For those of you who may not know, Tim Tebow is a BIG DEAL around our house. I graduated from the University of Florida. I'm a Gator. I bleed orange and blue. And by association, Jonathan, Beau & Lydia are all Gators. They bleed orange and blue. We've been Tebow fans since day 1. We've followed him from Florida to Denver to New York. Beau & Lydia started talking right around the time Tebow became known at Florida. Whenever they saw anything related to football, regardless of the team, regardless of the position, regardless of the person, they referred to it as "Touchdown Tebow." They associated everything football with Tebow. We've watched shows on Tebow, read books on Tebow and have idolized Tebow for his values and faith. We own four shirts/jerseys with #15 on them.
My home office is decked out in Gators.
Beau's room is covered in Gators.
Let me tell you about meeting Tebow. We shook his hand, he signed autographs for the kids (he actually signed Beau's jersey which was AWESOME) and we took photos with him. We probably had contact with him for no more than 2 minutes. His interactions with Beau & Lydia were sincerely warm. It is obvious he loves kids. He was gracious and friendly.
It was a great experience and I am truly grateful. I wouldn't take it back. But something changed for me after that encounter. I realized that Tim Tebow is... just a guy. A guy who meets thousands of people each year and who probably tells every one of them the same thing he told every one in my family, "God Bless." I think that is a great signature line that he has. And I believe he sincerely means it. But this experience brought into clarity something profound for me. I know a lot about Tebow and I admire the way he carries himself and the way he openly loves Jesus. But Tebow doesn't have a clue who I am or anything about me. This man who is incredible and Godly isn't God. And as great as I think Tebow is, I know God is infinitely greater. And the God of the universe is not just an awesome God that I admire... He knows me intimately. And unlike the 2 minutes I got to spend with Tebow, I can spend every minute of every day with the One who created me.
It's wonderful to have earthly heroes. Tebow's witness and testimony are truly something to be admired. But let's not forget that the one who made us (the one who made Tebow) is available 24/7 and He's perfect. We don't have to stand in line to see him and we don't have to leave thinking, "That was cool but it was a meeting without substance."
I love this passage in Psalm 77:16-19
16 The waters saw you, God,
the waters saw you and writhed;
the very depths were convulsed.
17 The clouds poured down water,
the heavens resounded with thunder;
your arrows flashed back and forth.
18 Your thunder was heard in the whirlwind,
your lightning lit up the world;
the earth trembled and quaked.
19 Your path led through the sea,
your way through the mighty waters,
though your footprints were not seen.
God is at work in and around us all day every day, even though we cannot see him. He is a hero who is always there. He can truly rescue us. He knows and cares about every aspect of our lives. Any earthly hero will fall short of that. God never will.
If you get a chance, I would recommend you meet your earthly hero. It's neat to say you did. But if you don't, take my word, they're just humans. One thing we all have an opportunity to do is spend time daily with God. Greater than any hero and more knowledgeable about us than anyone. Encounters with God are much more fulfilling than any encounter with an earthly hero might be.