About Tim Burt

Friday, May 30, 2014

Just for Fun: " Not Guilty???"

Fresh Manna 
by Pastor Tim Burt

Numbers 32:23 "...you may be sure that your sin will find you out."

"NO, I HAVEN'T SEEN YOUR LIPSTICK!" 

"Why would you even ask me that? I am so insulted! Every time something goes missing around here, everyone looks at me!"


   

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, May 23, 2014

How God Sees you!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Most of us look at ourselves in a mirror daily. We see what we see. You see yourself through your eyes and from perspective. Have you ever thought about how God sees you? Actually that thought scares too many people because they feel that in God's eyes, they don't measure up or they are in big trouble. They don't want to think about how God sees them.

As a Christian, it's important to learn not to look at yourself through your own eyes, but instead see yourself as God sees you. Do you know that this is the true key to supernatural change and what ignites the power to conquer your lame excuses for not obeying God in your life?

If you know the story of Moses, you know that the beginning years of his life were anything but normal. He was raised in the cross hairs of two cultures – Hebrew and Egyptian. They were two distinctly different religious and social cultures. It was easy for him to become confused over who he was in life and how he was supposed to walk his life out. He had to come to the place of discovery – deciding for himself what he believed and how he wanted to walk out his life.

At the time he finally mustered up the courage to choose the side of his Hebrew heritage and do something for God’s people, he failed in the worst way. He committed murder. Not on purpose. He was trying to protect a Hebrew slave from being beaten but through his efforts, he accidentally killed the Egyptian taskmaster. He panicked and fled giving up all his hopes and dreams for a great many years. That is until one day God called upon Moses to remind him of why He put him on this earth and to guide him toward his destiny. God asked Moses to step out in faith and do something for Him. Let’s read about it and as we do, begin to see the battle of excuses warring with the voice of God telling Moses who he was and who he could be with God working in and through him.

Exodus 3:9, “Come now, therefore, and I will send you to Pharaoh that you may bring My people, the children of Israel, out of Egypt." 

We see Moses’ first excuse – those words that the devil teaches us all to parrot and build into our thinking – “Who do you think you are?”

Verse 11 – “But Moses said to God, "Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh, and that I should bring the children of Israel out of Egypt?"

Moses struggled with his identity. He didn’t feel worthy or prepared and was sure there were others beside himself who were much more qualified. He was probably thinking – “God you’ve got to be kidding! I am absolutely incompetent to do this!” Moses was seeing himself through his own eyes and in his own ability rather than listening to God’s voice telling him that He would be with him to help him at every step. Moses, not unlike many of us, was afraid of failure. Most fears of failure in life are tied to the fear of the unknown, the scars of past failures, and of public opinion – What are others going to think? God answered Moses giving him a rod and the promise of signs and wonders to validate God was with him – the promise of a miraculous commissioning. Moses was still weak-kneed.
Look at God’s response. V12, “I will certainly be with you. And this shall be a sign to you that I have sent you: When you have brought the people out of Egypt, you shall serve God on this mountain." What could inspire more confidence in anyone than a commission and promise from God that He will back you and be with you!”

Then Moses offered his second excuse. Verse 13 – “Then Moses said to God, "Indeed, when I come to the children of Israel and say to them, "The God of your fathers has sent me to you,' and they say to me, "What is His name? What shall I say to them?" God told him what to say.

Then Moses had his third excuse. Exodus 4:1 – “Then Moses answered and said, But suppose they will not believe me or listen to my voice; suppose they say, "The LORD has not appeared to you."' 

God was so patient with Moses. He listened to his excuses and worked through each one with him. If you’re a dad and your child is telling you his excuses for being afraid to step out and try something,  are you as patient to help him? Are you as willing to help him? Part of who he becomes is connected to your support and encouragement – you being his helper, his friend, and his supporter.

God desired to use Moses in spite of his extensive flaws and contradictions. God addressed his excuses and objections with great detail, assurance and power. What did Moses do? Offer more excuses.

Number Four Excuse: "I’ve never been eloquent – I’m just not a good speaker." God helped him through that.

Then Excuse Five: "I just can't do it" – the one most people pull out of the bag before they walk away from God. Exodus 4:13 “But Moses again pleaded, "Lord, please! Send someone else."

All of the great leaders in the Bible outside of Jesus Christ were flawed, fearful of doing what God asked them to do, and tempted to decline with excuses. It’s easier to make excuses about our inadequacies than it is to take on a challenge at God’s request. We’re plagued by self-doubt. We say we don’t have the right skills for the job, and like Moses we may worry that people, even our families, won’t buy into our leadership – after all, Jesus’ own brothers and sisters didn't!

God discerned the traits of leadership in Moses regardless of all shortcomings.  God ended up bringing Moses brother Aaron in to help with the job assignment. That was God's second best. Time and again He supported and reassured Moses by addressing his fears and objections and by promising to be with him giving him the tools he needed to succeed. God choose to cultivate and develop leadership in Moses which would eventually inspire the future leaders of Israel. He would become one who modeled the leadership of trusting God more than himself. This is where excuses are defeated  – when one knows who He is in God, not in himself. This is where men become godly men and women become godly women. This is where families become a powerful light. This is where churches become centers of influence changing cities, states, and nations.

When God is leading you to do even small things that you are afraid to do, remember Moses being paralyzed with fear and how God helped him and taught him the answer to the question, “Who am I?” God is no respecter of persons and is waiting to help answer that question for you! The fulfillment of your destiny begins with one step of obedience to God at a time.

2 Timothy 1:7 (NKJV) "For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind."

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/

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

God's Promises Come by Knowing!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


One Sunday I met a young woman who introduced herself to me in our Visitor’s Center after our service. Her name was Angela and she had never been to any church in her entire life. This was her very first time. I told her that I didn't even know what that felt like since I had been going to church the majority of my life. I asked her what it was like. She had difficulty explaining what she felt. She was trying to find the words to tell me that she could feel something special and that she was very excited to come back. She had tears of joy running down her face.

I asked her if she understood who Jesus was and what He did for her. She knew who He was but had not made the connection of what He had done for her. I asked her if she knew what would happen if she were to die that day? She didn't really know. She hoped she would go to Heaven. I asked her how hold she was. She told me she was 23. I asked her, Do you know you’re 23 or do you hope you’re 23?  She gave me a strange look and said, I know I am 23!  I asked her what city she lived in. She told me. I asked her, Do you hope you live in that city or do you know you do?  Wondering where this was leading, she again said, I know I live there. I asked her name again. She told me. I asked, Do you know your name is Angela or do you hope it is? She said, I know it is.

I asked Angela, Do you see the difference between knowing and hoping? You don’t hope your age. You know it. You don’t hope your address, you know it. You don’t hope you name, you know it. There is a huge difference between hoping and knowing.  I then told her, Jesus didn't come to be born in this earth, set aside His deity, and live a rejected life to be falsely accused, beaten, tortured, crucified, and go into Hell so that you would HOPE you go to Heaven. He did this so you could KNOW you are going to Heaven.

I opened a Bible and took her to 1 John 5:13 and read her this verse: “These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may KNOW that you have eternal life…” I told her, God inspired these written words so that you would KNOW, not HOPE, you have eternal life. Jesus paid the price for your sins and He offers to wash them away and make you His child cleansed from all sin and prepared for Heaven. Wouldn't you rather know that than hope that? She did want to know that. I asked her if I could lead her in a prayer of salvation—accepting Jesus as Her personal Savior. Then she would know! She wanted to and together we prayed. Tears flowed down her face as Renee, my wife, and I held her hands and led her in a prayer.

I gave her a Bible and told her I would help her get connected in relationships that would help her grow in the Lord. She was beaming so bright she could have been mistaken for a lighthouse.

Today, I want to leave you with this thought: Faith is in the knowing, not hoping! Hope will draw our heart and emotions to the throne room of God’s grace. It is important for that reason. But, hope is not knowing. Faith believes in God's promises to us knowing that they still reach into each of our lives today!  Faith is knowing and knowing in faith will usher God's promises into your life.

Matthew 22:29 Jesus replied, "You are in error because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God.

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, May 20, 2014

Speak Blessing, Speak Words of Life

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


James 3:8-11 instructs us of a profound truth. "… no man can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. With the tongue we prAise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in God's likeness. Out of the same mouth comes praise and cursing. My brothers, this should not be. Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring?"

You know how it is. You've thought about it a million times. You know you shouldn't use your tongue to tear down or speak against others. Most everyone wrestles with this. If we have a conscience, then we will often find ourselves repentant over what this uncontrollable little creature has just released from our mouth. We will also find that despite the repentance, victory in getting it to obey comes way too slow. We find ourselves blessing some, saying kind things only to later spew inappropriate things to others, much to the regret of our conscience. We find out that the Word of God is true. "...No man can tame the tongue."


James 3:5-6 (NIV) says, “…the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole person, sets the whole course of his life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell." "...No man can tame the tongue."

If this is true, then what do we do? Do we just concede and let our mouth vomit words we regret? No, the first step is to recognize this truth and come to grips with it. You can't fix your tongue yourself. God is not lying when He says "...NO MAN can tame the tongue." That includes you and I. At the same time we have to realize that God is not setting us up to fail. The answer in taming the tongue is recognizing that only with the help of the Holy Spirit can you restrain the tongue and your thought-life feeding that little creature.

Pray that God give you a revelation of the truth in Proverbs 18:21. "The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit." You will know when God has given you this revelation. A revelation of this verse will create the desire from within for the need to curb your words. By that I mean that you will understand that your tongue can be used by God to be one of the greatest instruments of blessing to you, to others, and to benefit your life, or, it will be an instrument of poison that will hurt - even produce destruction in your life and the life of others
in some cases quickly and in other cases over a period of time.

Ask the Holy Spirit to help you hear the destructive phrases you say without thinking such as, He is never going to change! Or, I'm stuck with this situation and there is nothing I can do about it. Or, Nothing ever goes my way. Or, I am never going to find the right person for me 
—all the good ones are taken.  Make no mistake in understanding this. Your mouth is the barometer of what is in your heart! The words that spill out expose your heart and thinking and also reveal where your faith is at.
Don’t destroy your life and don’t destroy the lives of others with your words! Proverbs 12:18 says, “Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.” Pray and ask the Holy Spirit to help you understand the power of Words. Then listen to what you say. Become dependent upon the Lord's help for what it takes to change the words you speak. Let Him help you begin to speak words that bring life, encouragement, and healing. You can't control your tongue but the Lord can when you yield it to Him. And when you do, you’ll begin to succeed and experience an entire new area of the God-life that He has for you—a life that is blessed and produces blessing! 

Eph 4:29 "Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may impart grace to those who listen."

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, May 16, 2014

When A Christian is Not Right With God

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


If you are anything like me, you may find yourself struggling for adequate words of thanksgiving to the Lord for His love, mercy, and forgiveness. The Lord's forgiveness and willingness and desire to give us a fresh start is amazing! His love transcends our stupidity and He keeps reaching out to love us!

We all mess up at times - hopefully less and less as we grow older and learn from the Lord. What do we do when we mess up our lives from sinful behavior, bad attitudes, or from anger and it’s consequences? To the non-Christian, the answer will be – start at the beginning. Ask Jesus to be Lord of your life, to forgive your sins, and to fill you with His Holy Spirit. Then go find a Bible teaching church, read your Bible, and make some Christian friends. That’s a good start.

To the Christian, learn what godly sorrow is! 2 Cor 7:10 says, "Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death." The words "repentance that leads to salvation" comes from the Greek word soteria which conveys the meaning of being rescued and bringing restoration, health and wholeness from a troubled situation. The words "worldly sorrow brings death" are conveying the pain felt not from sorrow of the action, but from the trouble it's caused. That's worldly sorrow and it conveys this as unrepented sorrow likely to be repeated again and again, and leading to further problems and eventually spiritual death.

My experience and observation from ministry over the years coupled with what God's Word (the final authority on anything!) has taught me is that there are a number of Christians that when they mess up, only regret their trouble - not their sin! For example, I've known men and women that have had an affair. They've been caught but their sorrow is over the problems it's causing them. They weren't really sorry about violating God’s Word, or the people they hurt. In some cases, they actually thought about staying with the person they'd gotten into an affair with, without regard what God’s word says about it, or the pain caused to their mate, their children, or other family members. Just remember that the word Christian can be a tag a person can call oneself, but it doesn't necessarily hold water with God. It's not up to me to judge the person. God is their judge. But, the Lord does say this in 1 John 2:3-4, “We know that we have come to know Him if we obey His commands. The man who says, "I know Him," but does not do what He commands is a liar, and the truth is not in Him." This verse helps us understand that there has to be corresponding actions to our faith.

If a person continuously sins without godly sorrow - without regard for God’s word or for the hurt and pain they cause others – the enemy of his soul will try to draw him into a darker and darker place. Some become so blinded that they lose all regard for God’s word and what’s right. They’ve traded them for pleasures and lusts of his flesh. God does not control or manipulate us. He works to lead us to Himself by influencing our spirit to draw near to and yield to His love and influence. If we refuse, He allows us to make that choice, even when it could take us to darkness and destruction and eventually outside of a relationship with Him. Romans 1:24 says, "Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonor their own bodies between themselves."

The question from Christians who want to help their friends in this state comes up: "For this Christian that appears to have no godly sorrow, should I reach out to them?" You can try to speak to them but their heart may be hard and they may not listen. It takes time to pray for the hardness of their heart. Their spirit has been blinded by sin and they CANNOT see the spiritual truths and implications that you see! God compares it to rock hard or fallow ground. Rain just rolls off this kind of ground. Unless the ground becomes saturated with rain it will not soften. Likewise a hard heart unless saturated with consistent and constant prayer will remain hard. Hosea 10:12 says, "... break up your fallow ground: for it is time to seek the LORD, till He comes and rains righteousness upon you." For this person, it would take sacrificial prayer!

"Is it right to pray for this kind of a person?" It is right hearted to pray for someone who has gone astray and messed up. 2 Timothy 2:24-26 says “The Lord's servants must not quarrel but must be kind to everyone. They must be able to teach effectively and be patient with difficult people. They should gently teach those who oppose the truth. Perhaps God will change those people's hearts, and they will believe the truth. Then they will come to their senses and escape from the Devil's trap. For they have been held captive by him to do whatever he wants.” As the Apostle Paul did, it’s good to pray for the eyes of their heart to be opened. "I Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers; that…the eyes of your understanding being enlightened…" Ephesians 1:16-18

When a person shows no godly sorrow, it is sometimes best to love and pray for them from a distance. Your heartfelt prayer should and will create expectation and hope for their change, but despite your prayers, they have free will to choose - even wrongly. When they don't change, it can be disappointing. If you just go forward with your life and pray for them with distance in the relationship, it can help protect you from that disappointment and actually help you stay in faith in your prayers. You’ve heard stories about praying mothers… I want you to know there are just as many praying fathers! Don’t judge those that have gotten off course. Jesus loves them and died for them. Don’t preach condemnation to them. If you say anything, remind them only of Jesus’ love. They already know the condemnation part. That is what they are running from. Pray for them and be ready to be just like the prodigal father waiting to love them when the day comes that they return to the Lord.

And if this isn’t about someone else, but about you, get on your knees and tell the Lord how sorry you are and ask Him to strengthen you to do what is right. He’ll answer and help you in many ways. Real sorrow cares and wants to do what’s right!

Romans 6:16 (NLT) "Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? You can be a slave to sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living."

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, May 09, 2014

Coffee Talk: Tim Burt Gets Real About Leadership

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Last year I was interview by Suzanne Stock for her website, Spoonfuls of Grace. I've meant to post that interview but hadn't yet. She interviewed me about Leadership and I hope it is a blessing to you!  Thank you, Pastor Tim


Coffee Talk: Tim Burt Gets Real About Leadership

Today’s Scripture: Then, because so many people were coming and going that they did not even have a chance to eat, he said to them, “Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.” Mark 6:31 (NIV)

Our local Starbucks has a corner I often hide in when I’m sitting down to talk one-on-one with someone. There’s something about being focused on the person in front of you and stilling your mind as much as possible while you concentrate on what they’re saying that lends itself to much better conversation. Imagine, if you will, sitting down with me across from someone whose life has been full of amazing successes and leadership opportunities. What would you ask them? What would you talk to them about?

Today’s guest is Tim Burt. That name may mean nothing to you initially, but to me he’s a hero. He’s the guy that invented the first fold-down commercial infant changing table now used worldwide in public restrooms. (I can hear all the parents out there yelling a big THANK YOU with me!)

Perhaps you have heard of Tim. He’s an Associate Pastor at Living Word Christian Center in Minnesota, which is a church with over 10,000 members. He’s also one of Minnesota’s top Tweeters, one of the top 55 blogging pastors whose blog has been read in over 187 countries, and a former employee of Northwest Airlines. Tim and his wife, Renee, created a small group ministry when LWCC only had 800 members. Today, Tim’s responsibilities include managing the over 200 small groups. He also oversees the Visitor and Member Relations Department, Leadership and Volunteer Development, and the Pastoral Care Department. In his spare time, Pastor Tim serves as the Minnesota State Director of Christians United for Israel. His blog, Fresh Manna, is one I pay attention to. Now that you know who you’re getting ready to hear from, let’s dive in!

Thank you so much for taking the time out of your busy schedule to invest in those who follow my blog, Tim. I look forward to hearing your perspective. Let’s start off by talking about balance, which is a big issue for many leaders out there. How do you balance your leadership responsibilities with a healthy routine in other parts of your life? 

I am a leader at all times no matter where I am at. Leadership is something that is in you that you walk out every minute of your day. It is not an on/off light switch because, if it were that, then much of your leadership is pretense. If you think about Jesus, He was who He was at all times.  Living this way makes it easy because it’s who you are, not something you act out. Being a leader does not get in the way of laughing, enjoying time off, spending time with your wife and children, or anything else. It just means you walk prudently, with discernment, and with a servant’s heart in any situation.

I appreciate your perspective, Tim! It’s important to be genuine as a leader, and, you’re right, leadership is not something we should turn on and off. What is your favorite way to unwind in the midst of your schedule?

My wife and I have purposed from the beginning of our marriage to create a date every week. Sometimes that is as simple as a breakfast or coffee at a coffee-house. Sometimes it’s more. We get away, get completely caught up in the details of each other’s life, and then we solve all the problems of the world. Of course this is an exaggeration… but it feels like that, and it has been wonderfully therapeutic for us. We also try to pray together most every day about the situations in our life, in the lives of others, and in our jobs. This gives us great confidence that God is helping us in every situation. I also am a gardener (award-winning) and I was a marathon runner for many years.

I love that you are focused on date nights every week and praying together with your wife. It’s important to maintain a solid relationship with the person you’re walking through life with. Getting into nature and running are definitely two good ways to de-stress also. Let’s talk about faith and leadership for a minute. What is the hardest aspect of being a Christian leader?

Speaking in regards to Christian leaders in the secular workplace, I think the hardest aspect of being a Christian leader is living life by a higher standard–the standard of God’s word–while the rest of the world does not hold themselves to that standard. As Christian leaders, we are called to be a light and to model Christ-like behavior and attitude, or those watching us cry “foul….” That means emotional stability, maturity in handling conflict, carefully watching the words we choose and speak, offering forgiveness and grace, and walking in integrity are all going to be a part of our life. The benefit is that holding our-self to this kind of standard builds godly character in us and helps us mature in our leadership. Promotion and blessing will follow those that take their Christ-like leadership seriously.

What kind of response to your leadership from those you influence as a Christian do you find encouraging? Is there anything that’s ever discouraging to you in Christian leadership?

I am constantly encouraged by those I influence through my leadership. Rarely does a day go by that I do not receive some form of communication of appreciation for how my leadership and ministry helps their life. I keep them in a folder to remember when I am busy beating myself up over something or losing sight of my effectiveness.

The discouraging part would be that not everyone that you lead is in good shape, highly functional, or ready to be led. Sometimes people misinterpret your purpose or motives as they did Jesus. People can be mean when they want to and, when they let you have it, primarily born out of problems in their own life, it can hurt. But, the longer you are in ministry, the more grace there hopefully is to understand them, not take it personally, continue to love them, and try to help them by not reacting with anything other than love.

I’m so glad you mentioned having a grace perspective as a leader! I’m sure you have seen many benefits from maintaining that focus. What is one of the most rewarding moments you have experienced?

My wife and I walk in a leadership role influencing large numbers of people continuously. We have sacrificed a great deal of our life toward the service of others. And yet, in all that we’ve given, we've most always received a steady stream of warm, kind, thankful feedback that continuously encourages and motivates us to do more. I have had many experiences that have been rewarding, but I do remember a young businessman that I was mentoring a little here and a little there for years. He truly matured into a fine businessman that became very successful. One day he showed up at the door of my house asking if he could share a few minutes with me. He then told me how much I had helped him in His life and how God had used me to help shape who he had become. He then gave me a gift– a very precious and costly gift of appreciation. This wasn't about the gift, but his heart in this action. Very few people back their words up the way he did. That made this gift the most precious gift I've ever received– again, not because of the value, but because of his heart in this gift.

I’m glad you have been encouraged forward in leadership in every step of your journey, Tim! I know there are many who have benefited from your perseverance. It is my prayer God continues to encourage you and your wife as you give of yourselves and your time for the sake of others. Thank you so much for joining me today, and God bless you.  Suzanne Stock

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/