About Tim Burt

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

A Gift From God to You!

Fresh Manna 2008 by Pastor Tim Burt

1 Cor. 14:18 “I thank God that I speak in tongues more than all of you.”


Have you ever experienced what are seemingly impossible circumstances to overcome while at the same time feeling that God through His word was trying to comfort you and encourage you to trust in Him through faith? Then you are in company with Abraham. God made promises to he and Sarah that were naturally impossible.

Romans 4:18-19 tells us, “When God promised Abraham that he would become the father of many nations, Abraham believed him. God had also said, "Your descendants will be as numerous as the stars," even though such a promise seemed utterly impossible! And Abraham's faith did not weaken, even though he knew that he was too old to be a father at the age of one hundred and that Sarah, his wife, had never been able to have children.”

What did Abraham do when God spoke this promise to him? It says “Abraham believed Him.” It says, “Abraham’s faith did not weaken” despite impossible circumstances. That is why Abraham is considered the father of faith.

Great and unwavering faith is pleasing to God and what God responds to. Hebrews 11:6 says, “So, you see, it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to Him must believe that there is a God and that He rewards those who sincerely seek Him.”

We continue to see the importance of faith and the curse of doubt in James 1:6-8. “But let him ask in faith, with no doubting. For he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.”

So now, let’s get real. I want you to think for a moment. How many times have you been in an adverse situation and you have prayed asking God for a miracle only to spill the hopelessness of your situation and unbelief in a later conversation? We so badly want to believe the promise of God’s Word and pray and be in faith, but our head seems to immediately get in the way.

In Mark chapter 9 we read the story of a man whose son has been possessed with evil spirits and is tormented. He begs Jesus to help his son. This man has lived with this situation for many years. Jesus does to him what He tries to do with us – give us hope.

We read: “The evil spirit often makes him fall into the fire or into water, trying to kill him. Have mercy on us and help us. Do something if you can." What do you mean, 'If I can'?" Jesus asked. "Anything is possible if a person believes." The father instantly replied, "I do believe, but help me not to doubt!" Mark 9:22-24

Haven’t we all been in the role of that man to some degree? We know God can do anything. We want to believe He wants to. But in our prayer for help, like the father we cry "I do believe, but help me not to doubt!"

This is one of the reasons the gift of tongues is such a precious gift. As I began to say yesterday, the gift of tongues is a gift from God. When I pray in tongues, I do not know what I am praying. I am praying in a language I do not understand. But, God understands! It is a mystery to me but not to Him. They become prayers unhindered with unbelief – prayers of faith that God can respond to. 1 Cor. 14:2 says, “For anyone who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God. Indeed, no one understands him; he utters mysteries with his spirit.”

When we know what we pray, it becomes the battle ground of spiritual warfare. The mind is where Satan wages war. He tries to move us into unbelief and doubt. When Jesus was in the desert being tempted by Satan, Jesus resisted Satan by the Word and promise of God. He is our model. We do try to do that but, sometimes it’s a struggle. Sometimes more than others and usually in the mind.

If we don’t know what we are praying but simply become a yielded vessel of the Holy Spirit to pray in tongues, we are told here that we don’t know what we are praying but we are praying mysteries. The Greek word for “mysteries” means secrets. They are secrets to us but not to God. That means God knows what we are praying. We simply don’t. What’s the benefit of that? Satan can’t bring doubt to it because he does not know what we are praying.

Satan doesn’t know but the Holy Spirit does. He is the one that knows our heart and helps us pray in tongues. Romans 8:26 says, “And the Holy Spirit helps us in our distress. For we don't even know what we should pray for, nor how we should pray. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words.” The Greek word for groanings, means to literally speak unintelligible words – or words that we don’t understand. That is another language or tongues.

The Apostle Paul who wrote three-fourths of the New Testament prayed in tongues more than anyone. 1 Cor. 14:18 says, “I thank God that I speak in tongues more than all of you.” In 1 Cor. 14:39 he said, “… and don't forbid speaking in tongues.” What language is tongues? Paul said, in 1 Cor 13: 1 that they are the language of “men or angels.” Tongues is a supernatural gift given to anyone that seeks God for the gift. But, like we started out today examining – you don’t receive anything from God unless it’s in faith and that includes tongues.

The man without pride will admit that his life is filled with circumstances and situations that are beyond his reach and control. God wants us to lean on Him but understands the mental warfare we face. The gift of tongues was a gift given to Christians to help strengthen our faith and prayers overcoming the attacks of unbelief. It is a gift to you! More next time…

If you would like a free book to help you learn more about the gift of tongues, write to: info@lwcc.org giving them your name and address and ask for the book Water, Wind, and Fire. I hope it will be of great blessing to you. I am confident it will help you with questions you may have.

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2008 Tim Burt, All rights reserved

Monday, September 29, 2008

“A Secret to Spiritual Strength”


Fresh Manna 2008 by Pastor Tim Burt

1 Cor. 14:2 (NIV) For anyone who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God. Indeed, no one understands him; he utters mysteries with his spirit.”


Imagine if you would, that the Lord asked you to do this. “I want you to tell me three things I’ve previously spoken to you about building into your life and three things I’ve asked you to eliminate or spend much less time doing.” “Pull out a piece of paper and a pen this very moment and list those things and tell me what they are.”

I believe that some of you could list those things without much thought needed. I do because I think you have already spent much time thinking about them. You may even be upset with yourself for still doing some of those things you know you need to reduce or eliminate. I also think that you have already talked with the Lord and made the decision to do some of those things He has asked you to do, but you just haven’t done them yet.

I am writing this today because I hear these kinds of statements from people frequently in all kinds of conversations – especially when people are being honest and disclosing.

I’ve heard people say; “I just want to get up earlier and spend more time in the Word before work.” “I really want to spend some quiet time in prayer before work but I am so tired in the morning – to be honest, from staying up too late at night watching television or on my computer.” “The Lord has been dealing with me to find a church I can feel apart of and help out in.” “I think I’ve apologized to the Lord a hundred times for ……. I need to get a handle on this.” “The Lord speaks to me about sharing Jesus but I get so intimidated that I only end up thinking about it.” “The Lord and my wife have been speaking to me about watching less television and spending more time being with my kids.” “I go through this ritual every weekend where I intend to go to church, but then I let the most ridiculous excuses get in the way. I know I should be there – that it’s good for me!”

These are just a fraction of the kinds of honest disclosures I hear people say. They say them because they mean them. They are embarrassed to some degree about them. The most interesting thing is – they know them! They have heard from God and they know them. I think that for those of us in Christ who really love Him and care about His direction for our life, we have heard from the Lord and we do know them! So then, the question has to be asked, “Why don’t we move into the place of obedience and do them?”

The answer seems almost too simple, but I believe it is the answer. We have heard from God and that is why we do know what He wants us to do. Then we take what we hear from Him, and we try to execute it naturally – we try to do it in our own natural strength. Thus – we fail! The Apostle Paul experienced the same frustration in his spiritual growth and development that we read about in Romans chapter 7. He said, “I don't understand myself at all, for I really want to do what is right, but I don't do it. Instead, I do the very thing I hate. I know perfectly well that what I am doing is wrong, and my bad conscience shows that I agree that the law is good. But I can't help myself, because it is sin inside me that makes me do these evil things.” Romans 7:15-17 (NLT)

Paul went on to learn that he couldn’t work out the changes God was speaking to him about in his own natural strength. The power of sin was stronger that his natural ability and strength to overcome it. But, he was not stranded; he had the power of the Holy Spirit. He could win if he leaned on the supernatural side – if he leaned on the power of Holy Spirit. He wrote: Romans 8:9 & 11 “But you are not controlled by your sinful nature. You are controlled by the Spirit if you have the Spirit of God living in you. (And remember that those who do not have the Spirit of Christ living in them are not Christians at all.)” “The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you. And just as He raised Christ from the dead, He will give life to your mortal body by this same Spirit living within you.”

The most sincere truth I could ever impart to you is that I could, I have, and I would fail in my own efforts to be more Christ-like if I didn’t have the Holy Spirit to lean on. But let me be even more clear at the risk of creating a stir amongst some of you as readers. I could, I have, and I would fail in my own efforts to be more Christ-like if I didn’t have the gift of tongues from the Holy Spirit to pray in to strengthen me. Praying in the Holy Spirit – in tongues - provides me and inward strength that helps take me to new levels of obedience in God. It’s where the things that God is speaking to me about move from thought (and procrastination) to action – IF I will pray in tongues.

The gift of tongues is a gift from God. When I pray in tongues, I do not know what I am praying. I am praying in a language I do not understand. But, God understands! It is a mystery to me but not to Him. They become prayers unfettered with unbelief – prayers of faith that God can respond to. 1 Cor. 14:2 (NIV) says, “For anyone who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God. Indeed, no one understands him; he utters mysteries with his spirit.”

This is where I find the strength – where the Apostle Paul found the strength – to turn what God is asking us to do into action! Want to hear more? You will tomorrow…

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2008 Tim Burt, All rights reserved

Friday, September 26, 2008

I Never Said That!

By Renee Burt

Has someone ever confronted you and said something like, “Hey, I heard that you said this about so and so, and I happen to know it’s not true.” Or it might be even worse, “Hey, I heard you said this about me, and I don’t appreciate it.” At times like those you can feel the blood rush to your head, you feel alarms going off in your head…red alert, red alert…and the usual response? “I never said that!”…when in truth, you did! So how do you avoid that from ever happening again? Don’t say ANYTHING you wouldn’t readily admit to saying, especially to the person who you’re saying it about. Because unless you would feel comfortable saying it within earshot of that person, then can we just call it what it is? Gossip, plain and simple. The Bible actually has a lot to say about gossip, because it’s such an easy trap to fall into. Why? Because if you’re the “gossiper,” it can make you appear to be “in the know.” And if you’re the “gossipee,” (yes, I made that up…it means you’re the listener of the gossip) it can make you somehow feel more important because that person wanted to confide in you. And now, YOU have some interesting “inside info” to share with someone else…confidentially, of course. Whatever! We need to grow up and stop falling for this trap, and instead trap gossiping words and stop spreading them around. So the next time someone comes up and tries to tell you some "inside info?" Just say "no," and trust me...no, trust His Word, that you'll save yourself from a whole lot of trouble!

Ecclesiastes 10:20 MSG ~ Don't bad-mouth your leaders, not even under your breath, And don't abuse your betters, even in the privacy of your home. Loose talk has a way of getting picked up and spread around. Little birds drop the crumbs of your gossip far and wide.

More devotions from Renee's Fresh Manna

Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2008 Tim Burt, All rights reserved.
http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

Friday, September 19, 2008

Critical...or Joyfully Expectant? By Renee Burt


By Renee Burt

I wish it wasn't so easy to slip into becoming a little critical...or maybe even more than a little. But it's really not all our fault right? If everyone just thought like we thought...or if they would just say what we think they should say (in other words, what we deem to be the proper words)...or if they would just do what they obviously should do (meaning what WE would do in that situation). Let's take it a step deeper...if they would just believe like we believe...and if they don't? How can you not be critical when they believe what you feel sure is the wrong thing? How could they think THAT about God? Or how could they interpret that verse to mean THAT? I like the apostle Paul's response to this critical way of thinking that tries to worm its way into our life, robbing us of our ability to fully appreciate what God is doing in and through each one of us. Check out for yourself what he had to say in today's verse...I've been mulling on it all morning...and I'm determined to weed out any critical seeds that have taken root in my life. It already feels quite liberating, and this day is shaping up to be one joyfully expectant day!

II Corinthians 1:24 MSG ~ We're not in charge of how you live out the faith, looking over your shoulders, suspiciously critical. We're partners, working alongside you, joyfully expectant. I know that you stand by your own faith, not by ours.

More devotions from Renee's Fresh Manna

Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2008 Tim Burt, All rights reserved.
http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

Friday, September 12, 2008

Perfect Recall When We Call on Him!


By Renee Burt

Yesterday, I went to put the finishing touches on my 11 pages of notes for a very important meeting I was going to have at 9 a.m. I had spent about five hours preparing the notes the day before on my computer, and had woken up at 5:30 a.m. to finish things up. By the time I was done, I felt great about what I had to share...and thankful to the Lord for helping me capture my thoughts into notes that I knew would help me conduct a truly worthwhile meeting. But then, I did the unthinkable. I accidentally deleted all of my notes...not just some...but ALL of my notes. I felt the blood drain from my face when I realized that there was no way to recover what I had just lost...and if you're wondering, yes, I do have auto save built into my computer. But I had managed to even delete the auto saves...and there wasn't any time to try to redo my notes. I felt sick about it, and told the Lord, "I just lost all the notes You helped me put together so well." And His answer to my heart? "Don't you believe I can help you remember those things? This is an opportunity for you to be less dependent on YOU and your notes...and be completely on ME!" That was just what I needed to hear. And the result? He reminded me of everything I needed to say, and the meeting was awesome. Because I was awesome? No, because HE is awesome...and so call on Him, when YOU need help to recall something in your life. He'll help you too!

John 14:26 AMP ~ ...And He will cause you to recall (will remind you of, bring to your remembrance) everything I have told you.

More devotions from Renee's Fresh Manna

Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2008 Tim Burt, All rights reserved.
http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

“You Can Be Better With Age!”


Fresh Manna 2008 by Pastor Tim Burt

Romans 12:2 “Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will know what God wants you to do and you will know how good and pleasing and perfect His will really is.”


“God help me to change.” How many times have I lifted that prayer before the Lord in different degrees of emotion and exasperation over the years? I want to be more Christ-like. Is that possible? Absolutely! How do I know? The same way I can confidently know anything about God and His will for my life. He tells me in His Word in 2 Corinthians 3:18. “And all of us have had that veil removed so that we can be mirrors that brightly reflect the glory of the Lord. And as the Spirit of the Lord works within us, we become more and more like him and reflect his glory even more.” And again in Colossians 3:10. “In its place you have clothed yourselves with a brand-new nature that is continually being renewed as you learn more and more about Christ, who created this new nature within you.”

And we see it yet again in 2 Pet 1:3-4 "His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness. Through these He has given us His very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires"

These verses are revealing and this last one so powerful that it’s almost mind blowing. Did you catch God’s Words “…so that through them you may participate in the divine nature?” God says we can participate in His divine nature. That means we have God working within us. That is the supernatural help of the Holy Spirit that He makes available to us. God does help us but we must understand that the Holy Spirit doesn’t work independently without our participation. The verse says, “His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him…”

God gives us the Holy Spirit, but expects us to seek the knowledge of His will. As we learn what God asks us to become, we grow in confidence that we can or He wouldn’t have asked. We just have to believe by faith that the Holy Spirit will energize us and supernaturally help us do what we couldn’t do in our own strength – make changes and become more Christ-like!

The first step of change is putting ourselves in Godly atmospheres where God can get His Word to us to speak to our heart. Then we come to today’s Fresh Manna where we continue to learn how God works change in us. We are instructed, “Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will know what God wants you to do and you will know how good and pleasing and perfect His will really is.”

God says the way to become more like Jesus is to change the way we think. Again it says, “…but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think…” How do we let God transform us by the way we think? We begin to elevate the truth of what He tells us above our shallow and limited thinking. Do you know the future? No, but God does. Do you have the power to change the unchangeable? No, but God does. If you’re honest, you will admit you can’t even change yourself or your life to be all you really want to be. I know there are many people out there with a good heart and good intentions giving their “ra-ra”, exhortations - “You can be anything you want to be” speech but it’s not entirely true. You can’t without God’s help. His help says, “Change the way you think and do that by renewing your mind to the promise of my Word.”

I used to think God could never love me because of my past sins and behavior. Nothing would have changed my thinking on that until I was exposed to His Word that told me differently. It changed the way I think. It exposed His will to me. Jeremiah 31:3 spoke to my heart and helped me realize God’s love for me. “…I have loved you with an everlasting love. With unfailing love I have drawn you to myself,” and in Romans 5:8. “But God showed His great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.”

I would have put all sorts of limitations on myself about what I believed I could do and accomplish but God told me differently. Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” When we allow God to be the source of our thoughts and transform our minds and our way of thinking by elevating His truth above our own thoughts and unfounded beliefs, then we begin to gain the strength and power and help of God and supernatural transformation happens. So, shut down your negative thinking and begin to elevate God’s Word in your life and believe it! You’ll never be the same!

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2008 Tim Burt, All rights reserved

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

“Do You Want to Please God”?”


Fresh Manna 2008 by Pastor Tim Burt

1 Tim. 2:3 (NIV) “This is good, and pleases God our Savior…”


Okay, can we play true confessions for a minute? If you’ve asked Jesus Christ to be your LORD and Savior, is He really your Lord? What does it mean to make Him our Lord? Jesus modeled the meaning of what it is to make Him our Lord by how He submitted Himself to His Father. We see this in John 5:19. “Jesus replied, "I assure you, the Son can do nothing by Himself. He does only what He sees the Father doing. Whatever the Father does, the Son also does.”

I believe we all have good intentions to want to do only what Jesus would have us do. Yet, if we answer in honest humility, we would also all admit we fall far short of the mark. That doesn’t change what we should do and what should be our goal. If Jesus is our Lord, then He has the right to set the priorities for our life. He gets to establish them for us and He reveals them to us in His Word.

Today I would like to focus and share with you what His number one priority is for all of our lives – with no exceptions! It is to share our faith. God’s number one priority is for each and every human being to hear the gospel and receive the opportunity to be saved. 1 Tim. 2:3-4 says, “This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all men to be saved and to come to knowledge of the truth.” God loves every human being. He does not want even one to have to pay the punishment for sin. He had Jesus take our punishment upon the cross. Now He wants everyone to hear the gospel – the good news of His unfailing love, mercy, and grace – His offer to forgive and wash away their sins and give them eternal life through Jesus Christ. In this verse we see the words “This is good…” What is he saying “is good?” He is saying that praying for all men is good! Let’s connect these verses together to see this. 1 Tim. 2:1-4 “I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone-- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all men to be saved and to come to knowledge of the truth.”

Why must we pray for all men to be saved? Why must we pray? Why can’t God just do something? Satan obtained - literally stole man’s authority in this earth when he deceived Adam to sin. At that point, he stole Adams God given authority. The earth has become Satan’s stronghold. It is why he is called ‘the god of this world.’ 2 Cor. 4:4 says, “Satan, the god of this evil world, has blinded the minds of those who don't believe, so they are unable to see the glorious light of the Good News that is shining upon them. ”They don't understand the message we preach about the glory of Christ, who is the exact likeness of God.”

God now does His work in this earth through His angels and though men yielded to Him in prayer. It is our prayers, that help launch the angelic hosts of Heaven to be involved in the circumstances of the people we pray for. Prayer also petitions God to work in the hearts and minds of those that aren’t presently thinking about Him or even know Him. Our prayers of intercession are what help the hearts of men to become open to God’s love.

I try to remember to ask this question every time I find myself sharing the gospel with someone. I ask them, “Do you have a family member or relative or friend that is one of those “born again Christians” that might be praying for you? I don’t think that I have every received a negative response. It seems as though they can always find someone by that description that might be praying for them. I then tell the person I am sharing with – “It’s a result of their prayers that I am standing here sharing the love of Jesus with you today. This is no coincidence!”

Praying for the salvation of men’s souls is so very important. It causes your heart to want to be used of God and to be strengthened with courage to do so. It also causes the hearts of those you pray for to be open to the laborer such as yourself that crosses their path and helps angels hold back demonic warfare that would blind them from the truth of Jesus.

Praying to be used of God to share the gospel and then sharing the gospel is God’s number one priority for our life. Each of us will walk it out in obedience, yet in a great diversity of ways. God will use us all. He’ll use our own distinct personalities and giftings to relate to those He sends us to. You don’t have to be like anyone else in carrying out this purpose for God. Be yourself and let Him shape your fishing skills as He makes you a fisher of men. But, don’t’ be deceived. Don’t think you are going to do this in obedience to Him without praying for people and without praying that God would use you. “This is good…” means praying for and then sharing Jesus as God leads you, “is good.” As 1 Peter 3:15 says, “Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.”

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2008 Tim Burt, All rights reserved

Friday, September 05, 2008

He'll Always Bring Us Through!

By Renee Burt

I'll never forget the time Tim and I were in Mexico during Hurricane Emily. We had only been there for a day when we were herded, along with everyone else, into the lower level of our hotel. It had been turned into a shelter, but to be honest, we didn't feel all that sheltered. The winds were so strong they were destroying everything around us. But in the midst of it all, we felt a peace that we knew a lot of the other people weren't experiencing...because our confidence wasn't in the structure of our hotel...it was in our indestructible God! God brought us through that hurricane...and He reminded me once again that no matter what destructive storms of life may come, I can have that same kind of peace...confident in His promise that He will always bring us through!

Psalm 57:1 AMP ~ Be merciful and gracious to me, O God, be merciful and gracious to me, for my soul takes refuge and finds shelter and confidence in You; yes, in the shadow of Your wings will I take refuge and be confident until calamities and destructive storms are passed.

More devotions from Renee's Fresh Manna

Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2008 Tim Burt, All rights reserved.
http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

Monday, September 01, 2008

“A Chain Reaction of Salvations”


Fresh Manna 2008 by Pastor Tim Burt

Acts 11:14 “He will bring you a message through which you and all your household will be saved.”


Anyone who has accepted Jesus as Savior by faith is on their way to Heaven. What a glorious truth that is! What a wonderful peace that truth brings. Many people wrongfully think that you can't know if you are going to Heaven. That couldn't be further from the truth. That it is the point of the gospel meaning 'good news.' God didn't have Jesus die for you to keep you in a state of confusion or wonderment. He wanted you to know that Heaven would be your home. We see this truth in 1 John 5:13 "These things I have written to you who believe in Jesus, that you may know (not hope or wonder but know) that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.”

Knowing this is the beginning of a new life in Jesus. Once you have become one of God's children, He rejoices. He love us and will always take care of us. At the same time, He never loses sight of or concern for the lost. All mankind is a part of His creation. Satan has attempted to lie, pervert and draw all he can into his misery and destiny. God wants everyone saved.

We are all surrounded by people that don't know the Lord and are spiritually perishing. Some are family members or relatives and some are friends from work or acquaintances we've made such as neighbors or those we do business with. It's great to come to the place where you know you have eternal life but as God continues to care for the lost, so does he want you to. If you know Him then you love Him and care what He cares about. 2 Cor 5:15 says, ”And Jesus died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for Jesus who died for them and was raised again."

He desires to use us to be messengers of His love, His touch, and life-changing truth. 2 Cor 5:20 reveals our new job description in the earth saying, "We are therefore Christ's ambassadors, as though God were making His appeal through us..." When you become a Christian, you immediately gain purpose for your life. God makes you an ambassador for Him. He wants you to pray for the lost. He also wants you to touch others with the same life changing good news that He touched your life with. When we do, Heaven moves in our behalf. That is really the truth. You just can't always see it happening.

In Acts chapter ten, we read a fantastic story helping us see answers to prayer manifest from the realm of the spirit - into the lives of a family. It's the story of a man named Cornelius. He was a man that believed in God but did not know Jesus as His Savior. He loved God and really wanted to know the Lord. He was a good man that did many good things for God's people yet He himself had not entered into a personal relationship with Jesus.

One day as he was praying and seeking God, an angel visited him and told him to send for the Apostle Peter. He did what he was told. At the same time, God was speaking to Peter and telling him that someone was coming to take him to the house of Cornelius. Peter went to his home and Cornelius and all of his household were saved. As we see in today's Fresh Manna verse, God promised Cornelius one who would "bring you a message through which you and all your household will be saved." God cares for everyone this much.

This story reveals how powerfully God works in the background through prayers of faith. There are people everywhere seeking to know God and His truth. They, in their own words at some point in their life, lift their voice to God saying something like, "God if you are real will you help me to know you?" God listens to that prayer and moves on the hearts of everyday Christians like you and I just as He did Peter.

If you are willing, you will be used by God to be an answer to someone’s prayer. You will be a laborer. I always pray for laborers to cross the path of all my family. I likewise want to be a laborer for someone else’s. We may be used to plant a seed of God's love in their life or we may be used to usher them in a prayer of salvation to accept Christ. Either is wonderful but it starts with being willing and being sensitive to the real purpose God has for our lives.

I'll never forget the time I was sitting in a seat on an airplane reading my bible. The flight attendant I was working with asked me if I liked reading the Bible. I told her, "If you knew how much the Bible transformed my life, you'd read it to.” She wanted to know more. We ended up praying a prayer of salvation together. She asked Jesus into her heart. The next day she told me that she had called her husband. That same night, a man had engaged in conversation with her husband and had led him in a prayer of salvation. God was moving powerfully in both their lives! Want to hear the real kicker? The guy sharing Jesus with her husband was a friend of mine!

We never know how God is going to use us. But, we’ll definitely have more encounters if a) we are willing and paying attention, and b) if we will pray asking God to use us to be a light. I don’t put myself under the pressure of having to pray a prayer of salvation with each person I end up sharing Jesus with. I just pray that God’s love moves through me in such a way that I touch their life with His love and His power if they express a need I can pray about. Remember, you may be the one whom God uses that triggers a chain reaction of salvations – much to His pleasing.

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2008 Tim Burt, All rights reserved