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Super Bowl LII Serves as Platform for Faith

In just a few more days the Philadelphia Eagles will take on Tom Brady and the New England Patriots, a rematch thirteen years in the making. Heading into to Sunday’s game, the Eagles are seeking their first super bowl championship in history. The Patriots on the other hand are simply trying to add a ring to their insuppressible dynasty. As you can imagine, there’s a lot of pressure on the players. While winning is important, some of them are playing for much more than a super bowl Championship.

The Philadelphia Eagles have arguably been the best team in the NFL. Safety Malcolm Jenkins says it has a lot to do with the brotherhood of faith he and a lot of his teammates formed in the offseason through bible studies, praying together, and even baptism.

“I’ve seen like 3 guys get baptized at the team facility. I don’t think that’s happened anywhere. It’s just one of those things that faith is a really important part of this team. And we commune with one another often times. We talk about it, and it’s been unique and special to watch that unfold in an NFL locker room,” said Jenkins.

Tight end Zach Ertz agrees with Malcom. and says he is personally reaping the benefits of a faith-filled locker room.

“I dedicated my life to Christ back in March. I was baptized in March, got married the next day. Our marriage has been built on that foundation from the word and Jesus and it’s changed my life. And just to have these guys hold me accountable on a daily bases has been phenomenal for me. I hope I do the same for them,” said Ertz.

“My faith in the Lord has been my foundation. It’s been as they say…your rock, your strong point. He’s what I stand on. As a team, we’re strong in the faith. People say underdogs…and we’re like, we consider ourselves blessed,” said Eagles tackle Will Beatty.

Quarterback Nick Foles has an interesting story. He was traded by the eagles 2015. Two season later, the team signed him again as a back up to Carson Wentz. When Carson tore his ACL in week 14, many questioned whether Foles had the goods to lead them all the way to a championship. Now they’re playing their first super bowl in 13 years. He says it’s all because of god’s faithfulness.

“My faith in the Lord means everything. I’m a believer in Jesus Christ and that’s first and foremost. That’s everything. I wouldn’t be able to do this game with Him. Because I don’t have the strength to go out and do this. This is supernatural. It’s also and opportunity to go out there and share what’s He’s done in my life. And it’s not about prospering at all. It’s about how He’s humbled me. In my weaknesses, He made me strong, 2 Corinthians 12:9. You know, whenever I was at my lowest, that’s where my relationship with Christ grew,” said Foles.

The New England Patriots have won two championships in the last three seasons. Now they’re back to try for another. For a lot of the players it’s another opportunity for them to glorify the name of the Lord on the biggest stage in football.  

“I feel like my purpose here in the National Football League and on this earth is bigger than the game of football. I firmly believe I’ve been given the platform of football to build relationships, build bridges, and connect with people, and show them the love of Christ. And that’s something that I’ve enjoyed doing since I got here to New England and something that I continue to enjoy doing,” said Patriots Wide Receiver Matthew Slater.

“I go through my ups and downs. I’m a broken human being and I have my struggles and God’s the one that’s consistent. God’s the one that carry’s me through. And I’m so thankful for Jesus Christ and the things He’s done in my life,” said Patriots tackle Nate Solder.

The Patriots defense has had to work hard this postseason.  Veteran defensive backs Duran Harmon and Devin McCourty say that it’s when things get tough that they lean on their faith the most to help them stay focused and poised.
“This whole journey has been nothing more than a journey. It has ups, downs, but the one thing that has been consistent is God. His love for me, His grace, His mercy continually shows His favor. I know that He has something bigger in store for me than football but I just have to stay the course, continue to keep serving Him and everything else will fall in place,” said Harmon.

“I think one of the cool things that we talked about this year is just joy. You know I think football brings a lot of ups and downs and you can easily just ride with that roller coaster. Even today in our chapel before we came here, we talked about embracing everything, being here tonight and enjoying this process. And just being authentic, being ourselves and not being scare to be different and talk about being blessed and the opportunity to be here,” said McCourty.

Tight end Dwayne Allen signed with the team in the offseason. This is his first super bowl appearance. He’s worked hard to get here. While he’s elated about the opportunity, he says none of his success would have been possible with his relationship with Jesus Christ.

“I go back to January 8, 2014 in my bedroom I had an intimate moment where I submitted to Christ. When I said I can’t do this alone. I tried it the last twenty-three years and it’s just not working. I need you. And the way that He has come into my life has changed my life for the better. Taking that step to submit your life to my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is not something easy. But life isn’t to meant to be, but take heart because He’s conquered all,” said Allen.

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