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Shaken: Discovering Your True Identity in the Midst of Life's Storms Hardcover – October 25, 2016
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Q and A with Tim Tebow author of Shaken
What does your book’s title Shaken mean to you? Why did you choose it?
The reason I titled it Shaken was because in life you’re going to have highs and lows. There are going to be great times, and there are going be tough times. So, who was I when I won the Heisman Trophy versus when I got cut three times, well, maybe four times in the NFL? Was I the person that was praised by presidents or the person that was debated and scrutinized by most of the media? So, who was I? Am I that person who I was at the high or am I that person who had all those lows? I’m so thankful because of my relationship with Jesus Christ and being adopted in the family of God that I don’t have to live the highs and the lows and the roller coaster that the rest of the world lives because I know where my identity lies. My identity lies as a child of God, and that is something that will never be shaken.
Why did you decide now was the right time to share some of these personal experiences?
It’s something that God put on my heart. I’ve been traveling for the last three or four years speaking all over and being able to see so many people in today’s society that are searching for a firm foundation. They’re searching for identity, and I feel like this book is about identity, about not being shaken. To have a firm foundation as a child of God is something that so many people are longing for and wanting because they’re searching for something more. There’s got to be more out there. What is it? Well, I can tell you what it is. It’s a relationship with the God of this universe, who loves you so much. That’s what is it. That’s what you’re searching for. That’s what you’re longing for, and that’s what you need.
You’ve had to deal with issues of self-identity, such as fear, doubt and criticism on a much bigger scale than most of us. What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned?
I’m a people pleaser by nature, and I want to make everybody happy. But at the same time, it’s not fulfilling to make everybody happy. What is fulfilling is to stand for something that’s right. Now that doesn’t mean you’re going to be perfect. We’re going to fall and we’re going to mess up every day, but we can at least try to stand for something. When you stand for something, then you won’t fall for everything else around you. For me, my goal is to be able to impact as many people as possible for something good, for something right, to be able to leave a legacy of something bigger than myself--not for winning games, not for scoring touchdowns, but that Jesus Christ has changed my life. You can love God, and you can love people. There is more to this world than money, fame and power. You you can have an impact, no matter who you are, no matter what platform. No matter how big or small of a role model, there is someone watching you. There’s a life that you can change. There’s a life that you can impact. For me, it’s to be able to see that every life matters. Every life matters--no matter where, no matter how big, no matter how small. I’ve been able to see that in so many of the trips that we’ve taken around the world. That has been something that has been so eye-opening to me. I share that concept with everyone I come in contact with, so that we can unite around people. We can unite around one nation under God here, and we can unite that everybody matters. I think in this day and age right now, it’s important. People need to be able to see something bigger than themselves.
How do the things you’ve learned about identity differ from what our culture teaches?
Wow, I think our culture right now is a culture that is trying to find itself. They are trying to figure out what is it? Is it social media followers? Is it trying to be popular? Is it money? Is it fame? Is it power? They are searching for identity and so many of us have been there, and we’ll get back to that place of what is our identity? Who are we? More importantly, whose are we? For me, I find my identity in a relationship with Christ. I’ve also seen that in so many of my role models. So many people that have gone before me that I’ve been able to see, wow, I want what he has. I want what she has. I’ve seen what they have and wow, they have peace no matter where they’re at. They have assurance no matter what they’re going through. It was fun in this book to be able to highlight role models of mine that have been able to find a firm foundation in whose they are no matter what life throws at them.
What does it mean to you to stay grounded?
I think staying grounded is one of the hardest things we will ever do in our lives. How do you stay grounded? It’s always back and forth. To be able to stay grounded, we need to live with open hands that everything that we have has been given to us by the Creator of this universe. He can take it, and He can give it back to us. He can take some things, and He can give us new things. When a door closes, a new one is going to open. Where we start to lose it is when we start to grasp onto what we think is ours. No, this is mine. No, that is my career. That’s my money. That’s my platform. But really, no, it’s Yours, God. It’s not mine. You might lend it to me for a little while. You might let me hold onto it. You might let me use it for a little bit, but that’s not mine; it’s Yours. Thank You for letting me use that for a little while. I think that’s what staying grounded means.
In what ways have you found reaching out to others as an important part of the process of getting and staying grounded?
Ah, I think it’s huge. I think that’s what the church really is. It’s not a building. It’s not the logos out front. It’s not the denominations that we’re part of. No, it’s the people that we get to do life with. It’s the people that have courageous conversations with us. It’s the people that love us. It’s the people that invest in us. It’s the people we get to do life with. And we also get to share with them. It’s being able to have those people in our lives who we’re able to inspire and they’re able to inspire us. When we’re down, they pick us up. When they’re down, we pick them up. Iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.
How important is serving others to your identity?
Well, I feel like the closest that we get to fulfilling our calling is making a difference in other people’s lives. I feel like it’s different for everybody. Our purpose and our calling are different. We’re all called to do different things. But some way, somehow, it has to be impacting other people. If not, what are you doing? How does it have an impact? How does it have an eternal impact? It has to be investing in other people, somehow making a difference in their lives. When we do that, I really believe that we will fulfill why we’re here and what we’re supposed to do.
“Tim Tebow is not an athlete—athlete is what Tim fills in on his tax return. That does not begin to tell the story of who he is. Tim is a role model, an inspiration to those who have a dream and are willing to accept life as a journey full of ups and downs.”
—Jon Bon Jovi, singer-songwriter
“Shaken shows us a side of Tim Tebow that we’ve never gotten to see before. In this book, Tim comes alongside his reader and says, ‘I’ve been there too,’ and proceeds to show us how God is faithful even when our entire lives feel shaken to the core.”
—Mark Batterson, pastor and New York Times bestselling author of The Circle Maker
“Tim is a remarkable example of one who combines strength and boldness with kindness and compassion, and I’m always encouraged to hear of how he is using his tremendous platform to share the love and truth of our Lord with those who need it most.”
—Ravi Zacharias, author and president of RZIM
“Tim has always inspired me with his dedication to grow and improve in all aspects of life, especially his faith. With this book, Tim encourages readers to keep moving and stay strong while battling life’s obstacles.”
—Cam Newton, quarterback for the Carolina Panthers
“Whether or not you’ve followed Tim’s career, Shaken speaks to something we’ve all had to deal with—trusting God when the plans for our lives don’t work out as we expected. Tim shares his journey from the Broncos to the Jets to the Patriots and beyond with refreshing honesty. He comes alongside us as a friend and gives us hope for the days our lives take an unexpected turn. I am so grateful to call Tim my friend; his life and passion constantly inspire me! Whatever Tim does he does with all his heart, and this book reflects that incredible commitment! I love Tim, and by the end of this book, you will too!”
—Judah Smith, lead pastor of the City Church and New York Times bestselling author of Jesus Is _______.
“Shaken is everyone’s story. All of us know what it is to experience the best of days and the lowest of days. For Tim, he’s lived those days in public. I have the privilege to call Tim my friend and can tell you that with him, what you see is what you get, which seems rare these days! I appreciate how real and raw Tim is with his own struggles. In Shaken you will find great encouragement for your own life and faith.”
—Chris Tomlin, worship leader and songwriter
“All readers will be won over by Tebow's dedication and perseverance, and admire him for staying true to service-oriented Christianity through a quite unconventional life.”
—Publishers Weekly review
“I really got so much out of reading your book.”
—Robin Roberts, during a Good Morning America interview with Tim Tebow
“Tim Tebow Has A New Book Out And It Is A Must-Read.”
—The Daily Caller
“It was like having an encouraging chat with a dear friend—I finished feeling so hopeful!”
—First for Women Magazine
About the Author
Tim Tebow is a two-time national champion, first round NFL draft pick, and Heisman trophy winner. After playing in the NFL for the Denver Broncos and the New York Jets, Tebow joined the SEC Network. In addition to his role on SEC Nation, the network's traveling road show, Tebow also contributes to a variety of other ESPN platforms. Through everything Tim's true passion remains the work of the Tim Tebow Foundation, which he began in 2010. The foundation's mission is to bring Faith, Hope, and Love to those needing a brighter day in their darkest hour of need. The foundation fulfills that mission everyday by serving thousands of deserving children around the world.
A.J. Gregory is known for more than thirty-five book collaborations, some New York Times bestsellers, with fascinating high-profile figures from celebrities to scientists. She is also the author of two books, Messy Faith and Silent Savior, which chronicle finding faith in the middle of unavoidable and sometimes harsh realities. A.J., her husband, and three kids call New Jersey home. Learn more at www.ajgregorybooks.com.
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I am sure you have heard of Tebowing and seen photos of the ‘John 3;16’ written in eye black in the NCAA National Championship game in January 2009 to draw attention to this verse of scripture. Tim Tebow is why you are aware of these two phenomena. In Shaken, Tim Tebow’s second book, you will learn interesting facts about these two events he is known for but much more about who Tim Tebow is and what makes him tick. One of the categories this book is listed under is Christian Living and you will learn more about Christian Living from his life experience, much he has never shared before.
This is not a biography but does contain biographical glimpses from his young life so far and his perspective or the rest of the story behind these experiences. If you are a Tim Tebow fan from his college days at Florida or one of his professional teams you will want to read this book. It begins describing his gut-wrenching kick in the teeth when he was cut from the New England Patriots and his story weaves back and forth through his career on the field and his off the field activities which will have a much more lasting effect on those involved and you as well after you read and learn more about those.
I was not a Tim Tebow fan when he was in college since his Florida Gators were a chief rival of my favorite college team, the Alabama Crimson Tide. In his first book he described his decision choosing between these two schools as the one he would attend and play for. I was glad Alabama did beat Tim Tebow and Florida in the 2009 SEC Championship and go on to win the National Championship that year following Florida doing the same, with Tebow leading the way, in the 2008 season. I did respect him and what he had accomplished and what he stood for as a Christian. I just was not a fan.
However, since that time I have become a Tim Tebow fan because of his witness as a Christian. We are brothers in Christ and our paths may never cross in this life but I know they will in the future we will both share in Heaven. That is why I wanted to read this book and am glad I did. Here are some of the highlights and quotes for me from Shaken.
Highlights and quotes:
“If we can understand everything about the God we serve, what kind of god would that be?”
“There will always be people in your life who will underestimate your potential, say that you'll never reach your dream or make that goal, or try to hold you back in some way.”
“It might surprise you to know that some of the deepest wounds I've experienced have come from fellow Christians.”
“Don't get sidetracked by those who don't believe in you or by those who don't understand what it is you are doing. Whenever you dare to do something different, critics of some sort are bound to show up.”
The title of the book is taken from this scripture verse,
“I have set the Lord continually before me; because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.” Psalm 16:8
If you have followed his career you know he has had many opportunities to be shaken. When you read this book you will see he has been shaken but his life is about much more than the public perception as portrayed in the media. How he has responded to these life events is inspirational and will give you hope. His message of good news and his faith journey might change your life.
I encourage you to get Shaken today. As you read and learn how Tim Tebow has faced the challenges in his life this knowledge will help you face the challenges as they arise in your own.
P.S. As I mentioned at the beginning I was fortunate to be on the launch team for this book. That does come with a copy of the book before the release date so we can read it and write our honest reviews. I did that. However, I am also a confirmed purchaser since I have bought more copies to give away. That is the best endorsement I can give. Join me and get your copy or copies today. It will make a great gift.
This short book starts off with inspirational stories related to the author's football career. And some, well, not so inspirational stories, such as when the author is cut from the NFL team. The coach tells Tim that he's just "not the right fit" for the team. Tim leaves the room devastated.
But not all the stories involve football. For example, Tim describes many other "team" outings, such as trips to prison death-row, to hospital beds of sick children, and other Christian outreach events. The theme of each trip is always the same--forget about getting personal accolades. Instead, consider how you can serve others, and honor your Father.
The author explains that spending time serving others sometimes has unexpected benefits. One day, Tim visited a deathly ill boy. In his bedroom, the boy had a large number of memorabilia with Tim's "signature" on each one. Tim sees that the items are fake, and gives the boy "some bad news and some good news.” The items are all forgeries, he explains, but he will make it right by penning the real signature on each one of these items. Naturally, the boy is delighted. Besides that, however, Tim learned a lesson. Before the meeting, Tim had not particularly wanted to make the visit--he did it in spite of his feelings: “Spending time with this precious boy and his parents changed my perspective. It's interesting what happens when you do something in spite of your feelings. Many times, you walk away being blessed by the one you think you're going to bless.”
If you read nothing else in this book, there is one paragraph you MUST NOT MISS! About 4 pages from the end of this book, in a section called “The Difference One Choice Can Make,” read the story about what happened with the young lady and her baby. I bet that you agree that this one story alone makes this book worth reading.
The author mentions one very practical suggestion to the reader. Tim suggests each person should develop something he calls the "Circle of Trust." Find wise friends who can consul you in tough times: "Two or three people that you can trust, count on to pray for you, wrestle with you on big decisions, and offer wise advice." I thought the author's advice was right on. Developing a tight circle of close advisors is a great idea.
So all-in-all, I found SHAKEN to be an inspiring, uplifting read. Probably there's nothing particularly new or outlandish in this book; nevertheless, I still found this book to be an encouragement. It's helpful to see the difficulties this one man went through, and how it made him a stronger believer.
I think this one quote nicely sums up this book: “Society doesn't get to define what's important in my life. Although I may not get a pat on the back or an attaboy from others, I'd rather have my heavenly father be proud of me.”
Advance review copy courtesy of Blogging for Books.
I found this to be a moving story about dreams that hit a wall. A wall that you want with all your heart to get around anyway possible and how one responds. Do you let the wall stop you or do you allow the wall to build you even more into the person that you were created to be. Even Tim realizes that God might have something else in mind rather than what each of us might have in mind. Tim shows us how to accept God's vision through his own acceptance, the people that are placed in your path, choices that you aren't allowed to make and how we respond to all of these situations and continue the journey.
Whether a person likes sports or not doesn't matter in reading this book. It is about life and choices. I don't know anybody that this book will not help and encourage. I encourage parents, young people, even grandparents to read this book and watch you being stirred to more for your life journey.
I was given this book to give my honest review and I loved it enough I've already ordered one for a upcoming birthday! Order it today you will not regret the decision.