About Tim Burt

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

A Life Transformed Into Something Beautiful

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


One day I ran into Dave, a friend I hadn't seen for a couple of months. When I saw him, my jaw dropped. He has lost about 18 lbs and look the best I had ever seen him. I told him how good he looked and asked what led up to this transformation. He said, My wife said I was getting chubby and lost my good looks at a time I had been thinking that very thing. I knew that wasn't right because you've taught me through the word that I'm not a slave to sin. So, I went on a fast to get myself under control and it didn't end until I lost the weight. The Lord strengthened me through every step! I was truly inspired by his story and transformation, and immediately set out to drop some weight myself.

I kept thinking how his attitude and actions must have pleased the Lord. He knew his flesh was out of control. He wanted to do right by God and his wife, and himself. He took hold of the word of God, prayed, fasted, and stuck to his course. That kind of faith and action honors God and brings His power.  Romans 8:2 (NLT) says, "And because you belong to him (Jesus), the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death." Dave, saw through God's Word, that the Holy Spirit freed him from the power of sin. He wasn't going to let it control him. That is a revelation God wants every believer to take hold of.

God wants transformation to happen within us. He asks it of us, because it will bless our lives and ultimately bless those in our lives. Through these transformations, we become more like Him and less like who we were without Christ.

Colossians 3:7-10 NIV says, "You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator."

Ephesians 4:22-24 NIV says, "You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness."

James 1:21-25 NIV says,"Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you. Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it--he will be blessed in what he does."

God wants us to remove certain things from our life, but in order to do so, we have to remember that God’s Holy Spirit—the power of God to help us, lives within us! The Holy Spirit helps us by showing us what is best for us and what is harmful to our lives according to the Word of God. We may at times feel condemned but I assure you God is not condemning you. God wants you to run to Him; not from Him. Jesus already died for you. There may be a feeling of conviction. That is the feeling we get when we recognize God wants to help us make changes. That’s a good thing. It means we are spiritually alive. Now He wants to help you! That is what the Holy Spirit does! As we pray and ask God, He helps our inward desires change and even feel disgust for things contrary to His ways. As desires change, change comes!

God's Word will always lead us to God's best. God wants us to purify our minds and thoughts and put off things that defile them. Only faith in the power of the Holy Spirit working in us and prayer to help us change will produce those godly changes we so desire. Our relationship with God and His uninterrupted blessing are too precious to trade for vile and short-term fleshly pleasure.

As Colossians 3:10 says,”... put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator." God helps us become transformed into the best of ourselves—after His image. So let Him do it in you. You are not a slave to anything. You are filled with the overcoming power of the Holy Spirit.  Put on that new self and experience all that God can bring to your life!

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© 2017 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Monday, February 27, 2017

Speak Words That Usher Blessing To Your Life

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


I've been writing about the importance of our words. Do you think words are important? The Lord does!

In the book of Proverbs as He speaks in regards to the wisdom in His words saying, "All the words of my mouth are with righteousness; nothing crooked or perverse is in them. They are all plain to him who understands."(Proverbs 8:8-9 NKJV)  Meditate on this and you'll see that God has created a very high standard for the words He speaks. Since we've been created in His image to are to be imitators of Him, He wants us to pursue this same standard for the words we speak.

Words are important because they carry power. Words have the power to affect and shape how you think, how you believe and how you act. They also impact and influence others in a way greater than you could ever imagine. This is why it is so critical to be careful of what you listen to or allow within you, and to learn to take time to think about what you are saying! You may think, Come on Tim, you're giving the words we speak way too much significance, like they were a life or death situation. If you thought, that, you'd be right. I am. Proverbs 18:21 NIV says, "The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit."

Negative words are spoken around you every day that work to overwhelm any faith you have that God love and cares for you. They work to undermine your faith and confidence in God working i!

One of the greatest examples of harm ever done to a group of people through words, are the words of the negative report that ten of the twelve princes of Israel brought back to God's people after they went and scoped out the promised land God had told them was theirs. He promised them this lush land and promised He would help them take the land. He wanted scouts to go check out how rich the land was so they could come back and give a good report to the people. They weren't supposed to bring back a negative report. God had already promised them that they would be able to overcome every enemy by the strength of His Spirit because He was in covenant with them. When they came back, they started to give a good report but quickly turned to words of fear.

Reading from Numbers 13: 27-28 & 31-33, they spoke these words: "We went into the land to which you sent us, and it does flow with milk and honey! Here is its fruit. But the people who live there are powerful and the cities are fortified and very large. We even saw descendants of Anak (Goliath) there... "We can't attack those people; they are stronger than we are.... The land we explored devours those living in it. All the people we saw there are of great size. We saw the Nephilim there (the descendants of Anak come from the Nephilim). We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them."

This evil and fearful report was not what God wanted them to say. They were to report how rich the land was and then encourage the people with words of faith and trust in God. Instead they spread the spirit of fear to all of God’s people with the exception of two faith filled warriors – Joshua and Caleb. Their bad report talked God’s people out of His promised land. They were too fearful to enter. Joshua and Caleb refuted this evil report and pleaded with them to trust God. God had their best interest at heart. But, those words of fear had done their damage and stole their blessing. They never entered into the promised land.

Every day we are faced with multiple opportunities to pass the test of guarding our hearts from what we hear, and our mouths from spilling negative attitudes and words of doubt and unbelief. Speak negative outcomes in difficult situations and they will undermine the faith of your heart. Keeping your heart and words right cannot be done in your own strength and it's not just about stifling them. It's about letting the Word of God and His promises change your perspective, and the grace of God strengthening you to think on and speak those words of faith! David understood the life of faith in God and his heart reflected it as we see in Psalms 112:4 &7 (NIV) "Even in darkness light dawns for the upright, for the gracious and compassionate and righteous man...He will have no fear of bad news; his heart is steadfast, trusting in the LORD."  Would these be the words that came out your mouth? I want them to be mine! Just speaking these words in adversity makes you stronger and contributes to your faith.

Purposely shape the words of your mouth to speak God’s promises. You may have adverse circumstances facing you but speak and pray promises. You will find that your words spoken in agreement with God will strengthen your faith and usher miracles into your life. Let your words reflect your faith, not your doubts!

Psalms 46:1“God is my refuge and strength, my very present help in trouble.”

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

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Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2017 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Friday, February 24, 2017

There is Joy Ahead For Those That Trust God



Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

About six years ago, our daughter, her husband, and our two granddaughters who lived next door to us, made the decision to become missionaries to Peru. It was so wonderful to see them make such a sacrificial life-choice for the Lord, but the thought of not seeing them every day ripped our hearts out. I could barely talk about if for over a year without tearing up. The season of life with them leading up to this day had been awesome. They were over to our house daily and we enjoyed their love and smiles continuously. And it would quickly come to an end as we knew it. This happens in life. We go through seasons—good and bad, that come to an end and lead toward another.  I think most people, even non-bible readers are familiar with the words from Ecclesiastes 3:1 (NKJV) that says, "To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven..." 

No one is excluded from the experience of change. Changes happen that are predictable and changes happen that are unpredictable. Some feel wonderful and others are painful beyond words. For that reason, when you are in a good season of life, it's important to appreciate what you have, knowing that at some point, it will change. Hug your children because they will grow up. Love your youth because you will grow old. Love your great job because something about it will change. Love every blessing that God that has given and be thankful.  Ephesians 5:20 (TLB) "Always give thanks for everything to our God and Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ."  When something changes that creates pain in the moment, know that though it might have taken you by surprise, it did not take God by surprise. God has blessing planned ahead and a new season of joy for you. Let God move your forward. Let God heal your heart with time. And trust Him for the good yet to come! It does when you trust and lean on Him.  Psalm 112:4 (NLT) "Light shines in the darkness for the godly. They are generous, compassionate, and righteous."


The following was from my wife's journal regarding those days...

A week ago, my daughter, son-in-law and two granddaughters finished packing up the house they’d lived in for the past five years. They had heard a call in their heart to become missionaries in Peru, and the time had finally arrived for them to leave. I wish I could tell you that I was this noble, self-sacrificing mom, who only thought about all the good that they would be able to do on the mission field. Frankly, I asked God, with all due respect, if He could pick someone else’s children to send…you know, kids who had a mom who would blog about how honored and thrilled she was that her kids were chosen to follow such a beautiful path in life.

It wasn’t that I wasn’t proud of them…I was. And it wasn’t that I wasn’t supportive of them…I was. I just loved having them live next door…for a lot of reasons. One reason being this. Each morning, when I’d head into the kitchen to turn on the coffee maker, I’d glance through my kitchen window, which happened to face one of their bedroom windows. And on some of those mornings, I would see the adorable faces of one of my granddaughters peering out that window!

Well, the first morning after they had left, I was once again at the kitchen sink…looking into that very empty window. My heart sank, and tears rolled down my face. I considered closing the shade, so I wouldn’t have to ever look into that empty window again. But I didn’t…and one day this week it happened. I didn’t feel the same sadness…because God gently spoke to my heart what He speaks to each of us when there’s an empty place in our life. That He already knew what would be emptied…and He already had a plan…a wonderful plan to fill it with something good! It wasn’t that it would replace what had already been there…it would just re-fill that empty place with more of His goodness …goodness on top of goodness! So now when I see that window? It’s a loving reminder that even though I can’t see it yet, something good is on the way…for me…and for you too!

Jeremiah 29:11 MSG ~ I know what I’m doing. I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for.

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

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Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2017 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Your Words Matter So Master Them

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


We have definitely entered into a new season of time when it comes to cultural behavior. For years, modern society prided itself in leaving unruly barbaric actions and conversations behind, and becoming a more restrained, appropriate speaking and acting culture.  I think most people today would agree with me that we've gone backwards. Maybe social media giving everyone a more public voice they never had is a part of that. Definitely hiding behind fake names so that people can say and do whatever they want in social media, is created a boldness for letting it all fly!  I have said and written for some time, that culture was not to define Christianity or how God wants us to live, but that we as Christians, were to a restraining force on culture, beginning with ourselves!

I don't know anyone whose tongue hasn't gotten them in trouble at some point in life. Mine sure has. I used to think my tongue was uncontrollable until the Bible taught me differently. I learned that God wants me to learn to control it with the help of the Holy Spirit. 

James 3:8-10 NIV instructs us of a profound truth. "… no man can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison..."

James 3:3-6 NIV tells us more about this untameable thing. It says, "When we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we can turn the whole animal. Or take ships as an example. Although they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are steered by a very small rudder wherever the pilot wants to go. Likewise 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 the tongue is this unruly, then what can we do? The first step is to recognize this truth and come to grips with it. You can't fix your tongue yourself. That includes you and I. God is not lying when He says "...NO MAN can tame the tongue."  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 tame the tongue. The Holy Spirit will help you tame your tongue through a number of ways. I'll only go into one of them today.

Proverbs 18:21 NIV says, "The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit."  The Word from God says that WE WILL EAT from the fruit of our Words. You will experience the consequences of your words—good or bad.

Ask the Holy Spirit to help you hear the destructive words or phrases you that spill from your mouth so easily.  He is never going to change! I'm stuck with this situation and there is nothing I can do about it. Or, Nothing goes my way. Or, I'm never going to find the right man to build a life with. There just isn't any good men out there. Words like this reveal that this is your thinking and this is your heart’s faith—or lack of it! You pray for one thing but turn around and say the opposite is going to happen! I guess there is zero faith in your words or your heart!

What is in your heart comes out your mouth through that uncontrollable creature called the tongue. The words you speak are containers of power that spill from you and either bless or contaminate your world. And they even influence your health. Proverbs 12:18 NIV “Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.”

Your words affect everything and because they do, we need to guard our hearts by speaking right words. Proverbs 4:23 NIV says, “Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life.” Again, that is true whether you believe it or not! Your mouth is the barometer of your heart. And an indicator of what your faith and body is going to experience.

Don’t destroy your life and don’t destroy others. Pray and ask the Holy Spirit to help you understand the power of Words. Then listen to what you say. You will become dependent upon the Lord for what it takes to change your words and controlling that little creature called the tongue. When you lean on Him, you will sense His grace and help in restraining your tongue and feel great for it! Walking down this road will result in an absolute transformation of life and path to greater blessing!

Proverbs 15:4 (NIV) "The tongue that brings healing is a tree of life, but a deceitful tongue crushes the spirit."

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© 2017 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Lord, What is Going on Here?

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Have you ever heard anyone say, God, what is going on here? Have you ever said those words when going through a difficult or challenging time of adversity? Over the years, I have tried to share insight into this question because it is a question that will continue to be asked until we are one day with the Lord.

Satan, who is a very real force in the earth, loves this question. I would imagine that if any one statement gave him extreme pleasure, it would be this statement. Why is that? Because it is usually asked when someone is feeling isolated and beaten up or persecuted by circumstances and forces unknown to them. Satan loves it because he knows that most people will somehow blame God which is the very result he would hope for.

First of all, understand that every human being was created with an inward desire to know and understand God. Consequently, every human being goes on many soul searches in their lifetime. People abandon faith in God when they wrongly understand God's nature and character and attribute the negative things happening in their life as God's fault. Although our human intellect is a wonderful God-given gift to help us observe and comprehend all that God has created, it has great limitations in its ability to see or understand spiritual truths.

God gives us a capacity to understand things that are beyond the human intellect, but that can only happen when there is a joining of our human spirit with the Holy Spirit of God. That happens when one surrenders their life to Jesus Christ and personally receives Him as their Lord and Savior. At the moment of that commitment to God, He gives us His Holy Spirit to live an abide with us. The Holy Spirit is the teacher of our human spirit. It is He had that begins to open the eyes of our heart and bring understanding to the scriptures. It is He who helps us begin to see life through God's eyes. John 16:13 says, “...the Holy Spirit ...will guide you into all truth.” It is through our spirit that we have the ability and capacity to comprehend and grasp the revealed truths of God that the human intellect cannot. Let's look to God's Word to see this truth.

1 Cor 2:11-14 "… no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. We have not received the spirit of the world but the Holy Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by His Holy Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words. The man without the help of God's Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned."

When people try to figure out God through human intellect and reasoning, they in a sense, create their own god. I say that because they shape Him in their minds to what they think He should be, and create God to their liking. Your human intellect is not capable of doing so. Consequently, you will either wrongly decide that there is no God, or you will ultimately create a version of God to your own liking—something that has happened worldwide throughout history and that Jesus Himself warned us would happen. Only God Himself has the right to tell us who He is and what His desire for us and this life is!

The devil, not God, loves the confusion that comes from people creating their own version of God and how He operates. Satan is the author of confusion. 1 Corinthians 14:33 says, "For God is not the author of confusion but of peace…" Keeping people confused about God through lies and deceits is Satan’s greatest triumph—although quite temporary!

Satan's power is in his ability to get people to believe a lie. Jesus revealed this in John 8:44 saying, "... for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies." He lied to Adam and Eve to steal what God had for them in the Garden. He has been deceiving man ever since. His first goal through deception is misleading people about who God is. Satan works to deceive people into believing that he does not exist—that he is only a fictional caricature of Halloween and horror movies. He then deceives people into thinking that the evil that has attacked their life has come upon them by the hand of God.

Too many people who are experiencing hardship, never really discover that there is an enemy of their soul that works to destroy their life. They think every evil, hurt, and mishap happens at the hand of God. Thus, when bad things happen to people, they ask the question, God, what is going on here? Why are you doing this to me?  as though it were God’s doing. Satan loves that. He works evil and God gets the blame!
So, today, correct that thinking! God is not your problem. Run to Him, not from Him. Receive Jesus as your Savior. Ask God to reveal His love and help to you through His scriptures. And then pray in faith believing that God is good and wants to help you!

Jesus died so we could become children of God! God loves His children. See it in the scriptures and put faith in it.  Let verses like Psalm 37:39-40 become the anchor of your prayer of faith.  "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 (have faith and believe in) Him."

Jesus is your hope, your help and your answer—not your problem. Cry out to Him in faith believing that He loves and will help you! Cling to that! Don't let go. Thank Him that He is the answer until you see His hand deliver you!

Psalm 34:6-7 (NLT) “I cried out to the Lord in my suffering, and He heard me. He set me free from all my fears. For the angel of the Lord guards all who fear Him, and He rescues them.”

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

Would you like to Partner with Pastor Tim? Click here and Learn More...

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© 2017 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Monday, February 20, 2017

How to Keep Positive in Difficult Times


Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


I was talking with someone recently whose life is thriving and who is on top of the world. I talked to a couple of other people who are struggling because they are experiencing some difficulties. As good as it may be for some, there are more that are experiencing difficult hardships. It could be economic, health related, relational issues, or whatever.  If you are one of those people, how do you keep encouraged while working through difficult times? Let me encourage you with what God has taught me to do over the years.

First, I examine my heart. Is my heart and walk with the Lord in the place it should be? If it is, I can move forward. If it isn’t, I need to what Mary did—sit at the feet of Jesus. He is Lord. He is Savior. And without Him I can do nothing. Prideful people never make it to this place. They try to move forward in their own strength—even when they've strayed from where they know they should be in the Lord. Pride can keep you on a wrong path and keep you there for a very long time. But, there is a better way. Instead, take a time out. Pray about fasting time-wasters or things you know are not pleasing to God. Instead, give yourself over to more time with God in His Word, prayer, and things that bring you into His presence. In those times, examine your walk with God and don’t lie to yourself. You're not fooling Him! If there is enough evidence to suggest, you've strayed from God, then pray and ask God to help strengthen you and give yourself over to those things that would put you on a better path with Him. The Holy Spirit will help you. (And trust me, do this and you'll feel so much better quickly!)   2 Corinthians 10:3-5 NIV reminds us, “For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world (guns, swords, etc.) On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” 
Secondly, take the Apostle Paul’s counsel and be aware of the devil’s devices. Satan is the author of lies, attacks, discouragement and hopelessness. These things are not from the Lord but from Satan to discourage and get you to give up on God! Troubles can get in your head and become all you think and talk about. If that's the case, they've become a demonic stronghold. We are to take hold of the negative thoughts, fears, and worries that create strongholds and cast them down. Imagine them as muddy pigs walking across your beautiful wood floor. How would you respond to that? Grab a broom and scream and chase them out in Jesus Name! Take charge!

When you've done that, purpose to get your mind on something else. Listen to or read something written by a Bible teacher or Pastor you relate to, that would encourage you. Get your mind back on right thoughts. Colossians 3:1-2 (NIV) says, "Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things."  

Thirdly, meditate and focus on the multitude of promises that reveal God’s will for you to be a light and a blessing, and to be blessed in all your ways. Make them the meditation of your heart and proclamation of your mouth. I don’t mix thoughts and words of despair and God’s promises together. Oil and water doesn't mix. God and the devil don’t mix. My heart, my mind, and my words belong to God. In God’s strength and in the name of Jesus, I take my authority over what I think and say.

Finally, before I read the Word, I ask God to speak hope, promise, and encouragement to my heart. When He does—and surely He will, I think on it, say it, share it, and pray it. Getting your life on a good path and meditating on what God wants for you builds your faith and encourages your heart! Things will begin to look and feel better in your life!

Jeremiah 15:16 (NLT) "When I discovered your words, I devoured them. They are my joy and my heart’s delight, for I bear your name, LORD God of Heaven’s Armies."




In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

Would you like to Partner with Pastor Tim? Click here and Learn More...

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© 2017 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Friday, February 17, 2017

Promotion, Risks, Fears and God's blessing!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


We have a high deck off the back of our house. As you walk out on the deck, there is a double spotlight on the wall. Every year, robins decide to build a nest on it. There is just the right space and I think they like the heat of it at night. It's right outside our kitchen window so I have been able to watch the entire process each year—from the building of the nest, laying and hatching of the eggs, the mother nurturing her babies, and the fledgling (the babies growing their wings and learning to fly.) It's always fun to watch and should start in a month or two from now.

Last year as was entertaining as always. The parents had been feeding worms to the babies in the nest. The had hatched about two weeks prior and where at the stage where their little heads were just above the nest line with their beaks pointing straight up waiting for their meals to arrive. The time of fledgling was near.  I had been trying to catch that moment and video tape it if I could.  But, it happened while I was at work. I came home and they were all gone. As I looked around and did a little CSI investigation, I noticed the funniest thing. There was bird poop on the house siding just above the nest and all over below the nest. There was bird poop in almost a straight line on the deck floor to the deck rail.  And then on the deck railing there were five piles of bird poop perfectly spaced in this linear row. I can only surmise that they were scared out of their gourd as the mother or father bird was pushing them out of the nest.
Our deck is high off the ground. So as the baby birds were lined up on this deck rail overlooking the height of their first flight—you could say, each of them crapped their pants (or no pants) right where they sat on the rail. They were staring at their first 15 foot drop to the ground. I was sad that I didn’t get to witness it but the evidence left behind and how it was left behind was hysterical. It made it easy for me to imagine.

Over the years of my Christian walk, I’ve changed more than you could ever believe. The Holy Spirit living in every believer is a transforming power. He helped me change from a young adult wandering aimlessly through the early years of adulthood, caught up in drugs and alcohol, to an utterly complete new person as promised in 2 Corinthians 5:17 (NKJV). "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new." Since that time, my life has been a complete makeover filled with purpose with Jesus as the center. And it's affected every other part of my life.

God’s word has taught me life-changing principles of love, forgiveness, godly thinking, the importance of words and speaking hope and encouragement, and has helped me learn to walk in the fruit of the Spirit of God. His Word has also taught me the importance of being faithful, walking in servant leadership, and how to be selfless rather than selfish. It’s also helped me become a person that can take on responsibility, lead, and raise up leaders. And through all this, doors of opportunity have been repeatedly opened to me.

Opportunity is a funny thing. It most often represents new learning curves and challenges you've not walked in before. That has always meant leaving my comfort zone.  The easiest decision to make when you are in your comfort zone is the decision to stay where you are. Why? Because you already know what you’re doing!

I don’t take risks or make changes just for the sake of change. I make changes because God is dealing with me to make changes—sometimes internally, and sometimes in taking on more or new responsibilities to further what He has put in my heart to accomplish.

When I do make changes, they usually carry risk—the first risk being a new chance to succeed or fail. I often feel like those little birds sitting up on the rail of my deck being coaxed to take their first flight. You hope things will result in great life-change and blessing. But, like those little birds, I look out and see how far I can fall. I imagine every fear. And like those little birdies, I poop on the rail. I go through short bouts of anxiety thinking What am I doing? But then I hear His voice rise up within me and hear the His encouragement saying,  “For I can do everything through Christ who gives me the strength.” (Philippians 4:13 NLT) I begin to receive the Lord’s comfort and strength thanking Him for it and I hear more. I hear Psalm 118:8. "It is better to trust the Lord than to put confidence in people."  I am further encouraged and strengthened and hear more still. Psalm 118:7 NLT "Yes, the Lord is for me; He will help me."

I was never one to change or take risks until I gave my life to the Lord and learned He guides me down the path of my destiny, a step at a time. Because of His love toward me, I know it’s planned with good things that will transform and enrich my life. It might seem risky to trust the Lord and like the baby Robins I may poop on the rail at the risks, but as He coaxes me and pushes me through it. And like the birdies, I do learn to fly. I’ll learn to change and stretch and take risks so that I may live the life that is worth living!

Hebrews 13:5. “… For God has said, "I will never fail you. I will never forsake you."

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

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Published by Pastor Tim Burt
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Wednesday, February 15, 2017

The Most Important Thing To Know In a World Full of Rebellion!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


If you feel like there is demonic activity coming against your life, make sure this isn't why!

If there were ever attitudes that you would want to embrace, that would transform and help develop a part of your character, it would be these: learning to develop an attitude of sincere respect for people, and learning to honor authority.

Learning to show each and every individual respect is understanding that each and every person was created by God. They may not be who you like. They may on the surface level be flawed in their thinking and actions—maybe in your view, beyond words. Regardless, they are God's creation whom Jesus went to the cross and died for. This is the basis of respect to hold to when there doesn't appear to be any other reason for respecting them. Going deeper, it's critical that we all touch this truth of our own life—that we are flawed and but by the grace of God, we'd also be doomed to destruction and Hell. Coming from that place daily, can exalt your thankfulness to God each morning, and set the table of your heart to walk in the attitude of respect toward each individual.

I know it might take ten seconds for someone to say or do something that causes you to cringe and feel disrespect. I get that. We all experience that! But, showing respect will continually remind you that you are a light for Jesus, and an influence to them, whether they receive it or not. When you sincerely look for the good in them, you're prepared with a platform to bring words of grace into their life if that opportunity arises. Never forget this truth! No matter how broken and hardened someone is, the DNA of searching for God and knowing Him is within their being!

Oh, I am just like you. I can too often and too easily be rubbed the wrong way by a person. I can look and quickly see negative things that make me want to treat a person with less respect. That is where I as a Christian have to back up and realize that they might not yet know Jesus. They may be clueless in understanding that they have been created for a God given-purpose and have a role to serve the Lord in. Their personal lifestyle may be filled with sin and contrary to everything I believe. That would have the potential to tempt me not to respect someone. And even more so, if they proclaim to be Christians but with little evidence to the fact. But, there was a time when I was the one who was lost. There was a time when I was clueless to whom Jesus really was. There was a time when I was an enemy through my thoughts, words, and deeds to God’s plan in this earth. There was a time when I was living like a reprobate and noted by some as not worthy of respect. And there was a time in my Christian walk where there appeared to be little evidence.

Secondly, for those in authority, it doesn’t stop at respect. We are called to esteem the office (the position of authority) people hold. That doesn't mean esteeming them but the office they stand in. We are instructed by God to show them the honor bestowed by the position of authority to the degree the office holds. Whether they are a soldier, or a school teacher, a police officer, or a Mayor—any office of authority is to receive respect and honor. Giving that respect means believing the best, giving the benefit of the doubt, and trusting they know more about their position than you do since it's their world. If you were in one of those positions, you would desire it and appreciate it.  Every parent would like the respect (and once in a while) the honor of being a parent. In the work place, as a boss, you would appreciate that respect and honor. Most people know how to do that and will do so to some degree if they feel the person is in a high enough office. But showing respect and honoring authority goes beyond the President of the company you work for or the Police Chief or the Governor of your state.

God wants us to show respect to every person as though each person were walking in some significant “office” because they are. Their office is their God-given role they are walking in today whether it appears significant to you or not. Their life is significant to God.

This country and many countries around the world are presently in a state of rebellion—the disrespecting and dishonoring of authority. You probably have no idea what those words spiritually mean or how bad that is. The Bible compares rebellion to witchcraft and an operating base for demonic activity.1 Samuel 15:23 says, "For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft..."  Disrespect and dishonoring is rebellion! By carrying those attitudes, you are opening the door to the devil and demonic activity in your life.  The pattern of disrespect and dishonor and rebellion in this nation is opening this nation to great degree of demonic activity which it will greatly regret. If this has been a part of your life, you need to repent to the Lord and stop it immediately! It is a playing with something worse than fire!

The following scriptures may bring questions to you, but pray and ask God to help you grasp them. The fact is, initially you have to trust God. He knows the big picture. As you do and obey Him, He sheds light on scriptures and helps you understand the truth of them and how they work. If you don't, you'll stay in rebellion and the fruit of it will manifest in your life guaranteed!

Romans 13:1-7 (NIV) " Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God.  Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves.  For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and he will commend you.  
For he is God's servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God's servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer.  Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also because of conscience.  This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God's servants, who give their full time to governing.  Give everyone what you owe him: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor."



Phil 2:3-5 gives us instruction that makes respect for all possible. “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus…”

Learning to show respect and honor authority will change you. It will develop godly character within you and lead you to walk in greater love and warmth shining brighter as a Christian in a dark and cold world. And it will protect you from the demonic attacks that come with rebellion!

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

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Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2017 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

God's Kind of Love Protects Relationships!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


A friend recently told me that he and his wife had received a notice in the mail carrying delightful news from their bank. Evidently the bank had gone through some routine self-auditing and found a mistake in which it owed them money from charges on a loan that they should not have been charged for. They received a nice chunk of change unexpectedly. In many cases, such as this instance, record-keeping is very necessary. When it comes to marriages and relationships, tallying wrongs and record-keeping in can lead to great harm.

If you have ever had to work in a job where you’ve had to take inventory, you know that you have to keep record of every little item on the shelf.  When someone has hurt us, it seems as though Satan is right there to increase our memory capability for remembering wrongs. We seem to want to inventory  every one of them. 1 Corinthians 13:5 NLT says, “...Love keeps no record of being wronged." The literal Greek words say think no evil and their literal definitions imply, Keep no inventory of the evil, worthless, deprived things someone has done to you. Why do you think that is? I'll tell you. God doesn't want us keeping a record of wrongs because if we did, there would never be a relationship that would survive—not one!

Great relationships generally begin with a mutual attraction of personalities that ignite a fair amount of excitement as they discover each other. If all goes well, dating with a deeper desire for friendship and more happens. If the pings and thoughts of love are sparked, then there is also great grace in play. That grace is almost a blinding force that keeps each other from noticing the little faults and idiosyncrasies that exist in each other. From there a true love and trust takes root.

As time goes on, some of the earlier efforts of demonstrating best behavior begin to wane. Stories begin to be repeated and conversations aren't quite as exciting or fresh. Because people begin to get more comfortable with those they love and trust, they become more carefree in their behavior. I know few men that have ever passed gas in front of a girl they were trying to meet and impress. Yet those same men drive their wives crazy with this rude habit in their marriage.

As relationships become very comfortable, that blinding new-love grace begins to lift. Idiosyncrasies begin to be noted. Little faults such as he’s always showing up late, start to be mentally recorded and the inventory process has begun. At this point, relationships face opportunities to deteriorate. If you begin to note and mentally record and meditate on faults, then there will come a time where your heart and mouth will slip and spew them out. When spoken, they gain power to do damage. Someone will be hurt. Schism will manifest, and the relationship that was a gift from God will deteriorate, possibly even to the destruction of the relationship. This is why God says, love keeps no record of wrongs! Problems do need to be appropriately worked through and couples need time to adapt to each other. Marriage is the process of two people becoming one flesh—learning to adapt to each other, and this takes time! God's kind of love is the love that makes it work. That's because love is also about preferring one another and laying down of your own self for another. These are the ingredients for fixing problems and enriching relationships.

We could all be guilty of having a list of faults that if recorded, would make us look like much less appealing. As a matter of fact, many people are secretly fearful that someone is making note of their faults and telling them to others. Part of our motivation in not talking about someone else’s faults is because we don't want someone focusing and blabbing ours! Proverbs 16:28 says, "A man who says pleasant things to someone’s face but stirs up strife and dissension behind their back is perverse and a gossip that can separate even close friends."

When my sons were young, they collected baseball cards. When they got a card they really valued, they’d put it in a plastic case so that it won't get bent and devalued. They’d do the same with coins. Because they valued them, they protected them. They wouldn't think of casually keeping them unprotected in their pockets while they walked through their day.

Many relationships start out with high value but we forget to encase or protect them. We let loose and casual words regarding their faults first take thought and eventually root in our hearts. Then at some point we speak them. The quickest way to deteriorate what was once a good relationship is to start taking inventory of wrongs and then start talking about them. This is something husbands and wives, families, and friends do all the time. Yet God says, "Love keeps no record of wrongs."

It is critical to diligently cover people that you care for and value. Because you love them, you will pray in faith over them. Devalue them with your words, and over time, you will find that the desire to pray for them wanes. When you stop praying or covering them, they lose the prayers of someone that may have been the one person who was holding back Satan’s attacks from their life. Your desire to cover them in prayer from a real position of faith and love becomes difficult to impossible.

So, hold on to that love for them by tearing up their fault list. Look for the good and speak and exhort them for it. Don’t bury things that bother you. Just find an appropriate way to lovingly talk and work through them. It’s easier to work on desired changes one at a time then having someone present you with an inventory list. Renee and I have learned that from experience. God’s not keeping a record of your wrongs.  Follow His example and count people precious and something to protect. As God says, Isaiah 43:25 "I, even I, am he who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more.”

Proverbs 17:9 (NIV) "He who covers over an offense promotes love, but whoever repeats the matter separates close friends."

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© 2017 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Monday, February 13, 2017

Are You the Boss of Your Flesh?

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Probably like you, I’d describe my life as fairly busy. It seems like it’s been that way for me for the past 37 years. Being busy is no badge of honor. Being productive is. And if in being productive, that includes being a blessing to others, then high-five! I would rather have that be the description of my life than just sitting around—well at least most of the time. It seems like about one every five weeks, I actually have a weekend free with nothing on the schedule. When they do come, my flesh screams to be lazy.

Maybe you're like me. My heart wants to be productive and do good things while my flesh would love to be more sedentary. Even when those rare moments of free time came in my life, doing nothing was not an option. Renee could always use help with the kids. I wanted to play with them or take them on little outings to parks. There was always a project to do or errand to get done. I was a long distance runner for 27 years and felt guilty when I didn't get out for my run. And then I loved to garden or golf if I could squeeze it in. I had two widows and a single mom as neighbors who often needed help. And my church was filled with people who wanted my attention and help 24/7—so who had time to be lazy? But, boy did I want to! And I’ve noticed that over all the years, that never changed. There are times when I think I can hear my flesh screaming, Will you leave me alone. I just want to do nothing!

The reason I don't leave my flesh alone is because of something I heard within my heart one night as a young man. I had just put the kids to bed and sat down to watch television. Suddenly from within, this thought came, Do you just want to sit around all your life watching people on TV who do something with theirs, or do you want to be someone who other people would want to watch and learn from? I turned off the TV and just sat there thinking about that. I felt it was the voice of God leading me. I knew I wanted to be someone who had an influence on others for God. I knew I wanted to be someone who contributed to making life better for others.

As I just sat there asking the Lord what He wanted me to see, it came to me. It it was in a humorous way! I had a flashback of my son Peter at 4 years old, saying to his 8-year-old bossy sister, You're not the boss! My daughter often thought she was mom to her three little brothers and Peter would always respond, You're not the boss. It made me laugh as I thought about it and I knew the Lord was telling me my flesh wasn't the boss! I was! I was always going to have to be the boss over my own lazy flesh. If I was going to succeed, my lazy flesh could not dominate my thinking or efforts. The Lord was preparing me to accept opportunities that would demand commitment and great effort. I knew I would have to become faithful and diligent to those commitments that God led me to take on. I’d have to continuously receive and walk in God’s grace for strength, right motivation, and a good attitude—because if not, my flesh would scream for lazy time and put up a fight. God’s grace did prevail in my life but you would think after all these years, I would be past lazy flesh wanting its way. It's never happened.

Proverbs 18:9 (ESV) says, "Whoever is slack in his work is a brother to him who destroys." This verse exploded in me. I had never thought of lazy as being a destroyer!  Proverbs 13:4 (ESV) says,"The soul of the sluggard craves and gets nothing, while the soul of the diligent is richly supplied." I believe we all want success and blessing but God teaches us that it comes through diligence and hard work and His grace (His divine help), not through just dreaming and hoping. 

All this has helped me grow and patiently walk out my life pushing myself to do what is profitable for myself, my family, and for the blessing of others. Renee has been the same as she pushes just as hard!

Today I am looking in the mirror and reminding my flesh who’s the boss. It’s my spirit-man taught and led by God's word and His precious Holy Spirit. There is too much need and hurt in the world to be lazy. Our families and the world around us need God’s love and touch. Lazy cancels that from happening. Being the boss over lazy flesh through God's grace, gives opportunity for God to have His way in me.

Today I will think upon those powerful and motivating words of God spoken through the Apostle Paul:

1 Corinthians 9:24-27 “…Run in such a way as to get life’s prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. Therefore I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air. No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.”

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

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Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2017 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Saturday, February 11, 2017

The Blessing and Power of Unity!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


As you begin to walk out your day, you can count on the fact that there will be something said or done that could annoy or insult you! You might immediately agree with me, or not! But just remember this and watch! It will happen. Why will it happen? It will happen because the devil knows that God's blessing is in unity and so his strategy is to prevent it by causing annoyance and offense!

Proverbs 12:16 (NIV) says, “A fool shows his annoyance at once, but a prudent man overlooks an insult."  For the most part, an insult is an intended offense although many people say insulting things without ever realizing it. Then there are all the little annoyances that aren't really an insult but they provoke us like one. For example, the car that squeezes in front of you the second you allow just a little extra space in front of you on the highway. Or the person who cuts you off when you’re speaking because they weren't listening to what you were saying to begin with. If a list of things that irritate or insult people were constructed, it could be endless.

Some people let every little thing get to them and according to God's Word, that makes them foolish. "A fool shows his annoyance at once..." People that are easily and quickly annoyed have forgotten their own flaws and shortcomings.





Let me share two things that will help reduce getting quickly annoyed and lead to more unity. First, know that this truly is a strategy to rob you of blessing. Be smarter than that! Letting the multitude of possible annoyances get to you will eventually cause you to despise people. That would be a victory toward the devil's effort to deprive you of blessing. God's Word says we should not be ignorant of the devil's devices. So, lean on God, forgive others as God has forgiven you, and be merciful toward mistakes and annoyances knowing you are guilty of them too. Matthew 5:7 (NIV) says, "Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy." Be merciful and you'll also be shown mercy. 


Secondly, know the blessing of unity. It is poetically revealed by God in Psalm 133:1-3 (NLT). "How wonderful and pleasant it is when brothers live together in harmony! For harmony is as precious as the anointing oil that was poured over Aaron’s head, that ran down his beard and onto the border of his robe. Harmony is as refreshing as the dew from Mount Hermon that falls on the mountains of Zion. And there the LORD has pronounced his blessing, even life everlasting." 
"For harmony is as precious as the anointing oil..."When the Bible talks about anointing, it is implying that the presence and power of God is there. And the Bible teaches that the anointing of God breaks the power and deceitful lies of the enemy.  So the takeaway is, unity is anointed and full of God's presence and help. It's refreshing like dew is to the ground when it's dry. Ultimately unity brings collaboration of effort that leads to greater blessing for all! This is why the devil tries to bring annoyance and offense—to get you made at people instead of being unified with them. When you watch the news, doesn't it seem like most of the world hates each other? Now you understand why! It's the devil's strategy—and it is exactly that, a demonic strategy.

Because you begin to show mercy toward others, patience begins to develop in you. You'll eventually become good at overlooking offenses—like water off a ducks back. Proverbs 19:11 (NIV) says, "A man's wisdom gives him patience; it is to his glory to overlook an offense." Once you learn these practices, you are on your way to more unity in your life! And unity will bring blessing making your marriage better and your friendships better. And the world will actually feel more friendly to you—at least if you turn off the news!

So, when something is provoking you, look within and see if you’ve done the same thing. Whether you have or haven’t, blow off any and every offense you can and enjoy people and life and unity more!

James 2:13 (NIV) "... Mercy triumphs over judgment!"

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© 2017 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/