"It's official. 2012 is the year faith became more than just a post-game platitude," says Jesse Carey of RELEVANT Magazine. He cites as examples several top athletes who have chosen to use their fame and celebrity as a platform to share the Gospel message. "Superstars like Tim Tebow, Olympians Gabby Douglas and Lolo Jones and underdogs like Jeremy Lin and Bubba Watson," he notes, "made more headlines for their faith than their game ..."
Here's what a few of them had to say:
"I have so many things to work on, and so many ways that I fail. But that's what grace is all about. And I constantly wake up every morning trying to get better, trying to improve, trying to walk closer to God." Tim Tebow, Heisman Trophy winner and NFL quarterback
"Golf is just an avenue for Jesus to use me to reach as many people as I can." Bubba Smith, Master's champion golfer
"When other people see me play basketball ... the way I treat my teammates, the opponents, the refs--that's all a reflection of God's image and God's love. So that's the stuff I try to focus on." Jeremy Lin, NBA basketball phenom
"I would say the thing Tim Tebow and I have most in common is the thing that's most important to us, and that's our faith and our relationship with Christ, and everything flows through that. It's an honor to be mentioned in the same sentence. I'm very grateful." Collin Klein, Heisman Trophy nominee, and winning quarterback of the Kansas State Wildcats
"I am so grateful God has truly blessed me! Remember to always give Him the glory for He is great! ... I give all the glory to God. It's kind of a win-win situation. The glory goes up to Him, and the blessing falls down on me." Gabby Douglas, Olympic gold medal gymnast
These are men and women who have made a conscious choice to do what they do for the approval of the Lord rather than the approval of men. Yet you don't need to be a world-class athlete to choose to use your life as a platform for witness. In fact, we are each one called to do the same. "Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus. ... And whatever you do, do it heartily as for the Lord rather than for men, knowing that it is from the Lord that you will receive the reward of your inheritance. It is the Lord Christ Whom you serve" (Colossians 3:17, 23-24).
So whether your life plays out on the front pages of the newspaper, on the cover of tabloid magazines, and on the broadcasts of major cable news networks, or in the business office, the neighborhood park, or the aisles of the local grocery store, make 2013 the year when you choose to make your life a platform for bringing all glory to God! In the words of Gabby Douglas, "It's a win-win situation. The glory goes up to Him, and the blessing falls down on us."