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When Hope Meets Wrestling

It's Time to Man Up! / Nikita Koloff
The Truth Network Radio
September 23, 2023 1:00 am

When Hope Meets Wrestling

It's Time to Man Up! / Nikita Koloff

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September 23, 2023 1:00 am

Today, Nikita speaks with Marty Miller. Listen as he shares about the powerful work God is doing through his professional wrestling ministry. 

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It's Time to Man Up!
Nikita Koloff

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How do you go from being a wrestling fan from childhood to becoming a professional wrestler to promoting wrestling that brings hope to a community? Don't go away. This is the United States Champion, BBK, my personal savior. Ladies and gentlemen, the following contest is set for one flaw.

Introducing first, from Lithuania, he weighs 123 kilos, the Russian nightmare, the Kita Kolob. Now, the Devil's Nightmare. Welcome back to another episode of It's Time to Man Up. Today, I got a special guest on the show. You know how every week they're special, because you're special. Just for tuning in and listening to the show today, you're special, and I appreciate you. But today, today, today, I have with me a dear friend, longtime friend, Marty Miller calling in from the Peach State. Marty, welcome to The Man Up show. Hey, Nikita, thank you for having me.

I'm excited to be a part of this. Well, it's great to have you here or with me today, Marty, the Peach State of Georgia. Our friendship, I was trying to remember, maybe you may recall better than I, about how long have we known each other and or how did we meet each other? Was it through wrestling? How did we meet each other? Yeah, so about 15 or so years ago, you and Lex came to town with Pastor Tony Evans to Griffin, Georgia, to do a wrestling outreach. And Tony, somehow or another, got in touch with me.

He knew that I was involved wrestling or light wrestling, and was looking for somewhere for you guys to preach. And I was a youth pastor at a church at the time. And so we just, we connected there and you guys came and preached the morning after the outreach. And so that's where we met. That's where it started. Pastor T, did you attend the outreach as well then? Oh, I did, of course. My whole life, wrestling was anywhere near me, I was going to be there.

So I was definitely there. Would you consider yourself an old school wrestling fan, Marty, or do you like the new stuff or do you like all of it? What do you like? If I had to pick one, I'm definitely an old school fan. I grew up in the 80s, started watching wrestling when I was about 84, 85, 34 years old. Saw the Saturday Night Show, saw the Road Warriors and you and the Horsemen and Dusty Rhodes and all them.

They just captivated me from day one. And so if I had to pick an error, the 80s were definitely it. But I'm still a fan today. Yeah, well, and a lot of people are, right? Worldwide.

It's actually kind of crazy how many people around the world follow professional wrestling. So you were about three or four years old. We're actually then about the same age because I was born in 1984. Did you know that? Well, the Nikita Kolov character was born in 1984 in the halls of Charlotte, North Carolina. So you started watching right around the same time as my birth, you might say, my entrance into pro wrestling, right?

I did. And the Crockett territory was what I saw here in Atlanta, TBS and Superstations. And that was what we got for the most part. And it was what turned me on to it.

Hook, line and sinker all these years later, right? It sure did. Let me tell you a little story too.

Please do. Our connection kind of goes back a little further than that. About 20 years ago, me and some friends, I was in wrestling, I started wrestling myself, and me and some friends went to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to the ECW Arena. And we drove all the way up there with hopes of getting on the show.

Well, that didn't work out. So we attended the show. There was a merchandise guy in the building that was selling your first book, Break the Chains. And I bought it, not knowing what it was about, thought it was just a biography, wrestling biography, and I collected those still do today. And I got back to the hotel room that evening, and I read that book, cover to cover, while there was all kinds of, let's just say, stuff going on around me. But for some reason, God had began to work on me and block me out of all of that stuff, because your book grabbed me, and it wouldn't let me go all night. I was sitting there reading that book. And I couldn't even tell you what was in the book, but it just got my attention so much that it kept me from the other stuff that was going on that evening. And so that was really our beginning of our connection together.

Wow, that's actually pretty amazing. That is on my, actually on my, for you listening out there, that is on my to-do list. That has not been in publication for a while now, so it is on my goals list. You hear me talk about goals all the time.

If you follow me on social media, I'm always posting something positive or challenging you to set goals, have a vision, a dream for your life. And so that was not long after I surrendered my life to the Lord, Marty, that I had wrote that, the Lord had put that on my heart. And He's put it on my heart again to recirculate that, maybe update it or at least get it into reprint.

Breaking the chains. I actually went on, I think like Amazon or something one day, like looking for, you know, an old copy or something. I know I've got some somewhere, but man, they're not as cheap as they used to be. But other people selling them online have a pretty good price tag on them. Yeah. I couldn't, I can't find my original one.

I don't know what happened to it, but so I went on a few years back and got one off Amazon and I paid a good bid for it. Okay. Well, yeah, I mean, and I feel fortunate whether it's, whether it's books or even action figure, people tell me all the time too, we're trying to find your action figure and man, they're not cheap. But I'm like, well, they're limited.

So, which is what drives the price up, right? So anyway, so, but I appreciate you bringing that up. That's what a great story. And it reminds me of another story I'll tell real quick that somebody else who sat down and read it from cover to cover, you already mentioned his name or you mentioned their names, the road warriors. And I was doing an autograph signing out in New Mexico quite a number of years ago. They were on, we were doing a series of four different towns, little tour out in New Mexico.

I was already retired, but I had, I had a case of those with me. And on the last night, the Lord's like, give every guy in this show, every wrestler in this show a copy of that book. And I was like, Lord, there's like 25 guys on this show. You know, he's like, ah, what's your point? And I'm like, okay, fine.

So, so I did. Right. Well, Animal, Animal went into the dressing room and I walked by three or four times, peeked in and there he was sitting on a chair during the matches. Cause you know, they were main event or whatever during the matches, during the show, reading the book. And then he walks in to the other dressing.

He's like, ah, I read that book, you know, cover to cover, like you just said. Right. And I'm like inside, I'm like leaping for joy. Right. But I wanted to be calm, cool, and collective outside. Right. Right. And I'm like, ah, man, that's cool. Thanks. I really appreciate that. And only to find out, and there's more to that story, but only to find out about a week later.

He and his family, James, his son, James, and the family went forward in a church outreach, another outreach through some guys who did like feats of strength or ran through ice blocks and broke bricks and rolled up frying pans and all that kind of stuff. So anyway, what a cool story. And so for you out there, just to keep your eyes open, it is on my goals list. I'll be sure to announce it, whether it's on the show, social media, whatever, once I get that back in, in reprint.

And in the meantime, in the meantime, I do have a biography, of course, Nikita, A Tale of the Ring and Redemption, as well as a motivational book, a motivational book. I'm laughing right now about my man, Robbie in the studio, who would be just research $80, Marty, for breaking the chains right now, 80 bucks. I didn't get that much. And that may not even be signed.

Boy, if I had my autograph on it, my signature, it's going to be even more. But anyway, anyway, he just pulled it up online, $80. Wow. Thank you, Lord. Anyways, and so the other book, the other book, Wrestling with Success, is going to be motivational. A Tale of the Ring and Redemption is going to be inspirational. Maybe you need one or both.

Just go to Koloff.net and you can order them right there. And they are personally autographed by me, any book that comes in. So, well, let's get back to your story, Marty. Enough about me. I wanted you on the show today because you have a great story. And certainly the fact that our, how our relationship began through a book and then through wrestling and through the outreach. And I want to talk about that because I'm wondering if you attending that outreach that night that Pastor T hosted, if that planted a seed in you for what you're doing now.

Now, we're going to talk about that, but before we get there, let's fill our listeners in on who Marty Miller is. I mentioned the Peach State, but tell them, you know, where you're residing and just tell us a little bit about your family too. I'm in a little town called Milner, Georgia.

It's about right in the middle of the state, about halfway between Atlanta and Macon. And I've got four kids. We're a blended family.

My wife Ashley, we've been married for six years. I'm going on seven. And we've got four kids. They're all teenagers. They're 18, 18, 16, and 16. So we've got our hands full. Two of them just graduated high school. Two of them are, one's going to 11th grade, one's going to 10th grade.

Three boys, one girl. And so we've got our hands full. Blended family is a whole other interesting dynamic. But it's one that God's given us and we've been able to navigate through it. And it's just been amazing to see what God's doing through those relationships. They're definitely the way he designed it to begin with. There's no doubt about that, but he can still use us. Yeah, right.

Well, for sure. I'm going to pray for you, man. 18, 18, 16, and 16. Your stock just went up on my prayer list. I just want you to know I bumped you up higher on the prayer list. So, wow.

18, 18, 16, 16. And you're right. I know you and I have talked over the years and had conversations surrounding this. You knew I'd walked down that same path and raised a couple of children, Taryn and Tawny, two girls that were not my own by birth, but yet raised them as my own, embracing them that way. And in fact, the word step never even entered into the conversation ever.

It just didn't. I didn't view them that way. I didn't introduce them that way. Hey, me and my step-daughters. It was just like, hey, me and my daughters. And so anyway, you and I have talked over the years, and family marriage in and of itself is a challenge, right? Anyone out there listening who's married can immediately identify and or say amen to that, agree with that, right? But then as you said, when you add the dynamic of blending more than one family together, and you see this all through scripture. I remember the last time I read Genesis, I took a big sigh of relief, like for real.

I was like, oh, wow. I feel a whole lot better now because, Lord, there's been some dysfunctional family since way back when, right? And so thinking about my own nuclear family that was ravaged by divorce. And then my own relationships over the years, unfortunately experiencing that same thing. I have a real appreciation for a guy like yourself who's willing to step in, raise some children that are not your own. And what would you say to those listening out there? Maybe they have a blended family and they're struggling right now. What might you say as a word of encouragement to them in the midst of their struggles?

What would you say? You're listening to the Truth Network and truthnetwork.com Nikita Koloff here, and I am excited. Did you hear the huge announcement, the big announcement?

Well, maybe it's a minor announcement. Anyway, Facebook. Go look up my new fan page, Nikita Koloff Fans, and like it and follow today. For $100 or more, Nikita will include a signed copy of his newly updated life story, A Tale of the Ring and Redemption. Go to www.koloff.net and donate today. Go to www.koloff.net and click the donate button.

You can give monthly, annually, or one time. God bless you for making a difference around the world. You're listening to the Truth Network and truthnetwork.com I think the biggest, if I could narrow it down to one word for me, it's just patience. And because, like for our family, the way I raised my two was different than the way she raised her two. Neither one was necessarily right or wrong, they were just different. And so when things would happen and I'd be like, I want you to respond this way, but she responds this way, and the same thing for me, having that patience that only God can give us to say, hey, wait a minute, there's a bigger picture here, let's work it together and see how this works best for everybody involved. It's not about who's right or wrong, it's about how we can respond the way God wants us to respond.

And so that would be what I would say. It's a very solid response and let that be an encouragement to you out there if you're in a blended family or headed into a blended family, or even if you've been ravaged, even through a blended family, been ravaged by divorce. And of course we've heard all the statistics, know all the statistics of second, third, fourth marriages, the percentages drop less and less and less in terms of the success of that marriage. But I think you hit on two things, one, the word patience, and then even more important of that is that the family would be God-centered.

That there be an agreement there that no matter what, we're going to go to the Lord, we're going to stand together as husband and wife, even if we don't agree with our parenting styles, we're going to put Christ first, stand together on that foundation, and then hopefully, right Marty, make our decisions from there, right, for whatever decisions we make moving forward. And they're not always going to be right, right? They're just not.

They're not, but as long as they're based in what God's Word says, He works it out every single time. Yeah, and so patience, we could throw the word grace in there as well, right? For sure. I bet you've had to extend a little grace over the years with your wife and all the kids, right? It's me several times.

What's that? And I've needed it extended to me several times, too. Grace, grace, grace, grace, mercy, mercy, grace, grace. Lord, give me your mercy, give me your grace, right?

Patience. So, Marty, let me ask you a question regarding patience. So, it's because a lot of times I'm out and about, I like to randomly pray for people. I might be sitting in a restaurant, a waiter comes over, a waitress comes over, and I'm like, hey, question for you, nothing to do with food, what can I pray for you for today, right?

And it's been on occasion, I've had this, oh man, pray for patience. And I'm like, you sure? You sure that's what you want me to pray for you for? They're like, look at me like, what do you mean? And I'm like, well, is he just going to give that to you or put you in situations where you have to learn to be patient, right?

So, they're like, oh, I never thought of it that way before. An old evangelist came to our church one time and he told us, he said, be careful what you pray for. Be careful what you pray for, right? God will answer prayers.

Sometimes, and sometimes not in the way we're expecting or hope he will, but nevertheless he will. All right, so let's go back to you, our youth pastor, around the time we met. And I know since then you've been involved in a number of different things, you've been out there in the marketplace. I know you're still very engaged and very involved in the church setting. So, speak to that just for a moment, the transition from youth pastor into some of the other things you've been doing leading into the outreach that you now do. Yeah, so it really, I thought it'd be different going from a minister position to a job in the marketplace, like you said. But really, there's ministry everywhere, and once you realize that whether you're a pastor or you've got a reverend in front of your name or not, that God will use you exactly where you are. What I've learned is it really doesn't matter what you do for a living, you're still a minister. And God can use you exactly where you're at, exactly what you're doing, and exactly who you're with to minister who he wants you to minister to.

You know, I like that. You say even if you don't have a reverend or doctor or pastor in front of your name, you don't have to go to a seminary. I'm reminded of 2 Corinthians 5, verse 17 through 20, which says, if you have been reconciled back to Abba Father, right, our Heavenly Father, then you now have a ministry of reconciliation.

And so, great, great observation on your part. In fact, would you agree with this, Marty, that where do you spend, a lot of times, if you're working full-time, right, you're out there 40-plus hours in the marketplace, right? And around a lot of employees or customers, depending on what you're doing, so what better harvest field or opportunity than to be out there in the world, versus an hour, in some cases, two hours in church on a Sunday, right?

I mean, a, quote, pastor has much more limited time with a congregation than the congregation has with other people. And so, what a great, valid point and encouragement to all of you out there in Listening Land that it doesn't matter what you're doing and just start with your own family, minister to your own family. And so, you've been out working in the marketplace and you recognize it currently as your ministry field, but you also have been prompted and led into what we originally talked about, those wrestling outreaches, right? And you're developing an organization. Tell us about that.

Yes, sir. So, like we said earlier, I love wrestling from a little boy and that's all I ever wanted to do. And when I turned 18, I got to do it a little bit here in Georgia, nothing major, just small stuff.

But I always enjoyed the behind-the-scenes stuff more. And when I got saved in 2003, I gave my life to Christ. God took me completely out of wrestling, completely. It had become like an idol to me, so to speak, and God removed that to kind of recenter myself. And so, I came home one day when my son was born and he was watching it and I hadn't watched wrestling in probably five, six years at the time.

And he was watching it and he was enthralled in it like I was when I was his age. And I remember that night praying and asking God, I said, God, if you give me an opportunity back in this world, I'm going to do it to build your kingdom. And that's the only way I want to do it. And then he began opening doors, like with that outreach that you guys did and others throughout the years, to where today we've created an outreach called Hope Championship Wrestling, where we, similar to what you guys did 20 years ago, we go to a town, put on a wrestling event, but in the middle of the wrestling event, we have somebody come out and share their testimony. And we do an altar call and we do the whole deal, almost like a church service, but it's a wrestling event. And we just want to use the platform of professional wrestling to share the gospel with as many as possible that we can come in contact with. And so that's what we're doing now with Hope Championship Wrestling. Yeah, and you're going to reach people that may not otherwise come darken the doors of a church, right? Come to a church service on a Sunday or something like that.

Even though it's even held at a church, some people will, it don't matter, right? They're like, I know I've been blessed to be a part of a number of your events over the years, and usually on a Saturday night, and I know you've got me involved in some in the future, and I know you've had my adopted nephew, Alexander Koloff, as your champion. Is he still your champion, or was he? He is. He's a big part of what we're doing down here. He's a great guy.

Yes, he is. Loves the Lord, which is part of the reason I adopted him and christened him with the Koloff name. Alexander Koloff, champion for Hope Wrestling. What'd you name it, Hope? Hope Championship Wrestling. Hope Championship Wrestling. And how would, so you do these, basically all over, I think kind of like middle Georgia, at least currently, right? But if there was a church, a pastor listening in Georgia, or, I mean, how would they get in contact with you to say, hey, we might be interested in bringing that outreach, get outside the box, and reach our community. Let's face it, there's a lot of communities that love wrestling, right?

And it's going to draw people. How would they find out more, get in touch with you? So on social media, you can just look up Hope Wrestling Georgia, or email us, HopeWrestlingLLC.com, and we'd be glad to come do it. We went to Orlando back in April, so we'll go wherever God opens the door, wherever he provides, we'll be there.

And we'd love to come and help your community, your church, wherever you're at. Yeah, so you've got a wrestling crew, and I know you've had Chad Lael, who wrestled in WWE as Jackson Ryker, right, for a while, he wrestled TNA, AEW, or not AEW, or was he an AEW? I don't remember.

He was. NXT. Okay, and NXT.

NXT, and then I know they bumped him up to either Raw or SmackDown in one of those for a while, but anyway. And of course Alexander, and you've had other named wrestlers that are part of this, you've got your crew, you've got your ring, and for really a nominal fee, I encourage you, if you're a pastor out there, or you're listening, you're like, wow, that would be a really cool thing to do to get outside of the church walls, outside the box. You know, we have a tendency to put God in a box, and to get outside the box, and really reach some people, as I said, who might not otherwise have any interest in church. And back when I was doing more of these, you know, a while ago, when I was with Pastor T and others, you know, I used to say it this way, Marty, hey, we're going to give you what you want, and the reason you're coming is the wrestling's drawn you, right? So we're going to give you what you want. We're going to entertain you with some professional wrestling matches, while at the same time, we want you to leave with what you need, which is salvation, which is the gospel message.

You know, there are some who come who are saved, who have given their life to Christ, but there's plenty of others. In fact, I remember the first time, quick story before we run out of time. I remember when Lex Luger first went to one of these with me, and he was like, now, where are we going, and what are we doing? I'm like, dude, we're going to go, and I kind of explained to him, he's like, uh-huh. He didn't tell me at the time, he said, he was sick in his head, he's like, oh, this is going to be a bomb, this is going to fall flat on its face, right? And we get to this little tiny town in middle Georgia, the place is packed out.

I mean, it's a little building off in the middle of nowhere, no air conditioning, so just figure that one, and hotter than a firecracker. All that to say, long story short, I give the message, I give the altar call, we had over 100 people respond of all ages. By the way, grandma, grandpas, I mean, kids respond to the ring as an altar, and he was blown away. And so I'm excited for Hope Championship Wrestling, Marty Miller, excited for you and your vision, because you would like to, as you said, I mean, you'd like to see, be able to do this more and more and more, right? Absolutely, this is where I believe God's leading the direction for me right now, and we would love, got a good group of guys that are working with us that are learning themselves, some of them are sold out Christians, and some of them are learning about the faith. You know, in the wrestling business, it's hard to go to church sometimes, because you're always on the road. I've got a good thing going here, and I'm really excited about it.

Yeah, you do. You have a great thing going there, and that's right, and I'll just say this, too, that, you know, certainly we want to reach the fans, but I have seen over the years many wrestlers who come to be a part of it, and the truth is, they come for a payday, right? They come for, but they hear a gospel message, they hear, or, you know, they're part of prayer before the show starts, or, you know, they step out to hear whoever's sharing their story and testimony, and I've literally witnessed pro wrestlers come to the ring with the fans to give their life to Christ.

And so, pretty powerful thing. Hope Championship Wrestling, Barney Miller down in Milner, Georgia. Really appreciate you being a part of the show and sharing some of your story today, and especially about your blended family. Thanks for being on Man Up with me, Marty. I really appreciate you, I really do. And I appreciate all of you out there in Listening Land each and every week. You're so faithful to listen to the radio show and go over onto the podcast and spread the word as well, and I hope you have a God-filled, God-blessed day today. This podcast is made possible by the grace of God and your faithful prayers, support, and generous gifts. May God bless you for your continual contributions. Go to Koloff.net and donate today.

Hi, Nikita Koloff. Be sure to check out The Man Up Show, now available on television, broadcast, and podcast. Go to MorningStarTV.com or the Truth Radio Network. Check out your local listings or better yet, download the Truth Network app today. If you are enjoying The Man Up Show, would you help us spread the word? Tell your family, tell your friends, tell your neighbors to download, subscribe, and leave a comment. Nikita Koloff here.

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Whisper: medium.en / 2023-10-07 05:56:30 / 2023-10-07 06:09:25 / 13

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