A-1 - Encouraged by What You Read?

Grace has been defined as the second chance we did not expect.

Picture this: We hang our heads in shame because we know we blew it. We missed our opportunity to be whole, to be who we were meant to be. So here we are, corrupted and broken, a far cry from what God intended for us. Yet, it is with overwhelming delight that we see God coming down the street to dry our tears and to encourage us to keep going and have faith in Him. He still loves us.

What a feeling that must have been for Adam and Eve, the first people to experience the inexplicable grace God has for mankind! There they were, planted in the middle of paradise in the most perfect communion with God. They only had one rule—yet they found a way to break it.

But God is not interested in excommunicating us. Instead of getting upset, declaring the end of the world, and starting over, He pursued the hearts of Adam and Eve. In the midst of their sin, God still loved them (see Romans 5:8). And He has continued pursuing His creation ever since.

Many times, when we sin, we wonder how God could ever love us again. However, it is the grace of God that gives us a chance to repent and find new life. God’s grace is not a pardon, for Christ had to die. But God grants us unmerited favor by making a way for us to be restored to Him—through the sacrifice of His Son. In this way He brings life to the broken: “You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness” (Ephesians 4:22-24).

As we grow in our relationship with God, oftentimes we are surprised by His love for us. But even more surprising is the amount of grace He pours over our lives. When we sin, God does not cast us aside. Instead, the compassionate heart of God meets us where we are and goes to great lengths to mend our hearts and restore our relationships with Him.

Prayer: Lord, thank You for Your love for me. Show me what Your grace looks like today. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.

“God raised us up with Christ . . . in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus” (Ephesians 2:6-7).

Check out more from Dr. Michael Youssef, here!

About The Author

Dr. Michael Youssef, Ph.D.

Even before he was born, it is clear that God had a vision for Michael Youssef. His mother was in poor health when she became pregnant with Michael, and because his life was in danger at the time of birth, the doctor recommended terminating the pregnancy. An abortion was scheduled. But God intervened and sent the family pastor to reassure them that God was involved in this pregnancy. He told them not to be afraid and that the child would be "born to serve the Lord." Michael's parents accepted the pastor's message as a message from God and obeyed. His mother gave birth, and lived to see him give his life to the Lord at the age of sixteen.


Believing that God had called him out of Egypt, Michael sought an exit visa in a time in which no university student was allowed to have a passport or leave the country. God intervened again, and miraculously he managed to acquire a visa. He immigrated to Australia, where he studied at Moore Theological College in Sydney, was ordained as a pastor, and met Elizabeth who became his wife.


The Youssefs came to America in 1977, and in 1978 Michael received a master's degree in theology at Fuller Theological Seminary in California. Then he earned a doctorate in social anthropology at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. Michael served nearly ten years in the Haggai Institute, traveling around the world more than 32 times, teaching courses in evangelism and leadership. He rose to the position of Managing Director at the age of 31 years. The family settled in Atlanta, and in 1984, Michael became a citizen of the United States, making his dream of many years come true.


He founded The Church of The Apostles in 1987 with fewer than 40 adults with the mission of "Equipping the Saints and Searching for the Lost". The church has since grown to be a congregation of over 3,000 people today. This church has driven the international ministry of Leading the Way. While it is heard by millions at home and abroad, behind every message preached through radio waves, is the heart of a pastor, willing to nurture and care for these people. Clearly God has uniquely equipped Dr. Youssef to speak to a global audience. The path he has taken has given him an understanding and firm grasp of the Scriptures that transcend cultures. He preaches, teaches and calls with a sincere, based on the authority of the inerrant, inspired Word of God. With his personal knowledge of the Holy Land, its history and culture, Dr. Michael Youssef transmits life to listeners all over the world.

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