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Lord, thank You for the great work the Kendrick Brothers are doing through their films all over the globe! Thank You they inspired Joe Kennedy to become Coach Kennedy and pray at the 50-yard line. Thank You for validating his actions through this U.S. Supreme Court decision!

Does media shape our culture? Can a little indie film make a difference? One such movie did just that. The film Facing the Giants, produced by a couple of associate pastors, Alex and his brother Stephen Kendrick, using volunteer actors from their church, inspired Joe Kennedy to become “Coach Kennedy” and pray at the 50-yard line. That led to a victory for religious freedom and freedom of speech at the Supreme Court. The win blessed the Kendrick Brothers, whose film ultimately led to such a great victory for liberty.

Pray for your fellow intercessor.

 

Kennedy came back to his hometown of Bremerton, Washington, after serving in the military for two decades. He told Victoria Will of the NY Post:

I never intended to be a football coach, but maybe it was part of Gods plan. In 2008, two years after leaving the Marines as a gunnery sergeant, I was jogging in Bremerton, where I live with my wife and five kids. A guy pulled up alongside me and asked if I ever thought of coaching football. At the time I was wearing a Bremerton football jersey, and it turns out he was the high schools athletic director. It was a little weird, but I said I would think about it.

Then he watched the Kendrick Brothers’ film Facing the Giants, and in an interview you can see below Stephen Kendrick said,

…with every one of the films… we’re praying as we’re asking the Lord to give us clarity concerning what direction to go, what themes, what story lines, who to cast. We’re praying as we’re writing the scripts. We’re praying every day on set as we’re shooting because the Lord alone is the Head of the Body of Christ, and He’s the One who knows what needs to happen. We, the members of the Body, just need to submit to Him and obey whatever He tells us to do. And so we look back and give God the glory for it. We had no idea he would be watching the film or that this issue would be at play….”

It was their second film, and Stephen said, “We were facing battles way back with Facing the Giants, trying to figure out how to make this movie, and we didn’t have the resources or the people or the knowhow, and the Lord carried us through that storm….”

Perhaps the Lord had Kennedy in mind while enabling the Kendricks’ film. Saturated with prayer, the film, which succeeded against all earthly odds, was a bullseye for Kennedy. In the film Alex Kendrick played Grant Taylor, a football coach who pledged to give God glory after every game, whether his team won or lost.

Photo Credit: Facing the Giants

Kennedy told Michael A. Fletcher of ESPN that after watching the film:

I was crying my eyes out. It was a clear sign that God was calling me to coach. I had never experienced that kind of effect in my entire life. I said, “I’m all in, God. I will give you the glory after every game right there on the 50 where we fought our battles.

So he took the position at his alma mater and knelt at the 50-yard line after every game, win or lose. He told Will, “I got down on one knee and held a helmet to the heavens. I would silently say, ‘God, that was amazing. Thank you for these guys.’” For a while it was just him, but then some of the team asked if they could join him. “I told them it’s a free country and they can do what they want.” Before long, members of the opposing team would join them. “On those occasions, I held up two helmets, one from each team, and thanked God for all of us.”

At a certain point someone from an opposing team called the school. Coach Kennedy said that person was “telling the principal that what we were doing was really awesome,” but that led to an investigation, complaints from parents and from a satanic group demanding to hold ceremonies on the field after the games. Eventually Coach Kennedy was instructed to move his prayer someplace where he couldn’t be seen. Fletcher described what happened next:

Kennedy said he stopped the public prayer for one game. But as he was driving home afterward, he regretted giving in to what he saw as “pressure to break his commitment to God,” his lawyers said in their Supreme Court petition. He said he turned his car around, returned to the empty stadium and with tears running down his face, delivered a silent prayer from the 50-yard line.

He retained a lawyer through First Liberty Institute, who delivered a letter to the school, letting them know he was compelled to fulfill his commitment to the Lord and exercise his constitutional right to freedom of speech and freedom of religion. Coach Kennedy told Will, “As a Marine, I fought for our freedoms, including the First Amendment. I fought for us to have that right.” Following the next game, after he and his team shook hands with the opposition, he went to the 50-yard line and knelt. By this point many knew about the school’s opposition to what he was doing, and dozens of players, coaches and fans joined him at midfield.

About a week later, after praying at the 50-yard line again, the school put him on leave and did not rehire him for the next season. His legal fight to get his job back went all the way to the Supreme Court. On June 27, Coach Kennedy was in his lawyer’s office when they heard the news that six of the nine justices ruled in his favor. He told Will, “I raised my arms in the air, as if I was calling a touchdown… great news for the entire nation.”

Coach Kennedy with wife, Denise, and First Liberty President, Kelly Shackleford.

The Kendrick Brothers React

Coach Kennedy reached out to the Kendricks several years ago and told them their film inspired him and about the legal battle he was facing. Alex said:

We began praying, ‘God, Your will be done. You see what this man is trying to do, and to the degree that it pleases You and honors You, would You watch out for him. Would you protect him, open the doors for him.’ … We watched this at a distance of course, then he sent us a video update. We sent him back one.

The Kendricks were in a meeting when someone interrupted to let them know the Supreme Court decision, and the Kendricks were ecstatic. They celebrated and prayed together. “We were delighted to hear that,” Alex said, “We are about what glorifies and honors the Lord, and so we’re very grateful.” Stephen said,

…it is very encouraging as we see the Lord lead us and then God use the movies as tools or weapons in His spiritual battle… tools of encouragement, exhortation to the Body of Christ, and so it’s very fulfilling. And at the same time whatever battle we’re currently fighting in our journey of seeking the Lord and trying to overcome evil with good it puts a little wind in your sails….”

They hadn’t had time to reach out to Coach Kennedy when I interviewed them, but Alex said, “We’re grateful and following it. And even if he sees this interview today: God bless you! Praise the Lord for what He has done.” Stephen added, “Congratulations!”

Coach Kennedy watched our interview en route to Tucson to speak at a conference, and he messaged, “Those guys are so blessed by God. God spoke directly through them to me.”

Alex said:

We want to remind people that as you walk with the Lord not every day is easy, but every day is worth walking with the Lord…. We are grateful that Coach Kennedy stuck with it as respectfully as he could, but he still fought the fight, and now has had the Supreme Court side with him, so we want to say don’t be afraid of expressing your faith. You want to do it in love, but sometimes that takes tough love. So express your faith and honor the Lord in the process, and let the Lord watch out for you.

Stephen added:

We have to look beyond our current comfort zone into eternity and trust that a sovereign God knows what He’s doing, and that He’s placed us in those circumstances, and that by his grace and strength He’s never going to leave us or abandon us, and we’ll stand before Him one day. As long as He gives us an A plus it doesn’t really matter what the world says.

Here’s Part One of a three-part interview with the Kendrick Brothers:

 

Post your praises for this monumental victory for freedom of speech and freedom of religion, and post your prayers for many to express their love for our Lord without fear.

 Rich Swingle has taught and performed in 39 nations on six continents, mostly with his own one-man plays, including one about an Olympic champion who wasn’t afraid to bring his faith into the public square, Eric Liddell. He and his bride, Joyce Swingle, another contributing writer for IFA, now have 37 screen children. The Swingles live in New York City. www.RichDrama.com. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

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Jackie
September 8, 2022

I’m so elated and overjoyed with the Supreme Court’s decision and praising and giving all the Glory to our Heavenly Father. Coach Kennedy and the Kendrick brothers did not compromise their faith and they were intentionally focused and grounded in their faith. We can do all things through Christ who strengthens us.. This brought tears to my eyes when I heard the verdict and also each time when I watch the movie. Praise the Lord!!

Glenda
July 25, 2022

Yahoo Our God is an awesome God and although man thinks he is control we realize everything is in the palm of God’s hand. May we daily remember greater is He that is in us than He that is in the world. May we stand in this hour humbly listening to His voice for what our next assignment will be and may we be faithful and courageous to follow His lead.

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Regina
July 25, 2022

SO thankful that people will follow God’s leading and make decent God honoring movies for families to watch and that God uses them to inspire Christians to stand their ground for Him. I pray more of us will be moved to bring His Glory into the earth. Praise God that He has found a way to move on the US Supreme Court to give some righteous judgments. May we see more and more of these God honoring judgments.

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Martha Johnson
July 25, 2022

I am so thrilled at the Supreme Court decision. I totally give Thanks to our God and his use of Coach Kennedy and the Kendrick family! God leads his Followers, He directs their steps. I rejoice with you and for you and Thank our Holy Father for this victory! May He keep us focused on Him and His Work. I have seen some of your wonderful movies. Please keep them coming. I will continue to pray for God’s good to come from your work. Thankful and Rejoiceful!

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Rose Ann
July 25, 2022

Thank you!

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Maria M Fillyaw
July 25, 2022

Praise God He is awesome and righteous!!!

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Laura K
July 24, 2022

Reading this moved me to tears and I am not one to cry easily.
Thank you for the article.
Thank you coach Kennedy
Thank you Kendricks brothers

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Holly Barth
July 24, 2022

This is wonderful to read about! It is so very encouraging to those of us who have chosen to do as Jesus Christ has directed us, and there “seems” at the time to be awful “fallout”, but God makes a way…I join all who love Jesus Christ in praising Him!

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Carroll
July 24, 2022

Lord,
What this country desperately needs is strong men that are willing to not only follow You, but stand up for You. Lord, we pray that you would raise up a generation of men to be Godly husbands and fathers, that will stand in the gap for their families, and that would be willing to stand up and be civic leaders. This country has spent years and millions of dollars trying to downplay men, and their role in the family first, and society second. Lord, we pray for an awakening that causes to want to return to the roles You created for them. Thank you for Coach Kennedy and the Kendrick Brothers for being willing to stand up for You. I pray for a nationwide revival of men who are willing to follow these examples.

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    Tim Mosher
    July 24, 2022

    Yes yes yes!! I am in full agreement. I declare that God is raising up strong men who know how to lead. Father restore our male and female roles to your original intent.

    6
    Laura K
    July 24, 2022

    I wholeheartedly agree. with your prayer Carroll.

    Rise up men of God and take your place in your God given role.

    5
Gail G
July 24, 2022

I really appreciate the Kendrick Brothers and am so thankful for their inspiring Christian films. Coach Kennedy is proof that their efforts make a difference. I am thankful for godly men who are willing to take a stand for the Lord and for righteousness. We certainly need them in these last days.

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C.S.
July 24, 2022

Thank you for putting this beautiful inspiring real life story to the public. Religion, faith, love of God, reverence & honor of our God our Creator must be revealed and expressed in action for everyone to see know and hear. It is not to be swept under the rug as a secret or hidden from public. God belongs and must be shared with everyone because everyone is His creation. Every miracle happening in our lives must be made known to all that God’s will prevailed & that He maybe glorified. This is how the problem began when existence & works of God were kept in silence & hidden as if He does not live with us which caused immorality, cult system developing by the discipleship of Satanism now out in full blast. Coach kennedy’s bravery to openly honor and glorify God in public arena is a great example for all Christians to be bold and assertive in a loving peaceful way. We are now fighting a spiritual warfare in this current New Testament generation and God will again show His saving power during this 21st century. It is no longer acceptable to just sit/ stand at the sideline as Spectators rather it’s time to stand firm on our moral grounds as Christians defending the truth of the teachings of Christ to show that the power of God is alive.

In Jesus Name, I trust.
I’m proud to be a ChristianCatholic 🌱

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Dwight Keafer
July 23, 2022

I would like to make a couple of important clarifications
1. The Supreme Court did not validate what Coach Kennedy was doing. It has no power to do this. The Supreme Court is not supreme. The God of truth validated Coach Kennedy. And he is the only one able to do this. Praise God.
2. The Supreme Court did not side with Coach Kennedy. It is not the prerogative of the Supreme court to side with anyone. To use this kind of language plays into the hands of those who use identity politics to manipulate the system to their own ends. Instead, the Supreme Court sided with the supreme law of the land, The Constitution, and rendered a just judgement. Praise God.

Lord, thank you for working in your mysterious ways your wonders to perform. Your attention to details and timing are awesome. From the Kendrick brothers and the film to Joe Kennedy’s watching it and his perseverance and courage to see the thing out and the victory, which is Your victory, nothing can compare. Thank you for faithful intercessors, gifted and hardworking legal professionals, wise and uncompromising Supreme Court justices, and Your mercy and grace. Thank you for a little breathing room before the next battle. And thank you for Coach Kennedy who did fall down or give way before the wicked. Lord, to you be all glory, honor, power and praise.

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    Rich Swingle
    July 24, 2022

    Dwight, thanks so much for those clarifications! Great points. I’ve reworked those phrases and I’ll submit them tomorrow during business hours.

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    Rich Swingle
    July 25, 2022

    Changes made. Thanks again for bringing this to our attention.

William Bennett
July 23, 2022

Awesome and courageous — God-directed and Joe Kennedy followed through with determination and passion all the way…Selah

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Tom Sanchez
July 23, 2022

Thank you God for the Freedoms given through your design of our Constitution.

Give us boldness to walk this victory and all the freedom you’ve given us to protect our Religious and American Freedoms. Including Freedom of Speech, and the End of of Censorship and one sided Justice, News, even CIA n FBI, to be non partisan!

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Gail Wood
July 23, 2022

Myrilla. I am sorry that you have had to go through those painful situations. I too went through similar situations when I was teaching.
As a Christian I became a target for many who were unsaved.
When a number of my students and even some of the other educators found that I was a Christian they often asked me to pray for them.
I have never been in such an evil job before but now that I left there several years ago I am thankful for the opportunity that God gave me to touch others for Him and so very thankful that His grace helped me to be able to forgive my tormentors and to still today continue praying for them.
I know that God has His hand on you and you must have touched many , many people for Him. God bless you !
Thank you Lord for the Kendricks and Coach Kennedy and all of your children who are bold and who love you and who are obedient to you. We never know at what point God will call on one of us to pray openly or speak up for someone etc… God is so good and never ask us to do something that we can’t do. God sees such potential in us.
Let’s keep pressing forward brothers and sisters. We can do all things through Christ Jesus who is our strength.

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Myrilla Carson
July 23, 2022

As a classroom teacher, No retired, and a university professor teaching future student teachers all I experienced threats about praying and even expressing Christmas holiday cheer. I researched and found that I had a right to put any documents that are in the library of congress on the walls of my classroom as I taught American history. I am so proud of the coach. So grateful that he was willing to push toward the goal of raising The fact that we have first amendment rights in the workplace. I pray every day for our country my state my city my family. We serve an awesome God and he promises to hear and answer our prayers. Thank you for the service of keeping all of us connected with Prayer!

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Marilyn
July 23, 2022

Praise God for weaving this story together to inspire and encourage so many. Thank you Rich for connecting the dots, great job!

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    Rich Swingle
    July 23, 2022

    Praise the Lord! That’s one of our goals at IFA: Connecting the dots.

    7
Diana Witbeck
July 23, 2022

Awesome interview! Thank you!
Watching for the next one!

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Dan
July 23, 2022

So important and often difficult to stand for righteousness. Our God will never leave or forsake us. Encourage our brothers and sisters who are in the fight. Yesterday’s court ruling for Pastor Art in Alberta, Canada is another praise story.

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Hana John
July 23, 2022

My heart leaped for joy and my lip sang praises for the Lord Jesus that day!!! God is so amazing!! Lord please continue to bless the Kendrick brothers and coach Kennedy as they continue to be Your instruments of miracles

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Hilda Gearhart
July 23, 2022

Continuing to praise God for this victory for religious freedom.
Thanks for sharing this article and the interview with the Kendricks brothers.

13
Shaunie Nye-Rodriguez
July 23, 2022

I’m amazed at the power of Christ! Every day something beautiful happens when you have Christ in your life. They’ve opened a Planned Parent hood I’m my city of Hemet, Ca. I’ve been asked to be part of a prayer team that goes to pray outside I’m the parking lot for women who go there. We are also praying that it will be closed.
I am not able to have babies. Never have. I want all babies to live. They were created for the Lord and will not be silenced in His name.

I love the Kendrick movies. My favorite one is Flywheel because it taught me the change that my husband would go through because God used me. It’s been a LONG journey but my prayers were answered 2 years ago. And I saw Flywheel when it first came out. I have not quit praying for my husband and I never will.

Thank you Jesus!

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Corazon Hall
July 23, 2022

Praise to God someone not afraid to pray in public.

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AWH
July 23, 2022

Thank you, Lord, for the Kendrick Brothers and thank you for Coach Kennedy! Evil has always been around and is unfortunately being glamorized by mainstream media and the far left. We pray that you continue to give us all hope and guidance in trusting, thanking, and following you.

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Kit Hackett
July 23, 2022

Thank you Lord for the conviction and tenacity of Coach Kennedy and for the Kendrick Brothers. Thank you that they making a difference establishing a beachhead in a two fields the evil one is trying to control. May they stay focused on You and continue in the call You have place on them. May others raise up and join them in their fields. May this reflect the next Outpouring of Your Spirit into the Seven Spheres. In Jesus Name Amen

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ronald Stiles
July 23, 2022

God is in charge

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Bo Ehrig
July 23, 2022

Proof that The God who made ears and eyes can and will hear and see.
God is working and waking people up for a great revival !

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Bob Filoramo
July 23, 2022

Our is a nation of spiritually weak, feminized men. Thank God the Supreme Court rebuked the progressive, Godless forces sweeping through our days. Men of faith need to be bold, fearless, radical disciples of Christ who was bold, fearless, and decidedly radical. The battle rages.
Peace, Bob Filoramo

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KERRI
July 23, 2022

PRAISE GOD!

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Kathy Bolam
July 23, 2022

Isn’t it wonderful to watch how our God cannot be put in a box. All of us who give our hearts to Him can be vessels of his grace. He just needs our Yes.

15
Barbara Janicki
July 23, 2022

So encouraging to know the backstory of Coach Kennedy and the movie “Facing the Giants” (one of my all time favorite movies) – thanking God how He uses all of us and all things to work together for His good purposes and His purposes are always good! This story is a ray of hope and much needed encouragement for us because of the “giants” we are all facing today in every arena of our public and private lives. We are surrounded – BUT GOD – “We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed . . .” (2 Corinthians 4:8-10) http://www.mtothe5th.wordpress.com

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Rene Garcia
July 23, 2022

Thanks for your post !! Great Confirmation of present situation of total reliance on Father God who SEE’S it all ! Persecution thru FAITH BELIEVING THAT GOD WILL COME THRU !! All I can do is WEEP ! To God Be the GLORY! Amen

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Rene Garcia
July 23, 2022

Thanks for your post !! Great Confirmation of present situation of total reliance on Father God who SEE’S it all ! Persecution thru FAITH BELIEVING THAT GOD WILL COME THRU !! All I can do in WEEP ! To God Be the GLORY! Amen

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Diane Sandoval
July 23, 2022

LORD YOU ARE SO GOOD!! WE PRAISE YOU FOR THIS TESTIMONY. MAY EACH OF US FULFIL YOUR WILL IN BEING who you called us to be in Jesus mighty name

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Brian
July 23, 2022

This is certainly a victory for Cristians in America. Praise God for the integrity of the 6 SCOTUS judges! It is a shame that things have come to this regarding Christian matters,and we need to remember that gtrater is He that is in us, than he who is in the world. Praise God!

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Sheila Steck
July 23, 2022

How I praise God for this story of Coach Kennedy and how the movie Facing the Giants impacted his life and actions! I’m in tears, rejoicing in God’s work in this man, and the Kendrick brothers! All of their movies have impacted my life as well, especially War Room. Thank you, Lord for the way that You use willing vessels!!!

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DOUGLAS NICKELSON
July 23, 2022

Through prayer, I have chosen to go to war against the blatant celebration of ungodly values and sin, and those who call evil good and good evil (Isaiah 5:20). I pray that the Bible will rise up as the standard for behavior and beliefs in our nation, and come against the forces of darkness that are permeating arts and entertainment. Finally, I pray that Christians will rise up to become movie producers, magazine editors, authors, video game creators and actors. My prayer then is that they will stand for righteousness and not be pulled down by the evil influences around them. Father I thank You for being able to see Your supernatural power revealed in the natural as I see your shift to righteousness in the entertainment world. In Jesus’ name. Amen

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Bryan Wright
July 23, 2022

We give this movie as gifts to others in our circle. Not only is it an encouragement to believers, it is a strong witness to the lost that God is moving amongst us when honor Him and pray. What an inspiration!!

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Rich Swingle
July 23, 2022

Last night we rewatched Facing the Giants. I understood how the film inspired him from having watched it years ago, but to watch it through Joe’s pre-coach eyes just blew me away!

Lord Jesus, use this story to encourage people to invite you into their gifts and talents so You can do abundantly more than they can think or imagine! Use this Supreme Court decoration to embolden those with Holy Spirit living in them to shine brightly for You!!!

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MICHAEL NORRIS
July 23, 2022

Praise God you posted this. I think it inspired me to do some things. I hope it inspires others to take action as well. And thanks to the Kendrick brothers for listening to God and producing those stories.

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Mary D
July 23, 2022

We Praise You Father and ThankYou for the Hope You have sent to Your Ekklesia through the efforts of a film made by men who wanted to honor You and one man who heard the call in that film and followed through even when everything looked dismal! You really use every member of Your Body! If You are for us who can be against us? Father, The Victory is Your’s Alone You are the Ultimate and Awesome Coach!

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Marie
July 23, 2022

Father, we thank You first and foremost for being an amazing Father! We thank You for this ruling, and ask that it stir up a new boldness in the entertainment industry to share the truth of the gospel. We thank You for the Kendrick brothers, and pray that You would continue to bless them and move through them in the entertainment industry, in the powerful name of Jesus we pray. Amen!

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Shelly
July 23, 2022

Thank you Lord, God that our prayers are being answered in Your name.. Praise You Lord, God. Amen

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Stephen Guarneros
July 23, 2022

Father, we celebrate the victory of these courageous Saints and rejoice in what the Holy Spirit is doing in this hour. We adore you Lord asking that the courage in them will spill over to others and the Holy Spirit will continue to be Glorified. Impact this nation with turnaround to our Godly foundations. Many have given their time, years, and some their blood, for these freedoms and I praise you Father for what is unfolding.

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Kris Branston
July 23, 2022

Hallelujah! This is so encouraging!

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Clayshia A Willis
July 23, 2022

Praising our Heavenly Father for such powerful witnesses to us and praying for their continued obedience, courage and insight from the Holy Spirit.

24
Jessica
July 23, 2022

PRAISE GOD HALLELUJAH! The Ke stick brothers movies are a tremendous blessing and obviously are making a difference!!!

20
Deborah Guebert
July 23, 2022

Thanks be to our God, who shows the Way to those who seek it! May He pour out his blessings on these faithful followers, who have brought great deliverance through their obedience to His voice. May many more have the heart to seek and the courage to follow that Voice.

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Becky
July 23, 2022

Heavenly Father, Praises to your name. Your blessings over Coach Kennedy and all involved living planted in You, continuing in faith throughout this situation against principalities. Honor to You Almighty as Your greatness, Your goodness, As You are revealed through faith in action firmly rooted in the assurance of Your will be done. In the precious name of Jesus, by the power of Holy Spirit, Your truth, light revealed for the saving of many. Your glory rise, Amen

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Sue
July 23, 2022

How refreshing: GOOD news!!

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Sandra Lee
July 23, 2022

I’ve seen the movie “Facing the Giants” and I must say, I loved it!! As a child of the living God, He chose me to break the generational curses off my family!..Little did I know that accepting that assignment, would alienate me from a lot of my family members, I was discouraged and crying out to the Lord and He sent me to Ephesians 6!!..He, (the Holy Ghost) taught me that I’m not wrestling with people but with principalities and powers much stronger than me, but not stronger than Him!!..It is an incredible., sometimes lonely journey, but God has planted in an incredible church where we do mighty deliverances to set the captives free from the wiles of the devil. I serve under a pastor who calls himself a “demon terrorist”..so please agree and lift myself and this little church that we will continue pushing back the kingdom of darkness. Thank you, in Him..Sandy..

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    Marian
    July 23, 2022

    Amen, Sandra! You are being led and are dressed in God’s armor to see principalities and powers crushed. Blessings and be encouraged!

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