AlongTheWay

“I Get By With A Little Help From My Friends” - Finish Strong AlongTheWay 85

February 22, 2021 John Matarazzo / Finish Strong - Dan Wheeler, Brian Roland & Terry Steen Season 1 Episode 85
AlongTheWay
“I Get By With A Little Help From My Friends” - Finish Strong AlongTheWay 85
Show Notes Transcript

Dan Wheeler, Brian Roland, and Terry Steen have been friends since their college days but have been lifelong friends. After the passing of Dan’s wife, Beth, the guys formed a ministry called “Fearless Faith”. Now, they have started their own podcast and they are passionate about helping others “Finish Strong”


Fearless Faith ffaith.org 

Finish Strong Podcast https://finishstrong.buzzsprout.com

Fearless Faith Facebook https://www.facebook.com/FFM60

Dan Wheeler on AlongTheWay

https://link.chtbl.com/ATWDanWheeler

AlongTheWay Links

Join My Email List

[email protected]

Become a Patreon https://www.patreon.com/AlongTheWay

More episodes and Social links for AlongTheWay

Watch episodes of My TV show RealLife & HopeToday

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/AlongTheWay)
Dan Wheeler:

Yeah, you know from his rodeo background Terry and I had to get him to lose the Spurs and the 10 gallon

Terry Steen:

and the chaps but yeah, there's

Brian Roland:

a chance that I didn't want to give up.

John Matarazzo:

That night he was a rodeo clown. That was probably his best.

Brian Roland:

I almost couldn't get him in that barrel. I was 60 pounds heavier. My gosh,

Dan Wheeler:

a little over Niagara Falls. We didn't think he'd make it.

Brian Roland:

I didn't think I was gonna make it. But you know, Maid of the Mist came and picked me up and just took me home.

John Matarazzo:

I always enjoy laughing with you guys because I know that my cheeks are gonna hurt after being with you guys just because we're laughing so hard about you just cut up on each other and it's great. I love seeing that friendship. Welcomed you along the way. I'm John Matarazzo, your host and fellow traveler. Thank you for joining me along my way as I try to become more like Jesus every day. I did an interview with Dan Wheeler A while back and we talked about his along the way journey and the lessons that he learned from his late wife Beth, he talked about his two best friends Brian Roland and Terry Steen and how they helped him after the loss of his wife, and then how together they started a ministry called fearless faith. I thought that was great how they found a renewed purpose for ministry. So when Dan reached out to me asking about starting his own podcast with those friends, I was excited for them. I gave them my advice. And then they asked me if I could be their producer for their podcast called finished strong. I have had such a great time working with these guys to produce their podcast that I wanted to share more of their story with you my along the way audience and introduce you to these guys who are passionate about helping people live with fearless faith so that we can finish strong. I'll get to that conversation in just a moment. But as always, I want to thank you for listening to along the way. I hope that you like what you hear and you subscribe, you can connect with me online as well. All of my socials and contact links are in my show notes. And you can check out all of my episodes at my website along the way dot media, join my email list and find out more about me too. I hope that you check it out and you connect with me, I would love to hear from you. I also have a Patreon page if you want to help me to continue to put up these along the way episodes. If you'd like to become a Patreon, simply go to patreon.com slash along the way and select a level. The link to become a Patreon supporter is in the shownotes. And now here's my along the way conversation with Dan Wheeler Brian Roland and Terry Steen, the guy of fearless faith, and the finished strong podcast. Well, Dan Wheeler, it is great to have you back on along the way. And you've got some friends with you this time. The last time we were together, we had such a great time. We're talking about your book, Hurricane of love your the things that you've learned from your journey with Beth Wheeler, your wife, who sadly passed away, but God has taught you so much through that. And God really brought these guys into your life. I mean, they've been in your life, but took you guys to a deeper level in ministry. And I just want to take a minute and let you introduce them and and see where I want to hear what God has been doing with you guys.

Dan Wheeler:

Well, it's great to be back with you, john, I really enjoyed being on along the way. And these two guys, they've been in my life for 48 years. I just can't get rid of them. I know, they are my best friends. And after my wife died, I shared with you that these two guys stayed with me after the funeral. And we went out to lunch one day, and I shared what God had been dealing with me about during the past few months of my wife's illness that, that I was supposed to use this and go into ministry and I really felt like I was in my 60s. And it was time to do something for the Lord and really give them my all in something connected with them both. And they just both said, Hey, we're in Can we help and I couldn't have done fearless faith without them. They're really terrific. They're really talented guys. And they we all kind of fill a space you know, in all the things we do. And we started out doing videos on Facebook, we call them your morning cup of inspiration. Then we started a YouTube channel. We have an Instagram page now. And here we are doing a podcast we've written a devotional hurricane of love was kind of the foundation of how it started. But yeah, I'd like to bring them on. They're here. Terry Terry Steen and Brian Roland, my two best friends in life guys. Great to have you with us today.

John Matarazzo:

Thanks, man. It's been a pleasure. We're excited to be here. That's for sure. And John, it's just great to see you.

Brian Roland:

It's been a long road. We're on the right side. Now. We're driving in the right lane.

John Matarazzo:

Oh, that's great.

Dan Wheeler:

You know, John, I was on your podcast along the way and I was so impressed with the way that it turned out and your professionalism and your announcer voice and when we started discussing a podcast I had you in mind, and I had a couple other people that approached me about wanting to produce it, but I just felt like you were the guy and you're very busy. But it's been great that you've done a great job with finished strong. Thank you fearless faith. And we've recorded like 12 episodes now and I hope people check it out. But

John Matarazzo:

Right, right,

Dan Wheeler:

I know you have questions for these guys.

John Matarazzo:

Oh, yeah.

Dan Wheeler:

Cause You and I've talked a lot.

John Matarazzo:

Yeah, it's, you know, I really have been enjoying working with you guys with the finish strong podcast, and get it helping get that started and to see it grow. And now more people are finding it. And I want to encourage everybody, as a normal listener to along the way to check out finish strong. And to hear some of the some of the great topics that Dan, Terry and Brian are talking about. And it's fun to be in this situation where I'm a producer, which is what I do in my day job. And now I'm producing another podcast, and you guys have been walking with the Lord longer than me, and you have a little bit more life experience than me in different venues. And, Dan, you're working with QVC, and Brian, working in Hollywood and other types of media and having Emmys and Terry, being a pastor and executive pastor. And I'm learning a lot from being a producer kind of behind the scenes being with you guys. And so it's a privilege and an honor to incorporate having Terry and Brian to be able to ask you guys some of these questions, because I already did it with Dan. And so if you want to listen to that you can you can hear those things there. But, Terry, I want to start with you for this episode. And I want to hear about part of your journey with the Lord. How did you get saved? And how did how has God led you to where you are today? Well, John, thanks. And once again, it's just a privilege to be here. And I'm looking forward to having a lot of fun with you over the next months and years. So it's great to call you a friend. Yeah. But I was raised in a Christian home. And I tell people, I was delivered from drugs and alcohol. And a lot of those things that are the reason I was delivered as I was saved today before I even had the opportunity. So he delivered me a head of time. That's a great way to describe that.

Dan Wheeler:

He always wanted to have a testimony.

John Matarazzo:

But I, you know, we talked about when were you saved, and some people can't really put their finger on it, I can put my finger on it. I know it was April 16. I was eight years old. And and I get emotional even today still talking about it. Because it's just real. When you have that relationship, you know, it's real. And it was a Tuesday night and I was at a revival the back back in those days back in the 60s, when churches had revivals, they brought an evangelist in and you were there every night of the week for two or three hours. And that's just the way it was. And that Tuesday night, I went down to the altar. It was just the wooden benches didn't have didn't have the carpet, it was a tile floor didn't have the padded pews and I gave my heart to the Lord that night. And my life even at that age had changed because I was kind of a hellion in fourth grade. And I remember in fifth grade, I was given my teachers tracks. And so it was kind of like flipping my life around even at an early age. And, you know, obviously we all go through our highs and lows. But early on, I had given my heart to the Lord and I have tried every day to just walk the walk, live a day at a time and trust him for my future for the plans he had for me and just do my best to be obedient. And that's been kind of my mantra as I've gone through high school and college and into my career. Yeah, where did you go to college and what did you study there? I went to evangel. It was Evangel College. It was a liberal arts college in Springfield, Missouri. That's where I met Dan and Brian and we had four incredible years there. majored in accounting double majored in accounting and management. The one class I enjoyed in high school was bookkeeping. So that was kind of the impetus to move that direction. not really knowing how God would use me even though I felt a strong. I didn't know if it would be formal ministry or not. But I knew I had an aptitude with numbers and that sort of thing. So I double majored in accounting and management there and then later another decade or so I got my MBA at Winthrop University in South Carolina.

Dan Wheeler:

John, Terry's leaving out one very important aspect of things and that was that we co hosted the harvest festival,

John Matarazzo:

okay,

Dan Wheeler:

and I knew then that Terry had abilities that needed to be out in front of a camera. toppling and I'm like, but Terry, remember, even in college, we would talk about one of the cool the one day do this together.

John Matarazzo:

We really did. And that was, it's true that may have been one of our greatest nights of our whole career in college is just a variety show. And you and I were asked to host it and, you know, we threw it together the couple weeks before and you you'd have to envision it, I'd prefer you didn't. We come out in tights and a tu-tu juggling to open the whole thing. And then

Dan Wheeler:

I want to make sure that no, it wasn't the same to to we each had our own.

John Matarazzo:

To to Dan had a dream one night, that week that somehow we forgot we were supposed to be up on stage and everybody was looking for us. And so he woke up it was kind of a nightmare. So we built that into it. And it intermission we were off to one side kind of hitting on the girls and and letting the the house spotlight finally hit us. And then we realized, oh, we're supposed to be out there. And so a lot of fun. I'm glad you brought that up.

Dan Wheeler:

The announcer kept saying now here's your host, Dan and Terry and nothing in this spotlights are going... And then they're on us and we're kind of flirty, it was just like I dreamed we'd go running up there with trying to get our to Tu-tus on and

John Matarazzo:

then we came out with a tu-tu up around our neck and just stupid stuff. Yeah. That's great. Dan, That's why I have you here because I don't want to miss those stories. I can't let these guys just kind of skate around that. Dan knows the dirt on these guys and the dirt on you too, Dan so be careful.

Dan Wheeler:

that leads us into Brian, right. He had he had an experience with the harvest festival to

John Matarazzo:

Okay,

Brian Roland:

I did actually I graduated right when these guys were coming in, but I was working at a local TV station so and my parents and dance parents knew each other well on before we were born. So there's there's a back a backdrop there that we tied together. But my heart was festival experience was that I always played in bands, and I always would perform at harvest festival. And that's what all my whole downfall in college has always played in bands. So my grades always reflected it. Because that was more interest of me than anything else. And my dad just said every time you play in a band, you end up on probation, what's going on. So that he understood and I didn't, didn't want to get that. But we Yeah, we played some music that didn't go over real well. And they closed down Harvest Festival. And I heard I heard years later that it wasn't just the stuff that we were doing. But the other people that were playing too. And but but since I was not in school, I had actually graduated. And the President's the ex the president who just retired, his son was getting married and I was supposed to go up to his wedding. Because this was going on I was invited to play. I decided okay, I'll do this. Instead, we had to go through a whole audition. It was all approved. But so I missed the wedding. But for some reason, when they shut this thing down. I'm the one that got blamed for it. I didn't accept it at the time, but I accept it now and just move on. But it was it was fun.

John Matarazzo:

Yeah. Well, Brian, now that we know that we're talking with you, I want to hear your story. How did you grow up and meet the Lord? And then what what led you to eventually how you met these guys?

Brian Roland:

Well, I was like, Terry, I was young. I was only five though, and grew up in a Christian home strong Christian family. And I was down in the basement with my mom. And I remember walking up to her and because I kept hearing about this being saved at church all the time. So I asked her, I said, Mom, what does it mean to be saved? And so she explained it to me and we spoke about it. And I had a lot of questions for her. And she said I was just an inquisitive little kid. And she says, so do you. Do you want that experience? And I said, Yes, I do. So she prayed with me right there. And she said she'll never forget it. And I know I won't because I looked at her afterwards. But we prayed and she said Are you okay? And I just said I feel so clean. And that was the words I remember saying it to her. I remember her just crying you know and but it's that that started off in a Christian home like that where I accepted the Lord and had great upbringing that way and, but as I was going along, of course, I went my own way in a lot of ways and, and I was doing things that my parents weren't proud of. But my dad, I always he would always say Brian, this is not this is what's going to happen this is going to happen. I'd say Dad, you had to learn for yourself. I'm gonna learn for myself. So he never told me I couldn't do something they just said this is it. We never had a generation gap we always spoke we always spoke our mind. So what we what we thought But he'd say this is what's going to happen. And evidently, that always happened. One was where we almost got arrested. And my dad, remember when I was leaving the house, this is a party we had after I graduated. And my dad said, I was only 17. I just could not turn 18 yet. And my dad goes, we'll have a good time. He goes on one other thing, I go, what's that? He goes, you get caught. I'm not bailing you out. And I thought, What are you talking about? And man, when we got out of that stuff from the beach party, where I thought, My God, how did he know that? Because he had already lived it. He knew it. But God had his hand on me through all of that, and even going to evangel when I went to college, there I am, I plan on going into the service. So I thought about doing but I had shattered my kneecap and broke my thigh and that playing football, so I wasn't going anywhere in the service wise, which was wise to because that was the height of the Vietnam War, the escalation and, and Lord had his hand on me in that one too, but went to school. And, of course, that's where I knew about Dan and then met him and then met Terry as his roommate. And things just progressed from that Dan and I became roommates after college in Chicago, where we both worked at TV 38. And our friendship just grew and continued to grow. And, and I, I knew Beth from the beginning. And like, Dan said, I was there with him when when she passed, and they're all like family. And she was just like, like, yeah, sister too.

Dan Wheeler:

And just like with Terry, Brian, and I used to talk about it'd be great someday to come back together and do something.

Brian Roland:

Oh, yeah, we always did. We always say, look, we got to work together somehow here because we always had so much fun together. And and knowing that we were both in the broadcasting business and working in that area. I mean, there's Dan was my lead cameraman when I was in Chicago as a director and a producer there. And then he was producing Washington for Jesus. And I was his lead director for that. So we were coming back and forth and sharing these leads, but at the same time working together, it was so much fun all the time. Yeah, we wanted to do something more. And this is this is it.

John Matarazzo:

So I have a TV background as well. And Terry told us how he felt a longing for bookkeeping and focused it on that, how did you get involved in media?

Brian Roland:

Well, in college, I thought I was going to be an optometrist, I thought that'd be a nice thing. I did one class and I go, No, I don't want to do this. So then I went in, I said, I'm going to be a business major, I want one economics class, I go, No, I'm not going to do this. And as I was flunking out, I had my favorite professor Neil. So when I said I need an incomplete to come back next year, and he said that we discussed it, and he gave me an incomplete and I was able to come back the next year and, and do the final exam and get my get that that credit. But I told him, I said, If you give me that, I will, I will. I will be going to communications, you know, and at the time that it was called, but I was so I was gonna do this major. He said, Okay, and so I think he knew for sure that I wasn't gonna do it. But they brought in communications. And once I got into that, I loved it. I mean, I started aceing everything. And I got called into the office one time asking me how I was cheating. And I said, how many how am I cheating? They said, well, you're, you're down here on probation all the time. And now you're on the Dean's List what's going on. I said, I love this stuff. And I didn't care about the other stuff. I love this. And I spent all my time down there. And then afterwards, I started in radio and, and progressed over to the TV station where I was just visiting. And I stopped in to see some friends of mine that I did an internship with and and the general manager came on he goes, didn't you graduate? And I said, Yeah, he goes, that job offer still stands. So I said, I'll take it, then it's been television ever since.

John Matarazzo:

Wow. So you literally just kind of fell into that path

Brian Roland:

I got in the areas that I had no desire to be in. And then actually, I didn't even know this was where I was going to be except I love music and I love doing a radio show. And then when they brought in the the video aspect of it, I just went with that. And of course, we we had film back then too, that we were working on and, and I came in second in the film contest that we had at the school there. So I thought about this is I'm doing something good here. And it's actually my parents are proud, I'm proud. And I'm enjoying it. I love it that you know, so let's let's move on and go in this direction. But God had his hand on it because he kept me I always wanted to be in a secular field. He kept me in the, in the Christian field and working in that area. And and I did break away later on and had worked up in Hollywood. And God had me there for just the taste of it and then pulled me out of it. And then I was out of it again. And but it's okay, because I I learned some valuable lessons. And I learned some sure great media that I needed to know about and broadcasting and in film, actually in Hollywood, too. So it was it's a blessing all the way around.

John Matarazzo:

And I was actually the other end of the spectrum for Brian when it comes to cinematography. I had an opportunity to get into a class with Dan, we never got to take classes together because we were doing opposite things. So I had a general requirement that I could see we could both take cinematography. So I said I'm going to jump into that and see if I need to shift gears from business into cinematography. Dan, what do you think?

Dan Wheeler:

He went into the "right field" though he did write a dynamic script called the old ball game,

John Matarazzo:

I bring it out because these guys will never let me forget it. It was it was so. So standard and simple. It was basically a guy hitting the potential home run or something. And I and I'm doing the pictures of him rounding the bases sliding into home. And the whole climax of the movie was whether he was safe or out.

Brian Roland:

I never heard that one before

Dan Wheeler:

to say it was predicted to be an understatement. But

John Matarazzo:

I've seen that movie a few different times. Yeah.

Brian Roland:

Was there fireworks going off behind the lights?

John Matarazzo:

Maybe Maybe you can do it for the for the follow up there, Terry, but

Brian Roland:

the sequel.

Dan Wheeler:

John, we love to have a good time. And we're always on each other. But you know, through it all. We really love each other. And it's just such an honor to do ministry together. It really is. Yeah.

John Matarazzo:

And that's one of the things I love about doing this podcast, the the finished drunk podcast with you guys is you guys have this great friendship that has been developing over the years. I mean, God brought you together at evangel. And you guys have stayed friends. And I want to ask you now that we've kind of talked about how you guys have met the Lord and how God has led you to where you are now. I mean, we can talk more about that too. But I really am interested in how has your friendships really stayed this strong for this long. Because that's something that I want in my life, I want to have some friends that I can, you know, I can say they've been with me throughout this whole time in my life. And I've got friends from my days in missions work. And, you know, we text periodically, but we don't get to see each other as nearly as often as we'd like to. But I see the friendship dynamic that you guys have and just the laughter that I get to be a part of whenever we're doing these episodes. What advice can I get from you guys? So we'll start with Terry, and then Brian. And then Dan, what advice can I get from you guys? about maintaining friendships? Because Terry, you're in Florida? Yeah, Brian, you're in California. And Dan, you're in Philly. So like, we're all spread over. And I'm in Pittsburgh. So we're all spread over the country right now. But the friendship that you guys have is something that I really admire. And I want to learn how I can do that too. Well, it's funny, yes, that because in reality, Dan and I were together for years in college, and we were totally inundated with each other and that we were roommates. And we played on the baseball team together, we played intramurals together, and we were really we really bonded in those four years. And then after we graduated, we went our separate ways and did not even live close to each other. So the first thing I would say is if you want a friendship, you have to be intentional to have the friendship. If you think it's gonna maintain and happen on its own. It's not as as good a friend as you may think you are. If you're not intentional and keeping that relationship, it's just naturally going to fade. Dan and Brian, over the years after college, they had a much closer relationship and did far more things because they were working together and and Dan and I never really were in close proximity ever since. But we knew we knew to stay in touch. We got together every so often. And when the important things came up, we were there for each other. It's really good. And I think whether you see each other every day when you know there's a guy out there in your corner, and he's there when you need him. That's key to deep, deep relationship. Yeah, Brian, what about you?

Brian Roland:

That's absolutely right. It just what he said is absolutely right. And Dan and I connected after we both graduated, and we became roommates for a couple years. But this is a time Terry, you you got married. I mean, you're settled in your life, Dan and I weren't so we were we were just doing our thing. And, and the thing is that we bonded together, but that we shared with each other. And everything. I mean, we just we just became like brick like brothers. And people who save it. Ask us you guys brothers, and I go, yeah, I'm the older one. But we would get the

Dan Wheeler:

Blues Brothers.

Brian Roland:

We were The Blues Brothers that we won. We won some contests with that. Yeah. It's right. But it's like Terry was saying it's being there for each other. I went through some dark times. Dan was there for me. He went through some times and I was there for him. And it was that bond and knowing that not just having a bond the Friendship but that it was tied into that we were both believers. So no matter how dark a god or what ruins we were going down, we were still believers. And God was actually honest, the whole time he was watching us. He was watching us go our way that we wanted to go. He was pulling us back. He was tugging at our hearts all the time. But we've talked to each other about that at the same time. And I think that just made us closer and just build it up through the years. That's my belief is Dan, I hope you do the same thing.

Dan Wheeler:

I definitely do. I never had a brother, I had three sisters. And these two guys are like brothers to me. And it's exactly I just echo everything. They said, when someone's there for you, you know, you can count on them, you know, you can pick up the phone, and no matter what they've got going on. They'll either say let me call you right back to get back to you, they'll, they'll hear you out. They'll pray with you. The fact that all three of us want to serve God with everything we've got now has made the bond even that much stronger. Realizing that these are difficult times, these are the hardest times I think that America has ever faced. And without our faith, where would we be and losing my wife obviously was a very dark time and made me realize boy, life is short. I mean, she didn't even make it to 62. And realizing I was in my 60s, and God had given me a great career at QVC. But that really started to lose its appeal. Everything went towards ministry and the way it just all happened. It just seemed like it was the Lord all the way. Nothing we really planned. And even now things just we take the next step. And you know, and the podcast is the next step. And we're so grateful to you for you know, taking us on with everything you have going on. But you do such a great job editing it together, you're announcing and I knew that from being on along the way, because I think you do a great job with this podcast.

John Matarazzo:

Thank you. Thank you, Dan. You know, Dan, as you know, we were talking about you being on my program along the way. And we talked about when your wife passed away, it was Terry and Brian that just came in sat with you. And they just they stopped what they were doing. And they came and as Terry was saying, at those moments where like, there's real big things that happen, these are the guys that God brought alongside of you. And that's, that is a gem that is a real treasure to have. And I'm so grateful that these guys were able to do that for you. And then subsequently that you were able to introduce me to your friends as well. And so I kind of feel like I'm the fourth wheel and on the fourth wheel on a tricycle right now. But that's

Brian Roland:

trade training wheel training.

Dan Wheeler:

When they were with me through that time, I mean, it wasn't necessarily what they said, it's what they did. They were there. Exactly. And I say to people, people all the time are like, Oh, I'm so uncomfortable. I wouldn't know what to say I don't I don't want to visit someone in the hospital. And I say go, just be there. You know, if you can take food all the better, because you know, people would bring my food. That was great, but just that they were there with me. And you know, and then after they left, I went through a really hard time I was just a mess and lonely. And you know, just dealing with a lot of guilt, a lot of feeling of failure, and it just been through this three year ordeal. But then, you know, the percolation of the idea of fearless faith.

John Matarazzo:

Yeah, let's talk about that.

Dan Wheeler:

Well, you know, we were talking the other day, when you start listing all the things we've got gone and we've gotten, you know, accomplished. It's been amazing in the last five years, because Terry is still working full time. And Brian and I are retired, but we're just able to get things out. You know, we have a philosophy, john, this is really strange. I don't think I could do this with anybody else. But if the three of us don't agree on something, we don't do it. But the thing is, we always seem to agree, and we always are going in the same direction. What do you guys think? I don't know that.

Brian Roland:

That's true, I believe. Because when something comes up, we'll pray about it. And sometimes we'll take a day or a week or a month, and then we come back to it. But once we're back and we start discussing it again. It seems like we The Lord is leading us all in that same path down the same the right direction. So that's that's like our assurance that we know that we are going in the right direction.

John Matarazzo:

Yeah, I agree a number of years ago, probably 10 to 15 years ago, I went into business with two other guys to form an online accounting service and we got it up and we got to go on and it did not take but a few months before I realized this is not going to work. The three of us are not going to be able to make this happen. And I had to back out of it and let them go. ahead and keep it going because it just wasn't where I wanted to be. And it's so refreshing. I've read done the same thing, in essence with these two guys. But they always have an open mind, even when we don't necessarily agree. You always feel like you can say what you want to say. Nobody gets offended. Everybody accepts the other's opinion and sorts it through and acquiesces if they don't have a strong opinion. And I think it's just the way God's put us together. And it's been a real delight. Yeah, for sure.

Dan Wheeler:

And I think a lot of that is our personalities are similar. And we know that we're doing it for the Lord. So there can be no egos. It's not about anybody running this ministry. We all do. And really, the Lord runs it. And we're just always trying to be faithful and saying, Is there more? Is there more that we can do? And what's next? And, of course, we're navigating through all these, you know, social media, sometimes suppressing things, not knowing what the future is there. So it's nice to have these other outlets.

John Matarazzo:

Yeah, well, you've got the fearless faith Facebook page, and you got the YouTube videos, you guys do something that's really cool. On a daily basis, right, the morning cup of inspiration. Can I hear about that? And how that got started?

Dan Wheeler:

Well, Brian actually came up with the title, your morning cup of inspiration, and I weren't, we were kind of saying what do we call these things. We just felt like we should do video on social media. We done a lot of it at QVC. And I knew how powerful it could be. And it's just helped us to really develop a bond with our viewers. I believe that video is so much stronger than just posts that you just read, because there's no personality behind that people relate to people, people buy from people. So we felt that was where we should be another podcast as a whole new format button. Yeah. What do you guys think? I'd like to hear from them? Yeah, it was organic, the way it started guide Terry. Yeah,

John Matarazzo:

yeah. And I was gonna just say on a side note, john, it was interesting how God does what he does, even even though I went the route of business, the Lord opened doors for me to be in television, I spent 12 years at a TV ministry, and was on air eight of those years musically and behind the scenes. So I got a lot of exposure to television and video, even though the bulk of my job was in the financial side of it. And so it's kind of helped me in the process, as we've moved and begun to do these videos and do these podcasts, to just give me a little flavor for it more from the technical standpoint and some of that sort of thing. So it's neat how God puts all those pieces together as you're just walking the road, right? And listening to God's voice and taking a right when he says take a ride and knocking on a door and if it won't open, you keep walking and then it does open and you walk through it. And that's kind of what we've done with fearless faith, we're walking along, knocked on the door, if it opens we walk through and if it doesn't, we keep on walking trail.

Brian Roland:

And john I before I retired, I was working with a group and we did a live pay per view events on the internet. And so I took from the broadcasting into that and went to the internet though to learn that because it was new media and I didn't understand it. But I spent six years there which I was able to get a taste of what was going on with it. And I was still directing I was directing concerts for them on these pay per view events and and some we did other things too. We did rodeos and equestrian events and it was called medical continuing learning continuing education. So there's a lot to be learned with that that I didn't understand but I got that experience before we decided to take all this on so God was definitely see his hand and that it just moved this another direction and move me towards that direction of where we were going to be together and what I can what I could give to this ministry that's really cool.

Dan Wheeler:

Yeah, you know from his rodeo background, Terry and I had to get him to lose the Spurs and the 10 gallon and the chaps but

Terry Steen:

yeah,

Brian Roland:

It was the chaps that I didn't want to give up.

John Matarazzo:

That night he was a rodeo clown that was probably his best I almost couldn't get

Brian Roland:

him in that barrel I was 60 pounds heavier. Oh my gosh,

Dan Wheeler:

a little tight, then we pushed him over Niagara Falls we didn't think he'd make it

Brian Roland:

I didn't think I was gonna make it but you know, made it a miss came and picked me up and just took me home.

Dan Wheeler:

It was testimony though.

Brian Roland:

I did lose my red nose but

John Matarazzo:

I always enjoy laughing with you guys because I know that you know we're gonna my cheeks are gonna hurt after being with you guys just because we're laughing so hard about you just cut up on each other and it's great. I love seeing that friendship and you know, I would I do want to take the take this time to ask Terry and Brian. The Key along the way questions. And so you know what, Brian, we'll start with you this time. The whole thing of this podcast is based around the road story of how Jesus was walking with the disciples from Jerusalem to a mess, and they just had no clue that it was him. And this is after the the crucifixion and the resurrection. And there was just rumor that he was alive. But people be weren't sure. And these guys were really down in the dumps and depressed. And here's Jesus comes along, and he's talking with them and walking with them. And the first seven miles, they, they go to a maze, and they sit down at the table, and Jesus blesses the food and breaks the bread. And then their eyes are open, and then poof, he's gone. And they they turn to each other. And in Luke 2432, we can see that they said, weren't our hearts burning within us along the way, as he was revealing the scriptures to us? You know, I don't want to miss those moments where our hearts are burning, as as we look back, and we realized that Jesus was really there. So I want to be I want to get better at recognizing when my heart's burning, not just because of acid reflux, or something like that. But it's really, it's really burning because of an encounter with the Lord or God's trying to do something. Can you tell me a story about when you look back and you say, you know what, Jesus really was there? I just didn't see him in that moment.

Brian Roland:

Yeah, I wonder what comes to mind is that it helped with my mom, actually. And I was living in California when I first moved out here. And I was actually I was roommates with it with another guy that had a beautiful home, and we were there. And I was just there with his dog chief one night, and he was gone. And this was about midnight, my time. And my mom calls, and there had been some noise outside let me preface that there was some noise outside. And she started going crazy barking outside my bedroom window, inside my bedroom window there. And so I thought, well, I'm gonna take care of this. I grabbed my baseball bat, my my ex called Hank, my Hank Aaron bat. And I started walking through the front door, and the phone starts ringing. And my mom, it was my mom and ally. And she goes, What are you doing? You know? What do you mean? What am I doing? It's three o'clock, where you're at? You know what's going on? She said, Well, what's going on right now. So I'm just about to go outside or some noise outside the window chief is going crazy. And I got my baseball bat, I'm going to go out and take care of it. And she goes, don't go out there. And I said, What do you mean, she goes, God had woken her up out of a sound sleep, and says Brian's in trouble. You got a call right now. Wow. And she did it to this day. I don't know what was out there. But I could be dead. I don't know. But that just opened my eyes to that. God has us covered. And he uses other people in our lives. He's our parents use our friends. But when we're interceding for each other, he's always there. And that just opened up my eyes to lead to always listen, always listen, whenever you hear that voice, go towards it. Don't turn away from it, because God is doing it for a reason. And here's my mom that night, and it just changed my life. That just turned me around to listen to God's voice more clearly than ever before. Sorry, I get choked up when I think about it, because it was so real. Just so real.

John Matarazzo:

That's great. That that's okay. Brian, I understand that. That's that mean, that's that's really moving to know that, while your mom is your mom was so sensitive to the Holy Spirit that she was woken up from a deep sleep. And she responded in obedience in faith, to call you and you weren't in the same area you like you said in that story. It was three o'clock in the morning where she was. And if I was told it at three o'clock in the morning to call somebody, I'm probably not going to do it, unless there's the Holy Spirit function. So thank God that she was sensitive to the Holy Spirit, and that she felt that burning in her heart to go and be attentive to that. And that's amazing how God how God saved you from something that we don't even know.

Brian Roland:

It's true. And that is this gone on, or I felt things in my life that I know I've had to work on. And I've had to go towards when I heard the voice. And when I got the call from Dan, about Beth and I told them I said look at as it was getting near or near the time, I said, if you if you want me there, call me. I'll be there. And he called the one that said, I need you here and I told my wife I said I gotta go. And she said, I know. Just go. She knew it. She didn't complain about it. She didn't try to stop me. And I said, I may be gone a month she goes go, Dan, did you go. And so that's when God puts that fire not just in me, but in her as well. Just listen to His voice. This is what we have to do and just pay attention to it and move forward.

John Matarazzo:

That's so good, Brian, that's so good. You know, the kind of my follow up question that I always ask with this one is if you could go back in time, and visit young Brian, little Brian, somewhere along your timeline, and you could give yourself some advice. What advice would you give yourself and If you could paint the picture of what's happening in that season of your life that you would want to interject at that time,

Brian Roland:

I think most of all, what I would do, john is learn to not trust anybody but Jesus, trust the Lord. I got some words of wisdom when I was going to school saying, you're going to find some professors here that are really going to be intriguing. They're really smart. But don't put your faith and trust in them. Jesus is the only answer. And, and I have to agree with that. And not just school. But afterwards, I put my faith in a lot of people at times, and they all failed. They've always failed. And I found that God is Jesus, it never failed. And I would tell young Brian, that not stick to that. Don't, don't go off and venture on your own. Try to find out things for yourself. It's been done. You're not doing anything new, not anything different. There's nothing new in the world. And you've had the right way going from the beginning, but yet you veered off it and you had to get back on it. Thankfully, God is gracious and loving and waited. And he never leaves you is always knocking. And he was always there for me. But I would that's what I was telling young Brian is that put your faith in God only and then Jesus do not. Do not put your faith in men.

John Matarazzo:

Yeah. Do you think young Brian would pay attention and listen to what mature Brian had to say?

Brian Roland:

Maybe not. Because because my dad tried to do the same things told me the same things that were gonna happen. And I I probably I would think that young Brian would learn sooner than then all men Brian did. Oh, man, Brian took years to figure it out. Because I was stubborn that way. And I think young Brian, listening and hearing experiences might say okay, I'm gonna buckle in. buckle down a little bit sooner.

John Matarazzo:

Yeah,

Dan Wheeler:

You maybe should have buckled into a Pinto not that trans-am. That might have been your downfall.

Brian Roland:

not a Pinto. Come on, Dan.

Dan Wheeler:

I bought a Camaro and I could only afford it without air conditioning. And my wife never let me forget what a stupid decision that was. And in the middle of summer, we're going down to Quincy just sweating. She's like, yeah, to save $400 and not get air conditioning.

John Matarazzo:

Brian, thank you for sharing all about that. And you know, those those moments are very special. And I appreciate you just sharing about that, that experience with your mom, and then what you would share with yourself. And so Terry, I wanna ask you those same questions. Where do you realize that your heart was burning? But you just didn't realize that Jesus was walking with you at that moment? Yeah, that's a great question, John. And I don't know that I have a specific moment that Brian was able to share. But when I think about walking that road, you know, those disciples had, they were walking the road, but they had no idea what was just about to overtake them. And that's kind of how it's been in my life as I've walked the road and done the best I could. And I mentioned I was at a ministry and it was actually an incredible ministry. I had some incredible experiences. But it had many ups and downs that confused me at times as to why I was there. It was ptl television heritage ministries with Jim and Tammy Baker, and anybody who knows the history of that I was there 12 years. It went through incredible times, then it went through chaos, then it went into bankruptcy. And I was in the throes of all that I was assisting with the IRS audits. I was working through the bankruptcy and out of that bankruptcy. Well, my wife was like, Terry, we've got to get out of here, you know, by just being here. We're condoning everything going on. And my response was, honey, I can only answer for myself. I can't be responsible for anybody but me. And I just felt God had me staying there. And before we were done, I were I was put into a position as the CFO and the church administrator of heritage church. And that was my first exposure to blending ministry with business on a full time basis. And that was the springboard and gave me the experience that I used when I left that location and got a job here in Florida in Tampa, as an executive pastor. And over the next number of years I was at this church for another 10 years. My wife and I felt we had the purest, true ministry and impact on people's lives that we've ever had to that point. And it was all walking that and maze road through the highs and lows that springboarded. us. And so the the burning of that ministry that we had in our hearts at this church was due to what we had walked through to get there. And so it's just interesting how if we'll just walk the road, and believe and have faith that God will show us where he was leading us and why. And so that that was very impacting to me as like I say, I didn't have a specific instance. But the progression of my life sure has had that those moments, those burning moments when I felt like I had true ministry impact. Wow. Wow. And so what about if you could go back and visit young Terry, somewhere along your timeline? What would What advice would you give yourself and what's going on in your life that you would want to talk to young Terry there? Well, first of all, I tell him to start lifting weights at an early age. Because I still don't have a chest all these years and I've never got a chest or arms. And I know if I would have started earlier I would have been a better athlete But anyhow,

Brian Roland:

we give you a badge you have no place to pin it, right?

Dan Wheeler:

We used to tease Terry, he'd always do this flexing, he was a very good athlete and very limbered quick, he was stronger than he looked. But Barney Fife comes to mind.

Brian Roland:

Mr. Rogers.

Dan Wheeler:

I've since been to the gym with Terry and man you were pressing

John Matarazzo:

are on Oh, it's way up there now.

Terry Steen:

No, seriously, I would come back to one of the key things to me in life now is always do the right thing. Walk in integrity. That's good. Be the whole person. And everything. Usually, if I have people come and ask me for counsel, it usually comes around to you know the answer. You know what the right thing is to do, right? But you're not wanting to do it. you're wanting to hear someone tell you it's okay to do this. Or it's okay to be selfish. But when it all comes back around, if you do the right thing, you'll never go wrong. And then secondly, I would say every day, get up and do your best every day. It's a day to day to day journey that accumulates over time. And I think the three of us as we've done that over our years, and now are coming together with fearless faith, that that's just helping us in the process that we have done it day after day after day. We're approaching this ministry with as much integrity as we know how. And I just believe that those lessons will in the long run help us be as effective as we can be for a forgotten for the kingdom. And I guess that's what I tell little teeny, Terry. in ninth grade, I was 411 and weighed 98 pounds. It took a while for me to kind of grow.

John Matarazzo:

Wow,

Dan Wheeler:

the guy grew like three inches after college I was so ticked because we were almost I leveled the shoots up into a giant. So I don't know...

Terry Steen:

it wasn't hard Dan up in 5'4".

Dan Wheeler:

This on me because it bugs me. One lesson that I think we've learned as a ministry is I think the the temptation in ministry is to judge your success on numbers. But we haven't felt that that's how we judge our success. I mean, a life changed or a life inspired is worth so much. And yeah, we've had salvations we haven't had tremendous numbers. But we know from what our followers tell us that God is using us and making an impact. You know, today I was this morning, I was recording one of our morning cups of inspiration. And I was kind of having trouble going back and forth between a few ideas. And I always just stop and say, Lord, I need your guidance. I don't know what to say right now. I don't know what the message is. But please give it to me. And then it seems like there's always clarity. There's a moment of clarity going, Yeah, this is supposed to go right. And then we hear from our viewers. How did you know and of course we have no idea how you spoke right to me. We hear it all the time. Don't we get this right

Terry Steen:

Yeah,

John Matarazzo:

yeah, that's, that's awesome. You know, I love getting to work with you guys. And just some of the stories. As everybody's listening to this episode of along the way right now you can you hear the stories that these guys have. And there are a lot of fun. And I'm looking through some of the episodes, the titles of the episodes that we've done for the finish strong podcast. And, you know, there's an episode called the blooming onion. And you know how to hear God's audible voice and one of my favorites is probably, we're making great time, but in the wrong direction. And so there's, there's a lot of great stories in there and topics that these guys are talking about discussing what God's taught them along the way. So not just along the way in their life, but they really have a passion to finish strong with what God's called them to do, but also to help other people finish strong. And that's why I want to strongly recommend finished strong the podcast that I will be putting links for that in the show notes, as well as the the Facebook page and the FA tf.org for everything that these guys are doing with with their ministry, fearless face. So you can see their morning cups of inspiration and listen to the podcast and just see what's what what they're doing. And so guys, I want to try to finish strong in my life. And I want to hear your best bits of information or best bits of advice to finish strong on the 36. And so from your perspective, what's a key piece of advice that you could give me to help me finish strong?

Dan Wheeler:

Well, I would say use every experience, you have an every career move to lead to the next one. It seems like God uses all of our past experiences and the talents that we've gained the abilities we've gained to do the next thing. So I often tell young people that are trying to decide what to do, I say, take out a piece of paper, take out two sheets of paper and put strengths and weaknesses and likes and dislikes. Because I feel like God gives us all strengths. And it gives us all things we really like to do. I'm not a carpenter, I could never be a carpenter, the walls would fall down. I can hardly cut a board to length, but I'm a communicator, God's given me that ability and just give those towels to the Lord and say, Lord, I'm yours. You know, Terry talks about the story of David Goliath. You know, they tried to put all this armor on David and this huge spear and then he could even move. He's like, no, I gotta do what I know to do. So he took five stones, and a sling. That's what he had in his hand. That's what he was good with. took one stone. God can use anything. If you give it to him. Yeah. So always give it to the Lord. And before making a major move. Just spend a lot of time in prayer, in the word, asking God for direction, you don't want to make the wrong mistake. And that would be some advice I'd give to a young man is always, always spend a lot of time with the Lord and seek other people's advice, right. But you know, sometimes you can listen to too many people and too many voices. But God will always cut through it all. And let you know the right direction. There's a verse that says, you know, you'll hear a voice behind you saying go this way. Walk walk ye in it. And I found that's really true.

John Matarazzo:

Yeah, well, speaking of too many voices, Brian, what do you have to say?

Brian Roland:

No. No, it's it's it's what Dan is saying it's point on. And and I agree with that. Because everything that I learned throughout my years in the in the business, I was able to take to the next level. And one thing to remember, though, is that if something doesn't work, don't try to make it work a second time, because it's not going to, it's going to get the same results. And you're just you're rolling against the current and it's not going to work. But I agree with taking it to the Lord and prayer, whatever, there's a major decision to be made. Definitely, I pray over it. And like Dan said, though, I was thinking with Brett before he said at sea console, but there was only a couple people I go to the sea console with then he'd be one of them for sure. My mom was another one. My sister's another one. I have a cousin. That's another one. But they're the only ones that I that I confide in, to pray with me on different things to and to include you that I'm sorry. No, but but it's and you got to have wisdom from what they're going to give you from what they're hearing from God to. Because there's not going to be confusion. The confusion doesn't come from the Lord. And the past is going to be made right and made straight. And if we continue on that from what we know, and what we're hearing from God, even if we can't see what's at the end there, what the outcome is going to be, it's going to be in the right direction, and it's going to be according to His will and for His glory. And that's what we're here for. We're here to be a vessel for His glory. And that's what be my advice to the person coming up.

John Matarazzo:

Yeah. Terry, hat about

Terry Steen:

Yeah, john, I would say you know, sometimes we hit times in life where things seem really mundane, and we feel like, we're spinning our wheels. And I would say never take anything for granted. It doesn't matter how small it is so good. God has a reason and a purpose for why you're doing what you're doing that day. And if we could get that into our heads, I think it would allow us to approach those mundane times a little bit more, knowing that it's leading us down a road to something that he has planned for us that in the end is going to be bigger and bigger. And I just come back to the Scripture, the story of the boy who offered his loaves of bread and his fish, I can almost guarantee you that there were plenty people on that hillside that had food, nobody else offered it. Right? The little boys, the one who offered it, and look what God did God fed everybody with it. So the key is whatever we have, whether we're feeling like we're the lowest of the low, whether we feel like we don't have any talent, no personality, or whatever, I'm not talking about you, Dan.

Dan Wheeler:

i was gonna sa , Don't be so hard on yoursel

John Matarazzo:

Whatever we have, give it to the Lord, he can do incredible things with it. That's really good advice, guys. I appreciate that. From all of you guys, with me helping you as the producer for your podcast "Finish Strong". I am learning how to finish strong. And it's it's a blessing to be able to be a part of that. And it's been a blessing to have you guys on along the way too. It's definitely a different format. I've never had this many people on at the same time, I spent a lot of fun. And I think it's because we've already unfortunately, I think it's because we've you know, we've developed a friendship and a relationship over the last few months, especially doing these podcasts and having fun together and just laughing and you know, having a having text messages that keep going on and on and on. And I just enjoy that. And it's fun to be a part of something to help somebody else's ministry with this. And so, guys, I just want to thank you so much for allowing me to join you along your way and helping me to finish strong to Dan, tell me about how people can find your podcast.

Dan Wheeler:

Well, we are wherever podcasts are found. They can also check out our Facebook page, which is under fearless faith. Our logo was three orange flames. And if you go there, we're posting each episode there where you can play it. If you're not used to listening to podcasts, they can also go to our website, f faith.org. And we have them all there thanks to your expertise. And you know, john, you said, sure you're learning from the older guys, we needed a guy like you because you know, when Brian and I, and Terry all started in TV, we're using two inch quad tape. And now this new world of digital and everything we don't understand at all. So we're so thankful for your skills and your young, sharp mind. Thank you.

John Matarazzo:

Thank you

Dan Wheeler:

You do slow down a little bit as you get olde

John Matarazzo:

Yeah, well, I just thank you guys so much for all that I'm going to put all those links in the show notes. So if you're listening, you can just go right there and click that. And that'll take you right to the fearless faith website and the Facebook page and all those other places that Dan just mentioned. And guys, again, just thank you so much for allowing me to join you along your way.

Dan Wheeler:

Our pleasure, John, thank you.

John Matarazzo:

I hope you enjoyed that conversation. It has been a lot of fun getting to know these guys more. There is always a lot to laugh about. And these guys really care about the Lord and the people that God has brought along their way. I pray that you find true friends like that too, and that they can lock arms with you to help you finish strong along your way. If you want to know more about fearless faith and the finished strong podcast, I'll be providing all that information in the show notes. Thank you for listening to along the way. If you've enjoyed joining me along my way, please share this with a friend who you think will be encouraged by this podcast. Also, please rate and review along the way on iTunes that helps more people discover along the way. And subscribe to this podcast wherever you're listening. You can follow me on Facebook, Instagram and on my website along the way dot media. I hope that you've enjoyed this part of my journey and may you realize when Jesus is walking with you along your way. Along the way is honored to be part of the charisma Podcast Network. You can find tons of spirit filled content from their vast catalogue of podcasts including my Monday through Friday news stories for the charisma news podcast. Go to CPN shows.com to see the full list and latest episodes.