About Tim Burt

Sunday, December 31, 2017

If You Belong to Jesus, Here's How God Sees You!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

Note from Pastor Tim: God bless you and Happy New Year to you! I will not be writing again until January 15th as Renee and I will be on the mission field. I'll update you when we return. There are hundreds of posts for you to go back and read! I know they'll bless you! If you are considering end-of-year giving, please consider this ministry and thank you in advance for your prayers as we continue to reach for the world and mission field with the good news of Jesus Christ! God bless you!

I received the Lord into my heart and as my Savior in 1977 at the age of 24 years old. In the early season of my Christianity, growing in the Lord had been a wonderful, yet long and sometimes very difficult process. The only reason I say difficult is not because of hard times or bad things that happened. The process of growth was difficult because there were so many times where I felt like I stood before the Lord stained from sin, filthy, and unworthy of Jesus' sacrifice for me.

I remember shortly after giving my life to Jesus and asking Him to forgive me of ALL my sins. I felt so clean and wonderful. Like a man who was given a second chance to live life right. I remember how I felt like it was yesterday even though it was many years ago. I felt so clean and fresh. I was determined not to do anything to violate the Lord and "dirty myself." As much as I didn't want to, it didn't take long.

If you've ever had a pair of new white pants, new shoes, or a brand new car, you know how much you want to keep them fresh and new. The reality is, they just won't stay new! That became a reality that made my growing process in the Lord seem difficult. Much like Adam in the garden, I wanted to hide when I did something wrong. Thank God someone taught me to do the opposite of that. I was taught to run to God not from Him. When I did, I often felt much like Joshua the high priest in Zechariah chapter 3. He also was standing before the Lord with filthy garments. The Lord did for him what He does for all who believe and receive Jesus and receive His forgiveness. He exchanged filthy garments for new snow-white robes.

Over the years, I have renewed my mind to God's Word. I now know that my own righteousness is like filthy rags compared to the Lord's. I have learned that I have to stand before God in the robes Jesus provided for me by His love on the cross—His robes of righteousness. It took me years to really understand that it is not my own righteousness that gets me into Heaven or allows me to stand washed before Jesus. It was His sacrifice and the gift—an unearned grace from God that made me worthy before Him. His robes of righteousness cover me and my faults. Like Joshua, God wants us to permanently exchange our filthy garments for His rich robes of righteousness.

You see the reason Joshua was before the throne of God was prayer. That's what a high priest did. He interceded to God in behalf of others. He needed to be confident in his right standing with God. Just like us, Joshua was standing before the Lord, being accused as unworthy by Satan. Look at these verses and you will see. Zechariah 3:1-5 NIV “Then he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right side to accuse him. The LORD said to Satan, "The LORD rebuke you, Satan! … Is this not a brand plucked from the fire? Now Joshua was dressed in filthy clothes as he stood before the angel. The angel said to those who were standing before him, "Take off his filthy clothes." Then he said to Joshua, "See, I have taken away your sins, and I will put rich garments on you."  Then I said, "Put a clean turban on his head." So they put a clean turban on his head and clothed him, while the angel of the LORD stood by."

The Lord rebuked Satan. He said, "Is this not a brand plucked from the fire?" What did that mean - "a brand plucked from the fire?" What is a brand? You remember! It was one of those hot iron pokers that sat in a blazing fire until it was red-hot. They branded cattle with it as a sign or mark of who they belonged to. Joshua belonged to God. So do we! Jesus paid the price for us!

As God’s children, we represent Him in this earth. We are clothed with His righteousness and presented before God as righteous! We present His gospel as we are led. We pray and intercede for people. We minister to people. And God says we have been given the privilege to come before Him. “Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” Hebrews 4:16 (NKJV) Anytime you stand before God to pray and intercede, Satan will point out your faults and try to disqualify you—to literally embarrass you before the Lord. We are to go to the throne room and stand before God clothed in His righteousness. We shouldn't listen to the condemnation of Satan. Jesus cleanses us, not condemns us! Then we can come in the authority of His Word and represent others before His throne—others who need our prayer. Their life may depend on it.

One night a woman at church said to me, Pastor Burt, you don't know me but my name is so and so. A couple of months ago, you were given my name and you and your prayer group held me up in prayer. She said, My friend who is in your group told me you all prayed for me. She said, I had very bad cancer, a terrible report, and I had to go in for surgery. Your group had prayed for me. When I went in to surgery, they closed me back up and said something had changed and they did not need to do surgery. She told me she was fine and wanted me to hear this great report. Praise God!

God wants you to know you are His righteousness and His hands and feet in this earth so that He, through you, can "destroy the works of the devil." (1 John 3:8) We are now His body in this earth and He still wants to do what Jesus did then. Walk in your robes and in your authority! You've been branded as His!

Revelation 5:10 (TLB) "And you have gathered them into a kingdom and made them priests of our God; they shall reign upon the 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





If your heart has been touched by God's love through Fresh Manna, would you like to help Pastor Tim reach others also? Please prayerfully consider donating. No gift is too small. 

Donate now!

How Your Donations Are Used? click here

Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2017 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Friday, December 29, 2017

Being More Used of God! A Worthy Goal!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

Note from Pastor Tim: God bless you and Happy New Year to you! I will not be writing again until January 15th as Renee and I will be on the mission field. I'll update you when we return. There are hundreds of posts for you to go back and read! I know they'll bless you! If you are considering end-of-year giving, please consider this ministry and thank you in advance for your prayers as we continue to reach for the world and mission field with the good news of Jesus Christ! God bless you!

I recently conducted a poll. 73% responded that they believed helping people know Jesus should help direct the purpose of their life. 27 % responded that it should, but wasn't as much as they felt it should. This new year is almost upon us. It's a good topic to discuss with the Lord and ask Him to help you with! Making God's purpose, your purpose, aligns your heart and mind with His and takes you down a better path in life. I know this is an area Christians struggle with because they tell me so. I was stopped at church by a young woman who is a fairly new Christian. She had been trying to share her faith with a co-worker. Not far into the conversation he made the declaration to her that he did not believe like she did and that he was an agnostic. She wasn't sure what that meant and asked me. It's funny how people like to label themselves.

The definition for agnostic is this: One who believes that there can be no proof of the existence of God but does not deny the possibility that God exists. When I hear someone tell me they are agnostic I think, Haven't they ever seen a baby being born? Haven't they ever seen pictures that have come back from the Hubble space telescope? Didn't they study science when they were in school? Haven't they ever been to the top of a mountain and looked around? Haven't they ever studied the miraculous way that the human body works? When I look around, all I see is God. I felt that way before I ever received Jesus as my Savior. That's one of two things that compelled me to seek the truth about God. First, I just had this knowing that there had to be God. Just because I couldn't explain His existence didn't mean He wasn't there. Secondly, all of creation is too sophisticated to be a random accident! People like to think they are smart, but to deny the obvious, is very unintelligent! The identity of God's fingerprint is on everything.

When it comes to believing in Jesus, I often ask people, Do you believe that Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, and Bill Clinton were presidents? Of course! they would say. Well there are people who are on the earth today who weren't yet born when Richard Nixon or Ronald Reagan were alive. They will learn about them from recorded history! Jesus Christ is recorded by the notable Jewish historian Josephus with him saying about Jesus, He was Christ. This is recorded history. The authors of the gospels and many books of the Bible are recorded history and the best kept in all of existing writings! In Josh McDowell's book, Evidence demands a verdict, he makes the case that some of the greatest minds in the world agree that the Bible is the most historically accurate book in the world.

Even though we know all these things and present them to those we are led to share with, there are still and always will be, those who resist the truth. I usually speak to them this way. I ask them if they are honest people. Of course they will say yes. Then I ask them if they are agnostic because they want to be or because they just don't have proof otherwise. Most will say because they don't have proof otherwise. If they want to be agnostic just for the sake of being agnostic, they aren't agnostic at all. They are stubbornly stupid! (I say that in love!) For those that claim to be honest and are truly searching, they can be easily won to the Lord. I say to them, You say you are honest. If God undeniably revealed Himself to you over the next few weeks, would you be honest enough to admit it and give your life over to Jesus? They always say yes. Then I ask them if they will let me pray for them. First I pray that the Lord will open the eyes of their understanding. Then I ask them to repeat these simple words: God, if you are real and Jesus is your son, will you please reveal yourself to me. They might hesitate, saying I don't pray, but I tell them, This is a challenge to determine if God is real. If He is, then these words are pray. If He's not, they're just words and no problem. But if they'll say them sincerely and their heart is open, then God will send people to them and find multiple ways to reveal Himself to them, IF, they will be honest!

I have won many people to the Lord this way. They come back and tell me the many stories and coincidences that they realize couldn't be coincidence at all. They say that it seems like people out of nowhere are talking to them about Jesus. Then they turned on the television and this man looks through the television screen straight at them saying, You can’t afford to go another day without asking Jesus to be your Lord and Savior. Then while they are waiting to have the oil in their car changed, they see this little pamphlet on the table. They pick it up and its talking about the way to receive eternal life as a gift through Jesus Christ. Then someone out of the blue, forwards them a devotion about Jesus. Then on their twitter home page is a tweet that says, Discover Jesus, the only one who will never let you down. The honest ones come back and say, I couldn't deny that all this was coming at me and I could hear your words, God will reveal Jesus Christ and His love to you if you will just open your heart! They can't deny it and they promised not to write it off to coincidence. Before they go on this journey, I tell them how to pray and ask Jesus into their heart so that when this happens, they will know what to do.

We are to try to reach those around us with the love of Jesus. 2 Corinthians 5:11 (NLT) says, “It is because we know this solemn fear of the Lord that we work so hard to persuade others…” 

Understand that we cannot personally reveal God. We can only share the truth of God’s love with others. If their heart is open, God will reveal Himself to them. That is His part and we need to trust it. Arm-twisting  and debates with the hard-hearted has the opposite effect! But, remember that in showing people the scriptures, they aren't ordinary words. Hebrews 4:12 says, “The Word of God is quick and powerful…” If we will lovingly plant the seed of God’s Word in them, God is faithful. He will reveal Himself to those that are truly open and want to know the truth. And you should know that when Jesus told his disciples that the harvest field was ripe, that never changed. It still is! You are actually surrounded by weary people hungry to know God. Meditate on that thought and pay attention. God is directing them to you! When they open their hearts, God will work powerfully in their lives to help them see His hand upon their life. I learned years ago, I can only plant the seed and pray (which is watering that seed), for them. God is the one that brings the increase! This takes the pressure off us and puts it back to the one who knows how to continually influence their lives toward Himself! The Lord!

2 Timothy 2:25 (NLT) "Gently instruct those who oppose the truth. Perhaps God will change those people’s hearts, and they will learn the truth." 

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

If you are having trouble viewing this post, click here.

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






If your heart has been touched by God's love through Fresh Manna, would you like to help Pastor Tim reach others also? Please prayerfully consider donating. No gift is too small. 

Donate now!

How Your Donations Are Used? click here

Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2017 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Is Your Relationship With God Intimate?

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

Do you desire to know God more intimately? Everyone does at some point in their life—even if they have been taught since they were a child that God doesn't exist. Oh I know some would argue this point with me, but when you know God's secrets, then you know what really goes on in people.

When God created man, He put His DNA within each of us. He did so that as we walked through life and would see His majesty in all the beauty of creation and life, that it would perpetuate two things within us. First this knowing that all that exists—all of creation, was not by accident. And secondly, that knowing it would create a craving within us to know the one who created all things. God created this craving knowing it would lead us to search to know Him in our heart.  God called this craving within us the burden. Ecclesiastes 3:10-11 (NIV) says, "I have seen the burden God has laid on men. He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end." 

This word burden in the Hebrew means a humbling. We've been born humbled to have an inner knowing that we are here because of someone greater than ourself and humbled with a craving to know Him. People experience this burden or humbling to know God periodically through life if they don't yet know God, and moment-by-moment if they intimately know God. Even many of those those that have appeared to hate God, have  finally yielded to that they know is true in their heart and come to believe in Him.

The verse goes on to say, "He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end."  God is the only one eternal—a truth our limited minds struggle to comprehend. It is only when a person gives their life to God through Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit comes to live within them, that these truths can be grasped and appreciated.

And so, you were created to know God intimately and have a beautiful relationship with the God of the universe through Jesus Christ. When that happens, the Holy Spirit begins to reveal as much about God as you will seek Him for, and spend as much time with you as you will give to Him. And what does that look like?

First, when you go to read the Bible, ask God to reveal Himself and the understanding of His words in an ever-increasing way. There will be no ending to God teaching you about Himself, His ways, and secrets of life. God has always been willing to reveal Himself to those that sought to know Him. Isaiah 45:19 (NLT) says, "I publicly proclaim bold promises. I do not whisper obscurities in some dark corner. I would not have told the people of Israel to seek me if I could not be found. I, the LORD, speak only what is true and declare only what is right."  And, Jeremiah 33:3 (NIV) says, "Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know." And, Jeremiah 29:13 (NIV) "You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart."  God is not conventional. To the sincere seeker of God, God will find numerous ways to speak into that person's heart and life—all which will be beyond the realm of coincidence, and instead, bare witness and proof of a loving, intimate God.

When you read God's Word expecting God to speak to you, you will discover through the scriptures that God calls those who've received Jesus as Savior, friends! And we all know that great friends share intimate truths and secrets with each other.

Jesus shared that very fact with those who became His disciples. One day He revealed to them that they were His friends. John 15:15-16 says, “I no longer call you servants, because a master doesn't confide (intimate truths and secrets) to his servants. Now you are my friends since I have told you everything the Father told me. You didn't choose me. I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce fruit that will last, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask for, using my name.”

Almighty God is our friend. For some people, to have a close intimate relationship with a prominent figure would be so cool. It would be extraordinary if Phil Mickelson, one of the world's greatest golfers were to call me and say, Tim, can you play golf and then have lunch with me? If he spoke those words simply because he viewed me as a close personal friend and just wanted to spend time with me, I would be awed! How much more mind-boggling is it to have an intimate relationship with the God of the universe? Moses did. In Exodus 33:11 we read, “The Lord would speak to Moses face to face, as a man speaks with his friend.’’

So, the bottom line is this: pray that God reveal Himself to you through His Word and in other ways to the questions you have. Mostly expect Him to speak to you through His Word. He can hear you. When you learn to sense Him speaking to you through the scriptures, your relationship will go to another level. You'll experience a supernatural friendship with Almighty God. He will reveal truths and mysteries to you that bring you guidance, wisdom, and great blessing. Learn to listen to Him and you will develop intimacy with God!

Jeremiah 33:3 (NIV)  "Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know." 

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





If your heart has been touched by God's love through Fresh Manna, would you like to help Pastor Tim reach others also? Please prayerfully consider donating. No gift is too small. 

Donate now!

How Your Donations Are Used? click here

Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2017 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Is Your Mouth Helping or Hindering Your Success?

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

Note from Pastor Tim: If you are considering end-of-year giving, please consider this ministry and thank you in advance for your prayers as we continue to reach for the world and mission field with the good news of Jesus Christ! God bless you!

One day my four young children were waiting for me to come home from work. They all greeted me at the door with hugs and just a spark more excitement than was usual. I thought it was about me until the children's spokesperson—their mother, entered into the room. They had a group request. Honey, one of the kids in Jeffrey's class brought a kitten to show-and-tell today. They are looking for a family to give it to. It's really cute! They are wondering if we could have a kitten. 

I must have really been tired because I did something I don't usually do. I caved in immediately and said Yes. I had never had a cat before. I grew up in a dog family. I knew nothing about cats. What a shock it was to learn how unusual cats are. Although I'm sure there are a few exceptions in the world, I quickly learned that cats, for the most part, don’t train easily if at all—at least compared to a dog. Cats seem to have a mind of their own. They do what they want, when they want. In that regard, cats remind me of the tongue—you know, that waggling little creature in your mouth that wants to say what it wants to say when it wants to say it!

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

You know how it is. You've probably thought about it many times. You know you shouldn't use your tongue—your words to tear down or speak against others. We find ourselves blessing others—saying kind things to someone’s face, only to later say inappropriate things about them to others later. People with a conscience hate that they do that. We find out that the Word of God is true. "...No man can tame the tongue."
James 3:3-6 NIV tells us more about this untamable 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 this is true, if no man can truly tame the tongue, then what are we supposed to do? The first step is to recognize this truth and come to grips with it. You can't fix your tongue yourself. God is not lying when He says "...no man can tame the tongue." That includes you and me. 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 touch on two of them today.

First pray that God, through His Holy Spirit, will give you a revelation of the truth of this verse. Proverbs 18:21 says, "The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit." You will know when you’ve received the revelation of this verse from God. That revelation will put a reverential fear of the Lord in you. By that I mean that you will understand that your tongue can be used by God to be one of the greatest instruments of blessing in your life, or, a poison that will hurt your character, hinder your promotion and success, and will destroy the favor with people who God promises to those that love Him. Your tongue will contribute to your maturity and advancement or it will tear down others, ultimately tearing down you. This word from God says that “we will eat” from the fruit of our Words. Your words have everything to do with how you will experience life. Your mind can't take a hold of that but your spirit can. Let the Holy Spirit reveal this truth to you.

A second step in letting the Holy Spirit help you tame your tongue is asking God to help you hear what you are saying. Once you can truly hear yourself, you'll be shocked by the number of negative things that come out of our mouth!

You’ll hear yourself say things like My boss is never going to change! I'm stuck with this situation and there is nothing I can do about it. I'll never get a raise or a promotion. She has something against me. I am never going to get into a good relationship. Everyone I seem to like is taken! All the good ones are taken. I'll always be lonely! You watch, I bet I'm the best one to catch the flu and a cold this year. Nothing good ever happens to me. 

Your tongue speaks more doubt and unbelief about the present and future than you can imagine. Words like this reveal that this is your thinking. This is what is in your heart. What is in your heart not only influences others and situations, but also influences the health of your body! We need to guard our hearts by speaking right words. Proverbs 4:23 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 body is going to experience.

God is trying to teach you to have faith in Him and speak words of faith and life. 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 and have to pause and lean on the Lord for the words you should speak. When you do, it becomes the start of a powerful new life and supernatural change!

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

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

If Fresh Manna is a blessing to you, let me know how. I’d love to hear from you!  Write me at FreshMannaFeedback@comcast.net





If your heart has been touched by God's love through Fresh Manna, would you like to help Pastor Tim reach others also? Please prayerfully consider donating. No gift is too small. 

Donate now!

How Your Donations Are Used? click here

Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2017 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Friday, December 22, 2017

"The Feeding Trough" A Christmas Message by Pastor Tim


Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Luke2:4-5 (NIV) “So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David.  He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.”

Joseph and Mary loved each other. They were excited in their new engagement and dreamed of serving God together as one. They knew of the depth of their love for God and hoped that His blessing would be mighty upon their life because of their love for Him. But the looks, the whispering and gossip—it seemed as though the reputation of living righteously before the Lord all their life had been trashed in the eyes of others and they were glad to get away from it. 

This journey was long and difficult for Mary. She was so pregnant and uncomfortable. Lord, if I am carrying your Son, is there anything special to help us that comes with this honor? It seemed to be the opposite. No room to stay anywhere. Lord, how can this be? You’ve led us here and I am about to give birth to your child. Surely you have a special place for this to happen. As they drew closer and were finishing this hard long journey to Bethlehem, they talked trying to make sense of what God was doing in their lives. It was so difficult to understand. Their minds could hardly comprehend Gabriel's revelation concerning the virgin birth of the son of God.

Mary and Joseph were real people—human, like you and I. They loved God and yet they had to walk out their faith moment-by-moment, like you and I. And so they did. Although they were blessed and God was with them at every step, they had those moments like you and I do, where the thought comes, Lord, where are you in all this?  He was there. They had to constantly remind each other of this just like we need to. That is one of the greatest blessings of marriage and Christian friendship. They provide the opportunity needed to remind and encourage each other in the promises the Lord makes to us throughout His Word. And so they recited together, "The Lord is my strength and shield. I trust him with all my heart. He helps me..." (Psalms 28:7 (NLT))

More of the story…

Luke 2:6-7 (NIV) “While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.”
Just think; Jesus was wrapped in strips of cloth and laid in a manager—an animal feeding trough.  I hope you understand how significant this is! It is because being feeding is such an important part of the plan of God. Jesus was laid in the trough. Feed is what is usually in the trough. Jesus, who laid in the feeding trough, would become the one who would eternally and continuously feeds us through His Word—to the degree we would seek Him.

As Jesus walked out His earthly ministry, His teachings would bring the listeners that were hungry for God, revelation and insight of God and His plan for man. And it would be the feeding of His Word that would bring the souls of mankind true joy and peace.

We see this in John 6:35 (NIV) “Then Jesus declared, I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty.”

We read more in John 6:31-35 (NKJV)  “Our fathers ate the manna in the desert; as it is written, 'He gave them bread from heaven to eat.'" Then Jesus said to them, "Most assuredly, I say to you, Moses did not give you the bread from heaven, but My Father gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is He (Jesus) who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world." Then they said to Him, "Lord, give us this bread always." And Jesus said to them, "I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst.” And as God would plan it, Jesus was born in Bethlehem which means The House of Bread. 

Jesus said that we would ’d live not just by natural bread but by His Words.  But Jesus answered him, saying, "It is written, "Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God." Luke 4:4 (NKJV)

As you think about Christmas, remember Jesus in the manager—in the feeding trough! Let that remind you that He came into this world to feed us His truth, His insight. and His instruction for living. He came so that we could live uprightly and blessed as overcomers over the trials and tribulations this sin-tainted world tries to destroy our life with!

This is what Joseph and Mary did. With faith in God's promises, and by His grace, they walked out each moment step-by-step and day-by-day. Their lives were marked with the reassurance of His love including signs and wonders as they lived by faith and trust in Him. That faith and trust was fueled by His word—Jesus the Word that was first placed in the manager—the feeding trough!

Matthew 4:4 (NIV) Jesus answered, "It is written: 'Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.'"  

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

If you are having trouble viewing this post, click here.

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






If your heart has been touched by God's love through Fresh Manna, would you like to help Pastor Tim reach others also? Please prayerfully consider donating. No gift is too small. 

Donate now!

How Your Donations Are Used? click here

Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2017 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Christmas Story: For the Man Who Hated Christmas

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

This story was originally published in the December 14, 1982 issue of Woman's Day magazine. I hope it will touch your heart and even inspire something wonderful within you! Merry Christmas! 
Pastor Tim 

Christmas Story: For the Man Who Hated Christmas (Author: Nancy W. Gavin)

It's just a small, white envelope stuck among the branches of our Christmas tree. No name, no identification, no inscription. It has peeked through the branches of our tree for the past ten years.

It all began because my husband Mike hated Christmas. Oh, not the true meaning of Christmas, but the commercial aspects of it – overspending and the frantic running around at the last minute to get a tie for Uncle Harry and the dusting powder for Grandma – the gifts given in desperation because you couldn't think of anything else.

Knowing he felt this way, I decided one year to bypass the usual shirts, sweaters, ties and so forth. I reached for something special just for Mike. The inspiration came in an unusual way.

Our son Kevin, who was 12 that year, was on the wrestling team at the school he attended. Shortly before Christmas, there was a non-league match against a team sponsored by an inner-city church. These youngsters, dressed in sneakers so ragged that shoestrings seemed to be the only thing holding them together, presented a sharp contrast to our boys in their spiffy blue and gold uniforms and sparkling new wrestling shoes.

As the match began, I was alarmed to see that the other team was wrestling without headgear, a kind of light helmet designed to protect a wrestler's ears. It was a luxury the ragtag team obviously could not afford.

Well, we ended up walloping them. We took every weight class. Mike, seated beside me, shook his head sadly, "I wish just one of them could have won," he said. "They have a lot of potential, but losing like this could take the heart right out of them." Mike loved kids – all kids. He so enjoyed coaching little league football, baseball and lacrosse. That's when the idea for his present came.

That afternoon, I went to a local sporting goods store and bought an assortment of wrestling headgear and shoes, and sent them anonymously to the inner-city church. On Christmas Eve, I placed a small, white envelope on the tree, the note inside telling Mike what I had done, and that this was his gift from me.

Mike's smile was the brightest thing about Christmas that year. And that same bright smile lit up succeeding years. For each Christmas, I followed the tradition – one year sending a group of mentally handicapped youngsters to a hockey game, another year a check to a pair of elderly brothers whose home had burned to the ground the week before Christmas, and on and on.

The white envelope became the highlight of our Christmas. It was always the last thing opened on Christmas morning, and our children – ignoring their new toys – would stand with wide-eyed anticipation as their dad lifted the envelope from the tree to reveal its contents. As the children grew, the toys gave way to more practical presents, but the small, white envelope never lost its allure.

The story doesn't end there. You see, we lost Mike last year due to dreaded cancer. When Christmas rolled around, I was still so wrapped in grief that I barely got the tree up. But Christmas Eve found me placing an envelope on the tree. And the next morning, I found it was magically joined by three more. Unbeknownst to the others, each of our three children had for the first time placed a white envelope on the tree for their dad. The tradition has grown and someday will expand even further with our grandchildren standing to take down that special envelope.

Mike's spirit, like the Christmas spirit will always be with us.

Proverbs 11:25 (NLT) "The generous will prosper; those who refresh others will themselves be refreshed."

This moving story inspired the creation of The White Envelope Project, a caring nonprofit organization dedicated to developing the next generation of givers, civic leaders, and philanthropists.

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

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Published by Pastor Tim Burt
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Monday, December 18, 2017

The Tablecloth: An Inspirational Christmas Story

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

The brand new pastor and his wife were newly assigned to reopen this old and aged church. It was very run down and needed much work. They set a goal to have everything done in time to have their first service on Christmas Eve.

They worked hard cleaning, repairing pews, plastering walls, painting, and more. They were making wonderful progress when a terrible rainstorm hit the area. When the rain ended, the pastor's heart sank when he saw that the roof had leaked and caused a very large area of plaster to fall off the front wall of the sanctuary just behind the pulpit. It would be visible to all. There wasn't time to fix it before the opening Christmas Eve service the next day. The pastor cleaned up the mess on the floor and with disappointment in his heart, headed home.

On his way home, he noticed that a local business was having a flea market type sale for charity, so he stopped in. One of the items was a beautiful, handmade, ivory colored, ornately stitched tablecloth with exquisite work and beautiful colors. The thought hit him. It was just the right size to cover up the hole in the front wall. He bought it and headed back to the church.

By this time, it had started to snow. As he was approaching the church he noticed an older woman waiting for a bus. He knew there was no bus coming for 45 minutes and encouraged her to wait in the warm church.  She was grateful. She sat in a pew while he got out a ladder and some equipment to see if this beautiful tapestry could redeem the ugly hole in the wall. When he finished putting it up, he could hardly believe how beautiful it looked! And it covered up the entire problem area.

Then he noticed the woman walking down the center aisle. Her face was like a sheet. "Reverend," she asked. "Where did you get that tapestry?"and immediately the woman requested that he check the lower right corner to see if the initials EBG were stitched into it there. They were. These were the initials of the woman. She had made this tablecloth 35 years before, in Austria.

The woman could hardly believe it as the pastor told how he had just gotten the tablecloth. The woman explained that before the war, she and her husband lived in Austria. When the Nazis came in, her husband made her leave planning to follow her the next week. He never made it out of the country and was imprisoned. She was told he was dead and never saw her husband or her home again. The pastor wanted to give her the tablecloth, but she made the pastor keep it for the church. The pastor insisted on driving her home. That was the least he could do. She lived on the other side of the city and was only there for an appointment.

What a wonderful Christmas Eve service they had. Many from the neighborhood came out. The Christmas songs and hymns and the Pastor's words of the humble birth of the Christ child and the humble rebirth of the church, touched everyone's heart. The Christmas spirit was warm in the hearts of all.  At the end of the service, the pastor and his wife thanked each person at the door for attending and many said that they would return.

One older man, a man whom the pastor hired to do some painting and came to the service at the pastor's request, continued to sit in one of the pews and stare. The pastor wondered why he wasn't leaving. The man asked him where he got the hanging on the front wall because it was identical to a tablecloth that his wife had made years ago when they lived in Austria before the war. "How could there be two so much alike?" He told the pastor how when the Nazis came, he forced his wife to flee the country for her safety. His plan was to follow her a week later, but he was arrested and put in a camp. He never saw his wife or his home again. The pastor asked if he would allow him to take him for a little ride as he answered his question about the tablecloth.

The Pastor and his wife, drove him and to the same house where he had taken the woman three days earlier. He helped the man climb the three flights of stairs to the woman's apartment, knocked on the door, and he saw the greatest Christmas reunion he could ever imagine. It was truly a Christmas miracle.

Joel 2:25-26 (ESV) "I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten..." "You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied, and praise the name of the LORD your God, who has dealt wondrously with you. And my people shall never again be put to shame."

Note to the readers: This story has taken on many versions - one of which I have posted for you today. The author is unknown although I've been told that the original author, who has passed away, is Reverend Howard Schade. 

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

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Friday, December 15, 2017

When Trouble Comes and Things Unravel...

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

While recently spending time with someone who had lost a parent, it brought back such strong memories of the day I lost my dad. I thought I would share it with you! It's not depressing or sad, but to the contrary, one of the most wonderful days of my life.

It was a Thursday morning. I had an early morning doctors appointment that I thought would take a couple of hours. Instead it took about 15 minute and I was on my way out the door. As I was leaving, I had the thought, Call Dad and take him out to breakfast. My day was somewhat unscheduled because Renee and I had originally had a vacation planned for this week. We had to cancel it because she needed to meet her sister and brother in Atlanta to help make plans for her father’s future. He had some medical issues and they met to help him. Consequently, it left me with a week off that was unscheduled and alone at home. So… I called my dad and he was excited to go. I told him, I’ll be there in 15 minutes to pick you up.

My dad was 90 years old. He was in good health, swam three times a week, and played golf with my brother, myself and my brother-in-law most Thursday mornings. He was one of the happiest people you could ever meet and had a sense of humor that was hilarious. He was never without a story or something funny to say that made us all laugh. And... he was a father of ten children! He was a selfless, hard-working man who taught all his children how to love people and have a great work ethic! He and mom provided such a great life for us all.

I picked dad up and we went to a local restaurant, ate breakfast, and talked and laughed for almost three hours. Although it seemed like we talked about any and everything, there was one topic that was more dominant in his conversation than anything else. He talked about how thankful he was. I remember his words: It might appear that I don’t notice all that you children do or have done for me these past years. But, I’ve noticed everything and I couldn’t be more thankful. I have the most beautiful family of anyone I know. I love you all and appreciate so much what each of you have done to be a blessing to your mother and me. When she died a few years back, you all helped me through a difficult period of life. And you’ve been so supportive to love and be helpful to me. I thank God for all of you every day. He then told me that he prayed for each of us by name daily—all 9 living children, 21 grandchildren, and 16 great grandchildren—plus the couple babies in the hopper. (The family has grown much larger since then.) That touched my heart in a way that is greater than I can describe. For dad to be this reflective was unusual but amazing as his child, to listen to. What was behind this unusual mood he was in? When I brought him home he was happy, singing, and appearing to be on top of the world.

Later that evening about 9:30 pm I got a call from my sister. She told me that dad had collapsed, possibly had a heart attack and that I should come down to the hospital. Dad had lost consciousness, and never regained it. The family all met down at the hospital and we hugged and kissed him and cried as we said our goodbyes! After a few hours, he stopped breathing on earth and took his first breath in Heaven. This man was loved not just by his family, but by everyone!

After many tears, Renee and I could not help but reflect on how God had ordered our steps, graciously giving each of us special time with our father's before they passed to Heaven. It became the gift we would never forget.

We thanked God we did not try to fix or force our vacation. It was like we both had a sense that God was leading us as our vacation started to unravel. We prayed and bound the devil from trying to steal it from us, but then sensed it wasn't an attack, but a gift of God doing something... if we would just trust Him through it. She was at peace going to Atlanta. I was at peace staying home. I was even called and asked if I wanted a doctor's appointment cancelled by someone else. And that led to my special breakfast with dad! In hindsight, though we didn’t know what was going down, God knew every step. Psalms 37:23 (NLT) says, “The Lord directs the steps of the godly. He delights in every detail of their lives.” As it turned out,  our vacation wasn't unraveling; God was leading us to be available to help our parents, and lead us every step of the way.

Trusting God can sometimes feel unnerving when something appears to be going wrong and you are not sure of the next step. But, if you trust Him and continue to pray, He will lead you step by step. And you will see the fruit of trusting in Him! We've lived these kinds of moments from God again and again. Each time, it has built a greater trust within us. Even when some things unravel because there is some kind of spiritual attack, we have prayed and simply asked the Lord to turn what the enemy meant for evil, for good! And He has! And we praise Him for it. So, when things appear to be unraveling in your life, don't panic. Don't despair. Pause, pray, and trust the Lord. He loves you and will walk you through every valley in your life!

Psalm 23:4 (NIV) " 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."

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

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Copyright© 2017 All rights reserved

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Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Satan's Plan in the Last Day's Before Jesus' Return

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

When something goes wrong in your life, have you ever heard the thought creep up saying God brought this on me. or, God allowed this because of what I did. If you were to say No, I have never thought that, then you would be the only person I have ever met that didn’t.

If Satan is anything, he is a liar. He is an accuser. He is a deceiver. His goal is always to deceive you into thinking God is mad at you, against you, and doing things to hurt you. Let me show you this truth through scripture. Jesus while speaking of Satan says, “He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, 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. (John 8:44)

Satan has a plan. It is to deceive as much of mankind concerning God and God’s nature as possible. His ultimate goal? To eventually deceive mankind into waging war against God. Until the very end of the last days, Satan is and will work in the earth to accomplish this task. You might think, How does he wage this war? He does it in this way. First he promotes false religion—anything outside of the saving grace of Jesus Christ. Secondly, he promotes deception causing strife and division—getting people to hate each other. Thirdly, he promotes a literal war against God. You may ask, How can he promote a war against God whom we can’t see? He will do that by promoting a war against Israel. A war against Israel is a war against God.

In the last days, he will work to turn many of the nations against Israel and entice them to war surrounding Israel to destroy her. This is where Jesus will finally deal with Satan.

Satan will manifest himself through a person he possesses that scripture calls “the beast” also known as the anti-Christ, and through one called “the false prophet.” They will be two human beings that Satan possesses and uses to draw the kings or world leaders into a war against Israel. When that happens, Jesus will literally come on a white horse with His angelic hosts of Heaven and His saints and He will defeat “the beast” and the “false prophet”—casting them and Satan into the lake of fire and the bottomless pit.
We read this in Rev. 19:11-20 (NLT) “Then I saw heaven opened, and a white horse was standing there. And the one sitting on the horse was named Faithful and True. For He judges fairly and then goes to war. His eyes were bright like flames of fire, and on His head were many crowns. A name was written on Him, and only He knew what it meant. He was clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His title was the Word of God. The armies of heaven, dressed in pure white linen, followed him on white horses. From His mouth came a sharp sword, and with it he struck down the nations. He ruled them with an iron rod, and He trod the winepress of the fierce wrath of almighty God. On His robe and thigh was written this title: King of kings and Lord of lords…Then I saw the beast gathering the kings of the earth and their armies in order to fight against the one sitting on the horse and His army. And the beast was captured, and with him the false prophet who did mighty miracles on behalf of the beast—miracles that deceived all who had accepted the mark of the beast and who worshiped his statue. Both the beast and his false prophet were thrown alive into the lake of fire that burns with sulfur. Their entire army was killed by the sharp sword that came out of the mouth of the one riding the white horse…”

Rev. 20:1-2 (NLT) “Then I saw an angel come down from heaven with the key to the bottomless pit and a heavy chain in his hand. He seized the dragon—that old serpent, the Devil, Satan—and bound him in chains for a thousand years…”


Okay. You are probably wondering, why did I tell you all this? I told you all this to amplify that Satan is a deceiver. He is the deceiver of the earth. He is against you. Jesus is the truth, the life, and the way. He is for you. When something bad happens, Satan the deceiver will tell you, God is doing this to you because you blew it. It’s a lie. God loves you and is always working to draw you closer to Him and wants to help you in every area of your life. It takes our faith in this truth for that to happen. Jesus responds to faith!

Jesus already paid the price for your sin. It is His love that draws you. God’s will is to bless you. Your faith which draws His blessing will never be greater than your steadfast belief that God is for you! That is why it’s critical for you to know God is for you. It is in having that assurance of His love that leads you to run to Him and not from Him. That assurance destroys Satan’s lie that God has produced something bad in your life. When you believe in God’s unfailing love, then you will become one that believes and does this: Isaiah 63:7 NIV “I will mention the loving kindnesses of the LORD, and the praises of the LORD, according to all that the LORD has bestowed on us, and the great goodness toward the house of Israel, which He has bestowed on them according to His mercies, and according to the multitude of His lovingkindnesses.” You will because you will experience it first hand!

We are in the last days. Satan is out to confuse you, deceive you, steal from your life, and if possible destroy it. Avoid deception by living wholeheartedly for the Lord. And when you do blow it, God does want you to come and repent and turn from it. BUT, He is for you—not lobbing trouble and hardship at you! Know this and run to Him. Ask Him to help you and bless you! That is His will for your life! What will never change, even in these last days, is His love for you and desire to take you down His right path and bless you in the midst of a very deceived and confused world!

Psalms 23:5 (NLT) "You prepare a feast for me in the presence of my enemies. You honor me by anointing my head with oil. My cup overflows with blessings"

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





If your heart has been touched by God's love through Fresh Manna, would you like to help Pastor Tim reach others also? Please prayerfully consider donating. No gift is too small. 

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Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2017 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/