My last column was about Tim Tebow. Maybe some of you are sick of hearing about him all the time. If that’s the case, you might want to grab a trashcan or a doggy-bag if you plan to keep reading this; because it’s going to start with Tebow, build up to Tebow, and finish with Tebow. Tebow. Tebow.
I grew up in a Christian home. My mom told me as I went off to college that I needed to go out and decide for myself if I believed it or not. In the end, I came to the conclusion that I wanted to pursue a relationship with Jesus because I realized that truly being a Christian wasn’t about following a checklist of religious rules.
No. It’s not about a religion, it’s about relationships; your relationship with God, with yourself, your family, friends, time, money, Facebook– you name it. I’m really pretty piss-poor at living a relational life, but at the end of the day I somehow still want to get better at it.
I tell you this not to try and cram anything down your throat, but I think when a lot of people hear the words ‘Christian’ they immediately associate it with words like —conservative, Republican, judgmental, ignorant, close-minded, up-on-a-high-horse, boring.
They think of names like Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Joel Osteen and Fred Phelps. Personally, I think I speak for the majority of Christian’s when I say Fred Phelps needs grace almost more than anyone. He perverts the Bible in order to gain personal power and unleash his anger.
The point I’m trying to make is that almost all Christians that mainstream culture knows about, are very extreme and often don’t even truly believe in the core teachings of the Gospel. That’s why Tebow has caught on like a honey badger on Youtube. He does believe and faithfully try to live a life that’s accountable to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Contrary to what his own Pastor said, Tebow doesn’t believe he wins football games because God “favors” him. He knows God is much bigger than sports. Tebow wins because he works hard, he’s positive and encouraging to his teammates, his actions match up with his words, and therefore he is a leader people are willing to follow.
Of course this is speculation, but I would bet that when the camera shoots to Tebow praying on one knee before kickoff, he’s not asking God for a Broncos win; he’s asking God that whatever the outcome of the game is, that he (Tebow) would have glorified God and shown the powerful love of Jesus in anyway he could. If the answer to that prayer involves him beating the Steelers for the Broncos first playoff win since 2006, then I’m sure that’s more than okay with him.
Bob Costas said in a story on NBC that even if people don’t believe the same as Tebow, his beliefs should at least be respected. I think it’s ironic that profound Atheist Bill Maher has ragged on Christianity for being judgmental, close-minded, hypocritical etc.
Then he tweets things like “Wow, Jesus just f****d #TimTebow bad! And on Xmas Eve! Somewhere in hell Satan is tebowing, saying to Hitler “Hey, Buffalo’s killing them.” This was after Tebow’s loss to the Bill’s last month. The first mainstream Christian that comes through not showing any of those characteristics Maher despises so much and he proceeds to judge and be close-minded about Tebow (which also makes him a hypocrite).
Everyone has a right to love or hate a sports figure. That’s one of the fun things about being a sports fan. But I hope Tebow-haters will truly ask themselves the question: why? And if they still hate him, that they would at least respect him. Because I’m betting he would genuinely respect you.