Football has been the “big talk” just about everywhere these days. First it was the Thanksgiving Day games, then it was “bowl season” which was quickly followed by the playoffs. Now all you hear about is the “Super Bowl”. Super Bowl Sunday celebrations rank right up there with our national holidays. In fact, it is probably bigger than some!
During all of this football frenzy one player and his faith stood out among the frey. Tim Tebow of the Denver Broncos has gained national attention for writing John 3:16 in the black under his eyes and for going down on one knee for a quick prayer during games. The press was quick to name this “tebowing”. During one of the biggest games of the playoffs between the Denver Broncos and the Pittsburgh Steelers the numer 316 came up several times in the statistics. Of course, this made for great commentary for sports broadcasters. In their next game the Broncos were defeated and that made for even more commentary. Some even went so far as to ask why God had not helped the Broncos to the Super Bowl.
In my opinion the answer is simple. I do not think for one second it was a coincidence that the 316 came up in the statistics nor that the sports commentators caught it . I have always heard, “God works in mysterious ways.” and in my opinion He does. A while back I did an article on living our lives as if we were the only “Bible” some people would ever read. Lots of people “read” the Bible through Mr. Tebow’s actions. I have no doubt God used him to send a message to the world. Just to refresh your memory:
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
John 3:16 KJV
There are many Christian athletes in all sports. They all pray. What non-Christians may not understand is that the prayer is for guidance and that God be with them. They don’t pray for a win, just that they might do their best and be a good example to others. Tim Tebow is certainly not the first athlete that has publicly bowed for a moment of prayer. Anyone watching the PBR will witness several of the riders taking a moment to thank God after their ride – whether they make the 8 second buzzer or not. Almost ever rodeo I attend begins with a public prayer. Through out the event you will see several cowboys and cowgirls express their faith. Some by bowing for prayer after their competition while others display crosses or other Christian symbols on their attire – especially on chaps.
Sports play an important role in all our lives. Whether as a competitor or as a spectator. Sadly more people will attend or watch a sporting event each week than will attend church. Athletes that use this opportunity to witness their faith to others deserve our praise for having the courage to do so.
Now take a look at your own life. Do you have the courage to witness your faith in your work place? It doesn’t mean you have to preach the Bible every day. It does mean displaying your Christian values. It does mean taking a second every now and then just to ask God to be with you through the day. It does mean thanking Him, remembering that all we have comes from Him.
Enjoy this year’s Super Bowl, I’m sure God will. I hear He is a big sports fan!