PHILADELPHIA (Christian Examiner) – American football quarterback Tim Tebow is back on the field and more impressive than ever after recently signing a one-year contract with the National Football League's Philadelphia Eagles.
In a CBN TV interview, Tebow called his salvation decision "the best decision that I've ever made," neverthless, the 27-year-old son of missionaries views his professional football career as a platform for ministry -- and Tebow has yet another chance at this role after having already played for the Denver Broncos and the New York Jets, and briefly connecting with the New England Patriots.
To achieve his dream of being an NFL quarterback, Tebow has showed himself committed to training and returned to the basics by practicing his throwing motion, balance, and timing. Now he may have a viable shot at the Eagles quarterback position, according to the Eagles's head coach.
Coach Chip Kelly is impressed with Tebow's dedicated practice and improved throw. "He's really progressed," Kelly commented.
"I have seen improvement from Tim from the day we got him in terms of his knowledge of what we're doing, getting used to the way we do things. What we do is different from anything he's done in the past. But each week you've seen an incremental bump and then some. I'm excited to see where that takes him as we move forward."
Training hard is not the only thing he's been doing with his time.
After establishing the Tim Tebow Foundation, Tebow, a fan favorite, has been active in the W15H program, an outreach initiative that creates more than 20 experiences per year for children with life-threatening illnesses whose wish is to meet Tim Tebow.
"From a very early age, my parents instilled in me the importance of God's word, the salvation we have in His Son Jesus, and the responsibility we have to give back to others," Tebow said. "That's why in 2010, I was so excited to create the Tim Tebow Foundation with a mission to bring faith, hope and love to those needing a brighter day in their darkest hour of need."
Tebow credits his parents with inspiring him to use his football career as a ministry opportunity. He visited hospitalized children weekly throughout college because he wanted to serve others.
I have so many things to work on and so many ways that I fail, but that's what grace is all about. I constantly wake up every morning trying to get better, trying to improve, trying to walk closer to God.
The Tim Tebow Foundation also supports orphan care and recently celebrated the grand opening of the 30-bed Tebow CURE Hospital in Mindanao, Philippines.
Tebow was born in Manila, Philippines, after a life-threatening pregnancy during which his parents chose not to abort him because they trusted that his life was in God's hands.
After his family returned to Florida when he was three, Tebow played football for a local high school while he was homeschooled. His reputation attracted a University of Florida football scholarship, which culminated in the Heisman Trophy in 2007.
He knows that awards and honors allow him to spread God's love. "We are more like Christ when we can humble ourselves," Tebow said. "I have so many things to work on and so many ways that I fail, but that's what grace is all about. I constantly wake up every morning trying to get better, trying to improve, trying to walk closer to God."
The football player has shared his faith in Christ 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.
About his legacy, Tebow said, "I hope that they say this is a guy who, number one, loves the Lord, but he also loves people and he wants to make a difference in people's lives. At the end of the day, it's about glorifying God."