PODCAST: Fellowship of Christian Athletes Holds Fields of Faith Events (UCNN 10.07.19)

According to Charisma News, Fellowship of Christian Athletes’ student-led events focusing on prayer, worship and a commitment to Bible reading are set for Wednesday, Oct. 9, on 500-plus fields nationwide. Some sports stories can unfortunately take on a negative focus, as headlines pinpoint matters such as locker room unrest, player indiscretions or holdouts on salaries. But the national and international story of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes’ (FCA, www.fca.org) Fields of Faith is laser-focused on the positive—that God is good all the time and that He is raising up a young generation to see the world transformed by His Son, Jesus Christ. The Fields of Faith events will offer hope in a world where students are faced with many challenges, such as hopelessness, loneliness, depression, suicide, drugs, alcohol and more.

According to Christian Headlines, This weekend, Lauren Daigle made history with her hit song “You Say” by staying put as the No. 1 song on Billboard’s Hot Christian Songs for 62 weeks, according to Fox News. At 62 weeks atop the Billboard’s Hot Christian Songs, “You Say” now holds the record for the longest time a song has stayed in the number one spot on the chart. The previous contender, “Oceans” by Hillsong United, was the inspiration behind the 28-year-old’s success. Oceans sat at number one on the chart for 61 weeks. “I really pondered the journey of the song ‘Oceans,’ and I remember seeing the impact that song made on so many people. It was just so beautiful to me,” Daigle told Billboard. “I hoped that I could be a part of something that shakes the earth like that song. I didn’t know that would ever happen, and I had no idea that ‘You Say’ would be something that would parallel the life of ‘Oceans.’” Her accomplishment came days after she announced her first-ever headline arena world tour, starting in Australia. Daigle wrote “You Say” after her first Dove Awards Show.

According to The Christian Post, ESPN football analyst Tim Tebow was in Waco, Texas, where he made a surprise visit to the Alfred D. Hughes maximum-security prison on Thursday. “So encouraged by what God is doing at Alfred Hughes prison and grateful for the time spent with my new brothers in Christ today!” the outspoken Christian wrote on Instagram. Alfred D. Hughes maximum-security prison holds over 2,000 inmates and Tebow met with a group of them there where he shared the Gospel and even took part in a push-ups contest that he lost. TMZ reported that he was defeated 84-71 in the push-up competition. “Excited to see how they will use their lives for the Kingdom as they grow closer to God and encourage others to live in faith,” he shared. The Florida Gators Heisman Trophy winner thanked the warden and the entire staff for opening their doors to him. In a separate Instagram post, Tebow shared a photo of himself and some of the inmates pointing up to God. “Beyond blessed to spend time encouraging new brothers in Christ and that through Jesus they can have hope for a better tomorrow, and an eternity in heaven!” he wrote.

According to the New York Times, Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders suffered from a heart attack this week before being released from a Las Vegas hospital Friday. The 78-year-old entered the hospital on Tuesday evening after experiencing chest pain at a campaign event, which caused him to cancel campaign events this week. The campaign previously announced that Sanders had two stents inserted, but his Las Vegas doctors announced Friday that he was given a diagnosis of a myocardial infarction—also known as a heart attack. The candidate was seen leaving the hospital Friday, waving and pumping a fist. “After two and a half days in the hospital, I feel great, and after taking a short time off, I look forward to getting back to work,” he said in a statement. Sanders’ campaign said the senator would be returning home to Vermont by the end of the week, and confirmed that he would be participating in the next Democratic debate on Oct. 15.

According to The Christian Post, Gordon College, a flagship evangelical higher education institution in Massachusetts, has announced the reception of a financial donation of over $75 million dollars that it will put toward scholarships as enrollment has dipped in recent years. The 130-year-old liberal arts college launched its “Faith Rising” campaign to raise $130 million to “meet the evolving and dynamic needs of current and future students around affordability, academics and community.” The campaign was announced last weekend as the university celebrated a $75.5 million lead gift from an anonymous donor that was dedicated to the college’s endowment and directed to fund student scholarships. A news release explains the Faith Rising campaign actually began three years ago with a “quiet phase” but was publicly launched last Friday during the institution’s homecoming weekend, where the $75.5 million was announced. According to the college, the $75.5 million gift is “one of the largest donations ever given to a Christian liberal arts college.”

According to The Jerusalem Post, Demi Lovato may have posted an apology for her Israel visit last week on her Instagram account, but her mother, Dianna De La Garza, who accompanied the singing star on the trip, posted on Instagram that she would “unapologetically go again one day.” “Praying at the Western Wall with my beautiful daughter @ddlovato in the Old City of Jerusalem was the highlight of my trip to Israel,” De La Garza wrote on Friday next to a photo of her hand and her daughter’s pressed against the stones of the Western Wall. “I will never forget that day… or that trip as we celebrated life and Christianity as we learned about the Jewish faith while listening to the Muslim call to prayer. There was no fighting, no judgement, no cruel words… only love. And I will undoubtedly, unapologetically go again one day.” As of Sunday morning, the post had over 31,000 likes. While the singer’s mother may literally have stood with her daughter at the Wall and on the trip, the last hashtag, #istandwithdemi, is ironic, given that Lovato posted (and then deleted) an apology to those she may have offended – presumably BDS activists and others who criticized her for ignoring the Israel-Palestinian conflict and posting enthusiastically about what she saw and felt in Israel.

According to People, Selena Gomez is speaking out about her hiatus from the public spotlight and her mental health journey. Nearly one year ago, the singer went off the grid as she announced she would be taking a break from social media. A source later told PEOPLE she had checked herself into a facility for help with her mental health. Gomez has now opened up about what she called the “scariest” time of her life — and her decision to finally seek help — while receiving the 2019 McLean Award at the McLean Hospital’s annual dinner held on September 13 in Massachusetts. “I think that we are better when we tell the truth and, so, this is my truth,” she began her acceptance speech, shared by a fan account on Instagram. “Last year, I was suffering mentally and emotionally, and I wasn’t able to stay all that kept together. I wasn’t able to hold a smile or to keep things normal. It felt like all of my pain and my anxiety washed over me all at once and it was one of the scariest moments of my life,” she added. Gomez then explained that after she sought out help, doctors were able to give her a clear diagnosis, which she said was both terrifying and a relief. “Terrified, obviously, because the veil was lifted, but relieved that I finally had the knowledge of why I had suffered for so many years with depression and anxiety,” the actress explained. With her new knowledge, she said she felt equipped to face it head-on. And while it is still an ongoing battle, Gomez admitted that she is in a much better place a year later. “After a year of a lot of intense work … I am happier, I am healthier, and I am in control of my emotions and thoughts more than I’ve ever been,” she said with a smile. “So, I’m very happy about that.” Gomez went on to say that while it isn’t easy to share her story with the world, she knows that others will benefit from hearing it. “For me, it feels right to share that I have personally felt the effects of both depression and anxiety — but it isn’t easy. I have feared being misunderstood and judged,” she explained. “I know that I have been given experiences and people and opportunities that have made my life exceptionally beautiful and sweet — and yet I struggle with my own thoughts and feelings at times. But this doesn’t make me faulty. This does not make me weak. This does not make me less than. This makes me human. We need help, and we need each other.” Her openness about her struggles is why the McLean Hospital decided to honor her at their annual dinner. Their award recognizes “individuals who have furthered the public’s understanding of psychiatric illness and mental health,” per their website. The singer shared a photo from the evening on her Instagram, thanking the hospital and its staff for their support and for the recognition. “So humbled to have been part of the incredible McLean Hospital’s Annual Dinner and was honored to be able to share a bit of my story,” she wrote. “These are the moments where I am so grateful for the platform God has given me.”

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In closing, remember, God loves you. He always has and He always will. 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.” If you don’t know Jesus as your Saviour, today is a good day to get to know Him. Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died, was buried, and rose from the dead for you. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart and He will. Romans 10:13 says, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Thanks so much for listening and may God bless your day!