Friday, July 10, 2009

Tim Tebow: The Philippines is in his Heart

Filipinas Magazine July issue has a feature on American quarterback, Tim Tebow. Tebow plays for the Florida Gators and was the first sophomore to receive the Heisman Trophy award in 2007 - the highest MVP recognition in college football, he is also set to be one of the top NFL draft pick for 2010. The article talked about his life, his near death or abortion birth and his Filipino connection. Despite of his success in his sport he never turned his back from his Christian faith and the people of Cotabato, his birth place. The kids in Cotobato who calls him "kuya" every summer is blessed to have him as a big brother. He sets a good example of excellence in your vocation, humility, community service and faithfulness in Christ. Below is an excerpt but you can read the entire article here.

Every summer, when schools are on break, Tim goes to that barangay (barrio) in the Philippines where his dad had set up his mission. There, as a virtual unknown and away from the media spotlight, he walks the streets of Cotabato and visits the markets of Digos with the Holy Bible in his hand to preach the gospel of Jesus. He saddles homeless kids on his shoulder in the slums of Sarangani and plays kuya (big brother) to them while handing out candies and chocolates. He bathes in cold water just like the natives do, and runs errands for volunteer doctors and nurses who perform surgeries on indigent patients in makeshift operating tables.

A world away from their home in Jacksonville, Florida, that faces the Atlantic, Tim finds himself in a different playing field in the island of Mindanao that is nestled in the Pacific. “It is a much different ballgame,” he says. “There, I hear no roaring chants from fans rooting for a touchdown, but deafening silence as people desire to receive the words of Jesus that I preach about. I see none of those eyes of adulation when we win games, but eyes of faith of people searching for Jesus who I talk about,” Tim relates. “You kind of find out from the get-go, what sets faith apart and what a game is just about.”

With all his outstanding achievements in football, Tim will definitely emerge as the top NFL draft pick of his 2010 class as soon he steps out of college. But he has set his sight and his heart on other things, too—that little orphanage of more than fifty children in Mindanao that his father had founded. “Those kids make me more grounded and help me put things in proper perspective,” he says. “At the end of the day, what matters may not only be about scoring a touchdown, but also winning the future of those kids who do not get the opportunity to receive that touch of hope and love that you and I may have the means of giving.”

For further reading on Tim Tebow

(image from Filipinas Magazine)

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