About Tim Burt

Friday, May 29, 2015

Don't Let the Hurts in Your Life Cripple You or Your Life!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


When police pull people over and think that they have been drinking or are under the influence of drugs, they often make them take a test of simple task like walking a straight line.  If I said to you, Take one step forward, you'd do it with no problem. If I said, Take one step backward, you again would do it no problem.  Most people know what it means to move forward or go backward, that is, until they have been hurt from real-life problems. Then some people barely seem to ever move forward, and actually spend time letting their life unravel or move backwards.

I recently sold my riding lawnmower. It was getting older and needed to be replaced. It ran well but knew it would never last the next fifteen years so I wanted to update it. I loved it because it was utterly dependable although it had one very small problem. It's right front tire leaked air slowly. It leaked air not because the tire was damaged but because the rim and a slight dent and allowed it to leak air. Every four or five times I used it, I had to re-inflate the tire. I should have simply replaced the wheel a couple of years ago but didn't—more for reasons of procrastination than anything else which is surprising because I am generally not a procrastinator.

This tire reminds me of many people's lives. They have had something devastating happen and their life is like one with a slow leak in it. They don't move forward. They try to maintain and do to a degree, but then slip backwards until they have to fill their life's tire a bit.

The enemy of your soul hates you. I have written about that many times. His desire it to kill, steal, and destroy. Like Job's wife, the enemy would love to get you to curse God, give up on Him and die. If you did that, then Satan would have succeeded in deceiving you out of your faith and living your life in apprehension and fear. God has filled His Word with precious promises of His love, His hope, His help & protection, and a future—a meaningful and significant life that would bring you much joy. But, you have to move forward. You have to put the devil and past hurts and fears under your feet and move forward. This is what the Apostle Paul meant when he wrote, Philippians 3:14 (NLT) "I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us."
Jesus understood heart-ache. His life of faithfulness to His Father filled His heart with heart-ache—yet He always moved forward. The Bible doesn't reveal a great deal about His relationship with His cousin John—John the Baptist, but I believe if we knew more, we'd find that they were the very definition of iron sharpening iron. I believe they loved, talked about, and encouraged each other in the Word. When John we beheaded for following God instead of obeying Herod, it hurt Jesus heart dearly.  We read in , Matthew 14:13 (NIV) "When Jesus heard what had happened (regarding his cousin John,) he withdrew by boat privately to a solitary place. Hearing of this, the crowds followed him on foot from the towns. "

Jesus barely had anytime to mourn John's death. The needs of people around Him were so great that He was back to ministering to them that very day.  Jesus could have put His life on hold. People would have understood. He could have backed down from going to the cross. People would have understood. But He didn't because He knew the Father needed Him. Jesus' love for mankind was driving Him. He moved forward with His life and we are all blessed for it.

Hurt, disappointment, discouragement, unforgiveness—so many things could be that slow leak that at best allows our life to maintain for a while but then go backward. That isn't the plan of God. When the enemy comes against you, you make him pay so that what the devil meant for evil is turned for good! Trust God so that He can turn it for good. Champions move forward! They do because the love of God and for other people constrains them to! Let that describe you! You are a Champion for Christ!

Romans 8:28 (NKJV) "And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose." 

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!  Write me at FreshMannaFeedback@comcast.net





Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2015 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Glorious Results From Being Pruned

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Hi Fresh Manna Readers, I am on a short few days vacation this week so I am re-posting a popular devotion from the past! I pray it will bless you! 

Change happens! People desire it and are afraid of it at the same time. People want to change jobs they don’t like or career paths they feel are a dead end. People want to change haircuts they’re tired of. People buy clothes they don’t need simply because they like a change. People love to try a new restaurant just for something new. People get tired of their home d├ęcor and remodel. Friends change as seasons of life change - single friends, married friends, friends with children, church friends, activity friends and more. One of the biggest fears of change is the fear of the inability to make a change and have confidence that the experience will come out alright or better than before the change. What people most often don’t like is when change just happens to them and it seems beyond their control!

If we seek God for godly change and pray things like, “Lord, I want to draw closer to you and be more like you,” which are good things to pray, then we better understand that we’ve asked Him to work change in our life. There are two kinds of change the Lord works in our life in answer to those prayers. One is that He wants to help us rid our life of things that are harmful, aren’t profitable, or have no value. The other is that He prunes what is good so that it bears even more fruit in our life. John 15:2 says, “Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit.”

It’s funny. We want changes that will make our life better but we don’t often recognize it as it comes upon us. Consequently, we often resist it kicking and screaming. I’ve tried to grow and mature in this area because I’ve learned over time that God is often in change – especially when I pray for His will to be done in my life - and always ended up loving God’s results as I look back in hindsight.

When Renee and I moved into our present house, it was a gift from God. Our house is on a creek and it feels very private. I love to garden but felt limited when we first moved in because the border of my back yard was a think forest. It hid most of the creek and created so much shade, it limited what I could plant and grow. I would have loved to thin out a few trees, but for had no way to do that.

Some years back, I had a regular routine of running 5 miles around our neighborhood and always prayed over the neighborhood when I ran. One day, a storm came through that took out over 10,000 trees in our community. It wiped out a number of them along our creek and back area. It seemed like a disaster and was considered that. The city over time came and cleaned out those trees. When those trees were lost, it left a perfect number of trees that allowed us to see the creek, get sunlight, and for me to expand our garden. The entire community seemed prettier once it was all cleaned up. Then the city decided that the area behind our house on the other side of the creek which had lost all its trees would make a great place to put in a walking path and wildflower garden. It had previously been used as a place where people dumped any and everything. They bouldered our creek with large boulders. They put in a beautiful wildflower garden with walking paths and ornate streetlight type lamps. And I finally had the sunlight I needed to built the garden I wanted.

At the time of the storms and tree cleanup, I couldn’t see all that God was doing. I could only hope and pray for a good result. But, in hindsight, I realized that everything I hoped for had happened in a way that only God could have made happen – and with no cost or effort on our part, except prayer.

When God prunes our life, it’s to get rid of the unwanted and to bring more fruit and even a better result to what is good. This has happened in my life over and over again. What I started out complaining over, manifested in the big picture as an absolute blessing. If only we could trust God when change that is outside of our control is happening. If we would pray in faith, knowing that God intimately cares about the details of our life and is our Heavenly Father – the very best Father we will ever experience, then we would trust Him through every difficult change. When we go through the change, instead of being anxious, we need to lift our heart and tell the Lord, “Lord, I am not sure of how you are working this out, but I do know that I love you and you love me. I trust you to purge my life and bring more fruit. I know you want the best for me and I trust you with my life. You gave me your very best when you gave me Jesus. I trust you with all the less significant areas of my life. Thank you for your help and love. In Jesus name.”

Whether it’s the job, friends, your home, or whatever, when change is forging in your life, bind the enemy in your prayers and turn the circumstances over to the Lord asking and then truly believing He will bring change that will bear great fruit and bless you! He is good and wants what is best for you! Matthew 7:11 “If you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good gifts to those who ask Him.”

P.S. This is my garden today!

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!  Write me at FreshMannaFeedback@comcast.net





Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2015 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Assurance: The Foundation of Strong Faith

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Do you think it's important to know how God feels about you and what He wants for you?  If so, why do you think it’s important to know what God wants for you? Why do you think it’s important to know how God feels about you? Maybe this will help you answer those questions. If you had a spouse and you didn’t know if he/she loved you, would it affect how you feel about your spouse and marriage? Of course it would! Assurance of love and acts of kindness and good will toward each other are absolutely critical to the success in any marriage. Knowing your spouse absolutely loves you is the foundation of your trust! 

If you weren’t sure if you boss liked you or liked your work, would it affect how you feel and your performance? If you felt like your boss was critical of your work and was just waiting for an excuse to get rid of you, would it make you want to go into work?

How much more to do you think it would affect your relationship with God if you believed He didn’t love you? If you thought He was out to get you? If you thought He didn’t care about you and refused to play any role in your life except to punish you for wrong doing? This world is filled with people that who these very thoughts or unresolved questions about God. They really don’t know if He loves them. They really don’t know that He cares for them. Consequently, they pull back from God out of fear and doubt from their lack of assurance of His love. That coupled with a conviction within their own hearts over sinful things they do in their life will lead them to avoid God.

God wants us to stop the wavering over the fact that He loves us. Stop and think for a minute. The reason He sent Jesus into this world was for us. He became a sacrifice for our sins. Jesus lived without sin and yet was punished and put to death accused as a sinner. The punishment Jesus received that He did not deserve is the punishment you and I deserved that we will not receive. He did this while we were still sinners. In other words His love reached out to us before our sins were forgiven and blotted out. How much more does He love us now? These scriptures speak God's assurance of love for us.
1 John 3:16 "This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us…”

Rom 5:8 “But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

And, theses power words of assurance of God’s love and promise to you. Though they were spoken in the time of Moses, He spoke them to bring assurance to you today. You are one of the thousand generations that He speaks of below. It’s powerful and offers you your assurance!

Deut. 7:7-9 “The Lord did not choose you and lavish His love on you because you were larger or greater than other nations, for you were the smallest of all nations! It was simply because the Lord loves you, and because He was keeping the oath He had sworn to your ancestors. That is why the Lord rescued you with such amazing power from your slavery under Pharaoh in Egypt. Understand, therefore, that the Lord your God is indeed God. He is the faithful God who keeps His covenant for a thousand generations and constantly loves those who love Him and obey His commands."

Did you ready that? “Lavish His love on us…” Wow! He really loves you and I! Believe it today! Drawing closer to God with more of a confidence and assurance of His love is the only way to break the lies and doubts that He doesn’t love us. God wants us to draw closer to Him and not with apprehension, doubt and fear over whether He loves us but with excitement over the fact that He does! As James 4:8 says, “Draw close to God, and God will draw close to you."

Do what I do. Pray, “Heavenly Father, I thank you so much that you love me and desire to lavish your love on my life. I declare that I have confidence in your love. I declare your love over me today. I will celebrate your love for me by asking you to bless and help me as I live for you today. In Jesus name I pray. Amen”

Jeremiah 31:3 (NIV) "The LORD appeared to us in the past, saying: "I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving-kindness"

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!  Write me at FreshMannaFeedback@comcast.net






Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2015 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Monday, May 25, 2015

Be Independent Yet Needy. That's Not a Conflict!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Over the course of life, I've often heard the phrase, I’m and independent thinker. I thought that was the goal of everyone as they grew up into adulthood and matured. I think when people say that, they somehow mean that they don’t just go with the flow but they create their own philosophies and beliefs and opinions themselves.

My goal in raising my children was to teach them to learn to think for themselves and yet teach them that God's Word is the foundation of where all their thinking should filter through so that their thoughts are in harmony with what God thinks. I wanted them to learn to make decisions for themselves as they grew older but tried to be a part of those decisions until they had enough knowledge, maturity, and experience to make them for themselves. Then I released them and worked to stay out of their decision-making process because it was now their life, not mine. My goal from that point was to be the good friend whose ear they wanted to bend and ask what I thought. If I did and do share thoughts with them, I try to tread lightly so I don’t accidentally dominate their thoughts or decisions and push them away. This has helped each of them become a responsible adult that can make quality decisions independently of me – but not independent of God.

My life’s role feels significant to me. As a Pastor, I have many lives I influence and help in a great diversity of ways. I’m fairly confident that I’m seen as a strong leader. I know how to and do think independently, but also flow in unity and cooperation with those I work with to reach mutually desired goals and objectives. Working together with others doesn't affect my independence. It creates a healthy interdependence. I work with many strong and capable leaders–each one independent thinkers focusing on their areas and people for what is best, yet bringing all that into a larger big-picture plan so that we bring into harmony and effort, all of our thoughts and goals for the good of all we do as a team.

As much as anyone wants to be independent and as cool as it sounds to be so, it can also lead to a narcissistic attitude and way of life. The safe-guard for anyone is to realize how needy each of us are for help and cooperation and compromise in order to do execute life successfully. Learning to think independently and recognize that you are also needy of the input of God and others is not a conflict.

I’m extremely needy! I am needy for God. I am needy for His love. I am needy for His assurance that He is with me and will help me. I am needy for His wisdom because my decisions affect many people and I want to make decisions that help and bless, not hinder and hurt. I was needy for God to help me know the best way to raise my children. I was needy for Him to help me figure out how to make an income that would pay for my children’s schooling, and braces, and a thousand pairs of shoes, and college, and weddings, and so much more. I was needy. I still am. I need His wisdom for every decision and of course the major decisions I am facing. I am also needy for good people in my life. I am needy for particularly gifted people to help me execute some things that lie ahead. I am needy for anointed words from the throne of God for those that need them today. My life doesn't work without the love and help of others. I am needy!

All this causes me to realize my limitations and the Lordship of Jesus Christ in my life. He is God and I am His son and a son that needs His help. Jesus has made this all possible and I praise Him forever! Because of the repeated assurance of His love and desire to help me, though I know I am needy, I also know He’ll help me and it helps me be more independent in the right ways.

Finally, I am awed that the God of this universe has made Himself so intimate and available always desiring me to bring every need to Him with assurance of His caring and help. I am awed at these words. Philip. 4:6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. He gives me the permission slip to be needy and have faith in Him and then strengthens my faith and confidence by these amazing words of assurance. 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. He said, “This is the confidence…”

This is where the foundation of healthy independence comes from in my life. This is the reality of us all! We can be independent and needy without being in conflict. It’s our life in God!

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!  Write me at FreshMannaFeedback@comcast.net






Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2015 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Saturday, May 23, 2015

The Lord Will Calm Your Heart!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Years ago I was on a trip to Scotland and Ireland. You haven't seen green grass until you've been to Scotland and Ireland. They have some of the most beautiful countryside and rolling green hills I have ever seen. You also see many sheep. They graze in these green never-ending pastures. Places like this also make me think about Psalm 23:2 "The Lord makes me to lie down in green pastures: He leads me beside the still waters. When I am in places like this, I can't help but see God and all of His creation in everything I gaze upon. I think, "God's will is to lead me to these kinds of places and atmospheres. When He does, it illuminates how magnificent and powerful He is and that the Creator of all these things loves me as His child and wants to lead me beside still waters."

Green pastures and still waters may be more the exception than the experience for most of us. Someone recently said to me, "It seems like there is always something negative going on that wants to spoil my day or season of life."  The truth is, we do have an enemy of our soul. His name is Satan and He hates God and anything that represents God. Jesus said that this enemy has come to kill, steal, and destroy. Much of the world has just watched that with the destruction and death from the tornadoes. Did God cause or allow that? Of course not. We live in a defiled world. The Bible says that because of the choices of man, Satan has become the god of this world. Killing and destruction is what he attempts to do. Even when people pray for help, for too many, it's like breaking a wishbone. They have no real faith in God or in His love and divine protection. God is moved by relationship in Jesus and by faith in His Word. In the absence of that, the devil has a heyday and tries to destroy. Death and destruction are his playground.

God has a plan even for those surrounded by destruction and death. We also see that in Psalms 23:4. "Even when I walk through the shadow of death, I will not be afraid. For You, O Lord are close with me. Your rod and your staff protect and comfort me."

I'll tell a bad story on myself. I was one of ten children. When I was about seven years old, I lived in a bedroom with one other younger brother and two younger sisters. I was the big shot because I was the oldest of us four. At night when we were in bed and it was dark, I would pull out my flashlight and make shadows of a spider on the wall. Those shadows scared the ba-geebers out of my younger siblings. I thought it was funny. I regret that now. It's interesting that there really was no real danger, just shadows. Shadows produced fear.

The Lord said that even as we walk through the shadow of death, we did not have to be afraid because He was with us. What is the shadow of death? It's the fearful or negative mental images that Satan continually tries to bombard our minds with seducing us into states of panic, or anxiety, or cares.The more we think upon them and "see" them in our mind the worse they get. They become shadow of death!

God has not abandoned us in these hard places. His will is to comfort us and lead us to green pastures and still waters. Psalm 23:4 says, "Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me."

When we will quiet our soul and spend time with Him and learn of His promises, the voice of the Holy Spirit will rise up from within and comfort us. His Words will make our soul still and the waters quiet. They will cause fear to go as God’s greatness, power, and promises are magnified within our hearts.

When I was in those fields of Scotland, surrounded by what seem like oceans of green grassy hills, God became infinite in size and my cares and problems began to fade away. We don't have to go to Scotland to experience this. We just have to take in the power of His Word and let it still our heart and soul. He loves us you know! Very much! Lean on He and His Word and trust Him!

Psalms 107:29 (NLT)  "He calmed the storm to a whisper and stilled the waves"

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!  Write me at FreshMannaFeedback@comcast.net





Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2015 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

How is Obedience Connected to Blessing?

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Parents love obedience! When their children learn it and walk in it, they feel as though they are of the most blessed in the world.

When parents go through the teen years with their kids, they don’t think in terms of the word “obedience” so much anymore. Either their children have grown to the teen years having learned respect, a civil attitude, and reasonable compliance or they haven’t.

By the time we are adults, we dump the word obedience. Adults think more in terms of I am an adult and I can do what I want. Submission to any kind of authority is more often motivated more because of a paycheck or to avoid pain and trouble than it is from a heart of love or for appropriate reasons.

Obedience may become less important to adults but it never becomes less important to God. He wants children to learn obedience because it prepares them to reverence and respect Him and will help them also one day respect those in positions of authority as they become adults. It is what helps them become a vessel God can use and ones who will experience greater opportunity for success.

Let me show you this truth through these verses.

Exodus 19:5-6 (NIV) says, “Now if you obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession. Although the whole earth is mine, you will be for me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation…”

Let me expound: “obey me fully” means to know and understand God’s character and desires. This comes over time from reading and rereading the Bible. It teaches and helps us become familiar with what He wants us to gravitate toward and to restrain ourselves from. For example, He wants us to learn to restrain ourselves from unbridled anger and instead learn to put on the qualities of patience and love. It is more than that though. As we learn God’s Word and hide it in our hearts, He brings scriptures to memory and speaks to our hearts through them. It is how He prompts us and instructs our conscience to follow Him.

Keep my covenant” means to understand that we are in a covenant relationship with God. that we come to understand, love, and value. Let me use this illustration. Imagine you had a best friend. This relationship is so tight and special that you wouldn't do anything to mess it up. You are so close at heart and in friendship that you would do anything for each other. Your sincere attitude is what is mine is yours and you both feel that way toward each other. Now take that even one step higher in that you are also a business partners with a legal agreement. That is what a covenant relationship with God is. He has that kind of love toward us and makes Himself legally bound to us by His Word to keep His promises. (Even when we stumble and fall—something He will never do.)

The Lord says, “If you obey me fully and keep my covenant…,” then something precious will happen—“out of all the nations you will be my treasured possession.” Now God started out with that promise to the Jews— to Israel—those He chose to bring the revelation of Himself to the world through. After the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, He gave us the chance to also walk in that covenant as a part of His family through our faith in Jesus. Through this covenant and our faith in Jesus, we are also a part of God’s “treasured possession in all the earth.” Are you starting to get the picture of how God feels about you? It is through the execution of full obedience that these blessings manifest in their fullest form in our lives.
God continues to tell us. “Although the whole earth is mine, you will be for me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.”

God spoke these words through Moses to Israel. They reach to us through Jesus Christ today. His ways are still relevant to life today. God tells us we are His treasured possession as we take in, learn, understand, and walk out obedience to His Word in our life. We become those that learn to walk it out in love so that we can be a light and influence the world around us.

Your life is significant to God and so very important to His plan and purposes. And obedience to His Word out of love and reverence for Him is significant and what makes life precious—is what makes you precious —to this world! Walk in it today!

Exodus 19:5 (NIV) “Now if you obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession…”

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!  Write me at FreshMannaFeedback@comcast.net





Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2015 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

The Right and Wrong Way to Start Your Day!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Have you ever felt like an inner voice, a feeling, or a sign is a sign that is telling you how your day or upcoming future is going to go? The world calls that an omen. If you choose to believe it, you could be opening yourself up to demonic activity. An omen is defined as a phenomenon or event or circumstance that supposedly forecasts a good or evil. Signs outside of what God's Word teaches us are born out of superstition, myth, wild and over-stimulated imaginations, and even pizza dreams. And it becomes the devil's playground because getting you to believe or have faith in things outside of God's Word, opens your life to demonic activity!

When God created man, it became a part of man's spiritual DNA to seek to know his creator. Consequently, every culture that does not have God's Word to instruct them lets their imaginations fill those gaps concerning God with some form of spiritualism rooted in myth and superstition. God never wanted this for mankind. Abraham and his seed were raised up to be a light to the world concerning God and His ways. Israel was instructed through Moses to be light and influence to the nations while avoiding the worldly influences of paganism. We see it in Deuteronomy 18:9-11 (NLT) “When you enter the land the Lord your God is giving you, be very careful not to imitate the detestable customs of the nations living there. For example, never sacrifice your son or daughter as a burnt offering. And do not let your people practice fortune-telling, or use sorcery, or interpret omens, or engage in witchcraft, or cast spells, or function as mediums or psychics, or call forth the spirits of the dead."

God wanted them to avoid being influenced by the pagan cultures that surrounded them because belief in them would curse their life with false beliefs. He wanted them to listen to, learn, and trust Him and His Word alone. He wanted them to influence the nations, not be influenced by them. He feels the same way today.

When we give our lives to Jesus, God fills our heart with His Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit opens up our ability to understand scripture and teaches and instructs us from within, helping us to learn and execute God's Word in our lives. For example, let’s say one day you really have a bad attitude. As it affects your day and those around you, you start to feel the wrongness of it. You might hear this inward thought feeling like an omen that suggests, Your wife says you are always this way and you are never going to change. Your wife is going to get tired of you and ditch you and divorce you soon. If you put faith in that thought or omen, you might give up on the spot and say, What’s the use? At the same time, the Lord begins to bring to your remembrance verses on loving one another. That is God leading you by His Spirit. God doesn't lead us by omens or circumstances, but by His Holy Spirit. Romans 8:14 (NKJV) says "For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God." If you listened to the Holy Spirit, you’d repent to God and then to your wife, and with the grace of God and His help, you’d change your attitude.

You might wake up one day thinking, This just feels like it's going to be bad day. That is only a feeling but the second you begin to believe it, your faith in it is faith in the devil's ability to make the day bad.

Never accept feelings based on nothing. Reject them and instead, say, This is the day that the Lord has made and I will rejoice and be glad in it.  Believe that you have God's grace and favor and that will help your day be great! Pray and ask the Lord to lead you in your day! But never cave into erroneous feelings from nowhere—especially when they somehow seem to project bad about to happen! Omens, superstitions, horoscopes, fortune-telling—they are all from the same garbage can! And garbage stinks! God wants us to rise up in faith knowing that He is our help and our promise. He creates hope and expectation. Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV) "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."

He’ll help us in any situation if we will believe His promises and have faith in them.

On a closing note for today, which will you believe? Some omen generated by a negative circumstance or erroneous feeling? Or will you learn to sink your roots faith deep into His promises such as this daily? It's your choice! Choose wisely! Psalms 115:11-15 (NLT) "All you who fear the Lord, trust the Lord! He is your helper and your shield. The Lord remembers us... He will bless those who fear the Lord, both great and lowly. May the Lord richly bless both you and your children. May you be blessed by the Lord, who made heaven and earth." 

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!  Write me at FreshMannaFeedback@comcast.net





Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2015 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

What If Suddenly the Rapture Came?

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


I suddenly woke up! Something didn't seem right. There was too much light coming in the window. I looked at the clock. It was 7:00 am. I was in shock. My alarm should have gone off at 6:00 am. I reached for it but it wasn't turned on. I had forgotten to set it. I looked for Renee. She was already gone. Renee had left out-of-town to visit one of our sons and His family. I wasn't able to accompany here.

She set her alarm for 5:00 a.m. I was going to get up with her but I was in such a deep sleep, she didn't want to wake me. She thought I needed the sleep. Now she was gone and I didn't get to say goodbye or pray with her before she left. It felt so weird. I had immediate pains of missing her. I was caught off guard.

A few years ago, my dad had called me late one night. My mom had a heart attack. The ambulance was on the way and he wanted me to come get him and go with him to the hospital. Renee and I jumped in the car in seconds, picked him up and took him to the hospital. Mom never did recover. She died two days later. I never got to say goodbye to her while she was conscious. I was caught off guard.

Many years ago in my airline career, I was on a flight that nearly collided with another jet. It was a near-miss I survived, but I assure you, that day I thought about how close my life was to being over. I was caught off guard but that day changed my life.

Yesterday, I found out that an old friend I hadn't see in over 20 years died in a motorcycle accident. He was a great guy and I just couldn't stop thinking about how his wife and family and all of us were caught off guard.

There are things that happen suddenly in life. When they do, they usually catch us off guard. Had I been caught in that mid-air plane collision, I would have not been ready to meet the Lord. When my mom suddenly died, I so wanted one more last conversation to tell her how much I loved her. When Renee went out-of-town without waking me, I was caught off guard and missed praying with her and kissing her goodbye. And my friend, I'll have to wait until Heaven to see him again.

God doesn't want us to be off caught off guard—especially about the second coming of Jesus. It could happen at any time or it could be a number of years. Jesus said that no one knows the day or hour but, one day there will be, in the twinkling of an eye, the rapture of the church and all believers will be gone. 1 Thessalonians 4:14-18 (NLT)  reveals, “For since we believe that Jesus died and was raised to life again, we also believe that when Jesus comes, God will bring back with Jesus all the Christians who have died. I can tell you this directly from the Lord: We who are still living when the Lord returns will not rise to meet him ahead of those who are in their graves. For the Lord Himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the call of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, all the Christians who have died will rise from their graves. Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air and remain with Him forever. So comfort and encourage each other with these words”

As you can see from the last verse, these words are to bring us comfort, not make us paranoid. If you are ready, then you won't be paranoid. We want to be ready when the Lord comes. Jesus makes ready, those who've received Him personally as their Savior.  It is those who have their sins washed washing. So, are you comfortable personally with how you are living for the Lord or would you feel embarrassed if that trumpet blew right now?

Let’s not be caught off guard. Let’s ask God to help us live righteously for Him and live working to reach people with His love. Let’s be the church being about His business.

Romans 13:12-14 (NLT) "The night is almost gone; the day of salvation will soon be here. So don't live in darkness. Get rid of your evil deeds. Shed them like dirty clothes. Clothe yourselves with the armor of right living, as those who live in the light. We should be decent and true in everything we do, so that everyone can approve of our behavior. Don't participate in wild parties and getting drunk, or in adultery and immoral living, or in fighting and jealousy. But let the Lord Jesus Christ take control of you, and don't think of ways to indulge your evil desires."

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!  Write me at FreshMannaFeedback@comcast.net





Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2015 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Friday, May 15, 2015

You are God's Spice of Life

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Renee and I were out to lunch one day and I had a bowl of soup for my meal. I had never eaten this restaurant’s soup before, but as I took my first taste I wasn't pleasantly surprised. It was really bland tasting. I did what I think most people do: I added some salt but that didn't help. Then I added a little pepper. Still no improvement. So, I started grabbing whatever I could to spice it up.

Sometimes the world around us can feel that way—like a bowl of soup that isn't very tasty and needs spice. You can be that spice! As a matter of fact, God's word exhorts you to be that spice. Colossians 4:6 (NIV) says, "Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone." 

You are the one that can help them experience a touch from the Lord by bringing someone into the saving knowledge of Jesus. You are the one that can be led by the Holy Spirit to bring hope and prayer to the hurting, lost or discouraged. 1 Thessalonians 5:11) NIV) says, “So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing.” This is the Apostle Paul’s way of saying to you and I, “Spice up each other’s lives. Give them a taste of Heaven here on earth!"

One day, Jesus will renovate this earth and live here to rule and reign. Life will truly be glorious in that day and need no additional spice. But until that time, our God-given destiny is to be the spice in life this world so desperately needs. So... “Pass the Jesus, please!”

Isaiah 50:4 (NLT) "The Sovereign Lord has given me his words of wisdom, so that I know how to comfort the weary. Morning by morning he wakens me and opens my understanding to his will." 

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!  Write me at FreshMannaFeedback@comcast.net






Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2015 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Will God Will Reveal Himself to You?

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Technology continues to change and bring us new ways to live life. One practical application I have consistently benefited from is GPS and audible driving directions in my car.  I use this feature in my car and on my phone constantly. If you are like me, you might fight it a bit unnerving to drive to a place you've never been that is in unfamiliar territory. It has truly simplified finding locations for me.

In life, we can also personally feel lost and needing direction. Have you ever heard anyone including yourself say, I don't know what to do?or I don't know what the Lord wants me to do? You can rejoice in the fact that God has answers to these questions and He'll share them with you.

In Psalm 103:7 (NIV) God reveals a powerful truth, one we can sink our faith into. It says, “He made known His ways to Moses, His deeds known to the people of Israel." Can you see what this is saying? It's saying that God makes His ways known. He doesn't hide them. What God made known to Moses, Moses in turn revealed to all God's people. Then it goes on to say that God made known, all His deeds—His mightily exploits and His mighty miracles. His ways and desires do not need to be a mystery! He wants us to know them!

Why did God make His ways and miracles known? First of all, so we could learn of the one and only true God. Secondly, so that we could discover and learn our purpose, His plan for our life, and how He wants us to live life so that His blessings may become ours! The Book of Deuteronomy specifically lets us know that God wants blessing for our lives. He wants blessing to be our choice. Deuteronomy 30:19-20 (NIV) says, "This day I call heaven and earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live and that you may love the LORD your God, listen to his voice, and hold fast to him. For the LORD is your life..."

He made His ways known so we could follow Him and experience His love and blessing. Then He made His deeds—His mighty exploits and miracles known so that we would see His heart and the extent of what He would do for those that loved Him. He did these things as an act of love, and revealed them to build and encourage our faith. Does that make you want to shout with joy? It should! We have a mighty and miraculous Heavenly Father that you can come to know, and that desires to reveal Himself to you and work miraculously in your life.

When we come in life to the place where it feels like we hit the wall and are asking the question, What should I do?, we should be confident that the God of the universe that loves you as His child, wants you to know it. If you will seek Him diligently for that answer, He will lead you in what to do. Jesus said, "So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened." (Luke 11:9-10 NIV)

Acts 17:26-27 (NIV) urges us to seek God.  "From one man He made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and He determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so that men would seek Him and reach out for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us."

Did you get that? God is saying He knows everything that lies ahead and that we should seek Him though He is not far from us! God is not playing games with you or I. He desires greatly to reveal Himself to us. He desires us to learn of His love, mercy, and miraculous working power so that we might learn to put our faith in Him and trust Him—something the rest of the world mocks.

Why does He make us seek Him? So we will develop in our heart a right and reverential attitude toward the God of this universe. So that we will on one hand respect His Omnipotence, and on the other, learn of His personal touch and desire to be a loving father. Does it get any better than this? You'll find out it doesn't as you seek Him.

Do you really spend time seeking Him? If you just measure the time you spend with the Lord in His Word and prayer against the other activity of your free time, you might find a huge discrepancy. When you seek God sincerely, you will experience His loving touch. When you offer lip service but with no real seeking, you dry up spiritually and face the loneliness of resolving your own questions and choices.

What is the first choice we must make to experience the awesomeness of God's love? The choice to seek Him! Get by yourself. Pray and let the Lord know you desire to know Him more. Ask Him to speak to you through His Word (the Bible,) and then read. As you seek Him you will find Him! The Holy Spirit is the GPS that leads you to God and to His ways! He never wants you to be lost!

Isaiah 55:6 (NLT) "Seek the Lord while you can find Him. Call on Him now while He is near." 

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!  Write me at FreshMannaFeedback@comcast.net






Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2015 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Learning to Trust God for Your Provision

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


As I was reading God's Word this morning, I remembered that God has a sense of humor that reveals just how great and magnificent He is.

There was a time when God was moving in the earth, revealing Himself again to the children of Israel who had become backslidden. Just as people do today, they had, over time, been seduced into worldly ways and false gods. They had forgotten who God had raised them up to be.

A judgement had come upon the earth and there was a famine that had affected everyone—good or bad, including God’s Prophet Elijah. The difference for the good is, because they stay close to God, they are led by God to supernatural provision.

Elijah had been hanging out by a brook where there was water and where God was having ravens feed him—an amazing story. Eventually the brook dried up and God sent Elijah to his next place of provision. This is where God’s sense of humor comes in. God sends him to a widow woman who was in such a desperate place herself, that she and her son were about to starve to death. Seems like the logical place for God to send you to have your needs met doesn't it? NOT! Here is the story:

1 Kings 17:8-16 (NLT) Then the Lord said to Elijah, "Go and live in the village of Zarephath, near the city of Sidon. There is a widow there who will feed you. I have given her my instructions." So he went to Zarephath. As he arrived at the gates of the village, he saw a widow gathering sticks, and he asked her, "Would you please bring me a cup of water?" As she was going to get it, he called to her, "Bring me a bite of bread, too." But she said, "I swear by the Lord your God that I don't have a single piece of bread in the house. And I have only a handful of flour left in the jar and a little cooking oil in the bottom of the jug. I was just gathering a few sticks to cook this last meal, and then my son and I will die." But Elijah said to her, "Don't be afraid! Go ahead and cook that 'last meal,' but bake me a little loaf of bread first. Afterward there will still be enough food for you and your son. For this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: There will always be plenty of flour and oil left in your containers until the time when the Lord sends rain and the crops grow again!" So she did as Elijah said, and she and Elijah and her son continued to eat from her supply of flour and oil for many days. For no matter how much they used, there was always enough left in the containers, just as the Lord had promised through Elijah.” This woman believed in the direction of the Lord coming through Elijah. She obeyed him and it changed her life, and fed Elijah too! Oh how magnificent are God's ways!

There was a season of time when our four children were very young, that we lived mostly on macaroni and cheese to keep from starving. We were a family of six and at that time, you could get three boxes of it for a dollar. As I said yesterday, we never missed giving the Lord our tithes and we always prayed, thanking Him for taking care of us and meeting our needs. I remember one morning Renee coming to me saying I am out of groceries and we have no money.  We went into our living room, sat down and prayed thanking the Lord that He knew our situation and our faithfulness in putting Him first place in our life. We told Him we trusted Him knowing that He alone was our provider. I was working full time and working a side job but things were still tight.  As we finished praying, the doorbell rang. Renee and I looked at each other. We weren't expecting anyone. There was a woman at the door saying that the Lord told her to go buy us groceries. Renee immediately broke out crying with joy! We hadn't told anyone about our situation. We knew she was sent by the Lord!  These kinds and times of supernatural provisions happened in our life again and again.

God is not a genie! He is not someone you run to only when you are in crisis. God is our Heavenly Father. He loves and desires to lead us, shape us, and transform our life into a blessing so that we can become a blessing to others. He is our provider. When we look to Him no matter what place our life is in—whether a place of need or abundance, He is with those who believe in His love through Jesus Christ!

God’s plan for each and every one of us will be different, but, He will direct us and help each of us! When we have faith in Him and trust Him, then He will direct our all of our paths—including the path to our provision. Know that and be refreshed in the promise of it daily!

Psalm 69:16 (NLT) “Answer my prayers, O Lord, for your unfailing love is wonderful. Turn and take care of me, for your mercy is so plentiful.”

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!  Write me at FreshMannaFeedback@comcast.net





Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2015 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/