I’ve been anxious to see Tim Tebow, the controversial Denver Broncos quarterback people love to hate because he is unabashedly committed to his religious faith and fearlessly shows it to the cynical press and doubters.
Tebow had been relentlessly mocked in Chicago going into Sunday’s game with the Bears, but once again he led an amazing comeback in the last few minutes to get to overtime and then win during the extra period. Tebow’s performance was miserable through the first three quarters, and terrific in the fourth. The Bears helped Denver by making bonehead plays and playing soft, “not to lose” football. Tebows’s Broncos have now won seven out of eight with Tebow as quarterback after starting the season 0-4 with Kyle Orton (now gone).
I was extremely eager to see the game because Tim Tebow has gotten so much press, mostly negative. America is so cynical about everything today. My view of pro-football has been shaped by movies like Al Pacino’s Any Given Sunday, and the novel Semi-Tough, by Dan Jenkins. Tebow is the anti anti-hero. Supposedly, Urban Meyer, the head football coach at the University of Florida, where Tebow won the Heisman as a sophomore, had his quarterback checked out by an investigator to see if he was who he said he was. Tebow, the devout Christian who put the number of Bible verses on the adhesive eye-black patches he wore, checked out.
Tebow occasionally goes to one knee to thank God during a game and will exalt by looking to the sky and lifting both arms like signaling his thanks to the Lord for a score.
Honestly, I was set to dislike him because I don’t think God really follows the NFL, but after watching him play I have to love the kid. Not for his authentic devotion to his God, but for his leadership and belief in himself on the field.
In the final quarter of the Bears/Broncos game you had a team with belief in itself, and a team with doubt.
Bill Parcells, the great coach, has said that in most games there is a moment when one team perseveres and the other gives up its belief in itself. This happened last Sunday. The Bears had the game, but inexplicably the veteran running back Marian Barber ran out of bounds when all he had to do was fall down to keep the clock moving. The Bears had to punt, leading 10-7, but knowing that they faced a Denver team led by Tim Tebow that knew in its heart that it was going to win. And they did, with a last second tying field goal and an overtime field goal.
I rooted for the Bears, but I loved watching Tebow confidently lead players who obviously believed in him, and themselves.
Tebow does not have the great technical skills as a quarterback of an Aaron Rogers or Tom Brady, but he brings a palpable, authentic, belief to the playing field. You can feel an aura, even watching him on TV. A leader with authentic belief is a beautiful thing to observe. It doesn’t mean Tim Tebow, with a flawed throwing motion, is going to win the Super Bowl this year. But who am I to doubt it? The doctors said I had a slim chance of survival when I entered the hospital in heart failure three years ago.
Question: Do you think Tebow should restrain his religious demonstrations on the field?
As you’ve heard me say before I think every religious person should keep there views to themselves including you who many times has brought up your Jewish identity. Yes me again. Alan Hyman. Lonsman in Baltimore
Saying Tebow won the game is like saying Obama got Bin Ladin. They would not have won without a good kicker. Tim just happen to be evolved in the game. Obama was likewise evolved in the decision to go after Bin Ladin but he never stepped foot in that country.
I agree about God not being an NFL fan per se, but he is a robust fan of each individual player, whether or not that player knows him or acknowledges him. He’s made it possible for all of them to enjoy the relationship that Tebow lives in. I’m glad he’s not restrained, as the resulting conversations can be enlightening, even redeeming.
Delusion is a wonderful thing as long as you can keep it going and that he does. So I love him for his heart and his leadership and yes, he has skills too. Faith in oneself, faith in the future and the ability to get others to feed into that and work together with passion is such a beautiful thing and Tebow has that gift. Love the young man.
Another common media misconception is viewed as reality. If you talk with Tim Tebow, he will be the first to give credit where credit is due, his teamates, coaches, family and faith. The media portrays him differently than who he is and how he operates. So, it would be nice that this conversation is pointed at those who produce, write and create the articles to properly reflect all facts, not just one, regardless how boring it maybe. Let’s change the article to how media stereotypes people and only portrays facts that may create a ‘BUZZ’.
Now to answer the question, yes. What is different than doing the Iggy Shuffle, or end zone celebrations, or pretend rapping up the hoves of a cow when a sack is made? Thought this was America, land of the free? Seems everyone has special rights except mainstream America. Why did this happen? Seems special interest views are becoming more and more demanding of what they get, need, want, perceive as what should be the new “progressive” way, ISH.
Not being a religious guy, I find it laughable how so many players point to the sky when they score a touchdown, hit a home run, etc. but I never see them point to the sky when they fumble, throw an interception or strike out. I guess God just really likes good plays and does not require adulation when you mess up. As for Tebow, let’s evaluate him on his talent (or lack of same) and leave the rest out. As one sports talk jock said, you’d have a hell of a team if you had LeBron for the first 3 quarters and Tebow for the last quarter because the first guy can’t finish and the other guy can’t start.
No, I don’t. This is America and we have freedom of speech, thus we should be able to express our religion, no matter where we are. This debate is like having a debate about wether a Jewish person should be allowed to wear his Kippah ( the hat they wear on there heads) or debating if a Muslim women should be allowed to wear a Hijab (the scarf women wear on there heads) because it signifies a certain religion. The United States is called the melting pot for a reason. No one should have to hide or tone down their “religious demonstrations” because people don’t agree with it. Grow a back bone and grow up and learn to respect people’s beliefs. Maybe you’ll learn something interesting.
As an American and as a human being I of course defend freedom of speech, and – as an extension – expression of faith. Frankly, I don’t care that Tim Tebow is a Christian, or that Mr. Graff is a Jew, or that I was raised a Scottish Presbyterian. What I do care about is when people of whatever faith demand respect for their own beliefs, while decrying the beliefs (or non-beliefs, for that matter) of others. Believe what you wish – that is your Constitutional right – but don’t imagine it is your God-given right to impose your views on others, who may have very different, and no less valid, beliefs.
Like Mr. Clayman, I also find it interesting that Tebow et al seem so very keen to publicly and overtly acknowledge their God when things go in their favor, but chose to remain curiously silent when things don’t go the way they’d hoped. What? – do they not accept that an omnipotent God, if responsible for the ‘ups’ must then also be responsible for the ‘downs’? To quote Mark Twain: “Denial is not just a river in Egypt” But then, denial is a cornerstone of Christianity itself: it is absolutely necessary to deny certain awkward (and sometimes unpleasant) truths, in order to believe.
So, whereas I respect Tebow as a football player and a team leader and I enjoy watching him play, and wish him every career success, I would respect him a lot more as a man of faith, if he would hold his faith a little closer to his heart, and remember faith is just that: “faith” – as opposed to “fact” … which is certainly not to belittle faith in any way whatsoever, but rather to draw attention to a distinction many people of faith today, sadly, seem incapable of making.