Language Translation

Books I'm Reading

  • "Surviving the Anointing" by David Ravenhill

Books I've Read

  • "Revival God's Way" by Leonard Ravenhill
  • "Tongues: Beyond the Upper Room" by Kenneth E. Hagin
  • "The Dynamic Duo: The Holy Spirit & You" by Rick Renner

Monday, January 25, 2010

Got Any Dice?

In reading through the Book of Acts again this week, I noticed this interesting fact that applies to all of us in the children's ministry.

In Acts 1, the upper room was filled with so many great people, many of whom had actually walked daily with Jesus. As per Jesus' command, they were in this place awaiting the promised Holy Spirit. In this time, the apostles decided to have a business meeting. (What else can a church leader do when there's nothing else to do?) In Judas' absence, the apostles knew that someone had to fill the missing position. So, what was their method for selecting this person? After praying, they rolled some dice. We all know that their lot fell upon Matthias of whom we never hear anything again.

Here is this week's thought for those of us in leadership positions in the children's ministry. Have you considered the fact that after being filled with the Holy Spirit, the leaders of the church never had to roll dice again? With decisions constantly being made in the formation of this new Church, never again do we read of them casting lots. Why? Because they now had Someone who could communicate with them and guide them.

How are your decisions being made? When selecting what you will teach the children, is it a matter of which curriculum looks the most user-friendly? When deciding which music to sing, is it a matter of what is fresh and new or what has the most colorful DVD presentation? When deciding how much to pack into a service, is it a matter of which games haven't played in a while and which DVD is new and unseen? While we don't physically roll dice in our decision making, would it be safe to say that we are mentally casting lots?

Let's not have services whose results are as lasting as the decision to select Matthias. Let's hear the voice of the One sent to lead and guide us. It is amazing what He might say about what happens in next week's service. Selah!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Three Thieves of Intimacy with the Holy Spirit

For those wanting to have a relationship with the Holy Spirit, they must learn to create opportunities to be with Him. You see, relationships are birthed out of being together with the Holy Spirit. It is a time investment. Sadly, we often are just too busy. There are too many other priorities. Because of the lopsided priorities, the longing to be in His presence and to have communion with Him is pushed further and further down our list of priorities.

This week, allow me to share three ideologies in which many have subscribed that rob them of their time with the Holy Spirit.
1. You can have it all. We race through life, working and maneuvering to try to acquire everything on our "have-to-have-it" list. This pursuit to accumulate everything is a thief that will eventually leave you empty. King Solomon in Ecclesiastes 2:10, 17 showed the futility of this ideology.
2. You can do it all. While we know that we really can't do it all, our crowded, hectic schedules would prove that we think otherwise. And sadly, we push this ideology on to our children by engaging them in multiple activities (piano lessons AND soccer leagues AND junior Bible quiz) in addition to the eight-hour school day and the enormous amounts of homework. No wonder there isn’t any room for an intimate relationship with the Holy Spirit.
3. You deserve it all. This mentality will push a person to the limits (or rather, beyond the limits) to gain goals. While goal setting and having dreams are both important and biblical, the attitude of the heart reflected in these goals and dreams should always be Holy Spirit approved. This will prevent self-centered attitudes and behavior and promote a life-style of dependency upon the Holy Spirit and thus causing the longing to fellowship and commune with Him.

Monday, January 11, 2010

It's Your Move!

Here's a little known fact about Billy Burns. I am hopelessly addicted to playing word games. (If there is a support group for this addiction, I don't want to be a part of it.) I absolutely LOVE any kind of word game. To show you my passion for this addiction, I have on my iPhone 14 different word games. I could (and do) spend as much time as possible playing these games. And, to feed this addiction, the iPhone has a Scrabble-type app called Words With Friends. Several of Trinity's pastoral staff have this game on their iPhones and are involved in a Words With Friends tournament. Right now, I am involved in 12 different Words With Friends games and loving each and every minute of it!

There's one thing about the Words With Friends game that makes it so appealing. It is a self-paced game. With that I mean, when your opponent makes their move, their word appears on the Words With Friends game board. Now, it is my move. Because of schedules, once I receive notice of it being my turn, I can immediately take my turn and create my decimating, intelligent word. There are times however that it might be an hour or two before I can find the time to escape to Words With Friends world and make my play. The other player has to wait until I make my move before they can make their next move.

This is true with revival in this new year. In the Word, we can easily see that God has made His move for a mighty outpouring of His Spirit in our children and children's ministries. He has shown us His desire for our children to prophesy and powerfully inact His will in the earth. He has given us His Holy Spirit to enable His will to manifest. Throughout the Gospels, He has revealed His Spirit to us so that we can have an intimate relationship with Him. Throughout the Book of Acts and letters to the Church, God demonstrated how His Spirit operates.

Just as in Words With Friends, before God can make His next move, He will wait and wait until we make our move. Our move of desperation, our longing to do whatever it takes to facilitate the fulfillment of His promise will cause God to pour out a supernatural rain from heaven that will forever change you, your children, and your children's ministry.

This week's blog is your official notice (no iPhone app needed) that it is time for your move.

Monday, January 4, 2010

TODAY is the Day of the Holy Ghost!

Let me start off this blog by doing two things. First of all, I am wishing myself a happy 53rd birthday. On this day, January 4, in 1957, Bill and Elizabeth Burns became the parents of a stunningly handsome, incredibly intelligent, unquestionably funny, and undeniably modest little boy. (I'm the founder and president of my own fan club ... and its only member!)

Secondly, I want to restate the final few words that I posted in the final post of 2009 .... TODAY is the day of the Holy Ghost.

Many reading this blog have never been in our conferences and have never heard why I write and say "TODAY is the day of the Holy Ghost" so often. Let me tell you the story behind the saying.

One Sunday morning, we had a tremendous time of praise and worship. So many of our children were going after God. God's presence was so tangible. After this time of praise and worship, I told my wife Vickie from the platform that I could see the day that it would be difficult to stop our children from praising God in the service so that we could move on to the next portion of the service. That was a great spiritual statement, or so I thought. Shortly after leaving the platform, God's Spirit spoke to me and corrected me. He said for me to quit saying that I see the day coming and instead begin to state that today was that day. He continued by emphasizing that we can cause ourselves to miss out on what God wants to do today by living in the past where God had visited or by constantly looking at the future. He again emphasized that TODAY is the day of the Holy Ghost. By saying the word "today" we are opening the door for the Holy Spirit to begin to move among our children right now.

Join with me. Begin today to announce aloud that TODAY is His day. Begin today to announce boldly that TODAY is His day. Begin today to announce often that TODAY is His day. Thank God for what He has done in the past. I’m thrilled about what He will do in the days to come. But I am ecstatic about what He wants to do TODAY! TODAY is the day of the Holy Ghost!!!!