Monday, December 12, 2011

Using Your Platform Well

So, I never thought that I would EVER write a blog post about football. And yet here I am! I, along with everyone else in Football Nation America, have been fascinated by Tim Tebow for many reasons. This one man has created quite a stir and ruffled LOTS of feathers. I love it. It's what he's doing both on and off the field that has my faith challenged--he is using his platform well.

Ryan and I watched a documentary on Tebow and his journey to the NFL draft. Talk about hard work and dedication and a willingness to be teachable! He had to reteach himself how to throw a football to better fit the fast-paced nature of the NFL! Here is a man who knew his purpose. He didn't just pray and expect the Lord to just give him an opportunity in the NFL--he worked HARD for it. Sometimes my attitude towards life and my future expects the Lord to just hand me my opportunities. But the Lord has called us to much more. To work for HIS glory and with all of our heart (Colossians 3:23). Working with all of our hearts evokes passion, determination and hard work; that is the kind of effort we should have. Doing it to the glory of the Lord; that is the attitude.

Now, something that is especially apparent is that Tim Tebow has a significant sphere of influence. This is a fact that I'm sure he is beyond well aware of. Look at Twitter, ESPN, the Washington Post, Facebook, any social media network. He's a highlight on ALL of them and the comments are a'flyin. Football or the NFL is what I would argue to be one of the most highly influential and highly respected arenas in America. The Superbowl is the most watched TV program ever with more than 111 million viewers last year. 16.6 million was the average number of people who watched per NFL game last year. This is Tebow's arena, his sphere of influence, and boy is he using it well. Even in the college football arena, Tebow used his platform well. When he wore face paint with John 3:16 more than 92 million people Googled that verse. Seriously people?! 92 million people read that God loves them all because one man was willing to use his platform to glorify the Lord.

All stats aside, Tim Tebow is inspiring us to live for something that he knows is bigger, more important and far beyond the world of football--and that is the message of Jesus. He has been blessed with a massive sphere of influence to verbally communicate that very message to. He is using his platform well.

I think it's easy to feed ourselves the lie that as Christians, we do "enough" by attending our campus ministry/church functions, surrounding ourselves with Christian influences and living our lives as a Christ-like example (Matthew 5:14-16). While all of that is great, I know that we are called to more than that, and that part my friends is the hard part and what Tebow is doing so well. Not only is he being a light by living a life of example, but he is speaking. He is completely outspoken about the love of Christ in every chance he gets in front of the media. And ladies and gentlemen, he's only 24 years old. What does that mean? We are way capable of this!

So I'm guilty; I haven't been doing enough. Although my sphere of influence is much smaller, I haven't been actively taking the initiative with people in my workplace and even people in church. I've been sitting back and letting life slide by wondering when my "opportunities to share my faith" will show up. While many people sit on two sides of the camp--relational evangelism vs. initiative evangelism, we're called to do both. We are called to be fishers of men (Matthew 4:19). But what both involve is using our words and speaking! We have to start speaking and using the platform the Lord has given to us well.

So Timmy, thanks for being a light on a hilltop, for showing us what working for the Lord and not for men means, for being a true example of a disciple, and for using your platform well. I hope you keep winning, beat the Patriots next week, and keep stirring the media pot!

"How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? 15And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, "How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!" - Romans 10:13-15

Here's a great article on Initiative Evangelism from Cru that I highly recommend reading!

And a vid from Tebow's documentary because he's a baller:

Tim Tebow: Everything In Between from FCTN on Vimeo.
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