About Tim Burt

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

A Tiger's Stripes Won't Change, But Yours Should!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

Have you ever heard the old saying, A tiger can't change his stripes? That's usually a reference to the fact that a person rarely changes his nature. He is what he is and there is little change that changes that. That may be true for the world, but not for Christians, that should not be true.

In Romans 12:2 NKJV, God calls for us to be “transformed by the renewing of our mind.” In 2 Corinthians 11:15 NKJV God's word says to be “transformed into ministers of Christ.” Romans 12:2 NKJV says we aren't “to be conformed to this world” but Romans 8:29 says we are to “be conformed to the image of His Son.” So, though the stripes of a tiger and worldly people don’t change, change is what our new life in Christ is all about. If we don't change, it really reveals that we are not learning and growing in Christ.  Our stripes are to change!

In my old life before Christ I was a cynic. I was always looking for people's real motives and reasons for doing what they did. The Lord wanted me to change that stripe and spoke to me about it. In a private time of praying and worshiping God, I heard the Lord speak to my heart. He said, I am going to teach you how to see the best in people and it will transform your entire life. He said, That is going to happen by you learning to see others through my eyes. I died for them just like I did for you. They have good in them though it's been tainted by sin. I know who I created them to be. Can you see the good and beauty in them underneath those layers of sin? I can! Purpose to see them through my eyes and it will transform your life and help you to love them in a greater way. He continued to say, People that do not learn of me through my word and fail to worship Me, never really see or experience an intimate depth of love for me or others in their life the way they know they should. But those that do, know how to look deeper. Do that with me and you'll be able to see the best in people. When that happens, you'll be able to sincerely encourage and edify others and when you learn to do that daily, you'll life will never be the same. Your favor will grow with me and with man, and your life will become filled with rich relationships.  Then the Lord reminded me of His word in John 13:35 (NKJV) "By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.""  

These words exploded in me and really gave me insight. Before long, my cynical side was completely gone. It was replaced with a deep and sincere love for people that was formed in me.

There are always a few people in life that take the time to see the good in others and find ways to express it. They aren't complimenters or people that just say something nice. They are true edifiers. They look for and notice the good in others and tell them. This is a God-given stripe! These kinds of people help make life so much sweeter!

And then there are those that struggle to even notice when someone has said or done something nice for them. They are so self-absorbed that don't see it and seldom say thank you for something someone has done for them much less edify someone for anything good they see in them. That is their stripe and they don’t change. And probably won’t because they don’t do the one thing that could change their stripes—they don’t become a true worshiper of God and see others through His eyes.

When I read in Revelation 5:13-14 of those worshiping the Lord, I see that this is not lip service or obligation going on. Their worship is heartfelt and coming from the core of their being, like it should from us. “And then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea. They also sang: "Blessing and honor and glory and power belong to the one sitting on the throne and to the Lamb forever and ever." And the four living beings said, "Amen!" And the twenty-four elders fell down and worshiped God and the Lamb.”” 

Spend time learning, thinking about, and worshipping God for His love toward you and all that He had Jesus do for you out of that love! Think about His magnificence and the glory of everything He has created. There is no shortage of things to praise Him over. Think about all the ways He has and is transforming your life! It will help you have grace toward others!  As you do, this will teach you how to look and see deeper. You'll also be able to look beyond the surface and see the beauty in the people around you so that you may encourage and edify them. Worship is a sincere expression and reaction from a heart of love to Almighty God. It changes you! It opens the eyes of your heart to see more of God with love and appreciation, and it changes your stripes as a person. God has always wanted us to become conformed to His image. This is how that begins—by becoming a worshiper of God, seeing others through God's eyes, and becoming an edifier and encourager of others. It's just one of the stripes we are to change in becoming Christ-like.

Psalm 95:6-7 NKJV "Come, let us worship and bow down. Let us kneel before the Lord our maker, for He is our God. We are the people he watches over, the sheep under His care. Oh, that you would listen to His voice today! "

1 Thessalonians 5:11 NKJV "Therefore comfort each other and edify one another, just as you also are doing."


In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

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Friday, July 26, 2019

What Does it Mean to Seek God?

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

In my walk with God, I have learned countless life-changing truths. One of those times happened early in my Christian walk. My children were quite young at the time and I was desiring the wisdom to help them know the Lord in ways I never did.

I had grown up regularly participating in a local church but really only knew religious activities and prayers I'd learned to recite with no thought behind them. I had never read the Bible and when it came to God, although I tried to talk to him in my heart, it felt like He was a billion miles away and had no time for me. As young 24-year-old man, I one day heard the gospel and what Jesus did for me. I gave my life to Jesus immediately! It was like the eyes of my heart were opened to see life through God's eyes and everything changed—instantly! I became so hungry to read the Bible and learn of Him that I was like a person at a buffet, wanting to heap my plate as high as I could, over and over again.

There were multiple things I really desired to know that only God could answer. As much as I was developing an intimate relationship with the Lord, I wanted to know Him even more. I also greatly hungered for my children to grow up knowing Him intimately—not religiously. I didn't know how to make that happen. And then I wanted to know the direction God had for my life. I felt like I had a call of God on my life and yet I wasn’t sure what that was or how to know for sure.

I decided I was going to devote myself to getting up early each morning around 5:00 am and go out to our living room and read and pray and seek the Lord. I had the promise of help from the Holy Spirit from John 16:13 (NIV) which promised, "... He will guide you into all truth..." 

Devotion to God is meaningful to God. Devotion means to be: ardent, often selfless affection and dedication, as to a person or principle. The state of being devoted; addiction; eager inclination; strong attachment love or affection; zeal; especially, feelings toward God appropriately expressed by acts of worship; devoutness."

When we devote ourselves wholeheartedly to God, it sets us free from wrong motives. We draw back from doing things simply for appearance sake or to please others. Instead we do the things we do out of a pure love for God and trust in His guidance. And God blesses us greatly for devoting our heart and time to seeking Him!

Over time, everything I sought to know and understand regarding what God had for my life and how to train my children in the Lord, came. God always found ways to speak to my heart— in church through the preaching of the Word, through Bible study, through friends as we talked about God's word, and so many other ways. It has blessed my life in more ways than I could say in a book. Being devoted in seeking God's guidance for the direction of our lives is the smartest things we will ever do in this life! The result is supernatural and unfolds before you over time!  It will fill your heart with eternal joy and thanksgiving! Seeking God takes devotion and dedication to learning His ways and wisdom. But the things He teaches you reward you all the rest of your life! And for that reason, it's a pure pleasure to seek God through His Word and prayer!

1 Chronicles 28:9 (NIV) "And you, my son Solomon, acknowledge the God of your father, and serve him with wholehearted devotion and with a willing mind, for the LORD searches every heart and understands every motive behind the thoughts. If you seek him, he will be found by you..."

In His love,
Pastor Tim Burt

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Monday, July 22, 2019

Refreshing Your Intimacy with God!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Renee and I will be on a short vacation with some of our children and grandchildren until next week. I'll be back to writing on August 2nd. In the meantime, go back and read some past posts and let God encourage your heart with His timeless Word! We'll be praying for you! ~ Pastor Tim 


More often than you would think, someone tells me, I love God but I feel lost. I feel like I've drifted from Him and the love I should feel for the Lord seems cold. What should I do? I'm not sure how I got here and I don't know how to get back to the closeness I felt for the Lord. 

Our relationship with God is just that—a relationship. When two people nurture a relationship, it will grow richer in intimacy and love on every level. But, take a relationship for granted and stop nurturing it, and it will deteriorate. But just so you know, in a relationship with the Lord, it will never be His fault because His love toward us and desire to be intimate with us never fails!

David, whom God said had a heart after Him, was even capable of feeling like he had slipped back from the Lord. It can and does happen to any of us. There's a huge clue to the source of this problem in David's cry to God during a time he felt distant. We see it in Psalm 119:176 (NLT) “I have wandered away like a lost sheep; come and find me, for I have not forgotten your commands.” If you pay attention to what David said, he said he wandered away yet he had not forgotten God's commands.  That sounds like and oxymoron. That sounds like he didn't do anything wrong! Not having forgotten what God wants and doing them are two different things.

The hypocrites that Jesus continually rebuked didn't forget God's laws. They were teaching them to the people and making sure they lived by them or they would rebuke them. Like David, they hadn't forgotten them but it didn't mean they were doing them. They weren't! We see this in Matthew 23:1-3 (NIV). "Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples: "The teachers of the law and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat. So you must obey them and do everything they tell you. But do not do what they do, for they do not practice what they preach."

David WAS NOT your typical man. David DID stop and ask for directions when he got lost. Actually, he knew what to do. He knew what would lead him back to the Lord. First he knew to ask for help and he did so with great hope. He knew that there was a promise of help from God if he would ask in faith believing. He knew it was God's promise to help Him. We see it in 
Psalm 119:170. “May my request for help come before you; deliver me according to your promise." 


 David knew that God promised to help bring him back to the place of intimacy. It was faith in God's promise that made it possible. Secondly, He knew what would refresh his relationship with God. He knew to reflect on all the wonderful things God had done for Him. He knew to praise God for whom He was. He knew to put a song of praise about God in his mouth. He did these things in faith, trusting in God’s love and mercy and willingness to bring him back into a right place. Psalm 119:170-172 (NIV).  “May my supplication (request) for help come before you; deliver me according to your promise. May my lips overflow with praise, for you teach me your decrees. May my tongue sing of your word, for all your commands are righteous."

Thirdly, he knew He needed to obey God—not just know what God said but do it. He knew he needed to quit ignoring God's influence upon his heart. Ignoring God in certain areas of your life will cause you to wander, feel hypocritical, and lest intimate with God.

David knew deep down he was ignoring God. He knew that his affair with Bathsheba was the problem. You better believe God was warning him not to go there.  But each time David drifted, he didn't run from God. He ran to God. He sought God's help to restore intimacy and took real action to nurture the relationship as we see in Psalm 119:173-175 (NIV).  “May your hand be ready to help me, for I have chosen your precepts. I long for your salvation, O LORD, and your law is my delight. Let me live that I may praise you, and may your laws sustain me.” 

When we've strayed, the devil tries to capitalize. He magnifies every act of apathy, disobedience and wrong attitude to condemn us before God. He wants to drive the nail in your coffin and make you feel so guilty, that you'd not dare run back to God. That's his strategy and why we must be like David. Keep running back to God!  If you do what David did, and you turn your heart toward God and quit ignoring Him and do the right things you know He wants you do, your feelings of intimacy will return and grow, and the words of Malachi 3:7 will have come to pass for you! “…you have not kept my laws and failed to obey them. Now return to me, and I will return to you," says the Lord Almighty…”

Follow David's example and do what he did. Have confidence that as you do draw near to God, he'll draw near to you. Don't isolate yourself. Be around the body of Christ. Be around believers and get to church and sit under anointed Bible teaching. God will use these things to speak into your life and encourage you as you nurture your intimacy and refresh your love for the Lord.

James 4:8 (NKJV) " Draw near to God and He will draw near to you..."

In His love,
Pastor Tim Burt

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Friday, July 19, 2019

Before You Hurt Someone's Reputation

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

I am reposting this by request! I pray it is a blessing to you and helps you stop and think! God bless you! ~ Pastor Tim 

Before You Hurt Someone's Reputation 
(Author Unknown)

In Jewish folklore there is a story about a man who had a disagreement with his rabbi. Out of anger he spread lies and malicious gossip about him. However, one day while studying Torah he realized that God was not pleased with him and he decided that he needed to make amends to the rabbi.

He visited the rabbi and begged for his forgiveness. He said that he would do whatever was necessary to make amends for his behavior. The rabbi directed him to go home, take the feather pillows off of his bed, cut them open and scatter the feathers to the wind.

Though it seemed like an odd request, the man agreed to do so. He went home, took the pillows off his bed, cut them open and shook the contents out, allowing the wind to carry the feathers to and fro for miles and miles.

Later he returned to the rabbi’s home and reported that he had done as requested. The rabbi then said to him, “Now go and gather up all the feathers.” The man replied, “That would be impossible.” To which the rabbi answered, “You are correct. Even though you appear to be sincere in your desire to make amends for the damage you have done, it is as impossible as reclaiming all of the feathers. Once words are spoken, they scatter in the same way and no one can bring them back.”

Words are powerful. They can be used for good or for evil. A kind word spoken at the right time can comfort. A wise word spoken to a listening heart is able to save someone from making a serious mistake. An encouraging word spoken with a smile may turn someone’s bad day around. A word of warning can save a toddler from burning her hand on the stove. A harsh word can break a heart. A mean word can bring anger and doubt. A discouraging word may turn a life from success to failure. A foolish word wastes the time of both the speaker and the hearer. A word of gossip is able to ruin a reputation.

Jesus warns us about the power of words and their consequences in Matthew 12:36-37 NIV, "But I tell you that men will have to give account on the day of judgment for every careless word they have spoken. For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.”

On the day that you stand before the God of heaven and earth you will answer for how you used the gift of words. Did you use them as tools to build and accomplish or as weapons to tear down and destroy? Did you use them to encourage or discourage? Did you use them wisely or foolishly? To inspire or to gossip?

Just like feathers scattered to the wind, you cannot recapture the words that have escaped from your lips to this day. But you can make sure that every word that comes off of your tongue from this day forward is spoken with care and wisdom.

Proverbs 18:21 (NKJV) "Death and life are in the power of the tongue, And those who love it will eat its fruit" 

In His love,
Pastor Tim Burt

If Fresh Manna is a blessing to you, I'd love to know. Click here: 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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Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Taking Charge Of Your Feelings, Will Contribute To Your Success

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

This morning I woke up tired. It was an exhausting week with little time to recuperate. I wanted to sleep in for just 30 minutes more, but didn't. I have a big day ahead and wanted to get my morning exercise in because I will be busy tonight and won't have the chance to get it in later. As I began my workout, my brain still felt asleep. My body was moving slow. It was even difficult to pray. Ever have a day like that?

When you wake up feeling great, it’s the greatest thing! You feel upbeat. Your outlook on life is bliss. Your personality feels engaged. You feel like you can conquer life. But when you wake up sluggish and can't seem to get going, it can be a tough beginning to a long day with your mind screaming to quit before you've barely begun! It’s for that very reason that I’ve learned the importance of taking authority over how I feel—in the morning or otherwise.

If you’ve ever worked with someone who is moody from day-to-day—a person who is an emotional roller-coaster, you know it’s not fun and it takes its toll. They can add emotionally-draining drama to your day that can wear you out and bring you down. So why would you want to be one of those people?

Yeah, but I don’t want to be fake and have a smile plastered on my face when I feel like a snail out from under a rock! You may not, but I do! And I don’t consider it fake. I may wake up feeling less than exuberant, but I don’t want how I really feel to negatively impact everyone around me. And I really don't want to give voice to it like a negative whiny baby! Who wants to hear it? Who wants to impacted by it? It does no good and only increases more negative feelings. It isn't going to increase your favor. It isn't going to help people see the Jesus in you. So I don't want to walk in it!

There might be that opportunity on occasion to talk through real problems and feelings with a trusted friend as long as they don’t become your dumping-ground every time you see them. But other than that, to be an living, walking, expression of getting up on the wrong side of the bed? It's not going to happen! I’m not bottling up the start-to-a-bad-day feelings. I am leaving them at the feet of Jesus as often as I need to.

I am called to be a light. I want people to see Jesus in me. Most people want to avoid the drama king or queen in their daily routine. Most people want to avoid the person that when you say, How are you today? proceed to tell you every problem in their life. Most people have so many of their own issues they are dealing with, that they don’t have the capacity to take on all of yours. There are always those who will offer a hug, or a word of comfort and encouragement, or even a sincere prayer, but you don’t want to drown them in your woes. A few words and they’ll get the picture. If they are the kind of person that is geared to be compassionate, they’ll give you the some kind of caring response. If not, they didn't want to hear it to begin with.

Who can you share your feelings with and who will listen to you? The Lord will and he won’t disappoint you. He’ll listen to your every word—but don't miss this—He doesn't like whining either. It's void of faith and He wants you to come in faith about what He can help you with! When you're done talking, He wants you to listen to His words—words you read from His word or words that rise up from within you if you've hidden His word in your heart! He will want to lead you away from all the drama and instead, have you cast your cares upon Him in faith. He’ll ask you to take His promises deep into your heart by faith. Why? Because He cares for you! He knows His promises are more than just words. They have the power to give instant hope and life! They have the ability to turn your feelings around on a dime when you receive them by faith. AND He is the only one that really can care for you! As 1 Peter 5:7 NLT says, “Give all your worries and cares to God, for He cares about what happens to you.” Just that statement should make you feel better.

In Isaiah 61:3 KJV, God says He gives "... the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness.” Take authority over your feelings if they’re negative. Put on that garment of praise instead and just begin to praise Him! Think of His love for you! If you start there, put a smile on your face, and let your light shine, AND if you’ll take things one step at a time, trusting the Lord to lead you and help you at every point, your feelings will improve and so will you and your day!

I remember vividly, observing a young man who received news that he was soon being laid off from his job. He had a wife and young children and they were expecting another. As he walked out his last weeks on the job, he kept his feelings in check, put a smile on his face, and expressed his gratitude to those that had employed him. He expressed to them, his confidence in God being there for him and helping him gain new employment. Now this young man is just like you or I. He had big challenges facing him. It could have been tormenting and he could have walked around mad and angry, or with a face like a sad-sack. He didn’t. He put his feelings in check, a smile on his face, and put his words of faith out there before others. He prayed through every fear that rose up—instead recasting those cares before the Lord. A funny thing happened. Before he was let go, they decided to keep his job and him. They re-thought their laying him off and decided they couldn't let such a quality individual go!  He had passed this present test of life before man and God. I was so proud of him.

Let's take a lesson from him and forget about how we feel as we start our day! Why don't we declare how we are going to feel and lay our cares at the feet of the Lord! He cares for us!

Isaiah 61:3 "To all who mourn…He will give beauty for ashes, joy instead of mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness. For the Lord has planted them like strong and graceful oaks for His own glory."

In His love,
Pastor Tim Burt

If Fresh Manna is a blessing to you, I'd love to know. Click here: 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© 2019 All rights reserved

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TimBurt.org

Monday, July 15, 2019

Let God Refresh Your Life With New Things!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

Ever feel like you’re boring or stuck in a monotonous rut? I suppose there could be a variety of definitions of what a rut is. When I think of a rut, I think of two things: repetition in what I’m doing, and doing something that isn't what I want to do most. Repetition in itself isn't bad. Actually a fair amount of routine helps us develop a more disciplined life.

I remember back when our children were school-age and began summer vacation. Most all our routine flew out the window. It felt good for a short time, but by the end of summer vacation we couldn't wait for the kids to get back in school so we had some routine again. Initially we struggled getting back into that routine, but it didn't take long for it to feel good. I would get my daily disciplines back and it always felt good.

I like having my daily routines, but like anyone, we enjoy spice in our life. We like the things that we insert into our life that add flavor such as date nights, being with friends, events and gatherings, vacations, and the change ups and spices of life that make life more interesting. Repetition isn't bad to me unless as long as it serves a good purpose in my like and helps me achieve my goals and desires. But the repetition of meaningless and unfruitful things only makes me feel like I'm in a rut. The logical thinking would be Well, just break out of it!  If it were that easy, then none of us would be in a rut for long.

The Apostle Paul described his ruts like this in Romans 7:15 & 18-19 NLT. “I don't understand myself at all, for I really want to do what is right, but I don't do it. Instead, I do the very thing I hate... No matter which way I turn, I can't make myself do right. I want to, but I can't. When I want to do good, I don't. And when I try not to do wrong, I do it anyway.” Paul went on to describe that this is how he acted when He was living carnally.

Paul went on to say that as Christians we cannot allow ourself to think we are trapped by carnal thinking and behavior. That was a part of our old life and nature before we received Jesus. The Bibles says that as believers, we have become sons (children) of God. We've received His nature, His Spirit, and the Bible says we have His mind, the mind of Christ. Because of that, we can break out of ruts and instead through the power of the Holy Spirit, make the changes we seek God for that He then leads us in. We can escape from ruts! As Romans 8:9 NLT says, “But you are not controlled by your sinful nature. You are controlled by the Spirit if you have the Spirit of God living in you. (And remember that those who do not have the Spirit of Christ living in them are not Christians at all.”)

Whenever I’m in a rut, I meditate on this truth. I have the Spirit of God living in me, therefore I am not controlled by any sinful nature, nor am I bound by habit or stuck in what I am doing! By the power of the Holy Spirit, I can change things up whenever I deem necessary!  There is something else I do. I have done this in various forms over my 42 years as a Christian. It has helped me more than anything else I can point to. It has helped strengthen me in spirit so that I could rid myself of the bad in my routine and replace it with the good. So what is it? I have communed with God early before ever starting anything else in my day. As I wake up, I begin to commune with God, mediating on His promises and who He says I am.

Psalm 5:3 NIV says, “In the morning, O Lord, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation.” Psalm 143:8 NLT says, “Let me hear of your unfailing love to me in the morning, for I am trusting you. Show me where to walk, for I have come to you in prayer.” And Isaiah 50:4 says, “The Sovereign Lord has given me His words of wisdom, so that I know what to say to all these weary ones. Morning by morning He wakens me and opens my understanding to His will."


I commune with God in the morning before anything else. I talk with Him and let His Word speak to me. I talk over my day with Him and ask Him to use me and let me be a light for Him. I ask Him to strengthen me to make changes that are good and necessary. I ask Him to strengthen me do to what I know God wants me to do. And in this place of communing, God’s strength comes and my confidence in Him helping me grows.  It is in those quiet times with the Lord that I am better able to know what needs to change and find the daily strength to change it. Ruts suffocate our life, but Spirit led changes feels so good! Try it!

Isaiah 43:19 (NIV) "See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland"

In His love,
Pastor Tim Burt

If Fresh Manna is a blessing to you, I'd love to know. Click here: 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© 2019 All rights reserved

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TimBurt.org

Friday, July 12, 2019

The Man on the Fence An Inspirational Story

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

I am reposting this story by request. I pray it will bless you and challenge your heart! ~ Pastor Tim 

The Man on the Fence - A Parable (Author Unknown)

There was a large group of people gathered. On one side of the group stood a man, Jesus. On the other side stood another, Satan. Separating them was a fence running through the group.

Both Jesus and Satan began calling to people in the group.

One by one, each having made up his or her own mind, went to either Jesus or Satan. This kept going for a time.

Soon enough, Jesus had gathered around him, a group of people from the larger crowd, as did Satan.

One man joined neither group. He climbed the fence that was there and sat on it.

Jesus and his people left and disappeared, and so too did Satan and his people.

The man on the fence sat alone.

As this man sat, Satan came back, looking for something which he appeared to have lost. The man said, "Have you lost something?" Satan looked straight at him and replied, "No, come with me."

The man said, "But I sat on the fence. I chose neither you nor him." Satan said, "That's okay; I own the fence."

Matthew 12:30 (NIV) Jesus said, "He who is not with me is against me, and he who does not gather with me scatters."

In His love,
Pastor Tim Burt

If Fresh Manna is a blessing to you, I'd love to know. Click here: 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© 2019 All rights reserved

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Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Crushing Fear With Overcoming Faith!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

One Friday evening, my granddaughter Madeline who was six years old at the time, spent the night at our house. She's was an early bird, full of fun and life in the morning. She wanted to play hide and seek and read a Bible story so I restructured my morning to accommodate these serious priorities.

That morning, she brought me a story book to read to her. It was about a little boy who was afraid of getting a shot at the doctor’s office. I read her the story. She then asked me to read the Bible story of the young boy named David who had the courage to fight Goliath because God had helped him defeat a lion and a bear as a boy. When you read the story of David and Goliath you can see that David was different from every other soldier. When he heard the voice of the enemy mocking God, righteous indignation rose up on the inside of him and out came the words, 1 Samuel 17:26 "Who is this pagan Philistine anyway, that he is allowed to defy the armies of the living God?" His indignation and words led him to action. When David revealed what he wanted to do, he didn't get a lot of support. 1 Samuel 17:33 says, "Don't be ridiculous!" Saul replied. "There is no way you can go against this Philistine. You are only a boy, and he has been in the army since he was a boy!"

This lack of support didn't stop David. He had faced threatening situations his entire life. He defeated them one by one because he learned to depend and lean on the Lord in each situation. And in each situation the grace of God and His wisdom manifest in David's life. God strengthened David in overcoming his fears so that he could defeat the enemies in his life. When he came face-to-face with Goliath, David responded, "You come to me with sword, spear, and javelin, but I come to you in the name of the Lord Almighty—the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. Today the Lord will conquer you, and I will kill you and cut off your head. And then I will give the dead bodies of your men to the birds and wild animals, and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel! And everyone will know that the Lord does not need weapons to rescue his people. It is his battle, not ours. The Lord will give you to us!" 1 Samuel 17:45-47

We have all faced fears from situations that masquerade as Goliaths in our life. They try to overwhelm our thought-life far too frequently. They try to rob us of our sleep. They try to paint ugly pictures of doom and gloom. They try to steal all our hope and faith in God. One of the gifts of the Spirit taught in 1 Corinthians 12 is the gift of faith. This isn't just our normal faith in God. This is supernatural faith that comes as a gift from God during terrifying times and keeps you in this bubble of faith and trust. It is a gift. It comes by God's grace as a gift of mercy. It is not always present. It’s not but that isn't because God doesn't want to help us. He also wants us to learn to be like David—strong in faith and trust.

Why had David’s faith and trust in God grown so strong? Experience! David learned to face his fears and lean on God again and again. His trust in God had grown deep and rock solid. David explains why to Saul before defeating Goliath in 1 Samuel 17:34-37. “David said to Saul, "Your servant has been keeping his father's sheep. When a lion or a bear came and carried off a sheep from the flock, I went after it, struck it and rescued the sheep from its mouth. When it turned on me, I seized it by its hair, struck it and killed it. Your servant has killed both the lion and the bear; this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, because he has defied the armies of the living God. The Lord who delivered me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine." Saul said to David, "Go, and the Lord be with you." 

Fears can feel complicated or we can uncomplicate them. We can simply state what they are to the Lord, lay them at His feet, ask Him to show us how to defeat them, and let the Lord speak to our heart through His Word. Then as we do what He instructs and leads us to do, trusting Him, our faith and trust over time grows stronger and stronger. We also will defeat the Goliaths—the fears that surface in our life over and over again. Fears will always attempt to invade our life. Laying them at Jesus' feet in faith and trust of the Lord is what will defeat them as we trust Him. And we also will grow stronger and stronger for Him!

2 Samuel 22:31-34 "As for God, his way is perfect. All the Lord's promises prove true. He is a shield for all who look to Him for protection. For who is God except the Lord? Who but our God is a solid rock? God is my strong fortress; He has made my way safe. He makes me as surefooted as a deer, leading me safely along the mountain heights."

In His love,
Pastor Tim Burt

If Fresh Manna is a blessing to you, I'd love to know. Click here: 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. 

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Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2019 All rights reserved

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Monday, July 08, 2019

Shed Desperation For Expectation!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

34 Years ago when Renee and I were starting the Small Group ministry at our church, the Lord spoke something to my heart. He spoke it to me like a father giving his son godly advice.  At that time, I had been laying out a master plan for our small groups system at church. I had spent six months seeking God, praying and thinking about it. It was unique from what other churches had been doing and there were no systems like it—no models to pattern it after. Most churches were following cell group systems which were the trend of that day. We had gone that route years earlier but didn't feel it was the best fit for our church. We instead prayed over a small group system that was more compatible with our culture and goals.

When the time was drawing near to launch the vision of it, I began to pray over the leadership I would raise up for it. One morning while praying about it, I felt these words from the Lord impressed upon my heart. He said, You are not desperate! That's all He said but when those words were spoken, I knew in my heart what He meant by them. He did not want me to get ahead of myself just to achieve goals and hurt my efforts by raising people up into leadership that weren't prepared for it. The Lord was telling me, You are not desperate concerning your leadership so don’t act like it. Pray for me to give you the cream of the crop for leadership and over time, you will see that I will give you exactly that. And the Lord did exactly that. He gave me an amazing group of people that learned and grew and matured and were faithful. They became the leaders that served under me—many of them for the next 30 plus years. Many of them are still going strong today!

The Lord spoke one other thing to me that day. Since then, it has guided me through all my efforts in all I have done over the years, with amazing grace and patience. He spoke the words from Zechariah 4:10 (NLT) "Do not despise these small beginnings, for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin..."  

I learned that starting small gives you an opportunity to learn what you are doing, adjust your path and efforts as they need tweaking, and help you work through the mistakes everyone makes when attempting something new for the first time. In the small beginnings, there are fewer people to hurt or see you make those mistakes. That is a grace from God!

God had taught me at an earlier time in my life that He would equip me to do the things He wanted me to do. Hebrews 13:20 (NLT) says, “And now, may the God of peace, who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus... equip you with all you need for doing His will.” Over time, I knew that this did not just pertain to ministry, but to every area of my life. No matter what I had need of, God would equip me for the things He called me to do. I would seek Him for the equipping I needed. And from that point, if I ever felt anxious and less than confident about what I was attempting, I would remember that the Lord promised to equip me, and I would remember those words from the Lord, I am not desperate!

As we read God's word, we see people in the Bible who are in desperate places or situations in their life—just like we do in the lives of those around us. We ourselves experience feelings and moments of desperation. I know in those times, the Lord wants us to shout, I am not desperate. We aren't because the Lord is our provider. He is the one that shows us where our provision is. He is the one who equips us for every good thing!

When Abraham was called by God to offer Isaac as a sacrifice, Abraham knew God had promised Isaac as his heritage. So, even though this sacrifice did not make sense, he knew God would provide. Even though it was his own son, he would not allow himself to be desperate. And we know the ending. God provided at that very moment of sacrifice, Abraham’s provision—a ram in the thicket to take Issac's place. And because of that, Abraham named that place accordingly as we read in Genesis 22:14. And Abraham called the name of that place Jehovah-jireh;  The Lord Will Provide. And to this day it is said, "On the mountain of the Lord it will be provided."  Those words Jehovah-jireh literally means, God who will show you were your provision is. Is trust in this fact important? Absolutely! Because because Abraham trusted God and was willing to offer Issac in obedience, God offered up Jesus for us!

We are not desperate! We may at times experience very real and difficult circumstances that attempt to terrorize our heart. But because our heart and life if focused on what God wants us to do, God is with us! He is our deliverer and He is our provider. It is He that shows us were our provision is and equips us for everything He has called us to do! Trust that and lean on that as you seek God in faith for your equipping and needs!

Hebrews 13:20 (NLT)  “And now, may the God of peace, who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus... equip you with all you need for doing His will.”

In His love,
Pastor Tim Burt

If Fresh Manna is a blessing to you, I'd love to know. Click here: 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© 2019 All rights reserved

https://
TimBurt.org