Tim Tebow on mistakes, management and mission (book excerpt)
The following are three excerpts from Tim Tebow's new book, Mission Possible One-Year Devotional, released in November 2022 by WaterBrook.
Don’t Let It Define You
"Certainly there is a future, and your hope will not be cut off." - Proverbs 23:18
Lewis and Clark weren’t the first explorers to cross America from east to west. Fourteen years earlier, in 1789, a Scottish fur trader named Alexander Mackenzie achieved this mission in search of the Northwest Passage. He hoped this elusive waterway would flow into the Pacific Ocean via an inlet in southern Alaska. If so, it would open up a new trade route to China and make him a ton of money. Traveling on the river for 1,200 miles, he never found the Northwest Passage. He did, however, reach the Arctic Ocean by a river he named Disappointment River for obvious reasons. Later renamed the Mackenzie River, it’s the second-longest river in North America, as well as a major trade route.
Mackenzie didn’t find what he was looking for, but he discovered something else. And he labeled that new thing by what he assumed was a past failure.
Think about your own life. As you navigate through your own exploration and create a life that counts, are you allowing previous disappointments to affect your present? Are you so attached to that failure that you are letting it define what may lie ahead?
Yes, it hurt. It was hard. It was unfair. But you don’t have to let what happened impose its shadow on what could be.
What failures in your past are you still allowing to define your present?
"If the willingness is present, it is acceptable according to what a person has, not according to what he does not have." - 2 Corinthians 8:12
Remember that parable Jesus told about three servants in Matthew 25? The first was given ten talents to manage, the second, five talents, and the third, one talent. Each servant was given exactly what he could handle. When their master asked to see what became of their original portions, the first two servants reportedly doubled the investment. However, the third, though he had the smallest portion and therefore the least risk, only hid his share, in the name of keeping it safe. His master, angry with the servant, declared him unfaithful with his portion.
What has God given you to work with? It may be tempting to look at what others have and neglect to care for what He has given you to manage, especially if it seems that others have more. Excellence is being and doing your personal best. It’s working with what you have, as the servants were required to do. We are all in different situations in life. We have different limitations and are expected to work within them. The goal is not to do everything perfectly but to give of what we have.
If you have time, give it. If you have a talent, offer it. If all you can do is offer genuine prayers, then offer those. Don’t look around you to the other people. God works through our obedience, not our abundance.
How can you be a faithful steward of whatever you have today?
The Great Response
"Go home to your people and report to them what great things the Lord has done for you, and how He had mercy on you." - Mark 5:19
In Mark 5, the Bible tells the story of a man who was demon possessed. He lived in a cave in the mountain, cutting himself with stones. One day he saw Jesus from afar and ran toward Him. Jesus healed the man, casting out the demons from him and sending them into a herd of pigs that ran off a cliff, fell into the sea, then drowned (see verse 13). When it was time for Jesus to get back into the boat and return to the other side of the lake, the man who had been freed from the demons begged Jesus “that he might accompany Him” (verse 18). Now, that’s what I call a great response!
Though the man wanted to stay with Jesus, Jesus had a different mission in mind for him. Jesus asked him to go home and tell the people there what Jesus had done for him. The man said yes, and he had an amazing impact.
God might have a different mission than what you have in mind, but whatever it is, say yes. Go and make your life count. That is the great response to the great question of who Jesus is.
If you would like to commit to making your life count, go ahead and tell Him right now:
Dear Jesus, I believe I can live a mission-possible life because Your mission was accomplished. Remind me that because You have overcome the world, I can do whatever You have called me to do. Thank You that I get to live mission possible. Amen.
Excerpted from Mission Possible One-Year Devotional by Tim Tebow. Copyright © 2022 by Tim Tebow. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Tim Tebow is a two-time national champion, Heisman Trophy winner, first-round NFL draft pick, former professional baseball player, and college football analyst with ESPN and the SEC Network. He’s also the founder and leader of the Tim Tebow Foundation and the author of five New York Times bestselling books, including Mission Possible, and the children’s book Bronco and Friends: Mission Possible. His latest book is Mission Possible One-Year Devotional, from which the above excerpts were taken. Tim and his wife, Demi-Leigh Tebow (Miss Universe 2017), live in Jacksonville, Florida, with their three dogs. Visit him at TimTebow.com and @timtebow.