In the Old Testament, we learn of an ordinary woman, named Esther, who saw a need and met that need. Esther was a Jewish woman living in exile in Persia. Through God’s plan, she married King Xerxes and found herself in a unique position to help her people.

When the king agreed to the planned execution of the Jews within his kingdom, Esther was poised to change his mind. God had placed her in the right place at the right time—but it was risky and dangerous. Esther was afraid and hesitant to act. Drawing from his trust in God, Esther’s cousin Mordecai knew the Lord would act for His people and thus admonished Esther that this was a crucial moment in her life—one that required deep courage and faith (see Esther 4:12-14).

What was Esther’s response to Mordecai’s strong words? “Go, gather together all the Jews who are in Susa, and fast for me. Do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my maids will fast as you do. When this is done, I will go to the king, even though it is against the law. And if I perish, I perish” (Esther 4:15-16).

Esther’s decision did not come easily. She wrestled with her fears over her own future. She knew she was putting her life on the line to approach the king. But in the end, she knew what God was calling her to do, and she obeyed.

Prayer: God, thank You for the example of Esther, who saw a need and responded in obedience to what You were calling her to do. Help me to have that kind of courage and vision. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.

“So the king and Haman went to Queen Esther’s banquet, . . . the king again asked, ‘Queen Esther, what is your petition? It will be given you. What is your request? Even up to half the kingdom, it will be granted’” (Esther 7:1-2).

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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