Monday, November 05, 2007
Fresh Manna© by Pastor Tim Burt
John 1:1-2 & 14 “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning….So the Word (Jesus) became human and lived here on earth among us.
I was a flight attendant before I knew the Lord. One day on one of my flights, I met a flight attendant who was so different from anyone I had ever known. She seemed so genuine, kind, and really fun. She also seemed pure. I never heard her swear. She didn’t get caught up in the gossip the way others did. She had such a sincere kindness toward the passengers on the airplane. That was the way I thought of myself yet I wasn’t anything like her. I asked her what made her so happy and she told me. It turned out to be a long and fascinating discussion that ended up with her leading me in a prayer asking Jesus to come into my heart to be my Lord and Savior.
The next day something seemed different that I couldn’t explain. Things seemed the same yet they seemed different. My day-to-day activity was much the same but my thought-life was different. I felt this questioning and self-examination going on about everything I was doing. That was so odd. I seldom every questioned what I did in regards to a moral standard. I had cast away off those guilt-laden boundaries a long time ago. So why was I suddenly examining everything I was thinking, saying, and doing?
What I didn’t know was that the second I sincerely asked Jesus to be my Lord and Savior, a miracle happened inside of me – a miracle I wouldn’t fully understand for a season. God had placed His Holy Spirit within me. How did that happen? Jesus explains it in His Word saying that in just the same way we come into this world through our mother’s womb in childbirth – our first birth, so we are brought into God’s family through a spiritual birth – our second birth. Jesus said “we must be born again.” How does that happen? Jesus said it’s like the wind - we can feel it and we can hear it but we can’t tell where it originates or the path it took to where we are. That was Jesus’ analogy. John 3:5-8 “Jesus answered, "I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. You should not be surprised at my saying, 'You must be born again.' The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit."
That perfectly described me because I didn’t feel the same. I didn’t’ understand what was going on within me. What I would eventually learn through God’s Word was that I was no longer dominated by Satan and his powers of darkness, but I was brought in an instants time into the Kingdom of God. Though I didn’t realize it or understand it, my commitment and prayer to making Jesus my Lord initiated my new life in God. Col. 1:13 puts it like this, “God has delivered us from the power of darkness (Satan’s power) and translated us into the kingdom of His dear Son Jesus.” He instantly plucks the sincere heart that asks forgiveness of sins and asks Jesus to be Lord and Savior out of Satan’s grip and translates him/her into God’s Kingdom and care giving the gift of His Holy Spirit.
This had all happened in an instant’s time and now it felt like the walls of my heart and mind and been ripped out and were being prepared for an entire remodeling. Things I never questioned as being wrong, now felt and seemed wrong. How could that be?
Now I understand. It was the Holy Spirit speaking to me and helping me examine my life. The Holy Spirit can only teach and confirm what we read in the scriptures. He does not teach or confirm without them. He can’t hold up the standard of what God wants in relation to what you are doing UNTIL you start reading the Word of God. Unbeknown to me, that was what was causing the self examination within.
God helps us as we give our life to Him. Suddenly I’d have Christians cross my path. Prior to this I never really understood what a Christian was. One gave me a Bible and told me where to start reading it. That would be a first for me. Another suggested a church where they taught the Bible. That was the beginning of putting the Word of God within me so that the Holy Spirit could take God’s Word and begin to instruct and teach me. Major change had absolutely begun.
God’s Word – scripture - is God’s voice when we realize it’s how God speaks to us. His Holy Spirit takes scripture and begins to shed light on it and help us understand it. We often find ourselves asking God questions only to see Him some how speak back to us through His Word.
As today’s Fresh Manna verse says, “So the Word (Jesus) became human and lived here on earth among us.” Jesus and His Word are the same – alive and powerful then and now. He speaks to us through it if we will open our heart and ask Him to speak to us. When and as it happens to you, you will hear and sense the voice of God. When you do, pay attention because, “His word is a lamp for my feet and a light for my path.” Psalm 119:105 (NLT) Do you need direction, insight, and wisdom from God. Do you need encouragement and the promise of His Word to renew your hope? Then read God’s Word in faith with expectation He’ll speak to you! He will! He loves you! More later…
In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2007 Tim Burt, All rights reserved.
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