Monday, September 01, 2008
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
Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2008 Tim Burt, All rights reserved