I always enjoy the NFL playoffs (it’s one of the nicer aspects of January in Wisconsin), though for this reason or that, it seems that I don’t end up watching so much anymore. But I was watching Sunday night when Tim Tebow did the incredible again.
Watching that first play in overtime, I made so much noise that my kids came to find out what was going on. I used our DVR to show them the magic, starting with the screen shot of the new NFL overtime rules – now, like in college, each team gets at least one possession and thus at least one chance to score, except, “in the unlikely event of a water landing”, or rather, in the unlikely event that the team with first possession scores a TD on the first play of overtime.
And they did. I mean, he did. I mean they did.
Now, I’m not really a Tebow fan, although I am partial to Christians – it’s all part of the deal, something having to do with being brothers and sisters – and Tebow is clearly one of us. And the whole Tebow phenomenon is fun to watch. (By the way, I just got tired of the squiggly red lines under Tebow in my word processor and added his name to my dictionary. Welcome to my computer, Mr. Tebow. You’ve earned it.)
Winner of the Heisman Trophy in 2007, Tebow led the Florida Gators to a 13-1 record and the National Championship in the 2008 Bowl Championship Series. Now, as the starting quarterback for the Broncos, Tebow has been under fire this season for being so outspoken in his faith. I suppose I understand why the secular media finds this so galling: when you bring up Jesus all the time, people tend to think you are suggesting that God is helping you win. As for me, I’m always glad to hear championship-winning athletes mention the Lord even before they mention their upcoming trip to Disney, but I doubt most of these folks are suggesting that God loved them more than the guys on the other team. They just want to give glory where glory is due.
And aren’t there often Christians on the other team? While Tebow was throwing for 316 yards in the win this past Sunday, humble and powerful Troy Polamalu was absorbing a loss with his Steelers. Then again, maybe God is sitting in heaven, adding up the faithful on each team, and handing out victories accordingly? Someone should do a study.
But, of course, the results will be inconclusive. Though I know that God reigns, and though I know that He shapes the snowflakes, and though I know that He thus controls the outcome of every athletic contest ever played, I don’t ultimately know why He does what He does. And only the foolish will presume to say. “Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways!” (Romans 11:33 ESV).
And now, we wait for next week, when God-loving Tim Tebow and his Denver Broncos go up against the cheating New England Patriots.
Go figure…but my money is on the Patriots.