Tim Tebow’s rise to popularity and expressions of his Christian faith are well documented, but will it last? Tebow, and the popular act of #Tebowing (taking a knee and assuming a prayer like posture) may now be replaced with… #Linsanity?
Jeremy Lin was a relative unknown in the NBA. Just a few weeks ago he was on the bench for the New York Knicks and now Jeremy Lin has helped his team win five straight games. On February 14th, he had a buzzer beater shot that won the game for the New York Knicks. Asian-Americans and other sportswriters have dubbed him the “Taiwanese Tebow”.
So, what’s up with all these Tebow connections? Jeremy Lin is a Christian and made his faith very public after a big win:
Lin, when asked about a clutch shot for a win, thanked, “My Lord Jesus Christ… I’m blessed.” That’s not just one mention, but on February 13th, Lin expressed similar praise for his faith in Jesus:
“I’m just thankful to God for everything. Like the Bible says, ‘God works in all things for the good of those who love him.’”
Much like Tim Tebow, Lin uses social media to share his faith. His Twitter stream contains many tweets of faith:
Awesome church service to start 2012! My new years resolution: love God more deeply and intimately by dec 31 than I did on jan 1
— Jeremy Lin (@JLin7) January 1, 2012
Thankful to God for the opportunity to be a New York Knick!! Time to find my winter coats from college lol
— Jeremy Lin (@JLin7) December 27, 2011
And, his public faith doesn’t stop there. When asked if Lin can believe his rise to popularity and success, he merely said: “No, but I believe in an all-powerful and all-knowing God who does miracles.”
All of this is big business too. Tickets for New York Knick games have shot up in value, seating is limited, and tickets through StubHub went up 108% in value. Lin jerseys are selling like hot cakes for the Knicks and people are scrambling to trademark “Linsanity”. As you can see, this is truly insanity about Jeremy Lin.
Not everyone is so affirming of Jeremy Lin and the New York Knicks. American boxer Floyd Mayweather thinks the hype is all about ethnicity:
Jeremy Lin is a good player but all the hype is because he's Asian. Black players do what he does every night and don't get the same praise.
— Floyd Mayweather (@FloydMayweather) February 13, 2012
Though Lin does not yet have a signature move, like Tebowing, but Lin’s name and likeness have been replaced by “Lin-sanity”. Linsanity is reaching a fever pitch. As I have discussed before, the hype surrounding a Christian professional athlete rising to success is hyped by the fans. Sportswriters also are adding to the “Linsanity”. However, unlike Tebow, very few Asian-Americans find success in the NBA. #Linsanity is also a trending term on Twitter, Google, and Facebook.
Is this a new trend? Professional athletes coming out of the shadows to publicly proclaim their faith? That is still unseen, but through social media, those who do, will be welcomed by adoring Christians who proudly wear their faith and Linsanity on their sleeve.