Men of God Spotlight :: Dwight Howard

issue-6-dwight-small.gifMEN OF GOD SPOTLIGHT :: DWIGHT HOWARD
This Basketball phenom takes a stand for God.


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Who is he:

After graduating high school, most of us had dreams of graduating from college and being successful in a particular career. We envisioned the house that we would have, the car that we would drive, and many of the luxuries that we would enjoy based upon our hard work. Dwight Howard had a different vision for his life.

Blessed with an amazing talent in basketball, he dreamed of going straight to the NBA. A McDonald’s All-American and Gatorade Player of the Year out of Southwest Atlanta Christian Academy, Dwight became a guaranteed lottery pick in the NBA draft. His goal had been to be the first overall pick and the Orlando Magic made that dream a into a reality by selecting Dwight with the first pick of the 2004 NBA Draft. He was young, talented, and now he had become extremely wealthy. What would the effect of his fame be on who he was as a person?

His Faith:

Dwight is known not only for his game, but also for his faith in Christ. He publicly talked about his goal of changing the image of the NBA. The NBA has image has been criticized for years, tarnished by player’s attitudes and arrests. Dwight talked about his vision of a cross being incorporated into the NBA logo, even though revealing this vision could lead to persecution and the loss of money in endorsements. He discussed ways that he would share his faith with other players in the league as well as fans that he met along the way. While so many other stars in professional sports concern themselves with the popularity and money, Dwight’s main concern has remained the same: to be used by God, in a position that God has placed him in, to show people the love of Christ.

Dwight has vowed to keep from compromising his faith in his business affairs, as well as in his actions. He promised to avoid any situations that would cause people to question his faith or turn people away from Christ. The words were there, but could he live up to it? He had placed himself under the microscope of a world that loves to see Christians fall.
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What can we learn from him:

Most of us enjoy being seen and getting attention. At nineteen years old, few people can handle fame and wealth while trying to stand firm to their convictions. Most would fall into the traps that Satan had set up, but Dwight keeps his guard up, understanding that there is a greater reward for standing firm and avoiding the temporary pleasures that the world has to offer. Dwight stands on a court each night with thousands of people chanting his name. For many of us, it would be easy to get caught up in the moment, yet Dwight sees it as an opportunity to shift the spotlight to Christ.

He lives out a faith that is the foundation of his family. This faith, more electrifying than anything he has ever done in a game, is not simply a life choice, but rather an entire way of life. His entourage consists of his father and a cousin who live with him and help him along the way, to avoid falling into the temptations that are so prevalent in our society. He has talked with David Robinson, former center of the San Antonio Spurs, seeking advice on how to stay strong in this new life that he is living.

Dwight’s faith has brought about the question of marketability of a Christian. The belief is that many companies will shy away from someone with such an outspoken faith. Though this could be a reality, the whole issue does not seem to bother Dwight. He simply says that he will get the amount of money that God wants him to have and that it will be used to glorify God, not himself. There are athletes who will hold out because they are only making $10 million and they want more, but Dwight emerges with an attitude of sacrifice. He understands that it could cost him, but if it does, God will have a plan for him regardless of what endorsements he obtains.

He plays the game of basketball because of the love that he has for a sport, but his life is lived in a such a manner to show people who is his first love. He speaks of the most important person in his life, Jesus Christ. He has a goal and a dream: to change this world, one person at a time.

  • Katie Kepp

    It is greatly encouraging as a young person to see that there ARE professional athletes and people that pop culture looks up to that take a stand for Christ. Very few people in Dwight’s position would take the spotlight and turn it back to God.

  • Sarah

    I like to see people like him I pray that God blesses him and I thank God for him. This is crazy because this is also my dream to be able to share Christ with my teamates and fans.

  • Missy

    I love that you’re a christian Dwight. You’re a great inspiration to me. I’m hoping to play college ball and still have great faith in God. You’re a good guy!

  • http://Myspace.com/Odelya_Music_Addict Odelya

    Wow.
    This Makes Me Have Faith In The Fact That
    There Are Good People Who God Uses In The Spolight.
    Not Just Messed Up Drugged Up People That Arent Strong Enough To Handle Fame And Fortune With Morality.
    Dwight Howard IS Superman.
    He Encourages Me And This Made My Dayyyyyy!!
    I LOVE DWIGHT HOWARDDDDWow.
    This Makes Me Have Faith In The Fact That
    There Are Good People Who God Uses In The Spolight.
    Not Just Messed Up Drugged Up People That Arent Strong Enough To Handle Fame And Fortune With Morality.
    Dwight Howard IS Superman.
    He Encourages Me And This Made My Dayyyyyy!!
    I LOVE DWIGHT HOWARDDDD<3

  • RICHARD DY

    This article encourages me a lot. I didn’t know till the time I read this article that Dwight Howard is a Christian. Praise God for people like him who has been vocal about his faith in Jesus. Just a few players in the NBA are as vocal as Dwight as far as his faith in Jesus is concerned. I’m currently a full-time campus missionary here in the Philippines, reaching to college athletes. Ata tender young age of 23 or 22, Dwight has a long way to go in impacting the way the game is played, and more importantly, how a player can LIVE HIS LIFE TO FULL as a Christian in a league that has been tainted with many off-court controversies among the various NBA players in the past. God bless you Dwight!!!

  • Gabrielle Anderson

    Dwight Howard.
    Man what can I say about him.
    There is nothing wrong or bad about him.
    He is a great person, role model for the young. And inspiration for many others.
    Im hoping to meet him in the future, hopefully soon.
    My mom met him like 3 times, and I have only been within like 200 feet of him. lol. BUT he is my number idol and i am his #1 fan :D
    Dwight is a perfect example of a follower of Christ. Continue to have God in your life D. H.

    God Bless.
    -Gabby :)

  • Ka’leah

    I’am thankful that their are people like u in dis world u r a role model. A insprantal peron . 1 off the cutest person in the nba . And i hope 2 meet a man just like u.

  • Sharifa

    I watched you on TV at the All-Star Game and was impressed by your height and skill, but I was more impressed to read that you are a man of God. It’s a blessing to see people, especilaly young people, taking their stand for God seriously and not just as a temorary relationship when in trouble. I hope to meet you one day and discuss how things are going, but moreover I pray that you continue to shine and encourage the way God has planned for you. Don’t give up your faith and stand firm in the will of God. I will too. Thanks for this article.

  • http://msn.com Travis

    You are my favorite basketball player and I look up to you. Not only literally. lol,but from a 16 year old stand point on my walk with God. You are a great player, but more importantly a Great Person. There have to be people like Dwight Howard in this world at that high of a position and with the publicity that he gets. I just love the fact that he is so out spoken about his faith and the faith that we all need to share in order to be successful. Just keep your eyes on the prize.I will leave you with this scripture and one of my favorites “I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus”. Phillipians 3:14. I would love to meet you someday and talk with you but till then stand firm and strong on the word and keep doing what you are doing. Travis Williams.

  • Preston

    He’s up to 5 kids by 5 baby mamas…. very impressive. Real Christian values.

  • Preston
  • Preston

    You are thankful that their are people who have 5 kids by 5 women? smh.