Living

The first thing we did after seeing Living was call to thank the woman who had recommended it! Then we did something you can read about on the link we sent her next: www.RichDrama.com/OneDay. That's for a film I helped make with a similar theme.

A few hours earlier, over lunch -- with a friend from Germany we have known since she was a toddler and is now flying private jets -- the tag on my tea had this quote: 

The great and glorious masterpiece of man is to live with purpose.
--Michel de Montaigne

They could have put it before the closing credits of Living. 

It's told in fascinating fashion, but, well, there's a purpose to that. 

It's a basic rule of script writing that you introduce the protagonist first, so the audience knows who to follow. That's not the case in Living. We first meet a young man on his first day at London's County Hall in the Public Works Department. This film mostly tells the story of Bill Nighy's character, Mr. Williams. We never learn his first name, which is fitting for life in a British bureaucracy in 1953. The role has earned Nighy an Oscar nomination, and for good reason! But this film is as much about the next generation learning how to live as it is about Mr. Williams doing that at the very end of his life. 

These days I very rarely recommend films that don't come out of the Christian film industry, but I do wonder if the writers had help from Holy Spirit, because there was so much they got right. So right that it earned Kazuo Ishiguro an Oscar nomination for Writing -- Adapted Screenplay. Certainly they started with great source material: Leo Tolstoy’s The Death of Ivan Ilyich

Here's the one caveat I must mention to parents and any addicted to porn: There's one scene with a strip tease, and a woman takes off her top. The audience is watching from behind, but if I were watching it again, which I expect I will, I would look away at that moment. 

Parents, for more details you should know, read the PluggedIn review or your favorite source of what's decent and what's not.

Pray Living inspires purpose in many lives!

See the rest of Olympic champion Eric Liddell's Chariots of Fire story in Beyond the Chariots, another story about living with purpose. Watch it online and book a live performance

Praying Over The Chosen on Times Square

Last night we were blessed to see The Chosen on Times Square at the AMC Empire Theatre. During the credits we noticed that three of the cast members had seen it with us! I was able to pray over two of them: Abraham* who plays Neshon, and Aalok Mehta (in the frame below), who plays Barnaby. Intercessors for America posted the video to www.HeadlinePrayer.org yesterday:


Some of you will remember that the AMC Empire holds a very special place in my heart since my prayer to be descending the escalator after seeing a film I was in was answered when Providence showed there. Last night that prayer was answered again:


*Abraham just gave me his first name, and they haven't added his only episode so far to IMDb, but if he's there now, please post in the comments. 
 
I play a lead in Providence, which was in theaters on Valentine's Day in 2016.

What Is Satan Afraid Of?

Joyce and I were on Intercessors for America's Headline Prayer Live today and covered two of our articles, which ran today on www.HeadlinePrayer.org. Here's Joyce's:


Lord, strike Satan’s dominion with our prayers by lighting them with the fire of heaven and the power of the cross until all of the dark kingdom falls into dust. In Jesus’ name. 

Analysis. In Birmingham, England, Isabel Vaughan-Spruce, leader of March for Life UK, was arrested in early December 2022 on a charge of silently praying in front of an abortion clinic that was closed at the time; her prayer was deemed a violation of a Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) that established a “buffer” zone around the facility. PSPOs in the U.K. prohibit a range of peaceable activities, including audible prayer and “expressing opinions” about or “influencing” abortion-clinic activities.

And my article:


Lord, thank You for answering IFA’s prayers as justice is beginning to come in the wake of 186 attacks on pro-life organizations. 

On Sept. 29, IFA prayed with Rev. Jim Harden, CEO of CompassCare, a nationwide network of 650 pro-life medical centers, in the wake of their Buffalo facility’s being firebombed. In an answer to prayer, the FBI is offering a $25,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of perpetrators of crimes against pro-life entities. Additionally, alleged perpetrators Caleb Freestone, 27; and Amber Smith-Stewart, 23, were the first to be indicted for such crimes, in Florida, on Jan. 18.
Here's footage of me presenting Michael Bonning, Regional Executive - Buffalo, with a plaque honoring them for boldly re-opening 52 days after their facility was firebombed: 



Today IFA also posted our prayers:

Lord Jesus Christ, tear down the lies that these statues represent and be exalted in our nation. 

New York’s Madison Park now features a large golden statue in honor of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and there’s one to match a block away atop the Appellate Division of the State Supreme Court. Watch and pray with IFA Contributing Writers Joyce and Rich Swingle, as they break down the demonic symbolism and intercede in front of the statues.

We prayed over these articles and more on Headline Prayer Live today:


To get email alerts when we'll be on Headline Prayer Live again sign up at www.RichDrama.com/Prayer.


I released “Pentecost: Beyond the Imagination,” a scene from my one-man play, The Actsat www.RichDrama.com/Pentecost.

Hears the Story

I want to thank those of you on our prayer team who were praying for last Tuesday’s event at The Salvation Army's Theatre 315 in Manhattan! I so wished I'd invited you on the NYC list

The event went miraculously well, far beyond what I imagined or expected. After a brief introduction, our reading of Genesis 1-4 was 20 minutes, and the rest was discussion! It was rich and robust and led by Holy Spirit! When the director, Christopher Monroe, brought it to a close I was utterly shocked when I discovered we’d gone 90 minutes! It didn't feel that long at all. Time stands still during rich engagement with the Word of God. 

In that performance I played Cain and reprised the role of The Serpent, which I performed in The Beginners Bible: The Story of Creation. Christopher had me take the character in a totally different direction, which elicited some great feedback from the audience, but at the end I snuck in an homage to the original. 

On Session #3 on Tuesday February 7 at 7:00pm for Jacob and the Stolen Birthright I’m cast as Isaac and God. I appreciate your prayers, and if you're in the NYC area you're most welcome to attend! 

It will be live only at The Salvation Army's Theatre 315, 315 West 47th Street, New York, NY. 

Click here for the Eventbrite page if you'd like to reserve your free seat, and click here for the schedule. It shows Grace Hwoang on February 7 and 28. She's writing songs she'll perform based on the passages of Scripture we'll perform on those dates. 

Appreciate prayers as we prepare!



I played 20 characters in The Beginners Bible videos.


The Power of Remembrance

Yesterday at Westchester Chapel Pastor Jim and Dr. Linda Warren had some outstanding opening comments that weren't recorded, so they gave me permission to summarize them. Pastor Jim referred to the article, "Say Cheese! Galactic Photo Shoot Captures 3 Billion Stars."

I referred to the film The Matter of Life, which is available for free for a limited time. My article about it about it is scheduled to be reposted to www.HeadlinePrayer.org soon.

After my intro Rachel Taylor teaches on 2 Peter 3:1-2.





Here's the footage of the billions of stars: 


This service is available for download free on iTunes, where you can also subscribe to our podcast. Search for "Westchester Chapel" on the iTunes Store.

If you want to know more about starting a relationship with Jesus Christ visit www.WestchesterChapel.org/Salvation.

Photo courtesy of NicolettiPhoto.com.



Jonathan Park Episodes Filled with Fiery Miracles!

I've been on a few episodes of Jonathan Park Adventures, but this time I was so blessed to be playing a major character! He is from a nation where my ancestors spent several generations, so that was cool! He is able to witness to an enemy, and a profound miracle happens to him. 

On Monday night there was a scene in which a prayer was answered before the character said, "Amen." Before we began recording we gathered for prayer, as we did every night, and that night I prayed that those who have seen prayer answered as they're praying it would be encouraged, and those who haven't to be encouraged to pray with faith that our prayers can be answered in that instant. While recording that scene one of the actors was having some technical difficulties. We recorded from our home studios over the internet, and he dropped off of our connection. One of the other actors asked me to pray, and before I said, "Amen," our colleague came back online! Don't you know that next take was even more powerful! 

    Watch the film of this on    
my Instagram page.
On the first night I recorded at Hephzibah House, which has a wonderful recording studio they open for projects with Christian themes at no charge. On the way up to record, I rode my bike past this Christmas tree burn pile and it felt prophetic! Having finished this recording window I have to say that the Fire of the Lord lit the way for us, and let's pray hearts and minds are set on fire for the Lord and the expansion of his Kingdom!

I was blessed to create with several folks I've worked with on previous projects. Before recording David Sanborn shared something I hadn't heard or remembered: I was in his production of Judah Ben Hur in Singapore in 2001-2002. He told our group that there were some Muslims in the audience who had been recruited by Al-Qaeda, but after seeing our production they decided not to join! For those too young to remember, Al-Qaeda was the terror organization that attacked America on 9/11. 

Praying this production pulls many away from groups recruiting for the kingdom of darkness and beckons them into the Kingdom of Light!



Clockwise: Our assistant director/production manager Allison Francis, our director Nicole Franco (who I've known since the 90s), David Sanborn, Oscar Corral (Wise King Media and Lamplighter Theatre). Some unseen colleagues from past projects: Joseph Narducci (who directed me in some Airship Genesis projects) and Rachel Marley Corral (MasterWorks, Rocky Mountain Filmmakers Camp, Sochi Olympics, Wise King Media, and Lamplighter Theatre).


I released “Pentecost: Beyond the Imagination,” a scene from my one-man play, The Actsat www.RichDrama.com/Pentecost.

Celebrate Sanctity of Life Sunday with Our Short Film

I just discovered that this Sunday (January 22) is Sanctity of Life Sunday! What a blessing that such a thing exists! 

We created the film "Mine" to comfort those who took life through abortion. It was also created to be shared in churches, and there's no charge for that. 

I hope you'll pray about sharing it with your pastor/s by forwarding this if you're reading this as an email, or sending them to www.RichDrama.com/ThisIsMyChild.
If you'd like to show it in your church, here's a temporary link for downloading it: Download "Mine." That link will work through January 23. 

Praying this little film will help any who are struggling with past choices.

Their website, with resources for those regretting abortion, is www.ThisIsMyChild.com. I'm particularly blessed by this page because it tells the story of God's love for us through the lens of the film.

I play a pastor who reconnects with a childhood love interest in Providence.

Eric Liddell would be 121 today

I've been tracking Eric Liddell's birthday ever since the great grandson of Hudson Taylor surprised me with it onstage after performing Beyond the Chariots, my play about Liddell, in Hong Kong. Here's the story: "Happy Birthday, Uncle Eric!"

We're planning to bring Beyond the Chariots to Paris for the 2024 Summer Olympics, a 100 years after Liddell broke the world record in the 400m during the 1924 Paris Olympics. I'll also perform it in the Eric Liddell Centre in Edinburgh during the Edinburgh Fringe Festival that summer. 

Appreciate your prayer for a venue/s in Paris for the play and for provision if needed for the trip. 

See the rest of Olympic champion Eric Liddell's Chariots of Fire story in Beyond the Chariots. Watch it online and book a live performance

Why Joy Matters

On Tuesday Joyce and I each had an article post on www.HeadlinePrayer.org

Mine was based on an interview I did with Fred Defoy about his study on joy. His wife, Johanna Defoy, worked with me to coach actors on their French accents for Washington's Armor. She recommended me to Fred as a Joy Exemplar. My article was "Why Joy Matters": 

Lord, during these dark times show us how You want to be our joy! May we be unstoppable in our assigned intercession.

Fred Defoy is looking for “joy exemplars.” While working with Christian ministers, he happened to notice that those who wanted to quit the work of ministry were those who had lost their joy. [Continue reading...]


Here's the interview with Fred:



Lord, help us honor Your Word as we seek You this year. Help us live as You would have us live. In Jesus’ name.

We’re a couple of weeks into 2023, and if you haven’t already tossed the New Year’s resolutions, this may be the week they hit the trash. I gave up on these earnest-but-doomed-to-failure attempts at self-improvement many years ago, but when a new year starts, I do desire to establish benchmarks for what is to come. [Continue reading...]

Later that day Joyce and I covered those articles and others on Headline Prayer Live: 


Then, on Thursday, Joyce's article "Dave Kubal: Truth and Justice in 2023 posted on www.HeadlinePrayer.org": 

Lord, we pray Proverbs 21:15. ”When justice is done, it brings joy to the righteous, but terror to the evildoer."

IFA President and CEO Dave Kubal is calling intercessors to pray that 2023 would be the year of truth and justice. Kubal highlighted three situations the Lord used to show him the prophetic prayer direction: the miracle of Twitter and how it now protects free speech; how Twitter’s new policies have revealed proof that there were government agencies that were weaponized against the freedoms of America; and, finally, how this resulted in the spiritual battle for the Speaker of the House. [Continue reading...]

If you'd like to receive email reminders that we'll be on Headline Prayer Live every Tuesday and Thursday, sign up at www.RichDrama.com/Prayer.


We've changed how we send out email. Check out our new options at www.RichDrama.com/Updates.

The Magi Worship Jesus

Westchester Chapel celebrated Epiphany today, and Joyce calls us to worship as the magi did in this message from Matthew 2:1-12. I have to say, this is a really special message! I know you're going to be blessed!

She shared "The New King" from my Christmas play "Views of the Manger," as filmed at Butler (NJ) Church of the Nazarene. It will be available for one week: 



This service is available for download free on iTunes, where you can also subscribe to our podcast. Search for "Westchester Chapel" on the iTunes Store.

If you want to know more about starting a relationship with Jesus Christ visit www.WestchesterChapel.org/Salvation.

Photo courtesy of NicolettiPhoto.com.


I released “Pentecost: Beyond the Imagination,” a scene from my one-man play, The Actsat www.RichDrama.com/Pentecost.

Two articles posted to Headline Prayer

This morning two of Joyce's articles posted to www.HeadlinePrayer.org:

"Biden’s Weakness on Israel: Obama 2.0?": America’s current administration is on shaky ground in the Middle East, according to journalist Bill Koenig, publisher of Koenig – World Watch Daily. Koenig was interviewed by IFA President and CEO Dave Kubal at IFA’s Policy & Prayer Summit, in late October. [Read the full article.]

"
Contending for Life Continues in 2023": At IFA’s Policy & Prayer Summit, in late October, Dr. Ralph Reed and Dr. Alveda King, both seasoned veterans of the fight for life, encouraged intercessors to persevere in the battle. Reed, founder and chairman of Faith & Freedom Coalition; and King, founder of Alveda King Ministries, spoke on a panel moderated by Mark Zelden, senior adviser of the Center for American Values at the America First Policy Institute. [Read the full article.]

Thank you for keeping us and our nation in your prayers!

Looks like this is going to stay up through Epiphany, January 6: