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  • Why Tim Tebow Keeps Smiling

    When Pam Tebow was counseled to abort her baby to save her own life, the doctor referred to him as a “mass of fetal tissue.”

    “(M)aybe she just called me that to toughen us up for the names I would be called the first time I played at LSU,” Tim Tebow, who became the Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback for the University of Florida, writes in his 2011 book “Through My Eyes.”

    Now that Tebow is a Denver Bronco and under intense scrutiny in the role of starting quarterback, his congenital instinct to push through adversity and ignore the naysayers is again at work.

    “Polarizing” is the sports commentariat’s typical term to describe national reaction to Tebow since he went pro. The negativity flows in part from his initially rocky performance. But much more seems to be reaction to Tebow’s Christian faith. Critics want him to keep it to himself, a pattern that is increasingly common in American public life.

    Of course, there’s already plenty of God-talk in professional football. (Type “Green Bay Packers” into Twitter and see how many players give God a shout out in their profiles.)

    Talking is one thing. Walking the talk is another. That’s where Tim Tebow stands out. Born in the Philippines to missionary parents, he not only is outspoken about his faith, referencing it frequently in word and symbol – such as biblical citations in his eye black. He’s also as intense about living out his faith as he is about playing football – and winning.

    And he’s done a good bit of winning. For a 24-year-old who’s been, in his words, “the center of so much spilled ink” since his high school days (before graduating he was the subject of a documentary), it’s amazing he’s full of anything other than himself. Instead, he brims over about his faith, family, football and teammates.

    While the attention hasn’t gone to his head, it does seem to have gone to his heart.

    Tebow takes seriously the burden of his “platform” – a word he uses frequently in his book to refer to his opportunity to influence others for good. Such disciplined, purposeful stewardship of a leadership role is rare in anyone, but particularly someone so young in a field rampant with narcissism and bad behavior.

    Even for observers who consider the eye-black evangelism corny or juvenile, it’s simply no comparison to the “youthful indiscretions” that haunt so many public figures for years. And even through jaded eyes, the trademark Tebow kneel to give gratitude to God after a great play hardly can be as obnoxious as others’ on-field (not to mention off-field) antics and outbursts.

    “Tebow is just a guy with the good sense to say thanks. Instead of taking his cue, we mock his faith. And that says more about us, none of it good,” writes Jennifer Floyd Engel at Fox Sports.

    What the mockery of Tebow’s faith “has revealed about religious discourse in America is ugly,” she says. “And this defense that Tebow invites such scrutiny with his willingness to publicly live as he privately believes calls into question what exactly it is we value.”

    Public expression of religious belief is an essential aspect of what has been called America’s first freedom. This nation is founded on the principle that religious individuals and institutions would have the freedom to live out their faith. But in recent decades, policy and social pressures have suggested that faith should be pushed into a private sphere.

    Tim Tebow runs right through that line, surprising its defenders – just like he did to the New York Jets on his game-winning, fourth-quarter touchdown.

    Did Tebow “ever sit back, smile and admire” the events of November, a reporter asked on the last day of the month? With Tebow starting, the Broncos jumped to 7-5 from a losing record.

    “Well, I sit back and smile a lot just ‘cuz … I smile,” Tebow responded, with his reflexive grin. “I continually try to smile a lot.”

    It’s true. He’s kept smiling while showing remarkable magnanimity toward critics. One, former Broncos QB Jake Plummer, suggested toning down the religious rhetoric. Tebow responded that if it’s a good idea for a husband to tell his wife he loves her as often as he can, then wouldn’t it be appropriate to do the same when it comes to the most important relationship in his own life?

    “If people want to bash me for that, that’s OK. It really won’t bother me. At least they know what I believe.”

    Americans express appropriate indignation when a public figure is discovered to lack integrity. How ironic that one who shows consistent virtue should meet with consternation.

    Posted in Featured [slideshow_deploy]

    53 Responses to Why Tim Tebow Keeps Smiling

    1. Bobbie says:

      what an outstanding man of strength and good will. it is funny how in the 21st century people have chosen weakness to draw attention to their feeble offense or influenced to draw attention to take offense when otherwise personal endurance builds tolerance.

      Mr. Tebow is what the world needs more of! God Bless Mr. Tebow! …keep the world smilin'!

      • Jim Baxter says:

        Tim Tebow has demonstrated what many have learned: No one is smarter than their criteria.

        Since humans are all made in the image of the Creator, and He has furnished us with criteria humans cannot invent, our Criteria is the Word of God, and reaches to infinity. (So said Sir Isaac Newton.)

        Manmade criteria is limited. No one is smarter than manmade or God made. Choose wisely…

      • Bobbie says:

        God Bless Pam Tebow!!! an amazing decision when told otherwise. Selfless act of courage and strength!

    2. Alex says:

      I spent much of my childhood being told I was going to hell because I wasn't Christian across many localities in rural America as a child, because I was an openly practicing Buddhist. Persecution because of faith is alive and well in America, but the vast majority of it is perpetrated by people who are avowedly Christian.

      • MPB says:

        If you are a practicing Buddhist fo rsomeone to tell you you were going to go to hell should have no more effect on you than if someone told me I was not going to make it to Nirvanha. However, if someone was to tell me this because they were afraid, concerned and worried for me, I should be able to realize it was done out of love not meaness. On the other hand if it bothered me a great deal then perhaps I may just think that they may have a point.

      • jweb says:

        Evil exists in many forms Alex. I have experienced significant persecution from Christian "leaders". I have tried other paths to God, but I have learned that Jesus Christ is God's path to man. I would encourage you to investigate the person of Jesus Christ. If he is everything he says he is, it is not wise to let anything, even the vile behavior of others, rob YOU from the treasure that he is and the benefits he provides. Best wishes neighbor.

      • smct says:

        Don't blame all Christians for the bad behavior of a few people. There are hypocrits in all faiths and there are many more true Christians out here than you think.

      • George Emmitt says:

        What specific actions are you defining as persecution?

      • ron says:

        what a distortion of the truth-Alex has his head buried in the sand!

      • Stephen says:

        How is trying to convince others of the truth of your faith intolerant? I would say that those who said those things to you Alex were Christians in Name Only, not true Christians, because Jesus tells us to convert others in a loving way. Jesus Christ is love, and the hypocritical actions of some Christians cannot change that, but don't blame people for trying to express their faith such as Tim. The intolerance in America is undeniably against the Christians, and kudos to Tebow for standing up.

      • eddie333 says:

        You misspelled "liberal"

        "…avowedly liberal."

    3. Joe says:

      If Tim was a Muslim, people would be applauding him. There's so much praise for those that are "keeping' real" and so much ridicule for a young man who has respect for others and takes a stand for what he believes in.

      Lastly, it's nice to see someone not pat themselves on the back every time they make a good play let alone a marginal one.

      Tim, good for you for "keeping' real" in your way. May the Lord bless you and keep you, may the Lord make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you. May the Lord lift up his countenance and give you peace…..

      I can't believe I just praised this Denver QB, I'm a die hard Chiefs fan.

    4. christiansagainstnike says:

      God shows us in the Bible that our life has value even before birth. In the Bible, God also warns us not to even mention the names of other gods.

      Nike is one of the goddesses we are not to mention.

      Why? Because the Bible also shows us that gods are demons. NIKE is named after the pagan goddess Nike… and God is not happy when honor is given to another god or goddess.

      HONOR GOD!

      This is from NIKE’s own website: “Nike presided over history’s earliest battlefields. A Greek would say, “When we go to battle and win, we say it is Nike.” Synonymous with honored conquest, Nike is the twentieth century footwear that lifts the world’s greatest athletes to new levels of mastery and achievement. The Nike ‘Swoosh’ embodies the spirit of the winged goddess who inspired the most courageous and chivalrous warriors at the dawn of civalization.”

      If you know of a Christian buying NIKE or promoting NIKE… please share the truth so we can end this detestable idolatry and heal our land.

    5. Tim is a great example to everyone especially the youths in our country. Would we rather they look up to his example of faith or some gang banger?

    6. steve h says:

      As someone who is not religious, i'm amazed at what a lighting rod Tebow is. Why can't people just enjoy this special person and the success he is having, when so many said he couldn't do this, couldn't do that. He's an incredible story and inspiration. I could care less who he prays to or gives credit to, he's doing no harm by thanking a higher power he believes in, yet people bash him left and right for it. He's a wonderful role model for kids. He works his butt off despite all those who put him down, he's positive, his teammates love him, he volunteered his summers workign at his parent's orphanage, and he's not someone you will hear about getting arrested for guns or assault or beating his spouse – he's a great person and great story – it just blows me away so many criticize him for being proud of his faith. Let people believe what they want to believe – judge them on their actions, not their faith.

      • joanc says:

        It's a shame that Tebow is being singled out for his religion. He is a son every parent would be proud of and would be elated that he isn't like the dumb a##es who condemn him. I guess some football fans would rather praise, a pot smoking,drunken womanizing, defecating in public, destroyer of public property Wall street Occupier, instead of an upstanding Young man, who sets a fine example of a role model for young children. .It is amazing to see stupidity of a group, who can't leave another person's faith alone.

      • MyBoys5420 says:

        Well said!

    7. YnotNOW says:

      So true that the reactions to Tebow say at least as much about his critics as it does about him.

    8. Lloyd Scallan says:

      Isn't this entire matter a microcosum of today's socity in general? Isn't this a perfect example of how far this nation has declined? Today, anything pure and good is condemed by the left-wing media as bad for the country. Ask yourself why? Why do they even report on a way of life that only Tim Tebow should be allowed to live? How many times must we be told that we cannot "offend" someone who does not believe as we do? Who in hell gave them that right? There is an effort, led by our so called leader, backed by the media, to take away our rights to decide for ourselvies what to believe. They want only the belief of big government that should control not only our lives, but destroy any thought that there is a supreme being that controls our existence, not the government..

      • Luke S says:

        The reason he draws so much fire from society regarding his belief and actions was once said as: "We live in a society whose only remaining virtue is tolerance and can tolerate anything except virtue."

    9. Homer N. Jethro says:

      It is difficult for me to see how the likes of Franklin, Washington, Hamilton, and Jefferson could praise the young professing (as well as practicing) Christian Statesmen of their day along with their political contributions to the Constitution of the USA (thanks to Dr. Johnny Witherspoon) and we, the "progeny" of such a great heritage can only vilify, mock, and become threatened by public displays of the Christian Faith. Most of our elected officials are bereft of such values and insight and now, sadly, only a few of our sportsmen portray a Public Faith in Christ.

      Does the USA have the moral strength today to stand and support its Constitution?

      Only if we have more people with the courage of their convictions willing to practice their Christian faith in the whole of life, including the “Public Eye” like Tim Tebow.

    10. allen says:

      Thank You

    11. Chris says:

      Have some Christians been "insensitive" or harsh in expressing their faith and in how they interact with others? True enough.

      However, even Jesus — kind, loving, gentle-lamb Jesus — was uncompromisingly unabmigous when he said that certain people will not "inherit the kingdom of God" based on certain criteria.

      That is no more "intolerant" than a doctor telling a patient that unless a certain medication is taken or a certain procedure preformed that the patient most definitely die.

      I have personally benefited from a surgeon who was radically intolerant of a cancerous tumor that was discovered and who performed major thoracic surgery on me.

      Love says, "Don't use that plugged-in curling iron while sitting in a bathtub full of water! " while callous, unloving indifference says, "Who am I to judge and interfere?"

      • Glenn says:

        There are certain laws you have to follow to inherit the kingdom of God
        Like we have laws we have to obey or get punished or go to jail.
        Jesus would forgive you if you ask and you could inherit the kingdom of God.

        Jesus was not the epitome of tolerance, and yet He came during the era of Roman tolerance. The Romans conquered lands militarily but allowed conquered peoples to keep their customs and religious convictions intact. This policy of tolerance led to Jesus’ death. Since the Pax Romana ("peace of Rome") wouldn’t allow Jesus to upset the people under Roman rule, the tolerant Roman government tried, beat, and brutally executed an innocent man in the name of maintaining peace.

        Whom will we emulate — the tolerant in our midst or the Lord over us all? Like ancient Rome, America needs Christians to stand up for what Christ did, not to capitulate to the new "virtue" of tolerance. What America needs are more — imitators of Christ — who will reach out to the lost with compassion, while proclaiming the truth and living the virtues incarnated by the Savior.

        Prophets may not be honored in their own country, but no country will last long without heeding their wisdom.

    12. Dick says:

      To offer hope by example is a great thing.But to offer false hope is not. God bless Tim.

    13. Max McKinley says:

      Nice summation …
      “Tebow is just a guy with the good sense to say thanks. Instead of taking his cue, we mock his faith. And that says more about us, none of it good,” writes Jennifer Floyd Engel at Fox Sports.

    14. Waxafan says:

      Tim Tebow is as fine as young man as exists! I am SO PROUD of him! I LOVE his faith and that he walks the talk and he's bold in letting his light shine! GO TEBOW!

    15. Mike, Wichita Falls says:

      Athletes engaging in bad behavior on and off the field make people feel better about themselves and their own sinful condition whether they admit to it or not, so when a squeky-clean athlete arises, we must tear him down.

      Tebow knows his reward is not on earth but in heaven. Thank you Tebow for living in response to that faith.

    16. Richard says:

      Yea for Mr. Tebow, Yea for the Broncos. Whether it is God,Jesus,or true individualism it is beautiful. Just look at those players who surround him. World that is your answer.
      Dick

    17. Nita Durham says:

      God bless Tim and may He give us the courage to stand up as Tim does. Our apathy and weakness, our submitting to political correctness are in great part to blame for the decline in our culture. But it is not yet too late to draw a line in the sand, to say ENOUGH! You will be amazed at what just one person can do. God uses ordinary people to do extraordinary things. Go for it! It feels good.

    18. Natalie says:

      God Bless you Tim-keep up the good work and I continue to pray for the courage to be as loud and proud of my faith.

    19. MISTER Tibbs says:

      What a wonderful dialogue this issue has opened up in us! Better to speak of beliefs openly.

    20. This young man has so much courage in the face of ridicule and adversity. How refreshing it is to watch Tim Tebow kneel down and give thanks to God rather than having to watch all the ass-wiggling and otherwise narcissistic in-your-face antics of those other nit-wits. And then they have the gall to call Tim Tebow "juvenile"! If Mr Tebow were juvenile, he certainly couldn't stand up to the harassment that he's subjected to on a continual basis.

    21. Gem says:

      It takes courage to be open about Biblical moral values in todays society. Tim Tebow is a brave Bronco.

    22. Denise in Michigan says:

      It strikes me that several of these comments are sadly reflective of the debate about public displays of religion — preachy posts that point fingers, call names, attempt to universalize private experience, provide unsolicited advice (the Buddhist guy was just sharing his experience, not asking for advice), and politicize every single, little thing about private and public life (is this honestly about "big government"?). And then there's just the odd: Nike shoes? Really?

      I'm in the Steve H (posting above) camp – let it alone.

      • chewinmule says:

        It is what it is………..and you just had to comment….. to point, chastise, and maybe politicize in a "preachy post…….you should follow your own advice……you let it alone. You added nothing but your own "form" of that which you criticized!

        • Mike says:

          @chewinmule

          Not in the slightest. You shouldn't be so quick to judge. Isn't that what your religion teaches anyway? Not to judge others and to make a show out of praying? I'll leave you with this:

          Matthew 6:5-6: "And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men….when thou prayest, enter into thy closet and when thou has shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret…."

    23. Lois says:

      I thank Tim Tebow for stepping forward with his expressions of faith. The young men in this country need to see that and mimic it more. The showing of one's faith has been missing a long time around the country and people need to respect anyone who can stand up with the word of Jesus on their heart.

    24. Dorothy M. Brown says:

      God bless Tim Tebow!!! Wish more Christians had the courage to stand up for their faith, as Tim does. I really would love to see, especially, more of our young people stand strong for and in their faith in Jesus Christ. God is America's only hope. I am so proud and thankful for Tim Tebow and his family.

    25. Donald L. DeCamp says:

      Religion has been considered to be for old people and young children. It is refreshing to see a young man in the prime of life willing to stand for what beiieves is right in spite of adversity. Maybe the young will lead the way in this country and bring us back to our senses

    26. Ted says:

      I'm from Florida and never a Tebow fan. I thought in to todays world, there cannot be anyone without faults. I thought it was one big front. Now, I'm a huge fan and supporter of this young man, I thought the NFL life would expose him?? He's everything they have said. Very proud of him, not because of his game wins, his record of living the talk. Now the media, I guess they want a Ben R. Koby B, Michael V, and Suh to be our kids role models……..

    27. John Smithwick says:

      Look at the source of the negative comments about Tim Tebow's expression of faith. If anybody needs God in their life, they do. Tim has more class in his pinky finger than all those condemning clowns have in their whole body.

    28. Luke says:

      We live in a society whose only remaining virtue is tolerance and can tolerate anything except virtue

    29. Mary Pat says:

      Jennifer Marshall, thanks for a great article.

    30. Amy Cook says:

      This is a thoughtful, logical, inspiring article about an outstanding young man. Thank you!

    31. eddie333 says:

      I'm surprised that people are surprised by the negativity Tebow is getting. It's all spiritual, dark against the light. One of the things the devil uses to tear down God and his peeps are people.

      Eph 6:12.

    32. Jules says:

      More players need to step up and praise their God for their abilities. I applaud Tebow for having the courage to do so. Keep up the good work, Tim.

    33. Donna says:

      Tim is terrific! We need more young people like him!

    34. Terry Fortier says:

      Great article and we are grateful for Tim and how the Lord is using him. Keep up the good work!

    35. Kerry Helm says:

      Yes……it's just awful to have someone positive as a role model for young kids in America. Not sure how the American sports scene is going to take it, I mean, we are used to seeing so many lesser role models. Get off Tim Tebow's back. Let him decide what he wants to say and do. I am sure he's smart enough to work it out.

    36. Debbie says:

      I admire him–obviously it isn't easy to express your faith & walk the talk. Seems to be a positive upbeat guy who doesn't let criticism get to him. He'd have to be, after all the negative press. Why is his religion such a big deal? He believes in God as do many other athletes. I find it refreshing to witness athletes of all faiths expressing & sharing their religious views. Puts a meaningful spin on sports & they serve as role models for up & coming student athletes.

    37. Morris says:

      Easily the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard. I'm pretty sure it can be in MVP talks if they appear only in the fourth quarter every week and somebody comes out with a win. i can inform you all to access http://www.tebowformvp.com/ thanx.

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