A-1 - Encouraged by What You Read?

Those of us who are the recipients of God’s amazing gift of salvation have no option but to give of ourselves in gratitude. It is both an attitude that we strive to develop in our hearts and one that naturally arises by the power of the Holy Spirit as we mature in faith.

Generosity flows from grace. Just as God’s grace toward us makes Him generous, the more we cherish the grace we have received, the more generous we will become. The more we comprehend the incredible gift of eternal life, the more we will give of our time, our finances, our energy, and our resources, not in an effort to pay God back for His gift—we could never pay Him back in 20,000 lifetimes—but because we are inwardly and irrevocably changed by our unchanging God.

Because God is changeless, you and I need to change, to become more and more like Him, moving from one point of glory to the next. We are to change in attitude from owners to stewards, from hoarders to sharers and sowers. For, we have a sure hope—the promise of heaven with our loving Father, a future that will infinitely fulfill all our deepest hopes and longings. Our faithful God frees us to give generously today, so let’s set our hearts in heaven and use all we’ve been given to invite others into the hope of eternity found in Christ alone.  

Prayer: Father, as I reflect on the gift I have received in Christ, work in my heart to make me generous in turn. May I set my hope and treasure in heaven with You that I might be free to love and give with abandon. I know my all is You. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.

“One person gives freely, yet gains even more; another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty. A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed” (Proverbs 11:24-25).

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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