About Tim Burt

Friday, September 17, 2010

Please, Soul… Be Still!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

Today's Fresh Manna is written by our good friend Julie Larson. Enjoy and be blessed!

I’ve had so many random thoughts running through my mind this past week. I’d be thinking or writing about something, and then abandon it to start a new one. The same was happening in my conversations. I’d continually interrupt myself with my next thought. It seemed like each thought brought with it bursts of energy, and then as quickly as it came, it left. Over and over last week. I’d have a zap of energy, then I’d crash. I’ve been happy, but still, something was off. I don’t remember feeling so scattered in my thoughts like that for quite some time. It reminds me of Attention Deficit Disorder actually. As the week progressed, I began feeling a little unnerved by it because my heart would beat fast and I wasn’t really feeling capable of focusing on anything for more than a couple minutes at a time.

A few days ago, I was telling my husband about something that happened in my day, and God bless him for hanging in there with me and trying to follow along as long as he did. Laughing, he stopped me, and asked if I could please write it down. He could see that my brain was going a mile a minute and I was all over the place, but when I write, my thoughts just seem to flow and are laid out in a more linear and understandable fashion. Many times I even write out my prayers to God and conversations with Him. I do write things out a lot because not only does it help me formulate my thoughts, but it also has a calming effect on me.

In our fast-paced, technology-filled society, where everything is only a click away, we have to find a way to slow down and remove ourselves from the constant stream of stimulus happening around us. It takes a purposeful, diligent effort to do that. It seems like we are often like speedboats skimming the top of the water, versus taking time to go deep… like a submarine, in our thoughts and in our relationships (with people and with God).

In addition to writing, another thing that takes me to a new place and helps me go deeper in my thoughts is getting outside and breathing fresh air. Going for a walk in the park by our house is something I can do every day that helps bring me to that place of rest.

What is it that helps you to slow down and not be all aflutter?

I try not to take life too seriously or over-analyze things, so I still don’t know why I was so jumpy and unfocused last week, but this morning I asked myself, does the reason WHY really matter? No, it doesn’t. I’m not going to start obsessing about it. It could have been any number of things. I’m a woman! Need I say more?


I believe whatever the issue was, it was temporary, and that God is bringing everything back into balance—even as I write this morning. I don’t have it all figured out, but I do know that it’s the enemy’s goal to get us distracted and feeling flighty so we get off course. I trust what the Word of God says about me. That’s what I’m focusing on this morning, and this is my confession:

I have the mind of Christ. Everything I set my hand to produces good fruit and prospers. I am blessed whenever—and wherever—I go. I am the focus of God’s thoughts and He cares about me. He also cares about MY thoughts. He helps me think clearly and shows me how I can reach out to others and show His love every day. Because the life of God flows through me, His peace is available to me and resides in me. I’m taking time to go deeper in my relationship with God by removing the distractions for a little while every day. My soul is at rest because I lean on and trust in His Word.

If you’re feeling scattered like I was last week, I thank God that He will help you and bring order to your chaotic thinking, just like He’s done for me. It’s a new day and it’s full of freshness, so make a fresh start today and take time to slow down and sink into His rest.

Psalm 131: 2 (Amplified) ~ I have calmed and quieted my soul; like a weaned child with his mother, like a weaned child is my soul within me [ceased from fretting].

Matthew 11:28 (NLT) ~ Then Jesus said, “Come to Me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let Me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls.


Enjoy more of Julie's writing at: First Draft by Julie Larson

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2010 All rights reserved.
http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Keep Your Eyes Straight Ahead!



In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2010 All rights reserved.
http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Thankful Beyond Words…

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

This weekend Renee and I watched our youngest son Matthew, the fourth of our four children marry the most beautiful and sweet young woman – our new daughter-in-law Sarah.



I had the privilege of performing the wedding ceremony as I have for all our children. It’s an honor beyond what I could have ever imagined I would experience in life.

It was an outdoor wedding in La Crosse Wisconsin at a country club in a special wedding cut-out along a golf course. Sarah’s parents who are from the area, out did themselves in the planning of this wedding. It was absolutely beautiful. Close friends and family that knew Matthew and Sarah well came from close and afar to celebrate with us. The entire weekend was spectacular and left Renee and I in awe as we pondered it all on our three hour drive home to Minneapolis. I am still in awe this morning. I am thankful beyond words. It would take me a very long time to tell you all the touches of God’s grace throughout the weekend but there were many. It was His way of letting us know of His love and presence throughout.

My life was such a train wreck when I first gave my life over to Jesus 33 years ago. I had messed up my life so terribly that I couldn't imagine it ever being redeemed and restored to what He has restored it to today. And this weekend was like the cherry on top.

When I turned my life over to Jesus at the age of 24 years old, I would have served Him forever just because of what He did for me – dieing for me and restoring me sinless before His Father. He never had to do another thing. But, that isn’t how He is. He wanted to not only redeem us back to God but restore to us what the devil had stolen from our years of ignorance, rebellion, and wrong choices. That is the magnitude of His love. I saw that in His word and Renee and I have believed in every word of His promises every day of our lives. God would do things that would be beyond what we could ever imagine or do for ourselves. That is His grace. That was His promise to us. We’ve stood on it and had faith and trust in His love and today we stand in awe of it all!

God’s covenant of promised blessing to Abraham and his future seed reaches all the way into our lives today through that faith. Galatians 3:14 says, ”God redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus, so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit.”

The promises of blessing to God’s children abound throughout the Bible. What are some of those promises? Deut 28:3-8 is just one place that reveals many of them!

[3] You will be blessed in your towns and in the country. (Wherever you live) [4] You will be blessed with many children and productive fields. You will be blessed with fertile herds and flocks. (God will bless you in your body and in what you put your hand to in your livelihood.) [6] You will be blessed wherever you go, both in coming and in going. [7] "The Lord will conquer your enemies when they attack you. They will attack you from one direction, but they will scatter from you in seven! [8] "The Lord will bless everything you do and will fill your storehouses with grain. The Lord your God will bless you in the land He is giving you.

Now Renee and I aren’t farmers and this vernacular might not seem to quite match up with how we produce our livelihood, but you are smart enough to figure out what God is promising to all of us! God wants to supernaturally bless us. Promises like these cry out to us – “Only believe.” We have and continue to and consequently stand in awe as we see them manifest in our lives! And this is why we are so filled and overflowing with thankfulness to Him today.

Psalm 138:2 (NLT) “I bow before your holy Temple as I worship. I will give thanks to your name for your unfailing love and faithfulness, because your promises are backed by all the honor of your name.”

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2010 All rights reserved.
http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Zero to Panic in 60 Seconds

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

Today's Fresh Manna is written by our good friend Julie Larson. Enjoy and be blessed!

My youngest daughter, Hannah (age 14), got home last week from a two-week visit with my husband’s sister and her family in Connecticut/ New York. They just moved from New York across the border into Connecticut, and Hannah was going to put her love of organizing to good use and help them get settled in. She had been looking forward to it for most of the summer. The best way I can describe Hannah’s personality is that she has a quiet confidence about her. She’s very comfortable with who she is and in the things she does. Whether things go right or wrong, she typically just deals with it independently. She uses her words sparingly, and doesn’t take extra efforts to be social with me—just for the sake of being social. I am STILL getting used to this since I am very social and like to talk about everything. She is totally content to be across the country and only call me if there’s an actual emergency, like asking if I could mail her a book she forgot at home. You know, important things like that.

She is always good about letting us know that she’s gotten to and fro somewhere safely, and I was glad to receive her text when the plane landed in New York. But then I didn’t hear from her for a couple days, so I figured I’d give her a call and see how she’s doing. I also just wanted to hear her voice. So I texted and called her phone, but no answer and no reply. After a couple hours of waiting, I called Jon’s sister’s landline and it rang endlessly, not even rolling to voicemail. So I started down the list of calling Jon’s sister’s cell phone, my brother-in-law’s cell phone, my father-in-law’s cell phone (since he was out there too). NO ONE was answering! Where in the world were they… and why was no one answering?! I’m beginning to feel uneasy by this point and checked Hannah’s Facebook to see if she had been on there at all since she got to New York. Nope.

Oh, man. What now?! Criminy. Okay, deep breaths…

I went from complete rest one minute to the deadliest feeling of fear the next. In the blink of an eye, I felt a helplessness that I haven’t felt in a very long time. My head took over, and in mere seconds, my mind went crazy. I was consumed with fear. It gripped me, and logic and reason could not be deader than in that moment. I told Jon if I didn’t hear from Hannah soon, I’d be booking a flight to New York… tonight! And I was not exaggerating. There’s something about DOING something in the midst of fear that makes you not care whether you’d be of any value, or care if you made a complete fool of yourself in the process. I stopped to pray a quick prayer that Hannah and everyone else was safe—wherever they were. But I kept on, still a wrought-up wreck on the inside. And watch out because I’m about to come unglued!

Have you ever felt such a lack of control?

By the grace of God, I realized I was calling their old landline in New York. I looked back in an old email to retrieve their new Connecticut phone number, called it, and someone did finally answer the phone. Surprise, surprise… Of course there was an explanation for everything. It turns out that nobody’s cell phones work in the mountainous area they just moved to. Ugh…

Not only was I embarrassed for such a major FAIL at trusting God, but so thankful for a good outcome to a situation that I, ahem… created in my own head. In spite of all my fears, God still had angels watching over Hannah, and she was always in His care. Why would I ever doubt that? I apologized and asked Him to forgive me, and I know that He did. He didn’t tell me to go away and come back when I have more faith. He helped me to see my lack of faith, but didn’t make me feel bad for it. His love and gentle nature gave me peace in my heart, and I know He doesn’t hold my doubts against me. God knows we’re on a journey, and He knows we continually face some scary things in this life. He just lets us know that He’s always there, and worthy to be trusted.

Next time you’re gripped with fear, I pray the peace of God washes over you like warm, gentle ocean waves, and your head and heart are calm as you rest in knowing that God cares about ALL the things you care about. He’s faithful to the end, and He’ll never leave you or forsake you… or your children!

John 14:27 (NLT) ~ [Jesus said,] “I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.”

Psalm 56:3-4 (NLT) ~ But when I am afraid, I will put my trust in You. I praise God for what He has promised. I trust in God, so why should I be afraid?


Enjoy more of Julie's writing at: First Draft by Julie Larson

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2010 All rights reserved.
http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/