The positivity of Joel Osteen

It's a family business. The Osteens' two grown children are part of the Lakewood ministry. Osteen says his dad would have loved it all: "He used to call me and sometimes tell me how many were in attendance or what an offering was or something. And I think, 'Oh man, Daddy, if you could see it now!'"

The Osteen message seems to resonate outside the Bible Belt as well. Last week, he held an event called "Night of Hope" in Newark, New Jersey.

"You know, sometimes you just need the basics," said one attendee. "And I think that some people have the ability to deliver the basic principles that's needed for Christianity, and Pastor Osteen definitely can deliver that."

Another man called Osteen "very inspirational."

"You don't sell tickets to go to church," Osteen said, so attendees are charged the lowest price possible. "They buy their ticket, they get their seat, and we move on."

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Pastor Joel Osteen with correspondent Tracy Smith. CBS News

It's worth noting that the Newark event was completely sold out.

Back in Houston, not far from the church, the Osteens usually try to spend their Sunday afternoons at home with their extended family.

Smith asked Joel and Victoria, "Now you guys live together and you work together. Is that always smooth sailing?"

"We've learned. We've been married 28 years," said Victoria. "We've learned how to communicate."

"Yeah. I think there's things, you know, I've learned: Let her be right."

"That's a good rule!" his wife noted.

But what Joel Osteen's really learned is the same message he preaches to others: Life can be pretty great if you keep looking up.

"You know, my dad was very, very poor," he said. "No milk, no food, no heating in the winter. And you know what? He stepped up. And he had a big dream for his life. And look what he's done for us. And so that's my whole thing is, you don't have to stay there. You gotta believe that you can rise higher."


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