PHILADELPHIA (Christian Examiner) – In a nod to the Christian faith of a Heisman Trophy winning quarterback who played for the University of Florida and today stepped back into the National Football League to play for the Philadelphia Eagles, the Florida Gators tweeted a vine video, "Hoping to see some of this today #TebowTime."
Just two days after his 28th birthday, Tim Tebow stepped onto the field, four years after signing as a rookie with the Denver Broncos and two years after the New York Jets released him.
The son of missionaries and an outspoken Christian believer, Tebow has consistently said that God comes before football and family. His personal birth story was the focus of prolife Super Bowl commercial in 2010. He appeared with his mom who had said she was told to abort him due to an illness.
In the game against Indianapolis Colts, Eagles' fans gave Tebow a standing ovation when he entered in the third quarter with seven minutes left in the pre-season opener.
"A lot of fun to come back and play," Tebow told a reporter afterwards. "Just do what I'm coached and have fun."
The football player has shared his faith in Christ around the country in a variety of settings since his college football days and continues to use his publicity as a way to share the Gospel. The term "Tebowing" is derived from his trademark posture of kneeling on one knee in prayer on the field.
Tebow and his family are members of First Baptist Church of Jacksonville, Florida, where he delivered a sermon last year on "Preaching Christ" at the annual First Baptist Jacksonville pastor's conference.
In addition, he has connected with hundreds of children around the country with phone calls, hospital visits, meet and greets at speaking engagements, and more.
The year Tebow's foundation celebrates its fifth anniversary. A video marking that milestone, talks about Tebow's influence as a youth and his development as a football player and philanthropist who wants to help people in a variety of ways that brings glory to God.
"We just want to help people," Tebow said in the video -- which showcases real ministries -- from a hospital in the Philippines to orphan ministries, playrooms, special needs outreaches, and more.
Seconds after he scored a touchdown for the Eagles, Mac Brunson, pastor of First Baptist Church in Jacksonville, tweeted: "My my – Tebow scores a TD!"
For more information go to the Tim Tebow Foundation.