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Aren't You Somebody? : Joe Phillips - Part 2

It's Time to Man Up! / Nikita Koloff
The Truth Network Radio
January 30, 2021 12:00 pm

Aren't You Somebody? : Joe Phillips - Part 2

It's Time to Man Up! / Nikita Koloff

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January 30, 2021 12:00 pm

Pastor Joe Phillips - communicator, comic, author, actor, filmmaker, and longtime friend - continues his conversation with Nikita about his testimony, his missionary work in the U.S. and around the world, and his new film "Aren't You Somebody?" that addresses the sex trafficking epidemic, specifically in Thailand, and depicts a story of redemption from this horrifying reality.

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Hello, this is Will Hardy with Man Talk Radio.

We are all about breaking down the walls of race and denomination. Your chosen Truth Network Podcast is starting in just a few minutes. Enjoy it, share it, but most of all, thank you for listening to the Truth Podcast Network. Welcome back to It's Time to Man Up. Hey, you might remember Pastor Joe from the City of Angels, a man of multi-talents.

Well, he's not only talented inside the wrestling ring, I mean he is a comedian, a play writer, he's an actor, a director, a producer. You do not want to miss today's show. It is a pleasure to have back in the studio with me Joe Phillips. Hey, if you missed the first show, be sure to download, be sure to subscribe to the podcast. Go back and get that and listen to that. You will not want to miss the first part of his story.

Joe Phillips, pastor, evangelist, author, actor, director, producer, screenwriter, comedian, husband, dad, granddad. Man, that in itself is an accomplishment. Joe, great to have you back in the studio. Thank you, sir. It makes me tired just hearing all that.

Makes you a little bit exhausted, doesn't it? I mean, you have worn and continue to wear many hats. But Joe, I want to pick up for our listeners, for those who may be caught the first show, pick up kind of where you left off. You were just talking about your, I'll just say your humble beginnings.

Can you just touch just a little bit more on that? Well, sure. I'm glad to. My biological mother, three mental illnesses, two severe, one borderline. She would put me in the attic. She lived with her parents. And I found out before she passed away four years ago that her mother would look at her and say, why did you drag this kid into my house? I raised my 11 kids.

That's how I began. And so you can feel when you're not wanting. I have no memories of my grandmother. God sometimes gives us a good forgetter. My grandfather was as cool as the other side of the pillow. And he loved me. And I'm named after him, Clessie Roland Mills.

I'm Roland Joe Phillips. And he didn't want me to leave the house. But my biological mother said, I'll never get a man if I'm dragging a kid. So she gave me, with a judge's signature, 1967, she gave me to my first cousin. So my first cousin became my dad. My mother became my aunt. My aunt became my grandmother. My grandparents became my grandparents, great grandparents. That's why I flunk math. My family tree looks like a shrub.

It looks like kudzu. But life was pretty good, you know, till I was 15 years of age. My dad had gotten mugged in Tampa.

I don't know if you know this. He'd gotten severely beaten. And it changed his personality.

It changed everything. And so we moved to four states in four years and four years of high school, four different high schools. And my parent, my adoptive parents got a divorce, which shocked me.

They'd never fought. And it was ugly. We lived in a 900 square foot duplex. And about a week after my mom moved out, another lady moved in with her two kids and hate moved into my heart when that happened. And I was just lost, just completely lost, unmoored, tethered, not tethered to anything. Lived for basketball. I was the only white kid on my basketball team.

They called me the white shadow. I said, I don't care. Just throw me the rock.

That's all I care about. I just, and a math teacher my senior year took me under his wings. He was a Baptist guy. And he invited me to Evangel Temple. It was a Pentecostal church. He said the Lord, it was an assignment for him. He said he was Baptist all his life.

And just that was an obedient act of his. And he brought me up there and the rest is history. I gave my heart to Christ in 1982, summer after my senior year of high school. And it's been one miracle after another since then.

It's a phenomenal story. And I know I'm trying to reflect back on, you know, I'd mentioned on the last show that you, you know, you had attended one of our camps in the past. And I remember it being impacting in the ways, something to do with some release. What I remember is how you used to make references to your father or somebody and how the Lord spoke to you and kind of changed that language, right? Well, it was on a day where we were required, and I don't want to give away any of the sacred part of it, but you're required to go find a place basically all day in the woods and had some assignments, which they were very easy little assignments.

One of them was take a nap, which I really liked. And then at some point you have to hear what the Holy Spirit, you haven't said anything on it, you have to hear what the Holy Spirit is saying to you. And he brought back my dad's funeral of all things. I had never met my stepbrothers and sisters, but when I got there to preach my dad's funeral, he died at 63, fell in a creek, broke some ribs, and got some complications.

This was your birth? My adopted dad. I found my birth father, which another whole show, still a private investigator.

Had two conversations, he dropped dead July 6, 1997, I think. So my dad, my adopted dad, I always called him dad, when I got to the funeral home, they were in his casket kissing him. And I thought in that moment, you know, the Bible says Jesus knowing their thoughts, he knows our thoughts. I thought in that moment they don't know my dad or they wouldn't be doing that. So back to the mountain now, when I stopped, what are you saying, Holy Spirit?

I hadn't even thought about that. What I heard was, they did know your dad. And then he began to show me all the things my dad did for me. You've been telling the truth, Joe, when you share your story, but you hadn't been telling all the truth. And I went home and publicly on social media, repented, asked for forgiveness.

I said, there's a whole other side of the truth. My dad, before he had that spiral, he was good to me. He rescued me. And that really, I think it was 2009, that really put my ministry not into another gear, three gears ahead. Wow. Wow.

That's, which is huge. And in a sense, just the revelation of that and then bringing that public just really opened up the floodgates. When I got home, I called the family into one of the bedrooms.

Madeline had cleaned up her room. I said, Madeline, there are no dead squirrels in here. Wow. You did great.

What's going on? And I saw a Bible there and I picked it up. It was my dad's Bible. I didn't even know where you had it. And I had apologized to them for never encouraging a relationship with it, not forbidding it, just never encouraged it, never made room for it.

Right. And I picked up that Bible. I said, Maddie, why do you have this Bible? And she said, little girl, she said, well, it just makes me think about grandpa. Oh, it just ripped my heart out.

I mean, it was just like, wow. And that's just the power of what I, in my mind, what I'm thinking when I hear that story, Joe, is just restoration, even words like reconciliation, redemption, just got redeeming some things for you, even with your own children and their relation. And then other people, how they began to view your dad from there because of how you had a new view of your dad. So that's powerful. Wow. Well, and I just encourage you listeners out there, just maybe you've got some relationships where there needs to be some reconciliation, some reconciliation, some redemption, just take the story to heart that God's just a miracle working God and can bring the revelation of what you might need to do in order to restore relationship with somebody, whether it's a dad or a dad or a daughter or a son, you know, anyone, right?

Mom, someone in your family, a friend. So, well, let's transition here a little bit from a, a little, on a little lighter note. We've talked about your ability on the last show, about your ability to, to, to write. And before we get there, cause you've made a couple of references, you know, we're going to talk about this movie and I want to talk about another play, but there's another side to you that I've seen and many others have seen, and you team up with some guys and you do the clergy collar comedy tour.

Yeah. Tell our listeners just a little something about that. Well, to be a youth pastor effectively for 15 years, you had to keep kids attention.

And so people do variety of different things. I just tried to use humor. And then when I became a full-time traveling speaker, I'm thinking the cool term is side hustle.

How can I continue to do this and maybe have other streams of income? So my friends who are Christians, some of them say, I'm not a Christian comedian. I'm a comedian that happens to be a Christian and God bless them, but I'm a Christian comedian. I'm a Christian everything. That's so if we can, if we do this side hustle and have a standup comic platform, but then point people to Jesus, I'm all about it. So we would do things, um, individually. And then my best buddy Lee McBride, he's a hilarious comedian every now and then we'll get together and we'll do this clergy collar comedy tour.

Did it last year during the Christmas season. And it's a lot of fun. It's mostly people laughing at me, laughing at him. Okay. Okay. And, and, but that's something that like churches could have you in cause you still do that. We still do that. Yeah. So you and Lee and, and, and, but somebody, wasn't there a third guy at least at some point? We've used third, uh, third guys before.

John Wood is a hilarious guy. We've used some others. Okay.

Okay. So, uh, any of you pastors out there and, uh, those of you, um, involved in, in ministry, uh, we'll at the end of the show, we'll give you, uh, give you, uh, some information on how to get in contact with Joe, if you want to bring in the clergy collar comedy tour. Um, but there's something else that, that fascinates me, Joe, not only your ability to write and, and, and, and the other things you're doing, but I witnessed a number of years ago, a play. Now I know you didn't write this play, at least I don't believe you did. Uh, maybe Charles Dickens, I think you might, but Scrooge, you see the, did he write it? Charles Dickens wrote A Christmas Carol. Yep.

Which is, which is essentially the story of Scrooge. Right. Exactly.

Right. And, and, but you perform that here's a memory I have, you, you may, this may jog your memory. Uh, you were sitting in your car at a pharmacy in Kannapolis, North Carolina. I saw you in the parking lot and it looked like you were engaged in a conversation, but there was no phone to be found.

And I think I walked up, maybe tapped on the window or you rolled the window down. I'm like, what are you doing? You're like, I'm memorizing lines. I'm like, for what? He goes for this play I'm doing called, you know, Scrooge or whatever. And I, I'll never forget, Joe, you're like, yeah, I got like, like 557 lines to memorize. I walked away going, Oh my goodness.

I don't know, my best wrestling days. Uh, of course they didn't hand us scripts back then. For the listeners, they really didn't. They didn't hand us a script for the interview. They didn't hand us a script for the match. We, we just, I mean, we just went and did it.

Okay. But in this case, Joe's memory memorizing 500 or something, and the play over at the first assembly, uh, in Concord had a pretty large, initially a pretty large cast. Had about 80 people, five years, a lot of shows sold out, 15 bucks a ticket. It was really wild.

The conception of that was in 2010. I'm sitting in the service and I just hear the Holy Spirit. I sounded like a mystical guy. I bet he talks to me all the time. I just don't always hear him.

It's like that Aflac duck, you know, I just don't, but we've got to be tuned in to his frequency. But I was tuned in that day and he said, don't travel next year. Be in a play. And I'm like, I hadn't been in a play since high school. I was in Oklahoma. My character's name was Slim.

Many things had changed since then. But I remember that audition. They gave me the part of Scrooge. I went through a week of rehearsal. I told them it was a community theater, people from all over, all churches and no church, agnostics, you know, and just the community theater. I asked the producer at the end of this thing, can I share four minutes of gospel? And he said, let me think about that. Comes back the next rehearsal and says, I thought about it, do it. And Nick, I've done this 80 times. Christmas Carol morphed into the Ebenezer Experience, which was a monologue.

Well, yeah, I want to touch it. Don't go there yet. Finish with Scrooge. 80 times.

And I think over a thousand people have filled out cards saying that they gave their hearts to Jesus. Yeah. Yeah. And you play the main character, Scrooge. Yeah.

Well, that's why I did the other thing, because I'm thinking if I want to memorize 500 lines and cues, I got to leverage this. What else can I do with this besides just two weekends a year? And so you did. You create this Ebenezer, what was it called? It's called the Ebenezer Experience. We're like, now it's like not 80 cast members. It's like you and two or three other people.

That's right. And we show pictures on the LED screen. And we ask people to use their imagination.

And we do it for about an hour and 15 or 20 minutes. But this year, you don't even know this. This year, we are making a hybrid Christmas Carol Ebenezer Experience. We have combined those. And we are using a travel, I'm calling it like a little league traveling baseball team. We got 12 members of the cast.

It's a skeleton crew. We're taking it to Huntsville, Alabama, and Concord, North Carolina, two separate weekends. And we're going to do, I'm really excited about it because Jerry's Brain, the guy who did this originally, it is so fantastic. We've got a lot of different elements to keep people's attention for an hour and 15. So I'm really excited about that. Well, and I know it'll be phenomenal.

And just a thousand people filling out a card to give their heart to Jesus is phenomenal in and of itself. All right. This is what I really, I want to get to this. You made reference on the last show. We've kind of made references on this show, the movie. I guess my first question is, as you kind of give an inside peek to our listeners into this movie, and the topic is like, whoa. My first question would be, tell us about it, but what inspired you to do this movie? Tell our listeners whatever you want to share about this.

Well, it's a great question. In 2015, I went to Northern Thailand. I went to Malaysia to speak at a national conference with a friend of mine. And then I went to a children's home that he had started in Thailand. We flew to Bangkok. We went to Northern Thailand. We flew up to Chiang Rai. And I see people in customs in Bangkok.

I see Western men from Germany, U.S., Canada. They got little duffel bags. They're obviously not businessmen, and they don't have any families.

And so I'm like, what's going on here? In the Aka Indian region of Northern Thailand, they come into a village, and they'll buy a child for $400, which is a fortune. U.S. dollars is a fortune. And they'll tell the grandparents or the parents, we want to take your child to Bangkok, put them in the hotel industry. And they'll wash sheets and clean glasses. And then they'll send some money back home.

They think they've won the lottery. But it is not that. It's a trafficking situation. Human trafficking.

Human trafficking. And the way that my friend's children's home started was a knock at the door at midnight in 1986, and a grown man was trying to sell a child. And he said, what is this? What's going on? And he said, I'm going to call the police. The guy smacked him and said, stay in here. I'll call the police.

I'll find you in prison and have you killed. And that started in his brain. This guy is from the deep south, and he doesn't know what he's doing. But God wouldn't let him off the hook. And he had to start a children's home in northern Thailand.

And he's got 500 graduates in there. It's very, very inspiring. That was the inspiration.

I'm just sitting there in a meeting with the villagers, and I just see this kind of this film idea unfold like a roadmap. And I'm just an old youth pastor, but it would not let me go. And I just had to obey the Lord. And finally, I decided, well, God, you got to get this out of my mind. I bought a big post-it note thing, those big huge things you put on the wall. I'd interviewed my friend. I had a 14-page single-spaced transcript. I'm headed to a friend of ours named Susan Richards. You might remember that name. To her cabin, her and Bob's cabin. They had a basement that was just perfect for what I was trying to do. And I was praying, praying, praying, praying, God, get this out of my mind.

I don't know how to do this. Plus, it's not going to pay any dividends for years, spiritual or otherwise. And as I'm praying this, driving around a misty corner, well, this is your Hallmark moment for your podcast, my bladder usually sends my brain an email, Hey fat boy, you got like three minutes and you're going to be in trouble. I got no email.

I'm praying hard, man. And all of a sudden there's just emergency lights go off and I pull over into a big wide gravel swath. I go up into the woods and I see a trash pile about 20 feet away. It's four feet high. And I hear, there again, I hear the Holy Spirit say, I got a message for you in that trash pile. I come out of the woods, misting on top of that trash. And on the very top, Nick, there was an open hymnal that said, endure to the end.

And from that moment to this, I, even though it got tough over five years of making this movie, I never doubted whether I was supposed to do it. We've shown it nine or 10 times. We're going to give $15,000 to that children's home in Chiang Rai, Thailand. It's about 25 miles from that cave where those boys got trapped. That soccer team got trapped underwater. That's about the geographical location.

And some of these kids that are in this Chiang Rai children's home were found chained to a bed. And so I'm pleased. We were going to do it on the 19th of March.

And then this thing called Corona. Have you read about it? Have you heard about it?

The governor says, no, you can't show it. So we, we've just been trying to figure out what to do with it. So you, so you've kind of backed off on if you want to say the launch of it. So you've had some viewings of it. I know, I know there's been trailers out there for it. And, and I've seen the trailer and I'll just tell you, Joe, just from seeing the trailer and just knowing you and your heart and love for people that, that this movie is going to impact a lot of people whenever it eventually gets out into the public. And, and I know that's kind of under wraps for now, but for the listeners out there, we'll make it aware, make you aware of the fact that this movie is out and available and, and going to impact people's lives. And, you know, that's a huge, I'm learning.

Cause I had I did a show recently on human trafficking with someone else. And there's a number of high profile athletes, my, my old buddy Sting, Ray Lewis, I think two time pro bowl, Ray Lewis, and several high profile athletes that have gotten engaged with this whole human traffic. Cause it's a big deal. It's a big deal.

It's just terrible. People don't want to talk about it. I'm finding, but it really is a bit, and not just, I mean, certainly big in America, but it's big on a worldwide scale, obviously. Absolutely.

Thailand and other places, right? Absolutely. Well, I just, I didn't know when we made it that that was the easy part. Five years is the easy part of making the distribution part is what's complicated, but we've got some things that are exciting, kind of head spinning that we're trying to process and not ready to announce anything, but we want the most eyes possible to be upon this film.

What do you envision as far as, as far as it impacting people? Okay. So we've shown it about seven times in the South. Mainly, we take a, we take an outdoor, um, screen.

It's a great, great system and we can do it outdoors. We can do it indoors and people have one church and associate pastor was raising a foster kid and he told the pastor, God spoke to my wife and I through that film. We're not going to foster anymore. We're going to adopt this child. One church, a lady walks up to me with a little clutch in her hand and she said, please take this. I was going to use this to go to Sam's after church. And I was going to prepare for what's coming next, like a prepper, you know?

Yeah. But I want you to go rescue these girls. It was like 600 bucks in there and the money wasn't what was so special to me. What was special was she was saying I was going to save my life with this. Now I want you to go save somebody else's life. Almost like the widow with her mic, right? It really, it really moved me.

So people are moving and the drum beat is how can people see this? And we're working on it. We really are working on it. Well, we just, we, man, just this is such a, to me, a powerful topic. And do you envision, I mean, as far as you mentioned distribution, do you envision eventually or will it be on a, on a worldwide scope?

As of today, and don't hold me to this, but what I would envision as of today, it will land on a streaming platform and it will be offered for a minimal or no cost just to get people's eyes on this. And it's really a film about real world problems and all the heroes that solve them. So trafficking happens to be the topic of this 59 minute film. I have the gospel at the end of it in about five minutes. So it's 47 minutes, then a gospel message.

And with the credits, it's right underneath an hour. And I envisioned that a lot of eyeballs will be on it and not just be motivated by trafficking, which is a scourge, but also other issues like within a stone's throw of this radio station, there are issues that are breaking God's heart, poverty, hunger, loneliness, and keep your head on a swivel and find a problem that you can solve with God's help. That's what I want people to be inspired.

This just happens to be the scourge of trafficking. Yeah. And you're in it is, I saw on the trailer, is it, would it be more along the line of a documentary? No, not a documentary. It's just a standalone story. It's not really a feature film.

Features are an hour and 20. I was thinking Sunday morning when we made it. So it's kind of the perfect size for a Sunday morning service. And I am in it. People said, why are you in it? And I tell them Robert De Niro was booked on that particular project. I'm the only guy I could afford. Robert just wasn't available.

He was not in my price range. And Stallone would not have fit the role. Right on. And I have a 75 page script you probably don't know about that's already done and in the can of a film that I am more excited about even than this, which I'm extremely excited about. And for that, I hope to get real actors and casting directors and all of that. Well, you know, and man, just for the listeners out there, just join us in prayer for Joe and just one for the movie.

What's the title of the movie? Aren't You Somebody? They can go to aren't you somebody dot com.

Don't put any punctuation in it. A-R-E-N-T-Y-O-U somebody dot com. And they can see the website and they can scroll down and see the trailer. We were featured on the front page of the local newspaper before the pandemic. And we really had some serious momentum. And we'll get it. We'll get it back. God knows what he's doing.

Absolutely does. And if people wanted to get a hold of you. Joe Phillips ministries dot com. You can email me Joe at Joe Phillips ministries dot com. And I'd love to hear from folks and especially in this local area, you know, in the Carolinas and deep south here. We'll go anywhere. We go anywhere. We're invited.

But I'd love to I'd love to hear from some folks and see what we could do. Yeah. Because you I mean, you've traveled as people can can can gather. You've traveled worldwide. And I know you're sensitive, as they've already probably picked up on, as you've mentioned, referenced several times here from the Holy Spirit, that you're sensitive to the voice of voice of the Lord. My my sheep know my voice. And you clearly, Joe, have, I think, in the last two shows, both the last show and this show today, you have clearly, I think, conveyed that message that no matter who you are, if you're if you're connected with Jesus, if you have that relationship with him, then then you're one of his sheep and you can hear his voice. What would you say to our listeners in the last 30 seconds? What would you say to them in regards to our relationship with the Lord? Well, not only can your life be changed if you're not walking with him and you do walk with him, the lives of people around you will be transformed and changed by your transformation. That's what I would say, because he loves to take the foolish things of the world and confound the wise, the things that make no sense, like just a giving away baby growing up to make a movie that he doesn't know how to make. That's not unique to me. That's God's deal.

He loves to take your life that may not make a ton of sense and make it absolutely line up with his thoughts for change all around you. That's what I'd say. That's powerful. Thank you for tuning in. It's time to man up and tune in again next week.

Jetho'etah. Men, I would like to challenge each of you to consider spending five days with Lex Luger and I at man camp pursuing the heart of God. Ladies, if you're listening, we'll send your men home better equipped to be men of God, Godly husbands and Godly fathers that appeals to you. Give them your blessing and encourage them to sign up today at Pastors, if you would like to bring Koloff for Christ Ministries and Man Up Conference to your community, go to and email me. Remember this, it's time to man up.

This is the Truth Network. And no doubt big business is responding to Mike Lindell and all this generosity for causes for the kingdom by trying to shut down his business. You can't buy his pillows at Kohl's anymore. You can't get them on Amazon or you can't get them at Costco.

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Whisper: medium.en / 2023-12-29 22:28:57 / 2023-12-29 22:41:00 / 12

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