care of themselves, not just physically or spiritually, but emotionally, and find some other friends and take time to connect."

Osteen is also the author of a new book called Next Level Thinking: 10 Powerful Thoughts for a Successful and Abundant Life.

"I knew God put it in my heart but the battle takes place in our thoughts and our mind. So the book is about taking the limits off of yourself and to know that when God breathed life into you, He gave you everything you need to fulfill your destiny and really live from a fully-loaded perspective, not from a lacking perspective," he shared.

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About The Author


Emily Jones is a multi-media journalist for CBN News in Jerusalem. Before she moved to the Middle East in 2019, she spent years regularly traveling to the region to study the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, meet with government officials, and raise awareness about Christian persecution. During her college years, Emily served as president of Regent University's Christians United for Israel chapter and spoke alongside world leaders at numerous conferences and events. She is an active member of the Philos Project, an organization that seeks to promote positive Christian engagement with the Middle