The media’s treating this as a poll on whether people think God is helping Tebow to win, but the way the actual question was phrased is subtly different. Direct quote: “Do you believe that any of Tim Tebow’s success can be attributed to divine intervention?” (Emphasis mine.) Correct me if I’m wrong, but that’s a much easier question for a believer, no? Everyone’s “success” is, supposedly, attributable to providence to some degree. God gives you certain talents, you put them to use, you make something of yourself, voila, you’ve succeeded — even if you don’t win the Super Bowl. Which is not to say there aren’t Christians out there who think God’s actually picking favorites on Sunday afternoon. Said one Colorado pastor to TMZ last month, “It’s not luck. Luck isn’t winning 6 games in a row. It’s favor. God’s favor.” That was published on December 15; the Broncos lost three in a row starting the following Sunday.
Could there be a partisan divide on this question? There’s a partisan divide on everything, my friends:
Among the 70% of Americans who say they know of Tebow’s success, here’s how people by political affiliation responded to this question: “Do believe that any of Tim Tebow’s success can be attributed to Divine Intervention?”
– Republicans: 54% yes, 32% no, and 14% no opinion.
– Democrats: 38% yes, 48% no, 14% no opinion.
– Independents: 35% yes, 49% no, 16% no opinion.
Interesting that independents are even less likely than Democrats to say yes. Incidentally, Tebow himself apparently does not pray for victory. No one knows for sure except him, but when he was mic’d up for the Bears game in December, this is what he said:
“Lord put a wall of protection around me and my teammates today, and we go out there and we can honor you with everything we do and say. I love you in Jesus’ name.”
And later in the game:
“Dear Jesus, I need you. Please come through for me. No matter what happens, win or lose, give me the strength to honor you.”
As Deadspin noted at the time, those are poignant sentiments coming from a QB whose career isn’t likely to last long due to all the hits he takes while scrambling. Hopefully he’ll endure, but if not, I know what he can fall back on. How about national chairman of the Make-a-Wish Foundation? Rick Reilly:
Every week, Tebow picks out someone who is suffering, or who is dying, or who is injured, flies them and their families to the Broncos game, rents them a car, puts them up in a nice hotel, buys them dinner (usually at a Dave and Buster’s), gets them and their families pregame passes, visits with them just before kickoff (!), gets them 30-yard line tickets down low, visits with them after the game (sometimes for an hour), has them walk him to his car, and sends them off with a basket of gifts…
Take 9-year-old Zac Taylor, a child who lives in constant pain. Immediately after Tebow shocked the Chicago Bears with a 13-10 comeback win, Tebow spent an hour with Zac and his family. At one point, Zac, who has 10 doctors, asked Tebow if he has a secret prayer for hospital visits. Tebow whispered it in his ear. And since Tebow still needed to be checked out by the Broncos’ team doctor, he took Zac in with him, but only after they’d whispered it together…
Isn’t that a huge distraction?
“Just the opposite,” Tebow says. “It’s by far the best thing I do to get myself ready. Here you are, about to play a game that the world says is the most important thing in the world. Win and they praise you. Lose and they crush you. And here I have a chance to talk to the coolest, most courageous people. It puts it all into perspective. The game doesn’t really matter. I mean, I’ll give 100 percent of my heart to win it, but in the end, the thing I most want to do is not win championships or make a lot of money, it’s to invest in people’s lives, to make a difference.”
If Make-a-Wish doesn’t work out, there’s always politics: His favorable rating among Republicans in South Carolina per PPP’s new poll is 76/7, which is nearly 20 points better than Romney’s. Tebow 2024?
Via the Daily Caller, here’s Krauthammer et al. previewing tomorrow night’s battle of good and evil on the fields of Megiddo in New England. I don’t know how anyone can root against this guy.