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October 10, 2020 10:30 am
He dreamed of becoming a pro wrestler...and that dream was realized the same year he came to Christ. 20 years ago, Jaxson Ryker of famed WWE trio The Forgotten Sons, bowed the knee to Christ and also entered the squared circle professionally for the first time! Jaxson shares stories from his journey and how he lives out his faith today.
Hello this is Matt slick from the match looked like podcast right defend the Christian faith and lay out our foundation of the truth of God's word chosen Truth Network podcast starting in just a few seconds. Enjoy it, share it, but most of all, thank you for listening and for choosing The Truth Podcast Network. This is the Truth Network.
Once a world champion wrestler, now a champion for Christ.
Once the Russian nightmare. Now the devil's worst night in your tagteam partner cheetah call time back to its time to man up the cuticle the hellholes worst nightmare. Martin Luther King Jr. is famous for saying I have a dream while my guest today. WWE superstar Jackson Riker also had a dream. I am pleased to Jackson Riker not of you not familiar with that name so you might be having a Bureau of a wrestling fan or as I come to learn in the South harassed Lind thing on Jackson is currently on the WWE roster might see him on smack down when it airs from week to week him and his team. I let him talk a little bit more about that today would Jackson good to have you in the studio. My brother is going to be your Nikita thank you so much yeah appreciated. Now I'm excited to have you here and now it was just talk to talk out of the year on the roster know who it like it if folks are familiar with the course was backed out of the not familiar with dressing in general. If they wanted to and in what will they find they see you will see your part of the team right yet for guidance on some Friday night will Fox board every Friday night, which is now finally going back to somewhat of a live broadcast were running out of Orlando, Florida family center. It's like virtual fans now. So with all the stuff going on every Friday night now so you will Fox move one Jackson Riker with a forgotten sons were trio. We tensing our students would characterize actors to veterans. I'm a Marine Corps veteran. We have another one is a veteran and we we just were Americans all the way so we gotta betray that on TV and it is kind of a just kick a lot but that's that's that can be a good thing I so thank you for serving.
By the way they did RR for our great nation and we really appreciate that having the having that backgrounds amazing enough now give us the backups you been wrestling for how long it's 20 years excellent. August 28 will be 20 years I had my first match in 2000. Yes, right independent show in Lenore North Carolina the armory and Lenore North Carolina etc. torn down now but there's probably 400 people there. The guy who trained me took me under his wings and what you have in your first match. This is like two months after training. Look at was doing yeah and I got: quicker something I thought only quick. I watched as a kid since spy was what I wanted to do and not chase my dreams of my dad said you got a graduate high school. First, you can do it before then. But which graduate school your free game. I never want to go to college. Never in the military but once 9/11 happened.
I did you know it's okay honey to serve my country and give back while so but yeah I been wrestling almost 20 years. 38 now it's it's been a blessing for me. Spent a great platform as well.
That's amazing why that's interesting your story because it different from my story I just heard you say from age 5. You got fell in love with pro wrestling in it and then the dream was set ready.
The tree was planted in your heart to be pro Russell yourself one day and ended and the dream was fulfilled in an 20 years yeah and I would trade for anything man like I mean it's given me a chance to see the world just experiencing no crazy characters. I got a chance to work with no Hulk Hogan and Ric flair, and staying in like all these guys I grew up watching and I got a chance to wrestle sting in 2012 so here I am standing in the rain I remember my dad just would love sting loved standing and ringing in his music at something this look around like this is real like almost all the serve you and he was so awesome and so giving and no man of God, of course, like we talk about this stuff. Dr. wrestling everything but news is that it's been a blessing. Just a great career yet so unity taught about sting being a man of God.
Some people may not know the story, but not course I love wrestling tail in the 1992 beginning 1993, 11 months later found myself in an altar surrender my life to Jesus. I did see any of the guys fast-forward to 1995, December 1995 wrestling of the Charlotte Coliseum. I heard they're going to be in town. I grow my hair and I had a mullet do the same. I must get my food that you often isolate… Have some fun ethic and want to recognize me. Most of them did I go to is Lex Luger euros, but do not use your eyes pro you Catch Angel's eyes right like cornered staying about 1/2 hour. Let this be for two listeners out there. Let this be a note to you I corner for 1/2 hour just like I'll say this with Kenneth throughout Guatemala. All about Jesus rightly got obtained in the corner finally goes and I got to go get ready for a bad thing go right on like I will continue this, but little did I know you know I feel like I planted some seeds present. Fast-forward to August 1998 that I'd heard that he surrendered his life gives life to Jesus and then I began to have the privilege of of traveling down to Texas about once 2:45 days at his house with him and his sons as children and just really I might see mentoring discipling just loving them and just you know try to be Jesus was going on and help him.
You know, grow up in his faith, myself pretty cool. You had the opportunity to be in the ring up with some of the guys that you watched growing up, it's amazing amazing yet since it is surreal. We said that just to get a chance to mean just be in the ring with Holcombe and he's the one I can remember a five seeing on TV and I was always in the bodybuilding guy was always into pro wrestling select is the best of both worlds, like superheroes or active feminist is bigger than life characters so I got a chance to work with him in an impact wrestling in 2000 1012 or so. It was supercool to me always is really good to meet these guys that I idolizes a kid and then for him to be super humble and very giving to me in my career. So what would you say on that note, okay I me through some pretty big names out there people surely recognize even if they didn't watch wrestling right might recognize the name Hulk Hogan might recognize the name Ric flair, the icon staying three pretty big names would you say what would you say in that sense might've been your your what would you consider being your biggest moment in the ring what you was any particular one matching can you narrow it down. Or maybe not make yeah maybe was of like a childhood dream. Probably the time I got to wrestle sting.
Okay, that's a big moment for me, but other than that I got a chance to main event at the Manchester Arena in England and has sold out crowd there and it was this huge and I remember coming to the ring is like an impact which is no think it's doing back now, but it was the world title match is the big moment for me as I was in the sink or swim. So I get there and a member standing like on the middle room is looking out the people going.
This is my moment like I remember being wrestling and armories sometimes 10 people right you know.
And here I am a man so those two members really always sit with me. I have many other ones, but those two I can pick out just like that's pretty on document review and if you read is that they can of my page getting hot dog that I got a $50 guarantee that's right they can take you Lord for the guaranteed payout will say this one other memory you may remember, this is a independent show.
Maybe in Burlington somewhere you the best referee during my match and I pushed you a couple times. He said this is your last warning I did it again, you Russian sickle yeah oh yeah I remember that one like it was yesterday. So click here has been me up once it crosses the Russian sick God. I don't much guess rest referee anymore. My autograph signings and those are things that in Italy or if you like these guys like Hank, could you get involved in my back was the Russian sick like you don't want the rest is that David Crockett could tell you about adding itself is a great story. I don't remember that, but that's a great story of God.
I could give you that maybe I was as good as you live the talk about absolutely absolute that's pretty amazing. See, so you got this wrestling career and of course you know you the weightlifter I like to relate so much to what your sentence in terms of the wrestling and in the weightlifting as far as what I became adapted to be a quick learner, you know you had a couple months training. I had no training and like like the real and and Raleigh Dorton. Reno was thrust into the ring.
You know with with the victim. My first appeal of the talk about it to good but so let's do this. Let's transition from so your wrestling career, he established his pretty amazing wrestling career and and again for those listing out there today currently on the WW roster so people can still tune in and find the forgotten sons is right and Jackson Riker people up as it fell at. That's pretty cool so at where long that life journey from five years old dream to be a professional wrestler fallen in love with weightlifting and bodybuilding that sort of thing.
When did Jesus enter into your life. What that I can remember being really young and it in to some people it sounds crazy, but to me it doesn't.
It was it was me experiencing who Jesus was among my father, my mother were believers when it they didn't go to church every Sunday, per se, but I remember as a kid during the summer breaks or be like a weeklong Bible camp so the churches that I didn't attend combined these you know where I live, we live in a trailer park and come pick us up on the bus and take us away for the day and would do things to the church that we would play games, whatever.
But they wouldn't they would also read the Bible to us, but I remember just hearing this about this Jesus and being very interested in it before even like really knew what prayer was.
I remember a nighttime talking to God.
You know not not being saved my life to to deliver anything yet because I didn't happen until 2000 okay.
I remember being young and and kind of experience in a moment away, but to truly experience if we want to fast for little bit. March 15, 2012 save as my hometown church Bethlehem Church of God and in North Hickory, North Carolina and is started as a revival tent revival. My grandfather was a preacher.
Okay coaching in the family genealogy is not really so yeah he had died in the 70s but I still have a cassette tape of him preaching one of his last sermons, so it's pretty amazing for me to to know I went to that church and that we would have these weeklong revivals were these Baptist preachers will come in and the Holy Spirit fills bikini times are still vibrant snowman and pastor John Banks was his name, and I remember you know leading up to this know the pastor make an altar call in, fill in his tugging, but I might know what's going on here, but just a little bit of information. My grandmother always steps on Raleigh's epicenter. The whole sermon, the matter was going on or whatever here was a thank you Jesus over and over and over grandma grandma man yeah and what I now she was she was plant a seed, you know, so jail pastor John Banks is is preaching this by revival and where the suits witness hot in their people going crazy and and and he made the altar call that night I decided to like kick the sinner box often, and obey the Lord and I walked up and knelt down that red carpet. It's still there today and I gave my life to Jesus man while March 15, 2000 yes so 20 years ago while you not. I've had my rocky road up to be of two-hour talk but my testimony but I've always knew that the Holy Spirit convicted me of things that I needed to change in and that was a take back to the childhood of praying.
Prayer was something is always important to me but I have saved a new and have that communication with God's currently. I love it because it's a family church.
My grandfather started it was just my grandmother was air my dad was there is a supercool answer exam log yeah grandpa grandma can plant seeds and praying for their children and grandchildren.
And yes, intercessory interest in meeting the accessory and food for future generations and you got this foundation of of remembering, praying, and then eventually leading to to March 15, 2000 for you. The day of decision when he said this is that this phenomena surrender my life to Jesus and for the listeners out there. You know you may not know Jackson remembers you know a particular day. I do as well for me. 17.
October 1993 was my day of decision you baby. I'll thing you don't you like man I don't always believe in God but I don't member you know the day of decision and you don't what's most important is not so much you remembering the day is much as remembering the moment and if it was real for you.
It was real and it was heartfelt decision than you invited you opened your heart and invited Jesus and in your blood wash born again believer's right and I think that's important that we all recognize that you know I think I look at this way, Jackson the guy got place eternity in all of us in all of our hearts. She's placed eternity is just a matter of us coming to that point of decision when working to surrender our life to Jesus. So you surrender your life to Jesus, 2000 and directive am wrong, but same year he got a wrestling right so I was March. I graduated in May 2000 and and started training in August will start training like June 2000 okay August 2000 my first match okay yeah same year is a big year February Nancy it was you just solidified your your your eternal destiny. Yes and took a step into fulfilling your dream right, right. What a huge year for you left. Pretty amazing and so you met you made that you think you said this week. You have had a rocky road and want everyone out there listening to understand Nugent in the fact that you give your life to Jesus doesn't mean it's in of this is good be smooth sailing and tell you cross over the river and into the celestial city and and you take that step in the return like to save this way your death is not a. It's a, right right for those who have Jesus in their heart and their life and surrender the life you don't have to have a fear of death, because you know that's just step through the threshold into eternal life. So for yourself. You made this decision you're on this path. The road hasn't always been smooth and inoculate. I like to relate this way. Let's be like a roller coaster for the time I give my life to Jesus minutes that mean there's been ups and you know, climbing that anyone's been on a roller coaster hose access at a slow, going up the road right then we do reach the peak and I doubt you go right then theirs turns and twists and sometimes I felt like I'd been upside down and you probably due to absolutely and so to speak to that for minutes in some of these challenges for our listeners understand. You don't look at its there's still to be challenges even living for Jesus, there still to be challenges there is any challenge and you talk with a roller coaster needed sometimes as the roller coaster is is because of our own doing or like our flesh getting in the way of you: don't sit some time. I yeah it's our flesh getting in the way and I realize that you know I was on fire for a while and I Neptune in the Marine Corps and kind of surrounding myself with the wrong people and I live by Romans 12 two do not conform to the ways of the world, but be renewed by the transforming okay so I realize it. I was had been living for that verse early on in my 20s because I surround myself with the wrong people went down the wrong path. I started drinking. I had pill problems and just note, never, never, suicidal or anything but depression problems I was trying to find who was without consulting Christ, you know, so I lost it somewhere along the way but it was still even losing that someone would always tell people when I share my testimony. Always remember being convicted all the time Holy Spirit inside still inside me right wasn't given up on me right was being convicted about this isn't you, this isn't your identity in Christ.
I have something better for you if you can just be obedient and change your ways and just get in the word get in prayer and trust me walk with me staying in the shadow of my wings know and and finally I did, but that rocky road was a look at. It was a learning path for me.
Luckily, I never heard anybody hurt myself, but I look at it and I can use that to teach. I do some youth ministry now. I'm blessed enough to be able to have a platform to be able to do youth ministry.
My church is something I can use for those kids to teach them. Don't conform to the ways of the world you know don't go down that path. I trust the Lord in the process and I wish I would have a little more, but that's what testimony I wouldn't trade it for anything you write is what taught me so I helped you get to where you're at.
Absolutely yeah yes and it again for me that's just that's part of life's journey writing. He said something really important. I feel like you know like show choices and even as a Christ follower. We can still bow to the flesh, and walk not away from the spirit, but drift away.
I like to say drift away where sometimes fleshly things become more important or grab a stronghold and until we have that aha moment that God should something else. She said to that really resonates with me as she said I surround myself you got the military with the wrong people right and for you listening out there understand. I stop at this school sends a lot more of the law of association, yet they say become like the five people you hang around the most right now.
Care how strong your your faith if you're hang around a bunch of people who are not believers in doing all kinds of things that are contrary to the word of God matter how strong you think you are all eventually you're most likely going to be sucked in are pulled into that lifestyle right into what they're doing right, which is what you found to be true. We are most deftly and we as funny last night and the youth we did a study of friendship was when into Luke six were Jesus chose the 12 disciples and something resonated with me when I read the Scripture about that and talk to the kids about. I do that now. Mama wife make it a habit to pick our friends wisely because three years ago we worked it was affecting our personal life or marriage like I have a four-year-old daughter almost that she's watching daddy's is very important to me now are some clicked but anyway eat. Jesus chose his disciples, and before doing so, he went to the father in prayer and you would like to tweeze kids always go to God in prayer and spam. So even now like if I fill them a hard convicted about something like maybe these people are so good for my my inner circle because my daughters can be around him know I'm going to be, be around it always go to God in prayer.
He seems so super important me not always go to the father prayer man went what it what a great what a great message for Erin and you mentioned volunteer with youth what what what church the refuge in Kannapolis and how I know that will pass to Mary without is a story of Pastor Jay's been my past since the day I really I got saved in 1993 for long long time examining how amazing your heart for youth right now and serving and had one other little note is well as you've recently enrolled in a ministry school. Yes, we are like a couple misled but yet yeah so that's why we quick talk about being convicted all those younger years.
My life always felt the Lord knocking on the evening boot camp and Marine Corps icon which administers all of that means on the fence was pastor church and Josh don't know but I knew that God was calling me to pursue ministry school to pursue ministry in some way some form. So finally after 15 to 18 years. God never close the door. He kept knocking on the heart and started fire school of Ministry Dr. Michael Brown so I started that August 4 and is good because Dr. Michael Brown's kindly taken me under his wing. He so I listen I'm a busy man but I would like to mentor you little bit. So what were going to remain in our week and I'm reporting what I know and you're going to train me you're going to teach me lift some weights, so the other day we got to live. If I do some shoulders with gasoline just I'm so thankful for that relationship.
Jason and David been to run over well connected me to Dr. Michael Brown and saw started fire school ministry under prayer course right now and in the doctrinal class so I'm super excited about the minutes and it had. You are part of of men's Bible study Gilead Outagamie, which is amazing.
Surround yourself with that fellowship is so important and ended to the extent of this day and time. It's being missed out on and I love it because her so much knowledge like you got outside I heard a pastor tell me one time that you have a minute and you I don't know maybe you said this to me but if you could have your paddle your Barnabas and Timothy.
Is that what was it you, I have known for saying so, the Paul Barnett genitive of this however it is true that you need that person to mentor you. That one who is is your Barnabas to use side-by-side the note talking about. You need to change your ways younger Timothy, the one you get to teach and instruct God lead that's so true that mean you gotta have you surround yourself with people that they are more knowledgeable about you and more close to the Holy Spirit. Well that's pretty cool. Let me just to say this pretty good trade-off between the Dr. Michael brought me to look away and I'll pour I'll build your spiritual muscles you build my physical muscle that's pretty good trade. I will say this even yet he's no slouch though, the man can kill me in cardio separate good at pretty impressive and I dimension you met your wife and tell you to tell us the names.
Yeah, my wife's name Stacy and my daughter Ava shall before on September 13 so that I Medigap a boy she she looks like a spitfire is my daughter and my wife and you agree well it's been amazing to have you on the show today and I hope sometime you know you you be willing to come back absolutely will thank you so much. Jackson Riker WWE superstar from the pickup on map it from from the trailer park to us WWE superstar but but God was all available along the journey. In between, and you hear all fired up years is about the Lord what what store real quick.
As you know I love them to show that with a story and an altar as an ultra shy kid who's a good basketball player. I learned confidence, determination, dignity, taking pride in what I did because I watched you Nikita although you were a wrestler in an unusual world.
I learned all those things watching you every weekend. I cried when you lost US titled Lex Luther I did to nobody.
Just beg nobody thought. I cried on the inside pocket up to. I look where I learned by watching you Nikita. I learned or urgency narrowed to junior college basketball scholarship and the chance to go to Boston College, Cincinnati, South Florida or weight force. I wish you would become world champion at least once in. I have a couple opportunities that's another story for another time. I turned it down. Probably only guide resting ever to do that anyway.
Most of all, brother Nikita, thank you for thank you very kindly for being an inspiration very shy 17-year-old kid in high school who was always working on his individual game that led me to going to college. Charles C. And if you have a story then email it to me set it to me: off for email@example.com I love to share your story on air.
And maybe it's a story about a been administered in your church.
Some one time some time and and or or you know we had some conversation and autograph signing. Would you have a favorite memory of me in wrestling or if in some way. I was inspiration and inspiration or motivation for you and I just love to hear his story.
You know and and it encourages me blesses me.
Many of these different stories and I'm sure I'm sure Jackson could probably relate to the Sumter those.
There's tons of stories he's already getting right now from from the inspiration he is in wrestling with W. W. But even more important as he is now mentoring youth is Timothy's and eyes that Dr. Brown is Paul and is linked up with people around him.
His Barnabas is hey if you don't have that if you don't have a Paula Barnabas in the Timothy someone to come after you appear who can call you out when they need to let a young person you can speak into.
You need that just nevertheless it's time to man up is not about duration it's about your donation in life. See next week men.
I would like to challenge each of you to consider spending five days with Lex Luther and I and pursuing the heart of ladies listening will send your manhole with God godly husband and God you give them your blessing and sign up today at band camp.full pastors you would like to bring Holland for Christ ministries and man up conference to your community order cloth.org and email me remember this. It's time to man up. This is the Truth Network