About Tim Burt

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

The Promise of Sweet-Sleep, Not Worries and Sleeplessness

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

A friend recently told me that his sleeping patterns were in the toilet! His business has been going through some difficult adjustments and he often wakes up in the middle of the night thinking about and trying to solve problems. I could relate. I've been there. I would imagine you have too!

I've corrected that area of my life. I do not allow myself to worry in the middle of the night, or anywhere else either for that matter. It wasn't always that way for me.

I've written about this before, but I will again today. When I was a young Christian, I was misguided thinking that worrying for others was sacred or compassionate. I know I got that from my mother. She worried about everyone, thinking it was a godly thing to do. But, it’s not! It is a worthless way to spend time. It might come across as compassion to some, but in all honesty, it's wasted time! 1 Peter 5:7 (NIV) says, "Cast all your anxiety (worries) on Him (Jesus) because He cares for you." Do you know why God wants us to lay our worries at His feet? Because cares and worries will steal from your life and even kill you! They’ll create stress and rob you of sleep. They will destroy your health. You were designed by God to lean on Him and have faith in Him—not worry! Worrying will accomplish absolutely nothing! Worrying for someone else is not compassion. It accomplishes nothing real for them. Praying in faith for them will accomplish much! If you will sincerely pray for others, it doesn't mean you don’t take action to help in some way, but nothing you do will compare to your heartfelt faith-filled prayers!

When Mordecai confronted Ester about her part to help save the Jews, she knew she had a plan to execute but also knew that prayer was the most important part of that plan. She instructed Mordecai, "Go and gather together all the Jews of Susa and fast for me…" Esther 4:16  We see the exhortation in James 5:16 that says, “…pray for each other so that you may be healed. The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and wonderful results.” And Philippians 4:6-7 says “Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. If you do this, you will experience God's peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus."

I refuse to worry about anything anymore. Why would I? Psalm 46:1 (NIV) says, "God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble." Did you catch those words "ever-present?" That means God is always there to help you! Always! I may have a concern but I will turn that into appropriate action where needed and pray for God's wisdom and help for the resolve to what is bothering me. or for the person I am praying for. Our ability to handle serious and difficult problems is ridiculously limited.  Jesus said, "...apart from me you can do nothing." John 15:5 (NIV) That is a truth and a revelation to embrace. Learning to lean on God in faith is empowering and life-changing!

People that don't get prayer—the reason for it or how it changes things, have little or no faith in it. To be honest, that is sad! Prayer is the communication of bringing our concerns to God in faith—not in doubt or worry. It is the heart action of leaning on the knowledge of His deep and intimate love for us, coupled with the promises of His Word to be our ever-present help in times of trouble! Jesus said, “Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? Of course not.” Matthew 6:27 (NLT)

There are many nights I wake up, just like my friend. If it's because I'm tempted to worry, I do not lay there and do so! If I can't get to sleep, I'll grab my Bible and spend time in God's word letting it bring peace and promise to my heart. And then I pray in faith. And I won't worry about losing sleep because I pray that the grace of God will carry me in His strength through that next day. And through all this, God's words have comforted me and I've grown sleepy, and back to sleep in peace.

If this sounds foreign to you, I encourage you to seek God's word concerning it and ask the Holy Spirit to teach you how to walk this out. It will change your life over time!

Proverbs 3:24 (NKJV) "When you lie down, you will not be afraid; Yes, you will lie down and your sleep will be sweet."

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@gmail.com





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!

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Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2018 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Monday, January 22, 2018

Jesus' Last Days Warning to Keep You on Track!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

How many times have you been in your car thinking your were on the way to your destination when suddenly, you discover you are headed in a wrong direction. You get that sinking feeling of being lost and having wasted precious time.

The question, Is my life headed in the right direction, is a question and secret fear a great many people have.  People hope they have the right God, the right philosophy, the right spouse, the right job and on and on. People are glad that GPS was invented but wish they had a Life GPS System!

As a Pastor heavily involved in church and on social media, I have people tell me almost daily that their present life is off track. They tell me because they are looking for help getting their life back on track with God. Many are actually able to identify where their life began to get off track and then I hear them regretfully mutter words like,  If only I had paid attention to what I knew deep down in my heart. 

On that note, I want to show you one of the most sobering prophetic truths that Jesus left for us concerning the last days. But, before I show it to you, imagine yourself as a parent giving warning to your child about something. Your motive is love, not condemnation. You love them and you want them to avoid hurtful things. This usually becomes almost every parent's plight at some point. This was the heart and Spirit with which Jesus spoke these words. Jesus said, “Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold…” Matthew 24:12 (NIV) Jesus revealed that because of the ever-increasing level of evil, sin, wickedness, and corruption in this earth—especially in the last days, that it was going to invade our individual lives and cause our love for Him, for life, and for mankind “to grow cold.” Jesus is love and He is your only source of understanding and experiencing real love. Only Jesus, the author and creator of love can show us what love is and how to love others. When your love for Him grows cold, then your ability to know & give love to others has grown cold.

Jesus warned us that the ever-increasing and accelerating wickedness would work to influence your life and send you in the wrong direction—off His path for your life. Jesus said “because of this wickedness, the love of most will grow cold.” This world has really changed and not for the better. Can you see the truth of His prophetic words in the world around you today? The evidence of this being true is this: Christians have become tolerant toward sin in their own life. What was once considered vile is now acceptable and the new norm. Is that okay? No! Must you change it? Yes!

So how do I turn this devotion your reading right now, toward some point of edification and encouragement? Here's how. Think for a moment about how you feel when you find out you are driving in the wrong direction. Think about how good it feels when you stop and ask for directions. Getting back on track and headed toward your destination feels so great! It makes you want to be more cautious next time. Getting back on track is a decision that can be made in a moment's time. You stop. You talk with the Lord. You be honest about what is going on in your life and the path that your on. You ask Him to reveal things in your life that you've given yourself over to that you know aren't pleasing to God. Things such as profanity, sexual immorality, the worship of celebrities more than your love for God . Or polluting your body—the temple of the Holy Spirit with alcohol or drugs or horrible foods resulting in obesity and your uncomfortable self-image. Or the routine habit of looking at sexually inappropriate materials leading to masturbation and pornography. And this all leading to the abandonment of reading your Bible and going to church, and the letting go of Christian friends. Things you've gotten used to that have wickedness in them or help make room for wickedness. Things that have caused you to wonder if your heart is cold and hard toward God?

Don't allow yourself to become callous! Don't cave in and give up! Don't allow yourself to become apathetic! Jesus' warning was given out of love to open your eyes. And He wouldn't have given it if you couldn't change from it! Jesus said, these things will steal your ability to love the way He loves! Examine your heart and as you do, ask the Lord to forgive you and help you back on track. Ask Him to direct your steps and give you the strength to stay on track. Then do it! You have the power of the Holy Spirit within you to help you do it!

I challenge you today. Pull out your Bible. Pray before your read and ask God to direct your heart through the verses you meditate on. Pray about what needs changing in your life. Because of your sincere love for God, the Holy Spirit will strengthen you and help you see the changes needed and the path to His will for your life. If you've drifted from church, begin searching for one until you find a church that teaches you the Bible and helps you grow in the Lord. Call a Christian who loves the Lord and who you know will pray with you. Do whatever you know you should do to get on track. Don’t grow cold! Fall passionately in love with Jesus again! And in a very short amount of time, you'll feel that relief and thankfulness that you are back on the right track of life and with God!

Hebrews 3:12 (Message Bible) “So watch your step, friends. Make sure there's no evil unbelief lying around that will trip you up and throw you off course, diverting you from the living God. For as long as it's still God's Today, keep each other on your toes so sin doesn't slow down your reflexes. If we can only keep our grip on the sure thing we started out with, we're in this with Christ for the long haul.”

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@gmail.com






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!

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Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2018 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Friday, January 19, 2018

What Allows Us To Move Forward!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

There are truly some incredible things that people have accomplished in this world. There are those that have swum the English Channel, climbed Mt. Everest, biked across America, held their breath underwater for over four minutes, pulled a semi-truck trailer over one block's distance with a chain and their bare hands, and on and on... There are many books written on amazing feats that people have accomplished.

There is one amazing feat that I know the Lord would like us all not only to accomplish, but to do so on an ongoing basis. It is stated in 1 Corinthians 13:5. "Love...keeps no record of wrongs." Now at first that statement might not even make you stop and think, so I suggest you do just that. Think about how many times you remember what someone did or said to you, that made you mad, offended you, or bugged you. You might at first think, I don't keep grudges or a record of wrongs. I don't get offended. I don't get bugged easily. The truth probably is, you do much more than you realize. You very likely remember something that someone did that bothered you at this moment. But if not, don't worry. That moment will come to your remembrance suddenly—it will be right there before you!

If every person that we deal with closely in our life had a clean slate at each new encounter, our patience level with them would go so much further. We pray that God is that way with us—not remembering our wrongs and dealing with us from a clean slate. And He is! It is one of the awesome qualities of His character and our inherited promise through our faith in Jesus Christ. "I, even I, am he who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more." Isaiah 43:25 (NIV)  Yet, we don't seem to want to be as generously forgiving with others as we hope God is with us. Does that seem fair to you?

The Bible tells us God is love and that love keeps no record of wrongs. It sounds impossible but it's not. It's supernatural! It's God's nature to forgive and not remember when someone repents saying their sorry. He removes it forever. That's what Jesus' blood has made provision for. It covers and washes our offenses and wrong-doings from God's eyes. That brings us relief and allows us to be intimate with God without threat. And He would like you to practice by faith, that kind of forgiveness and keeping no record of wrongs with others.

Are you and I that forgiving? Are we that overlooking and patient with people in our life? Not without God's help we aren't! But could we be? Only if we would continually reflect on God's merciful nature, love, and patience with us. So much more grace would flow from us toward others if we only remembered that the offense that is bugging us at the moment, is one that Jesus has forgiven us of.

We've all been hurt by people. I'm no exception. There are some pretty cruel—even evil people out there. And they do hurt people. You and I have hurt people, Maybe not intentionally, but maybe accidentally or maybe because of our own selfishness. If we realize it, we should correct it an apologize. It's how we grow and be more careful to be loving and kind.

God is not asking you to be a punching bag for evil or cruel people. He may allow you to appropriately confront a situation, but that person may not have enough of God's character to deal with it right. In that case, there are some times when we just have to walk away. There are some times when we need to create space between ourselves and others—not unforgiveness, but space! There are other times when a person is so toxic, we must keep our distance. They have the capacity to hurt again and again. But, we can forgive them in our heart and pray for them. God can use that opportunity to influence their heart and draw them to Himself so that they might change. That's what Jesus did from the cross when the soldiers were dividing up His garments. Luke 23:34 (NKJV) "Then Jesus said, "Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do." That is what Stephen did when he was being stoned for following Christ.  Acts 7:59-60 (NIV) "While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit." Then he fell on his knees and cried out, "Lord, do not hold this sin against them." When he had said this, he fell asleep (died).

One day the Lord told me that I was keeping a record of a man's wrong and that I was stuck in unforgiveness toward him. I had to repent and totally forgive this man. The Lord instructed me to pray for him. As I did, the ill feelings left and I could finally feel the forgiveness that I had given him by faith. What a burden to get off my back! Forgiveness isn't a natural experience. It's a supernatural experience! It brings healing and allows you to move forward in your life.

There are some people who have done some amazing feats that are fun to read about. Are you ready to try one of the greatest feats of all? Are you ready to practice keeping no records of wrong? Go for it—but only with the Lord's help. You'll fail in your own flesh! It is an amazing feat that will liberate you from carrying the list of wrongs and bad feelings toward others that have burdened you for far too long. Being merciful is love. Forgiving others is freedom. Keeping no record of wrongs is the development of the character of God in you!

Mark 11:25 (NKJV) "And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses."

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@gmail.com






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© 2018 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Cast Off Your Fears Because God is For You!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

People can experience tough times at any time and for a diversity of reasons. When times get tough, especially in the area of finances,  people often get this feeling like they're floundering or grasping at straws, just trying to do what it takes to survive. I've been to that place. I know what it feels like. I was there early on in our marriage when we started having children. Renee and I prayerfully made the decision for her to quit her job to stay home with our kids. She was making more than I was, which meant we lost over half our income. I was convinced that I would do what it took to survive. I wasn't afraid of hard work. I was also convinced that God was with us and would lead us in the way. It seemed like the right decision when we made it and we really felt we were prayerfully following the direction God was giving us. But, it didn't take long before our personal economy was suffering and had gotten scary.

We, like anyone that makes a decision in faith to trust God, experienced the temptation to doubt the choice we had made. We had those moments of doubt crying out God you are helping us through this aren't you?  Thankfully those fearful moments were short-lived! They were because we stayed in God's word and prayed. As we did, we'd sense His encouragement speaking to our hearts through His Word. That is where you have to hear from God and get encouragement. It's obviously not in Satan's nature to encourage Christians who are walking by faith trusting God. Satan is skilled at painting pictures in our head of doom, gloom and disaster.

In the story of Cain and Abel, Cain had murdered his brother. He tried to avoid the truth regarding it in a discussion with God, and showed no remorse other than for his own personal condition. Cain had brought terrible consequences upon himself. God told him that he would become a vagabond—a wanderer for the rest of his life. That wasn't God’s doing. It was Cain’s. He was stubborn, jealous, rebellious, and unrepentant. These very attitudes are cursed and evidence of a mind whose thinking has become distorted and far from any good or godly wisdom. When someone is like this, they will wander through life as a vagabond.

You are not a vagabond, nor are you a wanderer. You may be struggling somewhat to survive but you are not an aimless wanderer never getting anywhere. No, when you received Jesus, God made a promise to you. He said, “Christ has redeemed and rescued us from the curse pronounced by the law. When Jesus was hung on the cross, He took upon himself the sins and consequences of our wrongdoing. For it is written in the Scriptures, "Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree." Galatians 3:13 (NLT) Jesus is the one who hung upon a tree (the cross) for you, exchanging your sins for adoption into His family and the promised blessings of Abraham reaching all the way into your life today! Learning God's Word and trusting in obedience to walk in it, creates a strong and stable mind and great faith. Grace and miracles happen in our lives through faith.

In tough times these thoughts need to anchor you. You are not cursed. You are blessed! God has not abandoned you. Hebrews 13:5 NI  instructs our thinking saying, “Let your conduct be without covetousness; and be content with such things as you have: for He has said, I will never leave you, nor forsake you.” The Lord is not saying you shouldn't work to improve your situation. He is simply telling you not allow the feeling of floundering or grasping for straws. Don't be indecisive and don't be tempted to violate your integrity. Reject panic and instead lift your heart in faith to the one that cares for you and will never forsake you. You don’t need to because He is with you! He is in you! And He will lead you!

You are blessed! Seek God and He will lead you. Shake off desperation. Seek God for guidance and for the steps you should take. GET FOCUSED! Be diligent to seek Him and work toward your future. You have a blessed one ahead of you! Jeremiah 29:11-14 (NIV) says, “For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you," declares the Lord, "and will bring you back from captivity.”

He’ll lead you step-by-step to your land of promise. As you trust in Him at every moment and step, you'll see His touch, His mercy and grace, and His divine help supply your needs.

Renee and I now have the benefit of 40 years of hindsight. looking back at all the ways the Lord was there to help us! Distrust and fear would have made us wanderers! Instead, we believed we were His and we were blessed! Now our heart aches for everyone to experience this divine life that comes from trusting Him by faith. It is the life He wants us to live! It is His way of getting us to where He wants us to go!

Psalm 9:10 (NIV) "Those who know your name will trust in you, for you, LORD, have never forsaken those who seek you."


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@gmail.com






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© 2018 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

God Guides Us To Our Destiny!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


If you want something done, do it yourself! Someone recently said that to me. There are one-time situations where this thinking is justified, but when the opportunity to receive help is at hand, then it is not good thinking.

At one time I must have believed that. Prior to asking Jesus to be my Lord and Savior, I tried to shape my entire destiny and the course of life. Then one day it was like I woke up. I woke up discouraged and disgusted with the course of my life thinking, What am I doing? This is not how I want to live my life! It was as if my eyes had suddenly been opened and I could see where my own choices and my own ways of doing things were taking me. It was not good and I knew that morning that my life had to change.

What triggered these thoughts? A short time prior to this event, someone had led me to pray a simple but sincere prayer asking Jesus to come into my life to be my Lord and Savior. I prayed it sincerely, but it seemed like I just went on with my life as before. I did go on with my life, but I didn't know something had changed within me. Upon praying that prayer, the Holy Spirit—the promise from God to all who receive Jesus—came to live within me. I didn't understand that the Holy Spirit was living in me from the moment I prayed that prayer, but my ignorance of it didn't change the reality of it happening.

It was the Holy Spirit that opened my eyes to things I had never thought about before. I was seeing everything in life differently. I didn't understand why. I didn't understand that for the first time, with the help of the Holy Spirit, I was seeing life through God's eyes. It triggered a deep personal self-examination. And then one day as I was beginning to learn to read the Bible, I came across the verse Psalm 127:1-2 (NLT). “Unless the Lord builds a house, the work of the builders is useless. Unless the Lord protects a city, guarding it with sentries will do no good. It is useless for you to work so hard from early morning until late at night, anxiously working for food to eat; for God gives rest to his loved ones.”

It was a heart-wrenching revelation to see and admit that up until that point in time, I had been building my life my way. These verses helped me see this was a useless endeavor. I was awaking to the truth that there was more to life that me, myself and I and I was awaking to the truth that God had a plan for my life and instead of me driving it. I needed to surrender my life to the Lord and let Him show me how to build it.


Interestingly enough, a week later, through a series of circumstances, I made my first visit to a Bible-teaching church. It was there that I first heard the words spoken God has a destiny for your life. That thought seemed so big and so hard to wrap my brain around. I remember thinking, What do I do with this truth? How do I figure out my destiny? What if I just lead myself right back into another messed up life?

Then I heard the Pastor teach on Proverbs 3:5-6 (NLT). The words built a new bridge between God and I. They put a rudder on the pursuit of my destiny. It sounds simplistic but it's anything but that. Those words were Trust GodProverbs 3:5-6 (NLT) says, "Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek His will in all you do, and He will show you which path to take." I embraced these words and clung to them. I thanked the Lord daily for leading my down His path for my life. I learned that the plan of God is a plan that unfolds day-by-day as you seek Him and have faith that He will lead you.

Over time, you eventually learn that you can absolutely count on God's perfect Fatherly love. The Holy Spirit will guide you into all truth and the plan for your life. You just have to walk it out a day at a time. As years pass, you gain the hindsight that only comes with time. You're able to look back and see how He has guided you and been intimately involved in all the details of your life—that is, to the degree that you lean on and trust Him.

As you examine your life today, does your life reflect your way or His way? Do you believe you are in His plan and are you letting Him build your house as you follow Him? Can you trust Him and take steps of faith walking it out His way, according to His Word? If so, He will build your house. In closing, the words from God through Jeremiah are more than nice or encouraging words. They are His promise to you! Start today by asking the Lord to lead you throughout this day. Even through troubled waters He will be with you. Trust that to be true!

Jeremiah 29:11-14 (NIV) “For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you," declares the Lord, "and will bring you back from captivity.”

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@gmail.com





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© 2018 All rights reserved

http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

Monday, January 15, 2018

What You've Got That Others Want!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

Hi Friends, I'm back although Renee is still in Peru for another week. I am back to writing and will update you on our trip soon. Thanks for your prayers. Our trip was blessed and successful on every level. God bless you! ~ Pastor Tim 

Renee and I had two of our grandchildren staying with us over Christmas! We had taken a bunch of blankets and draped the over couches and chairs to make them a fort in our basement. Renee and I both had memories of doing that when we were kids and they loved it just the way we used to when we were children. I turned off most the lights and gave them each a flashlight to play with in the dark of their fort. They had a blast and played in their for the longest time. Darkness works in settings like this, in movie theaters, for sleeping, for seeing stars clearly and a few other things, but beyond that, the darkness generally creates a sense of fear or at the least, discomfort in people.

We live in a world where Satan continually works to introduce ever-increasing levels of spiritual darkness. The world is getting darker and there is an increasing acceptance by mankind of things that used to be seen as dark and immoral. Profanity, sexual immorality, perverse behaviors, violence, and materials of the occult, are now accepted as normal and everyday. How do people feel about it? Some are naive or blinded and either accept it as the norm, or just don't think about it at all. Others sense the world is getting darker year-by-year. People internally seem to sense that the world has become more increasingly overcome with evil. They don't like it, but they don't know how to identify this darkness nor do they know what to do about it.

As Christians, we should absolutely recognize that this is happening, and take three immediate courses of action because of it. First we should pray and ask God to deliver us from these forces of evil trying to destroy our world, and pray that we have the strength to refrain from becoming a part of it. Secondly, we should take an active part in writing Congresspeople and Senators to create levels of media guidance to adhere to and discipline for when guidelines are violated regarding profanity, violence, and sexual content. It is not enough to have filters we can put in place. The majority of people will not use them. We need to go back to the Movie Code that was abolished. And third, we should walk in the revelation that Jesus told us to be a light, and be that light to this increasingly dark world. People don’t like darkness and often gravitate toward light. There has never been a better time for us to shine so that people can find Jesus through us!

Phil 2:15 says, "...so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe.”

If you love Jesus and are living for Him, you are that source of light. When you walk strongly in it, people sense something different about you and are drawn to it. I hope you understand that. You may not think you are much of a light, but even the tiniest light in a dark room, is easy to see. And so you are! As they are attracted to you, are you ready and equipped? Can you share something with them about the source of your light? Do you have a "light manual," a Bible or even a New Testament you could give to them? Can you tell them about this light named Jesus in you and share your testimony of how He led you out of darkness? 1 Peter 3:15 NIV says, “But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect...”

I was outside one night recently. There wasn't a cloud in the sky and the stars were so bright. I could gaze in awe, the handiwork of God. You and I are that handiwork of God to those trapped in the darkness of this world. When you carry Him in your heart and let Him shine through you, then don't be surprised to find out that people are watching you and are drawn to you. Sometimes it's important to share your testimony of what Jesus did for you and other times it's important just to let people see God’s love in action through your life. They'll come to gaze more. But be ready and when the time is right. They may come to investigate what it is they sense in you! That has happened to me more times than I can remember! Be ready to give them an answer and if you get far enough in it, invite them to church where they can learn more also.

There can be a few areas where darkness works, but for the most part, people want to come out from it and move toward the light. Be that light and let your light shine!

Psalms 112:4 (NLT) "Light shines in the darkness for the godly. They are generous, compassionate, and righteous."

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@gmail.com






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© 2018 All rights reserved

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Friday, January 05, 2018

We Share and God Connects the Dots!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

January 5th, 2018  - Hi all, Just checking in from Peru! Things are great. We spent the day at the orphanage yesterday. I'll tell you about it soon. I'll be preaching this weekend. I'll get back to writing soon! 

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! 

On day while traveling on a ministry trip, I jumped into a transportation van that was taking a group of us to a restaurant. Three got in the back and I got into the front seat across from the driver. He was a middle-aged man, meticulously groomed and dressed in a sharp suit and tie. I engaged him in conversation about his life. He revealed that he was the owner of the transportation company and that when you saw him driving, you knew his company was busy.

I love learning about people and so without trying to sound like I was interrogating him, I asked him to tell me more about his life. He also asked me questions about mine. At one point I told him I was the fifth child of a family of ten children. He chuckled immediately sharing that he was the oldest of ten children. That opened the door for interesting stories on the joys and humorous dysfunctions of a large family. We both had plenty of stories and it led to many laughs. He sounded like a kind brother that had done well in life and worked to help some of his less-fortunate siblings that needed help.

Suddenly he changed subjects to ask a question. I am guessing that you were raised Catholic right? I told him he was right. We discovered we had both grown up with a Catholic education. So then, he continued, If you grew up Catholic, how is it that you are a Pastor in a non-Catholic church and what kind of a church do you belong to?  I explained to him that at the age of 24, through a friend’s encouragement, I began to read the Bible, something I had never opened much-less read before. I had told him that she helped me understand Jesus’ real mission on earth—to pay the price for my sins and wash them all away so that I could have eternal life.

This led into a great conversation. He grew up Catholic believing in Heaven but felt more like he was a prime candidate for Hell. Of course he tried to say it jokingly but I could hear the concern in his humorous way of saying it. He continued to tell me that he, like he assumed most people would say, tried to live life with enough kindness and kind actions to earn his way in. But, he really didn't think he was going to make it. He told me he was hoping for plan B, Purgatory (which he wasn't too excited about) and if not, he didn't like the choice of Hell.

I shared with him that this was the missing link in my life concerning Jesus. I told him that I had never been able to connect the dots between Jesus' death and resurrection and me getting into Heaven. I told him that I also felt like I was at door number three and didn't like it. I told him that to relieve the guilt and fear of Hell, I went through a period of saying I didn't believe in God. That really didn't work. I knew I was lying to myself. I did believe in God. That was where he was at. I had enough time in our drive to explain what Jesus did for him. I said that out of love for each one of us, He took the punishment we deserved upon Himself—literally taking our place at death—and that having faith in Jesus’ sacrifice for us caused our sins to be washed away. We didn't deserve it. We couldn't earn it. It was a gift to whoever would believe. I told him, I know it sounds too good to be true, but the extent of God's love for us is so great, it will always feel to good to be true.  If you read the Bible you will see for yourself.  By the time we were arrived at the restaurant, I knew he was connecting the dots.

I told him that this gift was a gift that had to be received in his own heart personally as I had done many years ago. I could have asked him to pray right there in the car and wasn't afraid to, but was concerned he’d be embarrassed with the others in the back seat. I suddenly remembered something. Isn’t there a driver that works for you named Charlie that goes to a church in the area? I had remembered him from the previous year. Yes, he said. He works for me and has for over 15 years. I knew at that point that Charlie had to have talked to him before about the Lord. Charlie was very outgoing about his faith and church. I said, Charlie is a great resource to you with questions about the Bible. I know the church he goes to and it’s a good one. He can help you get to know more about what we talked about today.

We had arrived at the restaurant and as he opened the doors for those in the back, I noticed he had a big smile on his face. Without exaggerating, he looked different. I think the transformation had already started. I knew I wasn't the first person to share Jesus with him. I’m sure I was one of many that had a hand. As 1 Corinthians 3:7-9 NIV says, "So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow. The man who plants and the man who waters have one purpose, and each will be rewarded according to his own labor. For we are God's fellow workers; you are God's field, God's building.” 

There are many things that are wonderful about life, but NOTHING, and I mean NOTHING compares to the joy of sharing the love and gospel of Jesus Christ. It is God who makes things grow in a person’s heart and who brings the increase of understanding and insight so that a person can see and receive. It's God who connects the dots in their heart. But they need to hear the gospel and that's our part!

Romans 10:15 (NIV) "And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, "How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!" 

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

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