Sunday, December 4, 2011

Sandusky Sunday. Tebow & Tiger.

Love watching athletes who play with heart. Knock his game if you want but he's seriously vocational about football and that image is... anxious sometimes. Too good... Another Tiger Woods would make us feel better, Larry Taunton wrote in USAToday:
"When it comes right down to it, we don't want heroes who are truly good. We want them to fail the occasional drug test or start a bar fight from time to time... When Tebow say that glory goes to God and the credit for a victory goes to his teammates, coaches, and family, we are suspicious... we don't believe that anyone can say such things and really mean them. So we wait... In the meantime, we always have Penn State's Jerry Sandusky..."

There are many professional athletes (and politicians and pop musicians and people) who promote themselves and serve their platforms with the Jesus-brand rather than serving Christ with their positions. Tebow's integrity and sense of vocation, his "workmanlike... joy" and sincerity are delightfully refreshing.
Tebow is a serious young man in a silly adult world. He is an irony-free individual who seems uninterested in developing... persona based upon rehearsed machismo or wink-wink self awareness... 
It's possible to make the argument that Tebow is just another celebrity athlete who is simply choosing to sell people on the good book rather than a certain brand of sneakers. But his method of presentation makes him vastly different from his counterparts. The degree of sincerity Tebow displays while presenting himself to the public is what makes him distinct. When Tebow scores a touchdown... He either reacts with workmanlike satisfaction or unbridled joy. These types of celebrations are uncommon in the professional ranks but rampant... where the young competitors are unaware of the people watching them but very much engrossed in the joy of competition. 
Before he takes the field, Tebow simply kneels... That response is refreshing because it communicates a level of sincerity most professional athletes seem too insecure to display. I've listened to hundreds of interviews with athletes and usually when an interviewer asks an athlete whether he cares about what fans think, that athlete gives a stock response along the lines of "I don't care what fans think." Certain athletes even seem to court animosity... Perhaps they hope their antagonism will only make them seem tougher and thus more marketable. Smart fans can see right through this routine. It's a tired act, and one Tebow refuses to partake in... he doesn't feel the need to fake a level of indifference and hope that it will make him seem more macho than he actually is... 
He's unafraid to be vulnerable and serious in a world so full of jokes that it's often hard to discern the punch line from the set-up. And his serious approach to football makes it easier for fans to listen when he talks about the other things he cares about, such as being a good role model or building hospitals in the Philippines... irony and self-referential humor have saturated modern culture to such a degree that many people are now unable to discern who is serious and who is joking. Siegel's book identifies serious people as those who pursue a calling rather than a career and go about their work with attention, purpose, and continuity... Casual fans may not be able to articulate this, but Tebow's workmanlike approach is what makes him so unique and so appealing to a fans tired of the same pre-planned and machismo-infused routines that dominate professional sports. 
// The Atlantic.
NTS. Losing my voice and phlegmy. First time sick since June. This morning was EPC's reception of 25 new members and I was one of them YAY. We are now at 147 adults and 42 children on the average Sunday. First congregational meeting today, grateful for the refreshing seriousness of the Session and their meticulous love. Serious joy. Silver dust. Sad that there's 2 more weeks before I'm gone for 2 months. And sad to leave CCM soon. Lovely lovely. Guaps & buops.

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