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/

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Godly Restraint Leads to God’s Blessings

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


One day when my daughter Stephanie was about three years old and having a bad day, she lay down on the kitchen floor and threw the tantrum of all tantrums. She quickly discovered that was not allowed. She never did it again. Parents want their children to grow up obedient, well-adjusted, and prepared to succeed in this world. Good parents realize that this doesn't happen in a vacuum. God’s word teaches us that without boundaries—His guidelines and ways, human life would end up in chaos. That is the meaning of Prov 29:18: "Where there is no revelation, the people cast off restraint; but blessed is he who keeps the law." The meaning the original Hebrew implies is this: "Where there is no revelation or understanding of God's authority, the people are exposed, naked, without a covering of protection and consequently they wander around in chaos. But he that learns of and keeps God's ways is one that is happy and has God’s hedge of protection around him." This verse is in the central verse of instructional verses focusing on discipline and boundaries for children and adults alike.

God’s word teaches us of the need for and value of restraints and boundaries. It is not about do's and don’ts. Boundaries are motivated by God’s parental heart of love and desire to protect us. Of course this love extends to each and every one of us. God's boundaries and instruction for living are designed to keep us from hurting each other and from others hurting us. God teaching us boundaries and the need for restraint is His love spilling over to us. Boundaries are not confining but, to the contrary, liberating. They are designed to point us to that which brings blessing and to steer us away from that which could lead to a life of hurt, pain, destruction and death. Little Johnny and Sally’s parents tell them not to ride their scooters out into the street. Why? Because they want to take away their fun? No, because they want to protect them from harm.

If we love our children we lay these boundaries down for them, but then we also model them so they can imitate us over the progression of their lives. If you don’t want your children to scream, don’t you be a screaming parent—don't tolerate it from yourself or them! If we don’t love them, we let them do whatever they want to. But, that leads them to become unruly and uncontrollable children that have little to no respect for anyone. They then grow up to hate any form of restraint or boundaries while belligerently spewing, You can’t tell me what to do.  I’ll do whatever I please! They head straight toward life-long destructive behaviors. That is why Prov 13:24 says that part of love is discipline. “He who spares the rod (does not follow through with correction that results in a change of behavior) hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him. If we don’t follow through in instructing our children in the knowledge and instruction of God’s Word and establishing boundaries with consistent discipline, then we contribute to their destruction. Prov 13:24 says, “Discipline your son, for in that there is hope; do not be a willing party to his death.” (If you need to learn how, go to YouTube and watch SuperNanny.)

Parents need to know that they have only a few years to set the course for just how their little Johnny or Susie is going to respond to their authority and other authority figures for the rest of their lives. Our children had learned boundaries, received correction and discipline, and learned to treat people with respect. This was mostly established by the time they were five years old. It minimized bad behavior going forward and made raising our children an absolute joy! They have grown into adults and are now great people. We love them and they love us. Discipline applied consistently and appropriately is one real proof of your love. If this is done correctly it will help fill your life with joy. If left undone it will fill your life with grief. Proverbs 19:18 says: Discipline your children while there is hope. If you don't, you will ruin their lives. Make the effort to get this part right and you will be doing yourself a favor that will reward you for the rest of your life. It’s all about true love! Oh, and if you thought this post was just about children, it's not! Don't forget about yourself. God's Word is what is to chastise you! Receive it and respond to it or you will become unruly!

Proverbs 13:24 (NLT) If you refuse to discipline your children, it proves you don't love them; if you love your children, you will be prompt to discipline them.

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/

Monday, May 19, 2014

Increasing Your Ability to do Great Things

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


You've heard the saying, “If you want something done, give it to a busy person.” This statement often plays out to be true. Studies have shown that when a person has little going on in their life—little responsibility and little obligation, they accomplish little. Research also shows that when you give more responsibility to disciplined and responsible people, they learn to take on and manage more—stretching their capacity to do more and do so effectively.

Isaiah 54:2-3 (NIV) "Enlarge the place of your tent, stretch your tent curtains wide, do not hold back; lengthen your cords, strengthen your stakes.  For you will spread out to the right and to the left; your descendants will dispossess nations and settle in their desolate cities." 


This verse is not just about tents or home building. It's about trusting in God's grace and help to do more—to increase your ability and capacity to get more done.

God desires to bring increase into our life but people who can get things done—which is a good thing—often fall into pride over their own ability to get things done. Their success and efforts becomes their identity. Jeremiah 9:23-24 says, “This is what the Lord says: "Let not the wise man gloat in his wisdom, or the mighty man in his might, or the rich man in his riches. Let them boast in this alone: that they truly know me and understand that I am the Lord who is just and righteous, whose love is unfailing, and that I delight in these things. I, the Lord, have spoken!"

God wants our identity and confidence in getting things done to be in Him and His ability working through us, not pridefully in our own ability. He wants us to stretch ourselves by trusting and leaning on Him to do more and take on more. It will be a stretch! Ask any parent that's just had another child. Suddenly that family has stretched and increased. There's another person to take care. When we lean on God and stretch, we find that God will help and bless us.  But He also wants us to understand that it’s His grace that will help us accomplish more and for His purposes, not so we can be seen as great.

Some people have become unnecessarily dependent on the benevolence of government, churches, organizations, and more. Benevolence is supposed to be a type of grace to temporarily help people in tough situations—temporary being the key word. But people get trapped in them because they eventually strip people of their dignity and confidence to take care of themselves. God gives each of us the capacity to stand on our own two feet and accomplish not only providing for our self but the ability to do great things!

You may not know this, but when you set your heart and trust in God, you can do far more than you ever imagined. You can stretch your self and your abilities. You may have spoken the words I don’t know what to do and I can’t do this a thousand times before. In past efforts, you may have been one to easily give up and quit. But, when you learn to lean on God and stretch yourself to do things you've never done before asking Him for His help, you will experience His grace and power to help you. If your attitude is, God, I know by your grace and with your help, I can do all things as you strengthen me and give me your wisdom, then you will be able to do more than you could ever have imagined—more than you ever dreamed possible. God will stretch the borders of who you are and your life and help you to increase. Have an I can't attitude and attempt to do little and you will get little accomplished. You will become lazier and more inept.  Look to God and attempt to do more trusting in His grace and power to help you and you will pleasantly learn what you can do in His ability! He will help you manage your work, your family, and all your life in His balance—all while He increases you!

Let me close by adding the most important part of this secret revealed by God about stretching yourself. Prayer is the key to it all. It is the number one thing. Heart-felt time with God through His Word and prayer will fuel you and your faith giving you the courage to stretch yourself. It’s where your trust in Him will be refreshed. The promises of God will catapult you again and again. Jesus modeled that. He said He did “...nothing but what the Father told Him.” He saw that spending time in prayer with His Father was where the grace, the direction, and the faith came from directed that His daily steps. So it should be for us. That is where the words  "For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength" (Philippians 4:13 (NLT) become true in our life.

Motivational speeches peak us for about an hour. God's Word and grace help us become those whom people can depend on and trust to give us more. That's increase!

Luke 12:48 (NLT) “…Much is required from those to whom much is given, and much more is required from those to whom much more is given.”

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/

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

The Wisdom of Godly Experience

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


The wisdom of experience does give insight and perspective that often proves to be valuable to life. This is especially true when that wisdom of experience and insight comes from a Christian who knows the Lord and has lived their life learning of and walking out God’s Word. We see David commenting from his experience in 1 Kings 1:29. “…As surely as the LORD lives, who has delivered me out of every trouble…”

When you read about King David and his life, you can’t help but think of great faith and adventure. He passionately loved and learned of God from the time he was a boy. He studied what was taught about God by those that preceded him. He learned what Moses had learned and said, “O Lord GOD, You have begun to show your servant Your greatness and Your mighty hand, for what god is there in heaven or on earth who can do anything like Your works and Your mighty deeds?” (Deu 3:24) David learned this and believed it.imagesConsequently he walked out things that God had led him to do with great faith. He believed that God would always be there to instruct, guide, and bless him in that which he put his hand to for the Lord.

People that passionately love God like David did often become people who accomplish great and mighty things in the earth. 2 Chr 16:9 says, “For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself mighty on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him.” These things may be invisible to those that don’t know about or care for God, but God notices and does not forget as Heb 6:10 verifies; “God is not unjust; He will not forget your work and the love you have shown Him as you have helped His people and continue to help them.”

David wanted to accomplish much for the Lord and he did yet, even at the end of his life, Satan still opposed him trying to stir up trouble. He was stirring up trouble by trying to put someone on the throne of Israel besides David’s son Solomon. David didn’t panic. Out of the abundance of his heart, these words spilled forth, “As surely as the LORD lives, who has delivered me out of every trouble…” What powerful and faith filled words those are to spill forth from the mouth of someone. Those are the words of someone who has experienced God’s help first hand. David spoke these words by faith before He knew the Lord from a lifetime of experiencing the God’s faithfulness personally. He had his entire life to look back on and see how God had delivered him from trouble time and time again. He could look back on his life and say, “The salvation of the righteous comes from the LORD; He is their stronghold in time of trouble. The LORD helps them and delivers them; He delivers them from the wicked and saves them, because they take refuge in Him.” (Psa 37:39-40) He would also say “I have been young, and now am old; yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, nor His descendants begging bread.” (Psa 37:25 )

I believe To-Thank-and-Trust-God1we all have testimonies of God’s touch and imprint upon our life that we can share with others. We are also wise when we pay attention and listen to those who like David, have learned much and experienced much. Has what you’ve experienced helped solidify your trust and faith in Him? That’s what experience is supposed to be – a teacher and confidence builder!  They are to help build our faith so that we also learn to instinctively spill words of faith and trust in Him in any trying situation! So, let’s all say this together and mean it! “…As surely as the LORD lives, who has delivered me out of every trouble…”1 Kings 1:29. 

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 13, 2014

It’s All In Your Perspective

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


A little boy was overheard talking to himself as he strutted through the backyard, wearing his baseball cap and toting a ball and bat: "I'm the greatest hitter in the world," he announced.

Then, he tossed the ball into the air, swung at it, and missed.

"Strike one!" he yelled. Undaunted, he picked up the ball and said again, "I'm the greatest hitter in the world!"

He tossed the ball into the air. When it came down he swung again and missed. "Strike two!" he cried.


The boy then paused a moment to examine his bat and ball carefully. He spit on his hands and rubbed them together. He straightened his cap and said once more, "I'm the greatest hitter in the world!"

Again he tossed the ball up in the air and swung at it. He missed. "Strike three!"

"Wow!" he exclaimed. "I'm the greatest pitcher in the world!"

The pessimist may be right in the long run, but the optimist has a better time during the trip.

(Author Unknown)

Proverbs 15:2 (NLT) "The tongue of the wise makes knowledge appealing, but the mouth of a fool belches out foolishness"

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
 


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Monday, May 12, 2014

The Great Value of a Pure and Seeking Heart

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


One morning my son Peter was sharing some Bible verses he had been thinking about with me during our devotional time together. He was reading about Cornelius, a military commander who really sought to know and live for God. Acts 10:1-2 (NIV) “At Caesarea there was a man named Cornelius, a centurion in what was known as the Italian Regiment. He and all his family were devout and God-fearing; he gave generously to those in need and prayed to God regularly.” While most Roman military of that day hated the Jews, Cornelius loved them and was kind and benevolent to them. Because of the purity of this man's heart, his reverence for the Lord, and his actions to do what was right, God answered his prayers by sending those who would help reveal Jesus to Cornelius. My son Peter was simply commenting to me on how even though this man did not have a personal relationship with God through Jesus, God saw and honored Cornelius' heart to help him establish one.

Earlier my son Peter had read in Jeremiah 29:13 (NKJV) "You will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart." Now he had seen this promise spoken by Jeremiah come true in Cornelius' life. He learned that God works to reveal himself to those that sincerely seek Him. I was so touched by the insight the Holy Spirit had given him.

It’s likely that many of us reading Fresh Manna today were like Cornelius. Before receiving Jesus into our hearts, we may have thought about God, wanted to know God, and even tried to find ways to live that we hoped would be pleasing to God. We tried to figure out God and how to live for Him from our imagination—something that our imagination can not equip us to properly do.

We may remember having a hunger to truly know God, but didn't know how to make that happen. We probably prayed and pleaded with God—occasionally bargaining with Him when we were in trouble. But we did this from our imagination. We really didn't know what the scriptures taught about God because we hadn't read or studied them yet.  Our quest to seek God might have felt pretty one way—us speaking to Him without reciprocation. And like Cornelius, we didn't give up. In some way we kept seeking God in our heart. And thank God we did! Seeking God moves the heart of God. Proverbs 8:17 (NLT) says, “I love all who love me. Those who search will surely find me." It is because of the grace and mercy of God and our continuing desire to know Him that like Cornelius, God was able to get through to our hearts so we could meet Jesus and receive Him as our personal Lord and Savior.
God loves to reveal Himself—His heart, His character, His love, and His overwhelming desire to bless and lead us through life as we seek Him. If I earnestly seek to know Him, God will find ways to speak to my heart and manifest Himself in my life. I can count on it.

He knew of Cornelius, of his pure and generous heart, and of his good works. Cornelius didn't have God's word to guide his life but He did reverence God, seek God, and bless others from a pure heart. Nothing that is good and right escapes God's sight. We can count on that! God looks at and honors the heart. He did so for Cornelius. It was powerful. God sent an angel to speak to and comfort him and then to bring his answer—the Apostle Peter to be the one to get him saved.

Have confidence today that if your heart is pure before God in your attempt to seek Him so that you can learn how to live for Him, He will honor that and answer your prayers. Learning and growing is a continuing process, but a sincere seeking heart moves God.

John 14:21 (NLT) "Those who accept my commandments and obey them are the ones who love me. And because they love me, my Father will love them. And I will love them and reveal myself to each of them.

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
 


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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/

Wednesday, May 07, 2014

Take God's Supernatural Highway

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


God-given instruction and guidelines are something that helps us spiritually grow up in our thinking and maturity. God gives them to us from a heart of love. God wants to protect us from getting into what we shouldn't and from things what will hurt us and steal our blessings. This is what Jeremiah is relaying to God's people in Jeremiah 31:21.  He says, "Set up road signs; put up guideposts. Let your heart be guided down the highway, the road that you take. Return, O Virgin Israel, return to where you know you should be." Jeremiah is instructing them to have reminders of God's ways in their heart.

God gave the Ten Commandments to be guideposts to us through life. Do you remember what they are? We see them in Exodus 20:1-17 (NLT) 

Then God instructed the people as follows:
[2] "I am the Lord your God, who rescued you from slavery in Egypt.
[3] "Do not worship any other gods besides me.
[4] "Do not make idols of any kind, whether in the shape of birds or animals or fish. [5] You must never worship or bow down to them, for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God who will not share your affection with any other god! I do not leave unpunished the sins of those who hate me, but I punish the children for the sins of their parents to the third and fourth generations. [6] But I lavish my love on those who love me and obey my commands, even for a thousand generations.
[7] "Do not misuse the name of the Lord your God. The Lord will not let you go unpunished if you misuse his name.
[8] "Remember to observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. [9] Six days a week are set apart for your daily duties and regular work, [10] but the seventh day is a day of rest dedicated to the Lord your God. On that day no one in your household may do any kind of work. This includes you, your sons and daughters, your male and female servants, your livestock, and any foreigners living among you. [11] For in six days the Lord made the heavens, the earth, the sea, and everything in them; then he rested on the seventh day. That is why the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and set it apart as holy.
[12] "Honor your father and mother. Then you will live a long, full life in the land the Lord your God will give you.
[13] "Do not murder.
[14] "Do not commit adultery.
[15] "Do not steal.
[16] "Do not testify falsely against your neighbor.
[17] "Do not covet your neighbor's house. Do not covet your neighbor's wife, male or female servant, ox or donkey, or anything else your neighbor owns."


These guideposts were to help keep God’s children from trouble by keeping us aware of what to avoid. When adults don't have them instinctively built into their thinking and behavior, then they behave carnally like children still needing a guardian to remind them of what to do and not to do to keep from trouble.

As we spiritually mature, God wants us to take a higher approach than just do’s and don'ts. He wants us to take the higher way of love by not thinking, “What do I need to know to keep out of trouble?” but instead thinking, “What can I do to be a complete blessing and example of God’s love?” Love not only doesn't want to hurt or violate God’s ways, God's love wants to bless, to lead, and protect. James 2:8 puts it like this, "If you really keep the royal law found in Scripture, "Love your neighbor as yourself," you are doing right." The royal law of love is a higher way than do’s and don'ts.

If you know your life is full of carnal living that violates the do’s and don’ts, that is where your maturity level is at. You are off course. You are off God’s highway and path for your life. If you are living for the Lord and you've left carnal living behind, focus instead on the royal law of love—that is to “LOVE your neighbor as yourself.”  If you do, you are on the highway of life the Lord has for you! You have His heart and you are caring and watching out for others motivated by His love. Because of it, you will see supernatural signs of God’s presence and touch everywhere in your life. Your desire to live in this place gives you the spiritual eyesight to see God’s touch and presence on your life, even when there are troubles surrounding you.

God's grace and strength working in you will help you mature past the do’s and don’ts of carnal living to the path of living a life motivated by your love for God and for others. It's God's supernatural highway of love! There is no place like it in God in all the earth!

Proverbs 12:28 (NLT) "The way of the godly leads to life; that path does not lead to death" 

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/

Monday, May 05, 2014

The Power of Sincere Love

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Do you think you ever give out fake love? What to I mean by fake love? Inside you may be feeling many things toward someone but love is not one of them. But, since you are supposed to love that person, even though you aren't feeling it, you give out your fake love, roll your eyes as you walk away, and talk behind their back later. That is what I mean by fake love.

Romans 12:9 says these words: “Let love be without dissimulation.”  The word dissimulation in the Greek means let your love be without hypocrisy – don’t let it be fake. Don’t put on a smile and pretend to love someone and then as you walk away roll your eyes and later say something mean or cruel to someone else about that person. That is dissimulation. This is something that is done every day. Fake love which is not love at all – is given out every day. Other translations of Romans 12:9 say, “Let love be sincere.” 

In my early years as a Christian, I thought this was just a normal part of life. I couldn't just say everything I was really thinking and dump on someone could I? Even those closest to you make you mad. If I would have let my mouth and feelings cut loose and always said what I was thinking, I would have constantly been in trouble. So my fix was, put on my fake smile, say the right things, and roll my eyes as I walked away. That is until the Lord began to deal with me a about this.

One day I was reading in the book of Romans when I read Romans 12:9. “Let love be without dissimulation.”  Suddenly the Lord chastised me. He reminded me of a conversation with someone I had been upset with the day before. The Lord said, You put on a nice show but you aren't being sincere in your love toward him. You walked away affirming things were great but you were rolling your eyes thinking anything but that.  There was no argument from me. I knew I was guilty. I asked the Lord to help me be sincere in my love toward this person and with others. He really taught me how simple it is. He said, “Tim, when you love people with your love, it is often measured by their behavior or getting want you want. He continued, My love is pure. It is honest. It is FULL of mercy. It is forgiving. It is patient. It isn't there one second and gone the next. It isn't looking for perfection of performance. IT COMES AS A GIFT! I don't love you based on your performance. I love you period! If you love people through my eyes and with my heart, you’ll find it much easier. 

It was amazing how those words and that revelation transformed my life.  As I moved forward, the Lord would constantly remind me: Be sincere. No fake love. My love is greater than the moment. It's the relationship, not the temporary problem. I began to see my love run deep and the circumstance or problem just something to work through. Because people could literally see and feel the sincerity of my love, it changed even difficult situations. It increased my favor with them. They could sense that I cared more about them than the problem. People were so much more yielding in working through issues. I was finally getting God's kind of love across – a sincere love instead of my fake love in difficult moments. The kind of love He shows me daily!


Over the years, I have learned how important it is to let sincere love lead the way. Love does preceed performance and expectation. It it didn't, you could literally lose your love for everyone because everyone lets you down at some point. I only succeed when my heart comes to every circumstance filled with mercy over expectation. Of course you want people to perform and act appropriately. And so should you and I. But we all blow it more than we'll ever admit to and especially with God. If you understand the depth of His love and mercy toward you, then you'll run back to Him over and over again. If you don't, you pull back from Him thinking He is mad at you. If people detect your sincerity of love and mercy, they stay close to you. If they think your are disappointed and mad at them, they pull back from you. Sincerely loving, being full of mercy and having a willingness to quickly forgive, and having the humility to acknowledge your own failures in the very thing you could be upset at others over, helps you love sincerely day in and day out. Acknowledging the love and forgiveness of the Lord is what helps mercy to abound and precious and valuable relationships to be saved. Proverbs 17:9 says, “He who covers over an offense seeks out and works toward the promotion of love, but whoever repeats the matter separates close friends.”

All relationships are valuable. Relationships are the primary way God reaches people. Relationships are the primary way God brings blessing into our lives. So, let your love be sincere. Let it rise up out of the same love God in His mercy and grace has extended to you. His love is unlimited and our love can be expanded!

Ephesians 3:17-18 (NIV) "... I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ"

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
 


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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/