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Monday, November 9, 2009

Pam Tebow offers hope to women facing challenges

Pam Tebow offers hope to women facing challenges

Talks about what she was thinking when Tim was hurt in Kentucky game

Published November 5, 2009

TAMPA (FBW)—In that one terrifying moment when Pam Tebow watched her son, Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow, lying motionless on a Kentucky football field for what seemed like an eternity, her mind focused on the same thing as during other frightening moments in her life. She was meditating on the hope of God’s Word.

While scores of people across the country held their breath Sept. 26, waiting to see if Tim would get up, Pam Tebow recalled silently reciting Psalm 56:3-4, “When I am afraid, I will trust in You. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I will not be afraid. What can mortal man do to me?”

Talking to more than 800 women gathered at Idlewild Baptist Church in Lutz for an October outreach event, Tebow told them how finding hope in God’s Word has become a way of life for her.

As the mother of five and grandmother of two, Tebow has had many opportunities to trust God amidst fear and pain.

Recalling life as a young mother and missionary in the war-torn Philippines in the mid-1980s, Tebow said gunshots often rang out as she and her children said their bedtime prayers. In 1992, a freak accident left her with head trauma and permanent nerve damage.

“I had my own concussion,” Tebow quipped. Still, in spite of all of the hardships, Tebow said her faith continues to grow.

Defining hope as the confident expectation that God will come through, Tebow said she has learned to count on God in every circumstance of life.

Using a word picture to illustrate what it means to wait on God during difficult times, Tebow said hope has nothing to do with mere wishful thinking, nor is it the power of positive thinking. It comes from a relationship with God, the source of true hope, she said.

“God is holding onto you by a rope,” Tebow said. “You hold onto the other end and never let go.”

One way to continue to get to know God better is through communication—and that communication is through prayer, Tebow said. And referring to her son, Tim, she said he describes prayer as a “running conversation with God.”

And prayer builds trust, Tebow said.

Telling a story of a five-year-old boy who recently asked his mother for God’s telephone number, Tebow said the mother told him that God does not have a phone number. The boy persisted, however, and said, “I see it written under (Tim) Tebow’s eyes every week when he plays a game,” referring to the Scripture Tim writes on his eye black.

Grafting or memorizing Scripture into the “heart” is a way to filter out the error and is essential in building an intimate relationship with God, Tebow said. Like the reference or telephone number to the Scripture verse Tim wears on his eye black, it points directly back to God.

To many a sympathetic laugh, Tebow admitted she owns a high-tech iPhone but doesn’t know how to use it for anything other than answering calls and checking voicemail. Although she has a manual for her phone, Tebow said she has no desire to take the time to read the manual.

Similarly, some Christians have the same attitude towards the Bible.

“God has given us a manual, and it is a wonderful manual,” Tebow said of Scripture. “The Word of God was given to us so we could have hope.”

Though she said she is not a gifted musician, Tebow broke into song during her presentation, illustrating how putting Scripture to simple tunes can aid memorization. “What is learned in song is remembered long,” she said.

Just as Floridians prepare for tropical storms by stockpiling supplies, Tebow said Christians should prepare for the storms of life by building a collection of Bible verses in their minds. God’s promises, given through Scripture, are like a child’s security blanket she said.

Tebow said her favorite security Scripture is Psalm 62:5-8, which describes God as a Rock and Refuge in times of trouble.

“Sometimes in life the storms are so great that all I can do is lay my head on my pillow and go over my Scripture,” Tebow said. “That is enough.”

Noting the importance of a proper mindset, Tebow said Christians must determine to have hope. She said this is especially important for women dealing with the guilt and consequences of past mistakes. They must leave the past behind and press forward.

“Don’t listen to those voices in your head that say it’s too late. You can still finish strong,” Tebow said.

Being mindful of the privilege of storing up treasures in Heaven (Matthew 6:19), Tebow encouraged those at the meeting to remember to have an eternal perspective and to focus on four things she said that last forever: God, the Word of God, people and eternal rewards.

Tebow said women who find hope in Christ should seek out others who need His comfort and tell them of His love.

“Infuse them with hope. Give a hope transplant,” Tebow said. “All those things you do for the cause of Christ do not go unnoticed by God.”

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