Hi, I'm Joanne Vickner, Memaw with It's Storytime Memaw, an answered prayer for stories that point children to God on the Truth Network for kids. Your chosen Truth Network Podcast is starting in just a few seconds.
Enjoy it, share it. But most of all, thank you for listening to the Truth Podcast Network. This is the Truth Network. What a prolific testimony this guy has as an author, broadcaster, a teacher, professional, career man, all kinds of things, and he's still going for Christ. Herb Burns, what a blessing, man, to have you with us today. So tell me, who is Herb Burns?
That's what I want to know. Well, as I mentioned a little bit earlier, I shared with somebody, they say, Who am I? I'm a nobody wanting to share with everybody all about somebody that saved my soul. So who I am is not really important.
The journey, I think, is what's important. So I've been a college educator for almost 40 years, and I was trying to achieve something in my life that most educators want to do to get those accolades. So I spent one year, several months trying to apply for something. I got rejected.
You play basketball, you're a competitor. So I said, I'm not going to give up. I'm going to try the next year.
So I spent several months again, trying to accomplish this goal. I failed again. So I said, God, I give up. I surrender. It's not about me. It's about you. So I asked God, what can I do for you?
He said, Herb, I want you to use your talents to spread my word. I said, okay. I'm a Christian, been a Christian most of my life. How did you get saved? I was a young boy at church, you know, 10, 11 years old, accepted Christ, went and got baptized.
But then I said, you know, I've gone to church. I've read the Scripture, but I've never read the Bible from beginning to end. So Route 66 became my first book.
I love the looks of that. 66 books in the Bible. So this was my journey through the Bible.
How about that? If I was going to share his word, I had to understand it. So what I did is I read each book of the Bible. I did a painting for each book of the Bible, history of that book of the Bible and a take away application for the world today.
So that was my first book. And as I was doing the draft, I took it to my senior pastor at church. I shared it with him. I wanted to get his opinion. He looked at it and kind of slid back in his chair and he was kind of silent.
I said, this can't be good. He said, I've never seen a book like this before. Wow. And that senior pastor has to be Dr. Gary Chapman. Has he ever written a book?
Let's take a look at that. So he wrote the introduction. Yeah, he sure did.
He predicted that book would be a legacy book passed from generation to generation. I love it. It's called Route 66.
Have you found your route in life? So it's a brief commentary with some beautiful illustrations, paintings of each book of the Bible. Wow.
That is something Isaac and Abraham embracing. Look at these pictures. Herb Burns. What's your website? I want to get that early and often here.
www.herbburns.com. Just your name. Fantastic. Wow. And many of the illustrations in the book have faces of real people that God put in front of me. If you go to John, I did a painting of the Last Supper and all the faces of the disciples are people that God put in front of me. And there's a story behind each face that's in that painting that I created. Wow. So you're an artist also. You've got a lot going on.
Every time I talk to you, I learned something else. You came in. We're at a cool restaurant called Dario.
We just finished Wednesday. We're at 50 guys and you're getting in the word this morning. And it was such a treat to have you here. And it finally got you connected, got you to get up and give a cool shameless plug for all your awesome books and to meet the guys and we want you to come back.
But I had to grab you afterward and do this quick interview so people could hear about what is it that drove you to write the... When you put this book in someone's hand or they buy this book or they go to your website www.herbburns.com, what is your dominating motivation? Connect them with the Bible in a way that they've never been connected before. Some people are afraid to pick up the Bible and read it. So if they pick up my book, that's a much gentler way to get into the Bible. And there's scriptures in each book that are connected in it, an application that you can read to take away to apply in the real world today.
So it connects you with the Bible, hopefully encouraging you to pick up the real deal and get in it and read the best book that's ever been written in the world. And that's the Bible. So when I finished Route 66, I said, Okay, God, what's next?
He said, Don't you understand? The message was never stop. So that became the title of my next book, Never Stop, because he didn't want me to stop. So I had to ask, discover and share became the second book.
I was going to say that. Those are two. You never stop, right? Never stop, too. You have three books here total.
Yeah, yeah. So second one was asked, discover and share, you know, think about our faith, ask ourselves where we are in our faith, discover where we need to go, and then how we can begin to share that with others. And there's stories in here from other people's lives, how those three words Christians have been transformative in their life.
Those three words ask, discover and share. So then he just wanted me to never stop. And that became the next book. Never stop teaching and leading, help heal our nation. And we're going through such turmoil in our country these days. Americans need to know what we need to do to help heal our nation, especially as Christians. It's time we rise up, it's time we stand up and not be silent anymore. You know, you think about the revolution, the pastors during the revolution, after they preached their sermon, they took their robes off, and they led their congregations out to revolution.
They picked the musket up and went out the door and fought in the battle, fought in the British. So let me ask you this question. Going back, a lot of folks listening to you, they're passionate about Christ. They may have a book in them. How do you even write a book? I mean, I'm looking at these three amazing books.
How do you even practically do this? Do you just start typing stuff up that God puts on your heart? I mean, it's probably a journey of many years, I would imagine. Well, these three books have been written in less than two years. No kidding. Yeah. I retired in 19, your 2020 I retired. Okay.
And Route 66 was published in 2020. So I just say, God, what do you want me to share? Wow. So he's using what's in my head, my experiences, my talents.
I mean, look at you. He's using your talents in the radio station, how you're sharing the gospel. Everybody that was in our meeting this morning, they all have talents.
Yeah. We need to find out what our talents are. Even Steve Jumper, who's walking by right here. Even Joe Sperley, the pro baseball coach teacher who wrote that great book.
You and him talked about that. I just love to see. So you're really helping, you know, this whole help heal the nation, this whole asking, discovering, sharing. You're helping build other people. Absolutely. And encourage them to find what their giftedness is and then do something with it. Right.
And then write a book or go share a message or go feed somebody or go build something. Right. Some folks are good with their hands. Yeah. In one of my books, you probably know who JC Martin is. Yeah. Yeah. He wrote a book and a story in my book.
And title of his story is called Twice Broken talks about the failure that he had in his baseball career, which eventually led to him being a world champion baseball player. And that's in there. It's in there. It's called Twice Broken. Now you got some other Bible curriculum, too, don't you?
That's right. When you ask God, what can you do for you? He opens doors for you. So he opened a door for me this year to help teach high school Hispanic kids at Southside Calvary Church. I want to talk about that.
We've got to take a break. I want to talk about this great number of people coming into our country and how we can reach them instead of getting mad and begrudging. We can reach them with the good news of Christ.
You're doing it. I want to give your website some more. More with Herb Burns and how God brought him through retirement to even being doing more ministry for Christ. And, of course, your sweet wife. We've got to give her a shout in the next segment.
She's taught our kids wonderfully at Calvary Day School all these years, so your whole family is... Oh, and Susan is my blessed editor. Well, we'll talk about that. Give the website one more time as we go into this break. www.herbburns.com Okay, meet Herb there. You'll be encouraged.
Check out his books. More with Herb Burns after this quick break. Hang on.
Don't touch that dial. I'm Stu. This is Truth Talk.
Follow me on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram at Stu Epperson. That's T-U-E-P-P-E-R-S-O-M. How is God using your passion to reach people for Christ? Well, there's one guy here who he claims he's retired, but I argue otherwise because I'm seeing this guy sharing Jesus all over the place. His name is Herb Burns.
He's written these books. You've poured your life into education, Herb, and now you're writing books and speaking and preaching and podcasting and all that stuff. What is it about retirement you don't understand? I mean, you're supposed to be chasing a little white ball, sitting on your hands. What's going on?
Now you're teaching Hispanic kids. What's up with that? Here's the thing. God blesses us with many things, and I look back and think about what God has blessed me with, and it goes to passion and vision. God has granted me passion, and He's given me vision. Passion is the energy which fuels my sails to keep me going. Vision is the wind that fills the sails of my boat.
It takes me to places I've never been before, so the passion and vision takes me on journeys, and I've got the energy to go explore and discover new places and connect people with Christ in ways that they've not been connected before. So someone told you 30, 40 years ago that one day you'll be retired, you'll author three books, and you'll be teaching Hispanic kids the Bible about Jesus and teaching them English. What would you say to them? No way. Who are you talking to? What are you talking about?
It's the same Herb Burns that you're referencing. That's right. When you talk about opening doors, I know that you have worked with Troika in the past. Oh yeah, great. So that's another door that he opened for me. The Ukraine, sharing the gospel through business, right?
Absolutely. So I've made four trips to Ukraine, marketing and leadership, and I know you've done the same thing. That's another door that's been opened, and he just continues to open doors to share. You know that thing that I was failing at and I gave up and surrendered after I finished writing my book, what I was trying so hard to accomplish, came and sought me out without my seeking it.
No, I'm kidding. And I became one of five people in America that was chosen as a Fulbright Scholar to Russia. I got an email in the mail one day. It says, we haven't received your application. That's because I didn't apply.
We have one week before applications close. It took me months and months to prepare an application. So I threw some things together and I was selected as one of five.
That's tremendous. As a Fulbright Scholar, using the gospel, using business. Tell us about your career now. You've been in everything from engineering to being a professor to starting a very prodigious broadcast program at one of the top technical institutes in America, Forsyth Tech in North Carolina.
Like I say, don't be afraid to fail at something because everybody's going to fail at something. I was telling a gentleman earlier today, out of high school, I played basketball and I wanted to play basketball in college. So I tried out for the University of Kentucky team. I made the team. I was on the freshman team and I was in the starting rotation with Larry Steele, Greg Sterrett. Dan Issel was a sophomore at the time. UK.
UK. Yeah, I was a Wildcat. So midterm grades came out. I didn't go to any of my classes. I was off the team.
Here I was starting rotation. Next semester I signed up for classes. Didn't take classes. Eventually I was kicked out of school. Wow. So I landed a job with an engineering company.
Imagine that. No education. I get a job with an engineering company. I didn't go to a junior college. I was ready to go to school. I became class president, Dean's List.
I said, I'm going back to UK. Well, God works in amazing ways. They had something called academic bankruptcy. If you've been out of the system for a year, they wiped your GPA clean and you could start over from scratch.
No way. So I started over from scratch. I averaged 20, 22 hours a semester, graduated in architectural honorary and eventually became an architect.
Wow. Don't be afraid to fail. Just never stop what your passion is. I always wanted to be an architect and I succeeded. So you went back and God used all that to form where you are today.
As you look back, what do you see young people thinking about where God's going to have them? How to keep trusting God, keep having that vision? You just have to keep in communication with Him. You have to talk with Him. You can't be a Christian and say, okay, I'm a Christian.
I'm just going to listen to everything. You have to communicate to God. You've got to pray with Him.
You've got to talk with Him. You don't have to be in prayer to talk with Him. I'll stand on my deck sometimes and just raise my arms up and say, thank you, God, for all that you've done for us. I look at the trees and say, I can't believe you created that.
It's amazing. Let's do a quick recap of your three books. Your first one really is kind of the foundation one, Route 66. Tell everyone, give us a quick 90 seconds. First there's Route 66, then there's Never Stop asking, discovery, sharing.
Then there's Never Stop teaching, leading and help heal our nation. Take us through each one real quick. Route 66 is an introduction to the Bible. I had never read the Bible before from Genesis to Revelation. So I read the Bible and each book of the Bible, whatever stood out to me from that book, I created a digital painting, a history of the book and how you apply it in the world today. So when I finished, I said, God, what's next?
He said, don't you understand? Never stop. So that became the title of my next book. Never stop asking, discovery and sharing. So I had to discover more about myself, discover more about my faith. And I had to ask, discover and share what my route in life was going to be. So that was that was the next book.
Ask, discover and share. And then the third book again continues. Never stop. And that's when the pandemic hit us. Everything suddenly gets shut down. Suddenly we can't believe what we hear in the news. Suddenly we can't go to church.
Suddenly a protest turned violent. But it's time that we rise up. It's time the churches rise up now. It's time Christians rise up now.
It's time that we start to spread his word to help heal our nation. And this book has a prescription in it that if you want to follow it, there are some side effects, as I mentioned earlier. Dangerous, right? Dangerous side effects. Love, prayer, healing, salvation.
If you want those side effects, you take this prescription in this book. That is something else. I love how you're kind of putting that warning label on there. But really, I mean, this is neat. You're challenging people to step it up. And you're challenging these little Hispanic kids.
You know, a lot of folks are mad. They're coming into our country. Man, how could someone illegal be here and all that?
And I'm not trying to sidestep the law. But at some point, as believers, when a mission field comes to us, I was talking to a guy yesterday who every year he goes to Honduras on a missions trip. And with all the COVID stuff, he hadn't been going in it. So I was talking to John. Great Christian guy. This guy has been mentoring and encouraging me for years.
And he said, Stu, it's crazy. All these folks are coming over from Honduras to here. I don't even have to get on an airplane. I can just go down the road, talk to them and love them and encourage them. Lead them to Christ, get them in my church, disciple them. I mean, there's a door of opportunity for the gospel that God has opened wide open. As believers heard, what's your challenge to everyone to seize that?
You've kind of done it by writing these books and being out there. Well, something also has recently happened. God's opened another door.
It's, I guess, less than two months now. I've become a Gideon. No kidding. So he's opened another door for me. You think about what's happening at the border. What a great opportunity for Gideons to be at the border, to share Hispanic Gideon bibles with those coming across the border. In Spanish, you have all those bibles.
In Spanish, absolutely. What a blessing. And that's what you're doing. Tell us these kids.
Now take us in that, because I know that's near and dear to your heart. These young Hispanic kids that you're mentoring and teaching. They're high school kids from different high schools in the Forsyth County. North Carolina.
Yeah, North Carolina. So we feed them. The first part is 30 minutes for a meal. Then we have an hour to spread the gospel with them, get them in the Bible. And we actually make them open.
We don't make them. We ask them to read scriptures from the Bible. And they read it in English.
So they're in the Bible every Thursday night with us. And then when we finish, there's time for homework. If we can help them, mentor them with their homework.
If there's no homework, they go out and play soccer in the field until it's time to leave. Good for you for doing that. What's your challenge as we wrap up, everyone, about as believers to wake up, to be active in reaching our world? Now is not the time to be idle. Jesus is coming back.
What's your challenge? Well, so far media has tried to shut everybody up, tried to silence us. And if you speak up, there's forces that just pounce on you saying, oh, you're racist, homophobic, whatever it might be. They're just trying to keep Christians silent. And we cannot be silent. It's time that we started bearing some scars on our backs. And it may come that day.
It may come that day. What do you say to someone that doesn't know Christ out there that's listening to the radio, driving down the road? There you were, didn't know much about the Bible.
You started digging in. You wrote a book to help folks get back into the Bible. What would you challenge people that don't know the Lord? Find a Christian.
That's the first thing. Find somebody that you know goes to church. It may be a neighbor that lives next door to you. How many people don't even know their neighbors or communicate with their neighbors?
We have a far pit and we invite people to our far pit at our house to share with each other. So it's about connecting. If you're not in the gospel, you're not a Christian. There is a Christian so close to you, you just have to open your eyes and look. They are there. And Christians, you need to look around too, right?
Yeah, that's right. So if you're not Christian, Christ wants you to find Him. You've got to find Him. That's what happened to Paul on the road to Damascus. He found Christ. That's the voice of Herb Burns, who's a fellow broadcaster, taught a lot of people broadcasting. Some of your students came over and worked at the Truth Network over the years.
And now he's on the outside, looks like he's retired, but he's really retrenched and recalibrated. And he is retreaded and sharing Jesus and teaching kids and writing books and podcasting. And the website for all of that is herbburns.com.
Awesome. And his wife, Mrs. Burns, we know her in the Everson household, taught our little ones. She taught, I think, all four of them.
Hope, grace, joy, and faith growing up. Love Mrs. Burns and love your ministry. You're a son, a friend of mine, a tall fellow too, like his dad.
Baller too, right? So God bless you, Herb. Thanks for your ministry. Thanks for this message. Never stop.
God has called us to be ever-vigilant, to follow the Savior and to know Jesus and to make Him known. And let's close with what you said. I love when you introduce yourself and say, Who's Herb Burns? Share that little bit as we get out of here, will you? Yeah. I'm a nobody wanting to share with everybody all about somebody who saved my soul. And that's Jesus Christ.
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