Many Gator fans may think that Tim Tebow is a “miracle” quarterback, but his parents say he was actually a miracle baby.
Bob and Pam Tebow were Christian missionaries in the Philippines in 1987 when Pam, Tim’s mother, contracted amoebic dysentery, the leading cause of death in the country. She was pregnant with Tim—her fifth child—at the time, very dehydrated and very sick when she went to her doctor who advised her to abort the baby because of the powerful medicines she would have to take to survive. But they decided against abortion and instead prayed. Both mom and baby survived.
“We thought we lost the baby about four times,” Tim’s dad, Bob, says. “He’s a miracle baby, so we’ve reminded him of that hundreds of times.”
Tim, now a strapping 6-3, 240 pounds, 2007 Heisman Trophy winner at the University of Florida, keeps his humble beginnings in mind to stay grounded. “I am fortunate to have family members, coaches and teammates around who can help me stay focused on the right things,” Tim says. “For me, every day includes four things: God, family, academics and football, in that order. If those get jumbled around and you get the wrong one first, you can have a lot of problems.
“I am no different than anyone else—despite what people may think—because I am a Gator football player,” Tim adds. “Through everything I do... and just by living... I want people, when they see me, to say, ‘There’s something different about this guy, and that’s because he has a relationship with Jesus Christ.’”
Tim, who began his walk with Christ as a 6-year-old, according to BPSports, says, "I want to take this platform that I have—being a quarterback and being at the University of Florida—and use that to help people... and to be that role model, that example for kids. That's the reason I think I've been blessed to have the success that I've had."
Tim, who will lead Florida against the Oklahoma Sooners in the Jan. 8 BCS National Championship game in Miami, uses his influence as a Gator football player in every game. In the blacks under his eyes, he has the words "Phil. 4:13" written in white lettering, referencing the verse in Philippians, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."
During his 2008 spring break, instead of hanging out at the beach, he spent his week as a missionary in the Philippines with his dad's ministry, The Bob Tebow Evangelistic Association. He has traveled to the Philippines several summers to minister to orphans and the poor there.
“Meeting all of those different people who have nothing and are poor gave me an appreciation for what I and my family have, and provided me with the perspective of taking nothing for granted,” Tim says. “It also allowed me to see the effect that I could have on those people. For some, the belief in Christ is all that they have and is much more important than money or material possessions.”
He also has spoken at several prisons across the state of Florida, talking to them about his Christian faith and offering the opportunity for the prisoners and guards to ask Jesus into their hearts as Savior and Lord.
Tim tells the crowds, “I found true satisfaction, true happiness, and it is not by having your name in a newspaper, it is not by winning trophies, it is not by winning championships, it is by having a relationship with Jesus Christ.”