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The 49ers’ Christian McCaffrey explains surrendering to God

Christian McCaffrey playing in NFC Championship game.


Cerith Gardiner - published on 02/08/24

The young running back for the San Francisco 49ers is happy to share his faith on and off the field.

On Sunday, the San Francisco 49ers will be taking on the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LVIII. While there’s been much chat about the Chiefs’ Travis Kelce and Taylor Swift, there is another star on the opposing team who has both talent and faith: running back Christian McCaffrey.

The devout Catholic attributes much of his success to his unwavering faith. As reported in the San Francisco Chronicle, the 27-year-old openly shares that he turns to prayer both on the sidelines and in the huddle, seeking not only the opportunity to play honorably, but also asking for the well-being of his teammates and opponents:

My faith is very important to me,” McCaffrey emphasizes. “When you have a bunch of people chanting your name, it’s important that you give the honor and glory back to the person, God, that’s allowing me to do this.”

Hailing from a family deeply rooted in athletics and having attended a Catholic elementary school, McCaffrey’s faith journey has been integral to his life on and off the field. Even during his college years at Stanford, the football player made it known that his dedication to the game went beyond mere football, driven by his strong faith in God.

Faith off the field

As a two-time Pro Bowler and a recipient of the NFC Offensive Player of the Week, McCaffrey’s impact on the field is undeniable. His influence extends beyond the game itself; he frequently shares Bible verses on social media, as shared by Sports Spectrum, offering glimpses into his spiritual convictions and the peace he finds in surrendering to God.

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A post shared by Christian McCaffrey (@christianmccaffrey)

Teammates like quarterback Brock Purdy attest to McCaffrey’s positive influence within the team. Purdy acknowledges the running back as a beacon of Christian faith and camaraderie, emphasizing the importance of having fellow believers to lean on amidst the rigors of professional football. “To have guys that believe in the Lord and can help you and pour into you with their experiences and everything, I found that huge,” Purdy reflects.

Surrendering to God

For McCaffrey, surrendering to God isn’t just a gesture; it’s a source of strength and solace. As he explained in an interview with Queen City News:

When you have a ‘why,’ you can endure everything, and I think when your faith is strong, when you understand what’s going on in your life … you just turn to God and surrender. For me, what was the biggest weight off my back was that word — just keep telling myself, ‘Surrender.’ You’re not in control as much as you think you are, and that’s a gift.”

No doubt during Sunday’s Super Bowl, McCaffrey will be striving to give honor and glory back to God, and if you see him raise a finger in the air, you’ll know exactly who he’s pointing to.

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