Derek Carr is one NFL Quarterback who’s never been shy about expressing his faith.
“What they call work I call worship! Never ashamed of who’s [sic] I am and who brought me here. Yahweh is faithful to those who walk WITH Him! He has given me so many blessings my cup overflows starting with my beautiful family and friends. Then way down the list I get to play football for my job. I just pray I remain faithful with this platform to do His work! Love and appreciate every single one of you. There is a treasure inside all of you! God bless and Go Raiders!”
This week, the Oakland Raiders star quarterback is speaking out about his faith once again after signing the richest contract in NFL history.
The contract, which is $125 million over five years, is unheard of in the history of the National Football League.
After committing to the Raiders for the next half-decade at an annual salary of $25 million, reporters bombarded Carr at a press conference with inquiries about what he plans to do with the money—to which he humbly responded:
“The first thing I’ll do is pay my tithe like I have since I was in college,” Carr told CBS Sports. “Giving $700 on a scholarship check. That won’t change. I’ll do that.”
Today, he’s using his NFL platform as star Oakland Raiders Quarterback to live out his faith. But it hasn’t always been that way.
“I think Christ really became real to me when my wife [who was just a friend at the time]…wrote me a letter, and it said, ‘You’re not the person that I thought you were,’” Carr said in a video released by The Increase Stories in 2014.
The letter from his now-wife was a wakeup call that prompted Carr to radically change his lifestyle, and ask others around him—his teammates—to hold him accountable.
“You guys know what I’ve been doing. I’m a Christian, and I haven’t been living it…I’m a Christian now, and I’ve asked God for his forgiveness. Now, watch how I live my lifestyle.”
Years later, his historical contract parallels the Lord’s command for us in the Bible—that we give the first 10 percent of our earnings to God, and test Him in His faithfulness that we will be blessed beyond measure.
“’Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,’ says the LORD Almighty, ‘and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it.’” Malachi 3:10
But Carr’s financial plans don’t stop at just paying his “duty” of 10 percent.
His stewardship goes above and beyond—taking his blessing, and multiplying it to bless others.
“I’ll probably get my wife something nice, you know, even though she begs me not to… The exciting thing for me money-wise, honestly, is that this money is going to help a lot of people. I’m very thankful to have it, that it’s in our hands, because it’s going to help people, not only in this country, but a lot of countries around the world.”
Of course, like any rational person, the first splurge Carr has in mind with his contract extension is paying a little visit to the home of Truett Cathy’s chicken sandwich:
“Probably Chick-fil-A,” He said. “I’ve been eating clean… I’ll probably get some Chick-fil-A.”
Because there’s no better way to celebrate than with the Lord’s chicken.
Carr says his record-setting contract came with a lot of serious deliberation as to do right by other players in the league. It was important to Carr that other players feel as valued as he does.
“We figured out a way to do it so that we have the opportunity to sign the other guys that I think are important to this organization,” Carr told NFL. “That was really important to me. Not to just take every single dime that we could. I hope that that’s known.” He continues, “I just wanted to get mine done and, like we talked about, make sure the team had the flexibility to make sure my friends stay around.”
Derek Carr’s faith journey is a reflection of what God calls us to—and a reigning example of Luke 16:10, “Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much…”
All the praise to this superstar athlete whose NFL platform is exposing populations of fans and followers to the love and faithfulness of our almighty and AWESOME God.
May others come to know Jesus through the fruitful works and loyal stewardship of Derek Carr.