Do the Cardinals acquisitions this year show some sort of divine interaction? I heard about this the other day and found it to be funny. How can the St. Louis Cardinals go wrong when the recent trades and signings are of Matthew, Mark, Lugo, and John (Matt Holiday, Mark DeRosa, Julio Lugo, and John Schmoltz).
OK, so I don’t really believe this is a sign that God is rooting for the Redbirds. But I did hear of another story in the world of sports that does demonstrate how strong faith in Jesus is still something that can lead to ridicule and persecution. Tim Tebow is the starting quarterback at the University of Florida (our own Sam Johnson is on this team). He is a Heisman Trophy winner, and is also a believer in Jesus with a strong faith. Tebow is known for wearing eye patches with John 3:16 in the National Championship game last year, which led to this Biblical text being the number one internet search for the week following. He is also committed to sexual purity and has given time to do missions.
The Fort Meyers Miracle minor league baseball team decided to hold a promotional night titled, What would Tebow Do (see ESPN article here)? The idea was a night to “honor” the Florida quarterback, which included giving “promise rings” (a ring worn as a commitment to sexual purity before marriage) to every fan, and having a guy named Tim Tebo (no relation) try to walk on water between innings. They also considered holding a mock circumcision on the field, which is a reference to Tebow’s work on a medical mission trip to an orphanage in Southeast Asia.
The team had to change the event when they were informed by University of Florida that it was a violation of NCAA rules for them to use Tebow’s name and likeness in an event like this, so they changed it to “What Would TT Do?” And Tim Tebo didn’t show up, so they did not have anyone to walk on water. Some have said that the entire event was created to honor Tebow, and I haven’t seen anything from Tebow himself on how he feels about the event. But I do find it interesting that the team thought it would be appropriate to mock faith. I don’t think we need to boycott the team or minor league baseball, or be angry. Jesus flat out told his followers that our commitment to the Gospel would lead to levels of persecution and ridicule. And apparently, we don’t need to try to defend God, he does that fine for himself. As people were heading in to the event, a tornado was seen relatively near the event, a little reminder maybe?