Ambassador-Warrior Tebow’s Platform for Christ
Tim Tebow, the now-famous college football quarterback (previously discussed), is currently featured on the cover of Time Magazine, with the headline “Man of Many Missions.” With a fruitful college football career and an outspoken heart for Jesus Christ, Tebow truly does have many (very successful) missions. The champion college player had the option of quitting school and entering the NFL, but chose instead to finish his college career, in part because of
the platform that I had at the University of Florida, the opportunity that I had to minister to a lot of kids around the south, and the US for that matter, and just what was going on around the University of Florida, how much I loved it, how I loved being a Gator.
Tebow’s statements about the value of his witness express the very heart of Christianity, and of living his Truth with Feet.
My goal to do that is for my teammates and people in general to see that I’m a genuine person, someone who cares about them. When someone needs something, I want to be the first one there. If there’s a new sick kid in the hospital, I want to be there first one to visit him.
I think they see that and they say ‘What is it about him that does that?’
Then I have the opportunity to say, ‘That’s my relationship with Jesus Christ.’ And you’ll get to minister your faith and what you believe in by your actions first and not always preaching or trying to share it first, but how you act and what you do first.
The sincerity and effectiveness of Tebow’s ministry impacted even the Sports Illustrated writer, who said
I would say he’s the most effective ambassador-warrior for his faith I’ve come across in 25 years at SI.
Tebow displays the qualities of an “evangelical” Christian that many people–Christian and not–fail to understand. Some Christians cannot imagine evangelism without Bible thumping. Many non-Christians assume “witnessing” involves a Christian “forcing his religion” on someone. Both are wrong.
The best Christian witness is life example. Tebow doesn’t coerce his teammates or the others to whom he witnesses. He establishes credibility, respect, and admiration based on the accomplishments in his daily life–something that makes others come to him and want to know what makes him tick. The validity of his witness, as displayed in his daily life, is the foundation for his “evangelism.”
Likewise, a military member should strive to witness for Christ in his daily life, seeking to be the most professional, credible, caring, and respectful troop that they can be while displaying the Christian value of servant leadership. This applies whether those that are observing him are his peers, subordinates, or members of a foreign country. Though the “Christian-ese” word witness sometimes sparks outcries from those who do not understand it, living a Christian witness is entirely consistent with rules, regulations, and common sense.
Like Tebow, Christians in the US military also have a unique opportunity, given their platform, to be an “ambassador-warrior” for Christ. Whether it is the admiration of the elite and select, as with fighter pilots and Special Forces, or it is the instant respect and gratitude given to combat veterans who have fought and suffered at their country’s request, Christian Airmen, Sailors, Soldiers and Marines have a unique story to tell, and the platform to reach many for Christ.
Christians should serve God faithfully wherever He places them, being a “living witness” and unspoken Gospel to the world.