About Tim Burt

Friday, January 31, 2014

Do You Recognize Him in Your Life Today?

Fresh Manna 
by Pastor Tim Burt

It seems no matter how much people are encouraged to read their Bibles and pray, they struggle from it falling to the bottom of their priority list until they are barely doing it at all. Doesn't it seem odd to you that the things that matter least to us fight for the lion’s share of our attention and the things that we know deep down matter the most, receive little or suffer from lost attention? Our intimate pursuit and worship of God, our appreciation and time with those we really love, and our quest for a healthy lifestyle—these are what make our life rich and bring the happiness and contentment we’re looking for. And yet we cave in and give most of our attention to the very things that discourage and steal from our life.

attention-shutterstock-600x553It is an understanding of this that brings insight to how these words concerning Jesus could have possibly been true. “The true Light (Jesus) that gives light to every man was coming into the world. He was in the world, and though the world was made through Him, the world did not recognize Him. He came to that which was His own, but His own did not receive Him.” John 1:9-11

The words “…that gives light to every man was coming into the world” reveals that Jesus was the light—He was and is the one that could show us the meaning of life and everything about it. He is the one that can give us direction in our life. He is the only one that can illuminate to us what is and isn't important throughout our day’s pursuit. The world searches for the purpose of life but avoids the one who knows. How could that be?

The words “He was in the world, and though the world was made through Him” reveals that He is the author of every good thing. He alone knows what is good and evil. From the beginning He tried to help Adam and Eve understand it so they could make right choices. Today He is still here in the moment to “light” our path and show us the right decisions to make. The world looks to everyone but the author of wisdom. How could that be?

The words “…the world did not recognize Him” reveals that the world—and let’s bring this down to our daily world: those we’ll encounter today—did not recognize Him, the author of all, the creator of all things, the mighty God, our Heavenly Father, our Prince of peace. They didn't recognize Him. How could that be?

Here is the really difficult part. “He came to that which was His own, but His own did not receive Him.” We may have received Him as our Savior, but will we receive Him into our schedule that screams for our attention today? Will we receive Him into our fellowship and thinking so that He can show us what is good and what we should avoid? Will we receive Him into our decision making process and let him take lead in the decisions we make? Will we receive Him into intimate times we purposefully set aside to worship Him for whom He is and thank Him for all He has been and will be to our lives?

il_340x270.545929604_o64oThese verses reveal that “… His own did not receive Him.” Are we any different? Will we be guilty of the same? Or will we receive Him today, tomorrow and the days ahead. He is the light of men. He is your light and what makes you a light in this world. I pray that we let Him illuminate our lives today so that we can become what He wanted to infect us with—light! The world is dark and needs His light which was meant to be our light!

Please, let's embrace Him today! Let's let His word speak to our heart and produce a result that reflects in our life—today! And because He and His Word does impact our life today, let's let the light that shines upon our life, shine through our lives! Okay?

Matthew 5:14-16 (NLT) “You are the light of the world—like a city on a mountain, glowing in the night for all to see. Don't hide your light under a basket! Instead, put it on a stand and let it shine for all. In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.”

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt 

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Tim here:





Published by Pastor Tim Burt
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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Overcoming Bad Reports

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Have you ever received bad news? Who hasn't?  We all have at one time or another and for too many, enough to wear you down. Bad reports seem to punch you in the gut and twist your stomach in knots. The loss of a loved one, loss of a job, or some type of calamity or tragedy is never easy to hear about. Bad reports seem to come and the ones that directly affect us, we have to deal with in some way. But there are far too many other bad reports that come to our hearing than we should not pay attention to.


You may have noticed that in the Old Testament Kings were never pleased with those that couldn't wait to bear bad news. Kings often had them killed or punished. Many of us have been guilty of bringing a bad report to others that we shouldn't have. The sad part about that is, sometimes people almost seem excited or in a hurry to do it. Did you hear about Mary? She and David are getting a divorce! I just heard that David has been cheating on her.

In 2 Kings a very wicked King Sennacherib, spreads a very evil report about all the evil he is going to do to the children of Israel and how their God can do nothing to stop him. He puts a report out there that sends a chill of intimidation and fear down the backs of King Hezekiah and God's people. It’s is an ongoing tactic Satan has used throughout all time. He brings an evil report and then gets as many people to begin to repeat it as He can. The result becomes a bad report that gains in momentum. Satan's strategy is that of a terrorist with the goal of robbing all hope and faith to instead create feelings of helplessness and despair. In 2 Kings 19:6-7 God speaks through Isaiah the prophet and tells King Hezekiah, “This is what the LORD says: Do not be afraid of what you have heard--those words with which the underlings of the king of Assyria have blasphemed me… I will have him cut down with the sword."

In Mark chapter 4 Jesus exposes Satan's tactic again. It says that when the Word of God is planted in our heart, “Satan comes immediately to steal the Word of God from our hearts.” It tells us that one of the ways he does that is to bring the cares of this world.  An evil or bad report will definitely bring cares which are designed to steal our faith in God's love and help toward us.

The entire Bible is written to encourage us to believe God’s truth – “that with man things are impossible but with God all things are possible.” When Hezekiah heard the bad report, he did what God wants us to do to be still and instinctively begin to pray. When King Hezekiah did that, he heard from the Spirit of God and even though a whole army was coming down upon them, God spoke these words: "Do not be afraid of what you have heard..." God then delivered them from the evil report and destruction as God supernaturally destroyed King Sennacherib.

God so desires us to move away from responding to every negative thing our five senses tell us and learn to instead pray and stand on the promises of His Word what our spirit should be hearing from the Holy Spirit. If we are spending time in the Word of God, we will hear God’s voice and promises. With God, things are not over till they are over, and even then they aren't over. His Words say that the enemy has no right to harm us. It is a covenant promise. Yes, I know that people are hurt every day. You can't answer for every person. You can only personally learn to stand in faith for your life. It is all the more reason to pray. If you do pray and you do learn to stand on God’s covenant promises, you will begin to see evil reports change. Praying in faith and trusting God will be your greatest part and it will save you from making all the wrong moves born out of fear.

If you are a believer, then you belong to God. Luke 10:19 says, ”Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.” Behold means to pay attention and listen and learn. God then tells us that He gives us power over Satan. He then promises – “…nothing shall by any means hurt you.”

When my daughter Stephanie was three years old, I was at the bottom of the stairs going up to her upstairs bedroom. She was standing at the top stairs with a long window shade stick in her mouth. She started walking downstairs. I yelled out to her not to but she fell and the stick ripped a hole on the inside of her throat. Blood flowed from her mouth and was choking her. I swept her in my arms, called for Renee and we raced for the hospital. We prayed over Stephanie all the way there and took authority over the devil reminding him of God’s promise, “nothing shall by any means hurt her.” The doctor told us he could do surgery – cut the outside of her throat to sew up the inside and then sew up the outside again. Or, we could walk it out a day at a time but it would be at least a month before she could eat solid foods and she would be in great pain for a while. We felt led of God to take the latter choice. later that day we brought her home from the hospital. Within hours she was running around home like nothing happened. We had hamburgers on the table that night. We were going to feed her yogurt. Before we knew it, she grabbed a hamburger and started eating – no pain – nothing. She ate the whole thing. She never showed an adverse affect from this accident again. Praise God!

Replace evil reports with God’s promises and then pray and believe. I am not saying to ignore circumstances. Some evil reports are generalized and don't even directly pertain to you. Some are futuristic forecasting doom and gloom. Pray about those in faith be used as an agent of change over those evil reports. At the very least, you will be encouraging your own heart.

For those things that do directly affect you, pray and believe that God’s promises are true and that He is greater than any circumstance in your life. Be the bearer of hope, good news and the promise of God. Don't repeat a bad report. Instead grab the hand of the reporter and say, Come on, this situation needs prayer. Let's agree in prayer right now for this situation to change. As Proverbs 15:30 says, “…a good report gives health to the bones” Now you are a carrier of good news, of faith, and of hope. You will be used of God and be a great blessing!

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt


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Copyright© 2014 All rights reserved

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Monday, January 27, 2014

Steadfast Not Stubborn!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Eph 6:16 "In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one"

Why is the Bible so unique and such an awesome thing? Because it is the expressed heart of God to man. It is God's voice and expression of who He is, of His love, and of His instruction and correction to each of us. John 1:1 says, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” It says "...the Word was God." God and His Word are the same. It goes on in verse 14 to reveal to us that Jesus and His Word are the same. “The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us. We have seen His glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth."

Jesus is the Word and speaks to us today with a living Word to our hearts. He says that each of us unique and wonderful. Psalms 139:13-14 says, "For you have formed my inward parts: you have covered me in my mother's womb. I will praise you; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvelous are your works; and that my soul knows right well."

When God made us, He made us wonderful in His design, yet we have all been tainted by the sin that is in this earth. We were conceived and born into a world that had been defiled by sin. That sin has infected every man. Rom 5:12 says, "When Adam sinned, sin entered the entire human race. Adam's sin brought death, so death spread to everyone, for everyone sinned." 

Everything God created was created for good. God gives witty ideas and inventions. Satan tries to pervert their use for evil. That's true for television, computers, the internet, for sex, for any good thing from God. They were all created for good but the devil perverted the use of each one. Satan through sin has tried to pervert every good thing in this earth including the character qualities within us that God gave us for good. Within our personalities, there are godly character qualities that are to be developed. For example, being steadfast being sure in what you believe and faithful, determined, and purposeful to live it out is a good and godly quality. To be stubborn unreasonably, often perversely unyielding and bullheaded, is the perversion of steadfastness. God wants us to be steadfast but not to be stubborn.

Being stubborn hinders God from helping us. In Psalm 81:12 God says, "So I gave them over to their stubborn hearts to follow their own devices." Being steadfast will do the opposite. Steadfastness can help us greatly in defeating troubled times in our lives. When we will become steadfast against the devil, against evil, against every attack of the enemy in our lives, then we will begin to see the attacks slow down or stop. When we steadfastly say "No devil, I won't fall for your trap and go to that perverse internet site." "No devil, I won’t accept this cold – By Jesus stripes I am healed." "No devil, I won't stay in unforgiveness." "I rebuke you! I don't care what that person has done to me, I am going to love them with the love of Jesus. Be gone in Jesus name!"  When we won't let the devil pervert character qualities and  instead use the strength of godly character, we will win many more battles then we will lose. When it comes to resisting the devil, God wants us to be absolutely steadfast against him. God wants us to take on the heart and attitude spoken by Isaiah. Isaiah 50:7 “For the Lord GOD will help me; therefore shall I not be confounded: therefore have I set my face like a flint, and I know that I shall not be ashamed."

God wants us to learn to set our face like flint and be steadfast against every attack of the enemy. He wants us to quit being a doormat for him and stop letting him eat our lunch. He wants us to use the name of Jesus and the authority given us in the name of Jesus. We do so by putting on and USING the whole armor of God.

Today's Fresh Manna verse says, "In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the fiery arrows of the evil one." The devil shoots one fiery dart of temptation or trouble after another. He never quits trying. We will either eventually become overcome by being worn out from them or we will take godly qualities like steadfastness and set our face like flint. Have you ever seen an emotional rock? No! Don't you let the devil put you on an emotional roller coaster with the attacks leveled at you. Just discern; Is what I’m experiencing from God or is this the devil attacking me? If it’s the devil, be steadfast in holding up your shield of faith and quenching every fiery dart of the enemy. Read him God’s promise. “I rebuke you devil. Psalms 46:1 says, “God is my refuge and strength, and very present help in trouble.” Then rejoice and trust in God’s promise. Continue to be steadfast in quenching every fiery dart.

In His love,
Pastor Tim Burt

Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2014 All rights reserved

http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

Monday, January 20, 2014

Getting Perfect Results

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


I was twenty years old when I bought my first house. Along with my first house came my first yard to keep up. After the first winter in that house, I had the joy of repairing the parts of my lawn that had been killed by winter-kill. I was in my mid twenties at that time and fairly inexperienced in home upkeep. I also liked to do everything in a hurry. I was too young and immature to appreciate the old adage, "If you are going to do something, do it right."
After buying grass seed, I would sprinkle some over the areas of dead grass from the winter-kill. Then I'd water it. A couple of weeks later, I’d be frustrated because most of the seed had not germinated and little to no new grass had sprouted.
I asked a few friends if they knew a better way to get grass to grow. And "Yes," there were directions on the box of grass seed but who had time to read directions much less do it the way they recommend? That would take way too much time to read – (at least three minutes.) I’d get varied advice on what to do. One person told me that raking the grass seed in would work. The next year I tried that. It didn't work. Please forgive me for how stupid this sounds, but I'd keep trying some version of sprinkling the seed on top of the dead grass and watering it, even though it didn't seem to work.

Finally a true gardener found out about my frustration. He said, "Tim, you can either cut out the damaged lawn and replace it with a new piece of sod or do what I tell you which will take more time but get perfect results." I asked him what to do. He said it would be hard work – more than just throwing some seed. “First,’” he said, “If possible, start in the spring just after the temperature is steady at about sixty degrees. The weather is perfect for growing grass at that time of year because the slightly cooler weather helps the ground stays moist longer. That is critical to the seed germinating.” He then told me to take a gardening fork (a small hand tool to till up an area) and run it over the winter kill a section at a time. Rake it out picking up the dead grass and disposing it. Then sprinkle the seed over the tilled area and work it into the soil with the gardening fork. He prepared me. “Your yard will look ugly for about three weeks.” “Then” he said, “comes the most important part to get perfect results. You need to water it at least morning and night for a week to ten days. The seeds need to stay moist to germinate and then they need water as they sprout and begin to grow. If you do this, I guarantee you will see the results you want."

I did what he said and it has always given me perfect results. Over time I learned that the three key things to repairing my lawn are parallel to letting God build my house.
1.) Meditate on God’s Word. God’s Word is called incorruptible seed meaning its perfect seed that gets results. Meditate on the word of God before you start your day – before life and your day get too busy. Your intentions might be great but as much as you want to later, you probably won't. Work the seed (God’s Word) into the soil of your heart. This is important to the start of our day!

2.) Pray the Word of God. It is incorruptible seed. God’s word is His will and He says in 1 John 5:14-15,  "This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us--whatever we ask--we know that we have what we asked of Him." When you meditate on God's Word it builds your faith. When you pray what you've meditated on, then you've prayed in faith.

3.) Continue to pray every time you get a chance – ESPECIALLY when you are praying over something critical to you. It's not a works thing meaning more prayer means better results. The reason to pray often is because it helps you think about God and His word and chases out the unbelief that comes with the difficult circumstances you face over and over again. Prayer is not only talking with God, it reminds you of His love and power, His promises, and that He is working in your life as you trust Him.

Prayer is the equivalent of watering. It prepares and softens your heart so you can hear from God. It helps your heart grow in faith. It will help God’s Word take root in your heart. Prayer petitions His heart according to His will. The Holy Spirit will help you remember to pray and pray often. Pray whenever you can and often! Turn off your car radio. Turn off the distractions you can control. Water the seed of your requests with the prayer that will cause your answers to sprout!

Jesus said in Mark 4:27 (NIV) "Night and day, whether he sleeps or gets up, the seed sprouts and grows, though he does not know how." When we learn God's Word and pray in faith, God is working whether we know it or not!

I wanted to build a lush yard of green grass and there were principles I needed to follow to get those results. These are the principles that help you build a strong spiritual house. They are both about planting seed and watering.


I used to try to get great results in a hurry giving no respect for how God has ordained sowing and reaping to work. I used to think I didn’t have time. Now I know that the only way to get the results I desire is to make the time. This is how the Lord builds the house. This is how to avoid building your house in vain – doing what you think is the work but getting zero results.

Psa 127:1 Unless the LORD builds the house, those who build it labor in vain. Unless the Lord guards the city, the guard keeps watch in vain.

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
 


If Fresh Manna is a blessing to you, let me know how. I’d love to hear from you!  Tell Pastor Tim here:




Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2014 All rights reserved

http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

Friday, January 17, 2014

God Will Strengthen You

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Psalms 28:8 (NIV)  " The LORD is the strength of his people..."

Strength–God’s strength! I don’t know about you but I need it. Psalm 28:8 says “The Lord is our strength...” When I try to exist and accomplish life and goals in my own strength, I fail or fall short. When I try to accomplish life and goals in my strength, it makes me feel stupid and backslidden. Why would I bother trying to get anything done in my own strength when God offers me His strength – His power?

Psalm 73:26 says, “My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.“ “2 Cor. 1:21 says, “Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. Psalm 84:5 says, “Blessed are those whose strength is in you…”

The power and strength of God to us are the promises of His Word. As I read a Bible story to my ten year old granddaughter recently. I asked her, “Macy, what is that called when someone talks to Jesus?” “She looked up to me and said, “That’s called prayer Papa.” She was absolutely right. We may not be able to walk up to Jesus face to face, but we can and are encouraged to come to Him just the same. Hebrews 4:16 says, “Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” We are exhorted to come to Him with confidence. That’s the same as faith. It pleases God. When we lean on the promises of God, we think and say, “This sickness, this problem, this cursed thing is of the devil. It’s not God’s will. God is my strength. He is my healer. He is my deliverer. I am His anointed. He has told me to come to His throne room. He makes me stand firm in my faith. And as today’s Fresh Manna says, “The Lord is our strength of His people..." 

Leaning on Jesus takes faith. Praying for miracles takes faith. It’s not like breaking a wishbone, finding a four-leaf cover, or crossing your fingers. It’s about having faith in Jesus as the strength and power of your life for every circumstance - In the face of adversity and negative report! You may get weak kneed and tempted to crumble in the face of adversity, but, that is why God wants to be your strength! Lean on Him with great faith!

Psalm 68:35 “God is awesome in His sanctuary. The God of Israel gives power and strength to His people."

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

Published by Pastor Tim Burt

Copyright© 2014All rights reserved

http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

The Lord is Your Helper at This Very Moment

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


It seems like everything is caving in around me.”  There are times where you have felt like that. Everyone has times like this in their life. God can feel so far away when circumstances seem to get so bleak. I told someone feeling this way last week, “Don’t you dare run from God right now. You run to Him!” Psalms 34:19 (NKJV) says, "Many are the afflictions of the righteous, But the Lord delivers him out of them ALL!" That is a promise to stand on in faith!

If Jesus is your Savior, the first thing God is to you is a Heavenly Father. You are His child. He loves you as His child. Romans 8:15-17 (NLT) says it like this: “So you should not be like cowering, fearful slaves. You should behave instead like God's very own children, adopted into His family—calling Him "Father, dear Father." For His Holy Spirit speaks to us deep in our hearts and tells us that we are God's children."

God wants you to believe Him for his best as you see in this continuing verse – “And since we are His children, we will share His treasures—for everything God gives to His Son, Christ, is ours, too.” And 2 Cor. 6:18 says, “And I will be your Father, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty." This is your Heavenly Father! Run to Him!

When the early church was growing, it was under attack. Herod in wanting to please the Jewish leaders of that day persecuted the Christian movement that seemed to be growing. For the early Christians, this life in Christ was all new to them. One of their leaders, James, had just been captured and killed by Herod. They were too young in the Lord to really know what to do. They could have easily felt abandoned by God and felt anything but His children. We read about it here:

Acts 12:1-4 “About that time King Herod Agrippa began to persecute some believers in the church. He had the apostle James (John's brother) killed with a sword. When Herod saw how much this pleased the Jewish leaders, he arrested Peter during the Passover celebration and imprisoned him, placing him under the guard of four squads of four soldiers each. Herod's intention was to bring Peter out for public trial after the Passover.”
Herod had just killed one of their main Christian leaders and now he apprehended the other – Peter – to publicly kill him. What started as great fellowship and unity for these Christians was turning into chaos. Their world was crumbing around them. There faith was greatly challenged. Was God really there behind the scenes?

What did these young Christians do? Acts 12:5 says, “So Peter was kept in prison, but the church was earnestly praying to God for him.” There is no mention of prayer for James. I don’t think they knew what to do at that point. This was all too new for them. James was killed. By the time Peter was apprehended, they got a clue. They got together to pray.

Let me park her for a minute. You might be in a hard place. You like them, might begin to pray. But like them, you can’t see beyond your prayers. You can’t really see what God is doing. You can’t really see how He is working on your behalf in response to your prayers. Either you are holding up true prayers of faith and you trust the Lord, or you are putting out words of desperation with nothing more than desperate hope going forth. Hebrews 11 tells us that it is faith that pleases God because faith believes God and that He is working in your behalf!

So, while they are huddled in a room praying, what is going on behind the scenes? What is God doing? Let’s read:

Acts 12:6-19 “The night before Peter was to be placed on trial, he was asleep, chained between two soldiers, with others standing guard at the prison gate. Suddenly, there was a bright light in the cell, and an angel of the Lord stood before Peter. The angel tapped him on the side to awaken him and said, "Quick! Get up!" And the chains fell off his wrists. Then the angel told him, "Get dressed and put on your sandals." And he did. "Now put on your coat and follow me," the angel ordered. So Peter left the cell, following the angel. But all the time he thought it was a vision. He didn't realize it was really happening. They passed the first and second guard posts and came to the iron gate to the street, and this opened to them all by itself. So they passed through and started walking down the street, and then the angel suddenly left him. Peter finally realized what had happened. "It's really true!" he said to himself. "The Lord has sent his angel and saved me from Herod and from what the Jews were hoping to do to me!" After a little thought, he went to the home of Mary, the mother of John Mark, where many were gathered for prayer. He knocked at the door in the gate, and a servant girl named Rhoda came to open it. When she recognized Peter's voice, she was so overjoyed that, instead of opening the door, she ran back inside and told everyone, "Peter is standing at the door!" "You're out of your mind," they said. When she insisted, they decided, "It must be his angel." Meanwhile, Peter continued knocking. When they finally went out and opened the door, they were amazed. He motioned for them to quiet down and told them what had happened and how the Lord had led him out of jail. "Tell James and the other brothers what happened," he said. And then he went to another place.”  

God is working behind the scenes for you if you are drawing close to Him praying in faith! This is why Hebrews 13:5-6 says, “…be satisfied with what you have. For God has said, "I will never fail you. I will never forsake you." That is why we can say with confidence, "The Lord is my helper, so I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?" Don’t panic! Pray in faith and trust Him!

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
 


If Fresh Manna is a blessing to you, let me know how. I’d love to hear from you!  Tell Pastor
Tim here:




Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2014 All rights reserved

http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

A Story of Commitment That Blessed Others

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Every so often, someone shows an act of kindness that has a much greater and more profound outcome than could have been imagined. That is the case with Mitch and Ramona Erickson. I had the privilege of watching something like that unfold this past weekend.

One day Mitch had an idea. He and Ramona live on Lake Johanna in Arden Hills, Minnesota. Their lake was froze over as all lakes do in Minnesota. It was also covered with snow as is also the case with Minnesota lakes. As he was looking out the window overlooking the lake, he had a thought. I'd like to get a four-wheeler, put a plow on it, and make a path all the way around the lake and plow a couple of ice rinks for people to use. If I did, people would get outside and go for walks and have a place for some fun activity.

As he shared this idea with his wife Ramona, her first thought was, "Does this boy just want another toy or is he serious?" She knew her good man loved the people on this lake and supported Mitch in the dream. It didn't take Mitch long to find a used 4 wheeler and head over to Tousley Motorsports to have it outfitted for the kind of plow he'd need to plow the lake.

He got it home, got it down to the lake, and began to learn the reality of the commitment. This would become a commitment to plow this 3 mile path around the lake and keep it plowed throughout the multiple snowfalls that would come again and again. Then there was the learning of the art of snowplowing on ice with a four-wheeler. That was an adventure in itself. Mitch quickly mastered that skill and before long, behold, there was a wide walking path around the lake with three ice rinks that he had plowed in different areas.

Remember the movie, Field of Dreams
–"Build it and they will come"?
Well that is exactly what happened. The community of lake home owners and people from the neighbor began to use the path around the lake and enjoy a winter on the lake like they hadn't before. And oh how grateful they were.  
20140112_153728This past Sunday a few people in charge of the homeowners association put together an invite for everyone to come out and enjoy the weather. Caribou coffee, hot chocolate, marshmallows, and other various goodies along with a mobile fire pit  were brought to the event. And oh how the neighborhood came out! There was 80-100 adults and children
– maybe more, that had come along with a number of dogs that were also able to enjoy the event. People didn't just stay for a few minutes. Many stayed for hours. People were meeting their neighbors, pointing out what house they lived in, and getting to know each other. After a few weeks of brutally cold weather, this had turned out to be a gorgeous day in the mid 30's, probably feeling almost tropical to the crowd out there. The snow was perfect for building a snow man or a fun snow-ball fight for the kids both which happened! It was a celebration of pure community such as you seldom see.  


Person after person reached out to Mitch and Ramona to thank them, not only for plowing the path, but for actually keeping it up. Mitch had become a cult-hero but Ramona was not left out. People knew that without her supporting him this wouldn't have happened. For Mitch and Ramona, it was nothing. Taking care of people is what they do for a living. As owners of Provident Home Healthcare, their company takes care of people 24 hours a day 7 days a week. And that should be a part of this story. As their close friend, I know first-hand of the long hours they put in day after day. They rarely take a complete day off. So for Mitch to make this kind of commitment for the sake of his neighbors only amplifies this act of kindness. 
I talked to many people there that day. Sharon, a middle age woman who has lived on the lake for a very long time had already walked around the lake twice that day. She spilled over with the appreciation she felt toward Mitch and Ramona for this amazing act of kindness. She said, "In all the many years I've lived on this lake, I've never seen this happen. It's brought an entire new level of appreciation for the lake. I am enjoying it this winter like I never have and I've gotten to know or speak to so many more neighbors."  "I am so thankful to Mitch." And this kind of statement was repeated to me over and over as I met and talked with the people there that day.
To me, this is a story about the commitment to an act of kindness for the sake of others that brings such profound joy. That was what I saw on the faces of people all day. Joy! This day demonstrated Romans 12:10 (NKJV) to me which says, "Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another..."

Mitch had been kindly and affectionately putting others before himself in his dedication to this path. And they all came out on this day to share their thanks and appreciation for it! Wouldn't it be wonderful if neighborhoods could be once again be filled with people who think about how to be a blessing to each other?

John 13:34 (NLT) "So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other."

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
 


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Monday, January 13, 2014

God's Gift to Help You Through Conflict

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Conflict. It seems like there is so much of it almost everywhere. It is a reminder to me of why I need all the gifts of and help from God that I can get.

You have had things come up that have made you mad or angry in your life more that just a few times. And I have also! I realize we might be different in how we work through or process conflict but I think it's fair to say that when most of us face conflicts of some kind, there can be this tendency to run the conflict over and over again in our mind. It's like we have this digital recorder playing the same picture or scenario over and over again as we try to think it through. A conflict that is not resolved God's way is a conflict recycled in the mind. 

Jesus knew we would come to those "instant replay" moments. This is why He gave instructions to forgive so many times in a day. We see this in Matthew 18:21-22, "Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, "Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother when he sins against me? Up to seven times?" Jesus answered, "I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times."

Seven times seventy is 490 times. We aren’t going to find ourselves being offended 490 times in one day. But, we might take the same offense and run it over and over in our mind that many times. Especially if the offense comes in the evening or when it's quiet and there is nothing else going on.

These "replays" that work to perpetuate feelings of unforgiveness happen to most people if not everyone. These instant replays are almost like self torture yet we still replay these painful conflicts in our mind over and over and over again. We get tired of thinking about them and try to quiet our mind and move past them and yet they can seem impossible to shut off. This is just one of many places and ways that God's gift of tongues is an awesome benefit in a most practical area of our life.

When I find myself in one of these situations, I have learned that instead of playing the recording over and over in my head, I instead begin to pray in tongues. Something that happens when you pray in tongues is that the presence of God becomes greater. It's almost as if thoughts of conflict are pushed out in the presence of God.
I recently had a conflict with someone. I did not want to handle it in the wrong way nor did I want to say something that would make it worse and create walls. It was churning in me and I knew it was time to simply turn it over to the Lord and pray about it in the spirit – “in tongues.” I could immediately feel my thoughts and body begin to calm down. I was in one of those situations where I needed God’s consul and direction for how I responded and worked through this situation. When I lay them before God and pray in the spirit, it’s like He helps me see more clearly, honestly, and humbly. Romans 8:26 (NLT) 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 (words that cannot be understood – in tongues.)

First, I wasn't replaying the scene any more; I was seeing my wrong part. The Lord showed me how I could have avoided it, what I did to contribute to it. Something else happened to me while I was praying in tongues and thinking about these things. I was feeling remorse and wanting to go back and work it out. My working it out wouldn't be blaming him. It would be telling him I was sorry and telling him that I could have handled it differently. Then just kindly instructing him what could have worked better to prevent the entire thing.

The Holy Ghost has provided me with a gift that can be like a fire extinguisher. As I pray in tongues, it's like the fire goes out and peace comes. Pride melts like an ice cube in a frying pan. Humility rises within me like a hot air balloon. Praying in tongues seems to help me better examine myself rather than defend myself. Because of this, the Lord helps me to truly resolve conflicts and easily move past unforgiveness.
Why am I telling you all this? Because in praying in the Spirit or tongues, there can be a presence of God that helps you work through these kinds of times in a very supernatural way. As Jude 1:20 NIV encourages us - "But you, dear friends, build yourselves up in your most holy faith and pray in the Holy Spirit.”

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. Tell them Pastor Tim Burt told you to ask for it. I hope it will be of great blessing to you. I am confident it will help you with questions you may have about the gift of tongues.

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt 

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Friday, January 10, 2014

The Boldness of Principal Jody McLeod

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Mark 8:38 “If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when he comes in his Father's glory with the holy angels."


Principal Jody McLeod


This is a statement that was read over the PA system at the football game at Roane County High School, Kingston, Tennessee, by school Principal, Jody McLeod.


"It has always been the custom at Roane County High School football games, to say a prayer and play the National Anthem, to honor God and Country."

Due to a recent ruling by the Supreme Court, I am told that saying a Prayer is a violation of Federal Case Law. As I understand the law at this time, I can use this public facility to approve of sexual perversion and call it "an alternate lifestyle," and if someone is offended, that's OK.

I can use it to condone sexual promiscuity, by dispensing condoms and calling it, "safe sex." If someone is offended, that's OK.

I can even use this public facility to present the merits of killing an unborn baby as a "viable means of birth control." If someone is offended, no problem...

I can designate a school day as "Earth Day" and involve students in activities to worship religiously and praise the goddess "Mother Earth" and call it "ecology."

I can use literature, videos and presentations in the classroom that depicts people with strong, traditional Christian convictions as "simple minded" and "ignorant" and call it "enlightenment."

However, if anyone uses this facility to honor GOD and to ask HIM to Bless this event with safety and good sportsmanship, then Federal Case Law is violated.

This appears to be inconsistent at best, and at worst, diabolical. Apparently, we are to be tolerant of everything and anyone, except GOD and HIS Commandments. Nevertheless, as a school principal, I frequently ask staff and students to abide by rules with which they do not necessarily agree. For me to do otherwise would be inconsistent at best, and at worst, hypocritical... I suffer from that affliction enough unintentionally. I certainly do not need to add an intentional transgression.

For this reason, I shall "Render unto Caesar that which is Caesar's," and refrain from praying at this time. "However, if you feel inspired to honor, praise and thank GOD and ask HIM, in the name of JESUS, to Bless this event, please feel free to do so. As far as I know, that's not against the law----yet."

One by one, the people in the stands bowed their heads, held hands with one another and began to pray.
They prayed in the stands. They prayed in the team huddles. They prayed at the concession stand and they prayed in the Announcer's Box!

The only place they didn't pray was in the Supreme Court of the United States of America - the Seat of "Justice" in the "one nation, under GOD."

Somehow, Kingston, Tennessee remembered what so many have forgotten. We are given the Freedom OF Religion, not the Freedom FROM Religion. Praise GOD that HIS remnant remains!

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt 

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Wednesday, January 08, 2014

The Bottom Line!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Have you ever worked with an employee whom you are afraid to talk to or ask a question because you know if you do, the answer will be fifteen minutes long before they even take their first breath. Some people just don’t know how to make a long story short. Some just don’t know how to get to “the bottom line.” “The bottom line” has definitely become a phrase of this decade. It’s the phrase of determination or desperation to cut to the chase or to get to the point. In this fast pace and busy world, people often want to get to the bottom line. There is a time and place for both. the entire story with details included, and the bottom line. It’s good when people can figure out the right time for each.

The Bible has a “bottom line” set of verses in the book of Ecclesiastes. It reads like this:  “A wise teacher's words spur students to action and emphasize important truths. The collected sayings of the wise are like guidance from a shepherd. But, my child, be warned: There is no end of books written to hold opinions ready to be expressed. Studying them can go on forever and become very exhausting! Here is my final conclusion: (THE BOTTOM LINE) Fear God and obey His commands, for this is the duty of every person. God will judge us for everything we do, including every secret thing, whether good or bad.” Eccles. 12:11-14 (NLT)

The bottom line is to “Fear (reverence) God and obey His commands.” We’ve been told that this is our duty and our bottom line. We have been told that one day, everything we do – in secret or in public will be measured and judged by God good or bad.

Our sins our forgiven and washed away by the blood of Jesus. They won’t condemn us. But everything we do in this life will be measured in terms of right heart motivation and reward at the believer’s judgment – the judgment seat of Christ. That is where all we do will be judged. We see this in 1 Cor. 3:11-15 (NLT) “For no one can lay any other foundation than the one we already have—Jesus Christ. Now anyone who builds on that foundation may use gold, silver, jewels, wood, hay, or straw. But there is going to come a time of testing at the judgment day to see what kind of work each builder has done. Everyone's work will be put through the fire to see whether or not it keeps its value. If the work survives the fire, that builder will receive a reward. But if the work is burned up, the builder will suffer great loss. The builders themselves will be saved, but like someone escaping through a wall of flames.”

When we are united with Jesus, we won’t feel fear or condemnation. We’ll experience joy unspeakable. But our lives (not the sin – but the good we’ve done) will be judged and rewarded and those rewards will carry into our eternity with the Lord. How will that work out? We don’t know but it’s important to God and His plan or He would not have revealed it to us. We are told that God is a “Rewarder of those that diligently seek Him.” (That includes serving Him and His plans and purposes.)

So the bottom line is fear or reverence God and obey His ways! This is our duty. As a Christian, do you think you are doing that? Do you think you are reverencing the Lord and obeying His ways? In Colossians Chapter 3, the Apostle Paul had given us the bottom line for living a moral and godly life. These guidelines direct our thinking and the Holy Spirit strengthens us as we meditate and pray for God's help so that we won't forfeit our rewards in Heaven.

Col. 3:5-16 (NLT) “So put to death the sinful, earthly things lurking within you. Have nothing to do with sexual sin, impurity, lust, and shameful desires. Don't be greedy for the good things of this life, for that is idolatry. God's terrible anger will come upon those who do such things. You used to do them when your life was still part of this world. But now is the time to get rid of anger, rage, malicious behavior, slander, and dirty language. Don't lie to each other, for you have stripped off your old evil nature and all its wicked deeds. 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. In this new life, it doesn't matter if you are a Jew or a Gentile, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbaric, uncivilized, slave, or free. Christ is all that matters, and He lives in all of us.  Since God chose you to be the holy people whom He loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. You must make allowance for each other's faults and forgive the person who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. And the most important piece of clothing you must wear is love. Love is what binds us all together in perfect harmony. And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are all called to live in peace. And always be thankful. Let the words of Christ, in all their richness, live in your hearts and make you wise. Use His words to teach and counsel each other.”



The enemy of your soul and this lost world would like to dominate you and create a peer pressure of  "doing your own thing" which will take you astray and trash your life. Reverencing God is about doing His thing!  The bottom line is, reverence God and embrace His Word knowing that it will protect you, lead you to blessing, and help you build true Heavenly rewards that will await you.  I know that you, like me, wish we understood what those rewards are but we don't. But let this closing verse bring home how amazing they must be!

1 Corinthians 2:9 (NKJV) "Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, Nor have entered into the heart of man The things which God has prepared for those who love Him."





In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
 



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Tim here:






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Tuesday, January 07, 2014

You Do Not Want This in Your Life!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


In Matthew 21:28-31, Jesus told this story. “…A man with two sons told the older boy, ‘Son, go out and work in the vineyard today.’ The son answered, ‘No, I won’t go,’ but later he regretted what he said and changed his mind and went anyway. Then the father told the other son, ‘You go,’ and he said, ‘Yes, sir, I will.’ But he didn’t go. Which of the two was obeying his father?” They replied, “The first, of course.” Then Jesus explained his meaning: “I assure you, corrupt tax collectors and prostitutes will get into the Kingdom of God before you do.” 

In this story, it was easy for anyone that heard it to figure out which of the two sons was obeying his father. It was not the one that offered the most appropriate lip service, but instead the one that “did” the right thing. Our actions speak louder than words. Our rightly motivated actions prompted by love and obedience to Jesus are “the bottom line!”



Life is filled with people that are lazy. Signs within every area of a lazy person’s life betrays what they hope is a secret. Most every area of their life is void of disciplines. Their homes are typically a chaotic mess. Their cars are usually trashed. Their relationships lack any substance. And their work ethic is usually despised by those around them. There is another level of laziness even worse than this. That is the person that expects the world – the government, organizations, and whoever is around them, to take care of them. They don’t give. They only take. (In saying this, I exclude all legitimate people who are handicapped and need legitimate support and help. They are NOT who I am talking about.)



Being lazy is a curse. The book of Proverbs gives us insight to what the lazy person’s life will be like. Proverbs 10:4 tells us “Lazy people are soon poor while diligent workers experience increase.” Proverbs 10:26 tells us “Lazy people are a pain to their employer. They are like smoke in the eyes or vinegar that sets the teeth on edge.” Proverbs 12:24 says, “Work hard and become a leader; be lazy and become a slave.” Proverbs 12:27 reveals the procrastination of the lazy saying, “Lazy people don’t even cook the game they catch, but the diligent make use of everything they find.” Proverbs 13:4 says, “Lazy people want much but get little, but those who work hard will prosper and be satisfied.” Proverbs 18:9 reveals that lazy people can ultimately become dangerous to us. “A lazy person is as bad as someone who destroys things. “ The lazy person is the undisciplined person who makes endless excuses (and is blind to their doing so.) Proverbs 22:13 “The lazy person is full of excuses, saying, “If I go outside, I might meet a lion in the street and be killed!” At the end of the day, the lazy person’s life becomes a curse. Proverbs 6:6 says, “Take a lesson from the ants, you lazybones. Learn from their ways and be wise!” 
We will experience much greater success in life if we understand that consistent diligent effort builds godly character and lead to more frequent successful experiences. Faithful diligent people who work at bringing excellence to all they put their hand to are the opposite of every definition of lazy.
How does a lazy person transition to diligence? It isn’t because they one day decide “I’m not going to be lazy anymore.” Usually there is a wake-up call of some painful experience that opens their eyes to the trouble their lazy ways have reaped. That in turn triggers the revelation of needing to be more diligent. Most anyone in desperation will cry out to God. God in His goodness will respond and help if they are serious. God by His grace will lead the sincere person down a new path of transformation based on the Bible – the Word of God. The Lord will draw that person into a series of commitments. He’ll teach them and help strengthen them to override the whiny attitudes and selfishness of their own flesh. 2 Corinthians 9:8 (NIV) says "And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work."  God's grace is the supernatural help that will be available in "all things at all times" to anyone who wants to change!   
Like the man in Jesus’ parable, they might start out saying, “No,” but then God will speak to their heart and they will change and become a doer – not just a talker!

This is how laziness is supernaturally defeated by the power of God at work in a person. The blessing of it spills over to all parts of that person’s life and over time, and they are transformed from being lazy to becoming diligent for the Lord. 


Proverbs 21:5 says,” Good planning and hard work lead to prosperity, but hasty shortcuts lead to poverty.” The life of the diligent is blessed. The life of the lazy is cursed. God made you to be the diligent! 
In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt



Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2014 All rights reserved

http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/