He is a former American football center who played in the National Football League for sixteen seasons, primarily with the New York Jets, and is currently a member of the Arizona State University coaching staff. He played college football for Louisiana State University, where he was a four-year starter and was later inducted into the LSU Athletic Hall of Fame in 2007. He was picked by the Seattle Seahawks in the 1994 NFL Draft, and also played for the New York Jets and Tennessee Titans. Over his stellar pro-football career spanning 16 seasons, he evolved into one of the greatest centers in the league and helped set the bar for offensive linemen in the NFL.
He is a celebrity chef, bestselling author, actor, and TV personality. He is the mastermind and host of the television show, “Good Eats” on the Food Network. He also created the mini-series, “Feasting on Asphalt” and “Feasting on Waves.” And he is the host and primary commentator on “Iron Chef America.” His dedication, enthusiasm, and knowledge of food shine through on his shows and in his books. He is the author of seven books, including: “I’m Just Here for the Food” for which he won the James Beard Foundation Award for Best Cookbook in the Reference category; and “Good Eats – Volumes 1, 2, and 3” each of which made the New York Times bestseller list. He was named “Cooking Teacher of the Year” by Bon Appétit magazine in 2004. And in 2011, he won the James Beard Award for Best TV Food Personality.
She is one of the best American soccer players. She is a midfielder for the Chicago Red Stars of the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL), the highest division of women’s professional soccer in the United States, and the United States women’s national soccer team. She is a 2x FIFA Women’s World Cup champion with the U.S. Women’s National Team (2015 and 2019). She played collegiate soccer with the Santa Clara University Broncos from 2010 to 2013. Following her collegiate career, she was selected with the No. 3 overall pick in the 2014 NWSL Draft by the Chicago Red Stars. That same year, she was named the NWSL Rookie of the Year. In 2015, at age 23, she became the second-youngest player to make the National Team. With her help, the United States went on to win the 2015 Women’s World Cup final. She played every minute of all seven games of the tournament and was subsequently named to the FIFA Women’s World Cup All-Star Team. In 2017, she was awarded U.S. Soccer Female Player of the Year. She also represented the United States at the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup tournament, helping to lead the National Team to their second consecutive World Cup victory and fourth overall.
He is a professional baseball player with the St. Louis Cardinals of Major League Baseball. He plays the position of left fielder. He and the Cardinals won the World Series in 2011 and he is considered a major part of the team’s success. He is well known for his baserunning, hitting, and leadership abilities. Previously, he played for the Colorado Rockies and the Oakland Athletics. He has been selected as an All-Star 6 times. In addition, he has been recognized with four Silver Slugger Awards and a National League Championship Series Most Valuable Player Award.
He said of his faith, “My walk with the Lord has come about very gradually. I had always recognized there was God, but I did not know about Jesus or how to have a relationship with Him. My dad was head baseball coach at Oklahoma State University. We did not go to church much because my dad was always working – including on weekends – and we were usually going to the stadium to support him and the team. However, I feel I was raised in a great family. I had an extremely blessed childhood.
Beginning in my rookie season, I had a lot of people come into my life sharing their faith with me. There were individuals who mentored me and helped me realize I needed Jesus, and that the only way to true life is through Jesus. My faith in Jesus has shaped how I handle my family, how I am a friend, how I am a teammate, how I handle all the things I do in my life and how I list my priorities. How you represent Jesus in the way you live your life is the best way to share Christ. Jesus puts all things in proper perspective. It has allowed me to live a lot freer.
I like the book of Job. Much of Job is about trials and struggles, but also about understanding that God is God and we are not. The tattoo on my arm is Job 38:4: ‘Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation? Tell Me, if you understand.’ We are not going to understand His ways sometimes, but we must remain faithful as Job. Job 36:26 says, How great is God – beyond our understanding!’ Playing this game offers struggles at times. You have anxiety when you put pressure on yourself to perform, as well as the struggle to not get caught up in your worth or who you are as a pro baseball player.
Players like everyone else often feel the need for approval from other people besides Jesus. For me now, the most important – and only – thing that really matters is Jesus accepts me. The future for a Christian is eternity with the King! I see my relationship with Christ leading me where I know I will spend eternity worshipping Him. It does not make your life perfect, but it allows you to have a perspective that, at the end of the day, Christ will be coming to take us to be with Him forever. That is something that gets me excited.”
His name is Matt Holliday.
This is the “Chief of Sinners,” Daniel Whyte III, president of Gospel Light Society International, reminding you of what the Bible says, that “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” like you and me. Just as Matt Holliday gave his life to Christ, may I encourage you to do the same. Here is how:
1. Accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Ecclesiastes 7:20: “For there is not a just man upon earth that doeth good, and sinneth not.” Romans 3:23 reads: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” In fact, I am the chief of sinners, so don’t think that you’re alone.
2. Accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
3. Accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” The Bible says in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
4. Accept the fact that you cannot do anything to save yourself! The Bible states in Ephesians 2: 8, 9: “For by grace are ye saved through faith: and that not of yourselves: it is a gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast.”
5. Accept the fact that God loves you more than you love yourself, and that He wants to save you from hell. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
6. With these facts in mind, please repent of your sins, believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and pray and ask Him to come into your heart and save you this very moment. The Bible states in the book of Romans 10:9, 13: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”
“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Dear friend, if you are willing to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation, please pray with me this simple prayer: Heavenly Father, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
Remember, friend, Believe by faith. Share the faith. and Keep the faith!
She is the owner, founder and lead designer of Magnolia Homes, a remodeling and design business in Waco, Texas. Magnolia Homes is a creative compilation of construction with a heavy emphasis on quality and unique design. She, along with her husband, are the hosts of the HGTV show “Fixer Upper.” “Fixer Upper” shows the process by which they turn dilapidated but potential-rich houses into showplaces that are helping revitalize whole neighborhoods throughout central Texas. She graduated from Baylor University with a degree in Communications. Her passion is to create inspiring spaces that encourage others to do the same thing in their own homes.
In an interview with Charisma News, she spoke of how God spoke to her and how she has learned to trust His plan for her life. She said, “I heard God say very clearly… he said, ‘Joanna if you trust me with your dreams, I’m going to take Magnolia (a boutique she owned) further than you ever dreamed.’ I look back and I go, ‘God, your promise that you spoke years ago, I’m now seeing. I trusted you with my dream and you took it far beyond what I ever could have dreamed or imagined.'” She continued, “I really believe that God has a purpose for me. But he also has a purpose for you and on the other side of that is the enemy where he knows where to hit. Let God speak in your life. Let his father heart come and say, ‘this is what I have for you.’ And I think that’s the key — not believing the lies, fixing our eyes on Jesus and walking in that truth.”
He is a professional basketball player who currently plays the point guard position for the Los Angeles Clippers of the NBA. He played college basketball at Wake Forest University. He was drafted by the New Orleans Hornets and played there from 2005 to 2011 before joining the Clippers. He won the NBA Rookie of the Year Award in 2006 and an Olympic gold medal with USA Men’s basketball team in 2008 and 2012. He also led the NBA in assists four times and steals six times from 2008 to 2015. He has also been selected to eight NBA All-Star teams, six All-NBA teams, and six All-Defensive teams. Since 2013, he has served as the National Basketball Players Association president.
He said of his faith: “I am a Christian. I grew up in the church and still go to church every Sunday if we don’t have practice. It’s always something that my parents instilled in me. I’ve grown to be pretty devout in my faith. I am so thankful that my parents raised me and my brother, C.J. to depend on God’s guidance and our faith in Him, and to always be thankful for what we receive. As I went through the past year, I just kept trying to have fun, knowing that I was playing basketball at the highest level, and remain humble, keeping in mind that all this [I have received] could be taken away from me as fast as it was happening.”
He is an accomplished football quarterback. In high school, he played football and was a standout track and field athlete. As a senior in high school, he led his team to an 11-1 record and the state title while being named Interscholastic League of Honolulu Offensive Player of the Year. He was offered a scholarship to play college football at the University of Oregon and was the starting quarterback for the Ducks from 2012 to 2014.
In 2012, he was named Pac-12 All-Conference 1st Team, Pac-12 Freshman Offensive Player of the Year, and earning the 2013 Fiesta Bowl Offensive MVP Award. In 2013, he earned Pac-12 All-Conference 1st Team honors for the second consecutive year. He was named both Fiesta Bowl MVP and Alamo Bowl MVP, and the Ducks emerged as champions in both the Fiesta Bowl and the Alamo Bowl. In 2014, he was awarded the Davey O’Brien Award, the Walter Camp Award, and the Maxwell Award given to the nation’s best football player. Among many other honors, in 2014, he became the first Duck in the University of Oregon’s history to win the Heisman Trophy. He led his team to victory in the 2015 Rose Bowl and declared for the 2015 NFL Draft a few days after playing in the National Championship.
In an interview with The Fellowship of Christian Athletes, he said of his faith: “Being a football player, faith plays a huge role. When things start to get rough you find comfort in your faith. Knowing that no matter what, you can dust yourself off and be okay. And you know you do it for God’s glory. You do it for your teammates, your family, but also for His glory and to represent His name.”
“Going through the challenges of the season, my faith has been the steadying force that’s pushed me, along with my family, my friends and my teammates. Losing — especially here [at Oregon] — is tough. We have high expectations as a program to go and win national championships. It’s a huge pressure, but you learn a lot about yourself through it. [My Coach] has helped me learn that football doesn’t define me. It’s just what I do. That was a huge life lesson for me. I really took that and ran with it. My faith is what keeps me going and I can always grow in that.”
He went on to say, “I think as an athlete when you’re able to go out there and have the abilities that the Lord has blessed you with, you want to glorify Him. You want to go out there to represent Him in the right light. To represent your family in the right light and to do that through His power. Since I’ve been here at Oregon, I think my faith has grown tremendously. In high school, I learned about God and Jesus Christ, but I wasn’t really invested in it. I think getting involved with FCA really introduced me into my walk and into my journey. I’m not perfect, but I’m encouraged everyday to continue to open up in my faith. I’ve learned that no matter what, my faith will guide me. However I play on the field, I know my faith will guide me. After sports, my faith will guide me. As I’ve grown in my faith, that’s something that’s given me comfort. God has taught me that I can trust in Him. No matter what–whether things are good or bad — I know I can always trust in Him. And that has really allowed me to go All In for Him.”
He is a center and power forward for the New York Knicks of the NBA. He was drafted by the Phoenix Suns in 2002 and played with the team until 2010 when he was picked up by the Knicks. Despite chronic knee problems, he won the 2003 NBA Rookie of the Year Award and was a first-team All-NBA selection in 2007. He also made six appearances in the NBA All-Star Game and won a bronze medal with the United States men’s national basketball team at the 2004 Olympic Games.
Although his mother and father divorced when he was young, his father died when he was 12, and his mother was in and out of jail for petty crimes, he always knew he would play basketball. Due to multiple transfers throughout high school, he missed his entire junior year of basketball. He told Dime Magazine that what ‘kept him going during that difficult time was God.’
He said of his faith, “Although I didn’t start playing basketball until I was fourteen years old, I’ve been going to church my entire life. I grew up in a Christian family, and my father took us to church every Sunday and Wednesday without fail. Even though he died when I was twelve, my mother made sure that Christianity continued to be a central part of my family’s life. That’s why I have such a strong faith today. Going to church helped me develop a relationship with Jesus, and that has given me something to lean on as I have worked to reach my goals.”
He went on to say, “Winning Rookie of the Year in my first season with the Suns was an incredible honor, but I know I can’t claim sole credit. I depend on God for everything I do, including playing basketball. Jesus hasn’t just given me talent though. He also gives me direction, purpose, and hope. Without Him to guide my life, I don’t know where I would have ended up. I still say my prayers every night, and God always gives me confidence and peace of mind as a result. That’s exactly what we need more of these days. I was fortunate to grow up in a Christian environment. That may not be true for you, but that doesn’t mean you can’t start living for Christ right now. If you’re looking for someone to lean on, someone to guide and encourage you through these troubled times, I encourage you to begin a relationship with Jesus today.”
He is a professional baseball first baseman for the Los Angeles Dodgers. He was picked first overall in the 2000 Major League Baseball Draft by the Florida Marlins. Before the Dodgers, he played for the Texas Rangers from 2004-2005, the San Diego Padres from 2006-2010, and the Boston Red Sox from 2011-2012. He was named Most Valuable Player four times in 2008-2011. He won the Silver Slugger Award in 2011 and the Rawlings Gold Glove Award in 2008, 2009, and 2011. Together with his wife, they created a Foundation, which is focused on empowering underprivileged youth in areas of athletics, education and health.
In an interview with BeyondtheUltimate.org, he said of his faith, “I grew up going to church two to three times a month, but never really got to know the [Bible] or have a relationship with Christ. In 2003, just being around a bunch of guys who are [Christians] on the team, and going to baseball chapels and Bible studies off the field, I really started wanting that relationship and started trying to understand what it was about. My wife, Betsy, had a strong relationship [with Christ] at the time, so as a married couple we decided we should have our relationship with the Lord be the foundation of our marriage. Since [Betsy and I] have been in baseball, we put ourselves around people who will help us grow in our relationship with the Lord. It’s in the Bible that belief in Christ is what you are searching for and need. For us, Christ really has transformed our lives and we couldn’t be any happier, we are content with whatever happens. We look toward Christ to fulfill us.”
He went further to say, “[Christ has given me] a different perspective in life – in my marriage, in my attitude on the field, and in everything else, including [trying to be] the best husband to my wife as possible and striving to be the best person I can be. You see yourself in a different position. You don’t put yourself first, you put yourself last. That’s [something] I never thought I could do until I became a [Christian]. Now I try to live [as God would have me to live] every day and to let others see [that] so others can come to Christ. Anytime I can share in public, I try to take advantage of that as Christ would want me to do. I try to do what I can to lead others to Christ. I have success in baseball, but I know that is because of the Lord. I know my preparing and my hard work definitely play a part, but it would not be done without Christ.”
He is a former NFL wide receiver. He played college football for Notre Dame, where he won the Heisman Trophy in 1987, becoming the first wide receiver to win the award. He played for the Los Angeles/Oakland Raiders for 16 years from 1988–2003, and later played with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2004. He was selected to the Pro Bowl 9 times, made the AP Second-Team All-Pro, and was selected to the PFW All-Conference 6 times. He won the NCAA Silver Anniversary Award in 2012. He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2009. He is the only player ever to retire in the NFL’s top five leaders for both receiving and return yards. In both 2012 and 2013, he was selected as a finalist for enshrinement in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He is currently a college football analyst for ESPN.
In an interview with Game Plan for Life, he spoke about his Christian faith. Even though He grew up in the church as a child and was taught the ways of the Lord primarily by his mother, he slacked off from following God in college and in his early days in the NFL. He said, “Even though I had all of that good teaching, it doesn’t mean that I was living the way I was suppose to live. At the University of Notre Dame and my early years at the Raiders, I was ashamed of how I was living. I remember one day, I think I was 23 or 24 years old, I looked at myself in the mirror, and I couldn’t stand the person that I was looking at. I knew that I wasn’t doing what God wanted me to do….I was around 27 or 28 when I finally said it was time for me to live right. I had been given all of the teachings. I knew what I needed to do. It was just a matter of making those tough decisions.”
He went on to tell of how God is working in His life. He said, “There are plenty of challenges around and plenty of reasons to keep us on our knees praying and fasting. There are challenges in my family. There are challenges with my kids. It is like my pastor said, if the devil is not attacking your family, then your family must be doing something wrong. He must already have your family where he wants you, if he doesn’t need to attack you anymore. The better you try to do, the more the enemy is going to discourage you.”
Looking at his impact on others and the big picture of life, he said, “When I was about 32 years old and on a Hall of Fame run, I thought my career was being extended because I was going to be in the Hall of Fame. What hit me was that I realized I wasn’t here to make the Hall of Fame. I was there, because I needed to show those young men that you can play the game at a high level and have faith. Initially, I was let down because it wasn’t about the Hall of Fame. Instead, I began to think about the impact that I was going to have on other men. I am not trying to say I lived a perfect life. Sometimes you can walk into a room without saying anything and offend people. That is not what I am trying to say. The men in the locker room the last 10 years that I was there never heard me curse, never saw me drinking or doing anything crazy. When the men talk about me now, they are either going to have to lie about me and make up something, or they are going to have to tell people the truth that I tried my best to live right. When Junior Seau died, I told people that he had lost his purpose. His purpose was not to be a football player. His purpose was not to raise money for all of his charities. His purpose was to serve God and show people how to live for God. That is your purpose even in the midst of all the stuff that you may be going through. I think that it is so important for people to understand that no matter what platform we are given our single purpose on this earth is to serve God. Whether you influence one person or a million people, that is what you have to do. You have to show people that this is what you are supposed to be doing with your life. You are supposed to be serving God.”
He is a running back for the Atlanta Falcons. He played college football for Oregon State University, and was drafted by the St. Louis Rams in the first round with the 24th overall pick in the 2004 NFL Draft. He holds the Rams’ franchise record for most career rushing yards. He was selected to the Pro Bowl three times, named to the AP Second Team All-Pro two times, and was the NFC’s rushing leader in 2009. He was also awarded the MVP with the St. Louis Rams three times in 2006, 2009, and 2010.
In an interview with CBN, he said that he became a Christian at an early age. He said of his faith, “It was so much a part of my life. It was so embedded in me and I watched my mom and dad, through thick and thin, at every night and every morning, I saw them get on their knees and pray to God. So it was a part of our life that I understood that it was eventually going to be my life as well.”
It wasn’t until he got into college that he started to struggle with his faith. He said, “When I got on my own in college, I started venturing out and trying to find out who I was as a young man, that is when I kind of ran into the pitfalls and temptations — a lot of it, most of it was partying.” But he found out that such a life was not good for him so he decided to make an adjustment and live his life as a Christian.
He said, “I always say that whatever city I stop in, I want to leave a positive imprint on that city. And football is just a platform for me to grab the attention of the masses. But being successful and then being positive with it, you influence so many people. I always go around, do motivational talks, to not only young people, but actually to adults as well about my faith in Christ, about motivating them through hardship and how to achieve goals and how to deal with success.”
“Jesus Christ actually means a lot of things to me,” He said. “One, He’s my heavenly Father. He loves me wholeheartedly. He’s the true definition of unconditional love. Where a lot of times I can get frustrated with myself or with other people, I remind myself that God—He died and laid on the cross for us in my sins that one day I could come to meet Him. Love is just more powerful than anything on this earth. And, the more I try to remind myself of that, the more I try to walk in that, I find peace in myself, in my heart.”
He is a tight end for the Denver Broncos. Before going to the Broncos in 2012, he was drafted in the fourth round of the 2008 NFL Draft by the Indianapolis Colts. He played college football for the University of Kentucky, and as a senior, he earned first-team All-SEC honors from both the Associated Press and the coaches polls.
In 2007, he was named the SEC Scholar Athlete of the Year and elected to the first-team Academic All-America squad by the College Sports Information Directors of America. He was the 2007 recipient of the Bobby Bowden Award, a national honor presented by the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.
He helped his teams, the Colts and the Broncos, win the AFC Championship, the Colts in 2009 and the Broncos 2013. He recently helped to lead his team, the Denver Broncos, to a Super Bowl berth in the January 19th’s AFC Championship Game against the New England Patriots. His team played the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl 48 on February 2, 2014.
He said of his faith, “I’ve been blessed with two great parents who taught me how to do things the right way and that provided a great foundation for my spiritual life. Today, I am very thankful to have a life partner in my wife and a son. This has given me a great responsibility to lead my family in our faith, relationship with Christ, and provide the same foundation that my parents provided for me. To me, this is the thing that matters most in life.”
“My faith is important because it’s the core of why I believe we exist as humans. Faith allows us to spend an eternity with God and it fuels my every day actions. I’ve seen how having faith in God can change lives and it certainly has changed mine….God has to come first in all of our lives, then family second. Everything else that we chose in life comes after. Football is very consuming and I love being able to go out and compete week in and week out, but you have to elevate the other two (faith and family) because they are most important and the cornerstones of our lives.”
He is the quarterback for the Denver Broncos. Before playing for the Broncos, he was selected by the Indianapolis Colts as the first overall pick in the 1998 NFL Draft. He played 14 seasons from 1998 to 2011 for the Colts. He led the Colts to eight division championships, two AFC championships, and one Super Bowl championship in 2007.
His statistics throughout his playing career have ranked him among the greatest quarterbacks in NFL history. He has been awarded four NFL MVPs — a league record. He has also been named to 13 Pro Bowls and 7 AP All-Pro teams. He has thirteen 4000-yard passing seasons, and is the all-time leader in passing yards and touchdown passes for the Indianapolis Colts. Fox Sports and Sports Illustrated named him the NFL “player of the decade” for the 2000s. And in 2013, Sports Illustrated named him “Sportsman of the Year.”
Also in 2013: He broke the record for most passing touchdowns in a season with 55 of his own; he joined Brett Favre and Dan Marino as the only NFL players in history to throw for over 60,000 yards; and he broke the NFL’s passing yardage record by exactly one yard in the final game of the regular season.
He led his team, the Denver Broncos, to a Super Bowl berth by throwing for 400 yards and two touchdowns in the January 19th AFC Championship Game against the New England Patriots. His team plays the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl 48 on February 2, 2014.
He said of his faith, “At age 13, I committed my life to Christ, and that faith has been most important to me ever since….For me generally it had always been the big four: faith, family, friends, and football. As important as football is to me, it can never be higher than fourth. My faith has been number one since I was thirteen years old.”
He said further, “Some players get more vocal about their faith, and some point to Heaven after scoring a touchdown and praise God after games. I have no problem with that. But I don’t do it, and I don’t think it makes me any less a Christian. I just want my actions to speak louder, and I don’t want to be more of a target for criticism…My faith doesn’t make me perfect, it makes me forgiven, and provides me the assurance I once looked for. I’ve been blessed—having so little go wrong in my life, and being given so much. I pray every night, sometimes long prayers about a lot of things and a lot of people, but I don’t talk about it or brag about it because that’s between God and me, and I’m no better than anybody else in God’s sight. But I consider myself fortunate to be able to go to Him for guidance, and I hope (and pray) I don’t do too many things that displease Him. I believe, too, that life is much better and freer when you’re committed to God in that way.”
He is a running back for the Oakland Raiders. He was drafted by the Jacksonville Jaguars in the seventh round of the 2009 NFL Draft before going to the Raiders in 2013. He played college football at Liberty University in Lynchburg, VA. Before transferring to Liberty, he attended the University of Pittsburgh in 2005 and became only the fourth true freshman running back to start there.
At Liberty, he set a Big South Conference record with 3,633 yards with 42 TDs and a 5.7-yards-per-carry average. He holds numerous rushing records including most rushing yards and touchdowns in a single season and most 100-yard consecutive, single-season, and career games. He also played high school football at Liberty Christian Academy where he helped the team advance from a 0-11 season to a 10-1 season in two years.
He says of his faith in God, “I am truly humbled to be in the position I am. There is nothing special about me; I am just in a special position, and it is my job to utilize it to advance the kingdom. My faith is what got me here. My faith is going to keep me here. A part of playing in this game is to make sure that I witness to as many guys as I can; that truth (the Gospel) is going to last longer than the NFL.” He says his time at Liberty University showed him that “if you do things the right way, if you put God first and give him honor in your life, He will take care of everything else.”
He is a professional baseball player for the Tampa Bay Rays. His versatility on the field allows him to play most positions except pitcher and catcher. He has been second baseman for the Rays since 2009. In 2009, he earned a trip to his first All Star Game in St. Louis. While there the Baseball Writers Association of America named him MVP of the Rays for that year.
Growing up as the son of a Baptist preacher in Eureka, Illinois, he played baseball since he was eight-years-old. He became a Christian at an early age and as he grew older, his faith in God increased. After no scouts looked at him when he graduated from high school, he thought his career was over, but God had other plans for him. Soon God opened up doors for him to play at Olivet Nazarene University, and then at Dallas Baptist University where he played shortstop.
During the in-between times when he was uncertain of his baseball career, he said, “I wondered why God allowed this to happen and I started to have lots of doubts. But God allows things to happen the way He wants, and we need to accept it joyfully and to love Him through things that don’t happen the way we would like in life. The Bible says: ‘And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.’ Being sent up and down in both 2007 and 2008 was a great lesson for me. I had a prideful and wrong attitude about success. God was saying to me, ‘Keep working, keep glorifying Me; wherever you are, don’t grow weary in doing good for in due time, you will reap.’ I am learning to enjoy the experience God put me in at the moment and glorifying Him in that.”
His former teammate Brian Shouse said of him, “Ben is the kind of player you would want on your team…he plays hard, he wants to learn and improve, and he has a great attitude. He is a very active Christian and he looks for ways he can help and encourage others in life. He has found peace and joy in his life through his faith in Jesus.”