Is That Tim Tebow?
Is That Tim Tebow?
Last December, Lisa and I took the long journey to Liberia to see some old friends and speak at a very special graduation. The flight to Monrovia hubbed in Amsterdam—as many of those African and eastern European flights do—and we had about a 7 hour layover there. These are tough layovers because you’ve traveled all night and usually don’t get much sleep so you feel like about six miles of muddy road. We were waiting it out in an airline club, which helps a little, but we were still not feeling too peachy. This club was international so it was really large and I was kind of half dosing when I saw two guys walking pretty far across the way and they looked familiar. I asked Lisa, who was reading, “Do those two guys over there look like Tim Tebow and one of his brothers?” Lisa strained and said, “Sort of.” I thought I was just seeing things honestly so I didn’t even get up, but after a while I thought I might see if that really was them.
I walked to the front of this massive two level airline club and saw a Florida Gator hat and knew that has to be the Tebows. Tim was there with his mom, dad, sister and brother. They were talking and laughing and I walked right into the middle of the little space they had staked out and said, “Out of all the people I would have ever expected run into in an Amsterdam airline club, it would never have been the Tebow clan!” They sort of froze and blinked and then Bob (Tim’s dad) recognized me. We all hugged and marveled that we were here in this place. Lisa and I had only met the Tebows once a couple of years ago at Tim’s big annual fundraiser for the Tim Tebow Foundation that he does every year in Ponte Vedro, FL. They know the rest of the family pretty well and Tim is good friends with Jase and Missy. He spoke at an OCS fundraiser in Monroe as a favor to them.
The Tebows were heading to Dubai, where Tim would be sharing his faith and of course we were headed to Africa to do God’s work, so it was fitting that our two families would cross paths on foreign ministry journeys. I went and got Lisa and we had a great visit and then all headed out together to find our flights. We told them that we would see them again in a couple of months in Florida as we were planning on coming this year to Tim’s fundraiser.
We did reconnect with the whole clan in Florida and were able to tell about our trips and what God did with us in those foreign lands. We were also able to meet Chip and Joanna Gaines who were at the event. Tim’s foundation is amazing and they focus on helping those who can’t help themselves, primarily special needs kids around the world. The Tebows are the real deal and I love their heart for the gospel and for helping others. The Gaines seemed like such wonderful people as well. When we are able to spend time with some of these well known believers and see their hearts for ministry, it is such an encouragement to Lisa and I. We realize that God is using so many families to impact our culture with goodness and love.
Paul told the Romans in Romans 12:9-14 Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.
When I see the partnerships formed around believers that are in the public eye like our family, the Tebows, the Gaines, the Greens, the Cathys and others, I see this passage being lived out in a very public way. There is constant persecution, but that has only made our families MORE resolute to live the faith out loud and on purpose!
These families have inspired Lisa and I and we are going to continue to be as public as possible about what God has done to transform our lives and our marriage as we travel around the fruited plains battling the evil one by the blood of the lamb, by the word of our testimony and by us not loving this life so much that we would shrink from criticism, persecution and even death!