1) Feel it with him
Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. -- Romans 12:15
When Jeremy Lin is blowing up as the best thing since sliced bread, be happy with him! I've heard a lot of Christians actually say nasty things about how he doesn't deserve the praise because he is a rookie and I've even heard Christians attack him by saying things about how his rise to fame has only happened because of his ethnicity. Look, he is your brother in Christ. Be happy for the guy!
2) Don't set him up for failure
...in order that we, who were the first to hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory. -- Ephesians 1:12
Seem like a weird verse to toss in there? Note where our hope is supposed to be. As Christians, our hope should be in Jesus alone. Jesus is our perfect leader. Jesus is our salvation. Jesus is the one who will never let us down. Why do I say this?
Because I've seen Christians lately putting a lot of hope in guys like Jeremy Lin and Tim Tebow. But we need to be careful not to put them on a pedestal that only Jesus can handle. Jeremy Lin and Tim Tebow are excellent examples of men who make following Christ a priority in all they do. But let's be real. They are imperfect men as well. They will make mistakes. They will mess up. They will let us down. And what's even scarier is that their fame means that their mistakes will be broadcast to the world.
Be realistic about these guys. Learn what you can from their faith. Use the spotlight on Christianity as an opportunity to share the gospel with your friends when talking sports. But don't point to them as the modern day hope for Christianity. That kind of pressure is something no man but the God-Man can bear. Only Jesus can deliver on this front and its just not fair to put Lin or anyone else on that pedestal.
3) Pray for him
Brothers, pray for us. -- 1 Thessalonians 5:25
In his letter to the Thessalonians, Paul urges the Christians there to pray for the church leaders. Church leaders need our prayers all the more because they are in the spotlight for the church. People form their opinions of Jesus from what they do and say. People are influenced toward or away from obedience by their actions. People look to their lives for an example of how to live. People may even see their failures as evidence of hypocrisy in the church.
Whether he expected it or not, Jeremy Lin has become an unofficial leader in the Christian world. The spotlight is on him now and the world, both believers and non-believers, are watching. The things he says and does and even the attitude he does them with are all under the microscope. People are forming opinions of the church and Jesus based on his life. That's a lot of pressure!
So let's pray for him. Pray for encouragement in the midst of the negative stuff in the media. Pray for a close and intimate walk with God in the midst of his busy and crowded life. Pray for the Holy Spirit to be guiding him to overcome sin and bear much fruit. Pray that God would give him wisdom in how to best glorify Christ with his spotlight. Pray the Holy Spirit would give him the right words to say. Pray that God would guard him from attacks of Satan and his demons. Pray that he would live his life faithful to the end.
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