Sports commentator Tim Tebow says in a new social media post that his life changed for the better when he stopped being a "people-pleaser" and instead viewed God as his primary audience.
The ESPN/SEC Network commentator made the comments on Instagram, encouraging fans to "never forget that in whatever you do, your main audience is God, not others."
"Growing up, I always wanted people to like me," Tebow said. "I was what you would call a people pleaser. Today, while I still strive to do good things for others as we all should, I've come to realize that our main audience in life isn't other people. It's God.
"Be motivated not by what other people think about you but by what God thinks about you!" Tebow added.
Tebow won the Heisman Trophy at the University of Florida and went on to play professional football and baseball. All along, he has been outspoken about his Christian faith. He recently released a new book, devotional and a study Bible based on a "Mission Possible" theme.
If Christians care too much about what others think, Tebow said, then they eventually will fall short of doing God's will.
"I want to stand up for what's right. I want to stand up for good things. I want to stand up for Jesus. I want to stand up for life. I want to stand up for all these good things. But I hate when people say bad things about me," Tebow said. "And then a lot of times, you'll say, 'But that's not even true what they say.' And it will consume you, and if we let it, critics will consume us. And then, if we let it, will let critics change our decisions: 'I'm not going to do this because I'm afraid of what they're going to say.' And so we change what we're going to do, and we let them define our life. We can't give them the right to define your life.
"Only God has the right to define your life," Tebow added. "But we give critics the right to define us because we're so scared of what they're going to say. We're so scared of having people not like us. Your critics can consume you. But we can't give them the right. Only God has the right."
Do you struggle with people pleasing? I encourage you to watch this...— Tim Tebow (@TimTebow) July 21, 2020
Only God has the right to define your life. Don’t give critics the power or right to define you. Start tuning them out today, and tune into God’s voice. pic.twitter.com/WooCy1IMVA
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Scott Halleran/Staff
Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, the Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.