He is an Irish singer, songwriter, musician, and philanthropist. He is best known as the frontman for the rock band U2. He is responsible for writing almost all U2 lyrics which often consist of religious, social, and political themes. Outside of music, he is widely known for his activism concerning Africa, for which he co-founded DATA, EDUN, the ONE Campaign and Product Red. Among many awards, nominations, and mentions, he was granted a knighthood by Queen Elizabeth II, was given the Man of Peace award in 2008, the NAACP Image Award’s Chairman’s Award in 2007, and was named a Time Person of the Year alongside Bill and Melinda Gates in 2005. In 2013, he was made a Commander of the French Order of Arts and Letters. He was also named the most politically effective celebrity of all time by the National Journal. He has been married for over 30 years and he and his wife have four children.
In an interview with Focus on the Family, he spoke about his faith in Jesus Christ. He said, “For people who have a hard time with Jesus being the Messiah, Jesus isn’t letting you off the hook. The Scriptures don’t let you off the hook so easily. When people say [Jesus is a] ‘Good teacher’, ‘Prophet’, ‘Really nice guy’, this is not how Jesus thought of Himself. So you’re left with a challenge, which is either Jesus was who He said He was or a complete and utter nut case. You have to make a choice on that. And I believe that Jesus was, you know, the Son of God.”
Making a connection between his faith and his activist work, he said, “It’s very annoying following this person of Christ around, because he’s very demanding of your life. You don’t have to go to university and get a Ph.D. to understand this stuff. You just go to the person of Christ… We have a pastor who said to us, ‘Stop asking God to bless what you’re doing. Find out what God is doing, because it’s already blessed.’ And when you align yourself with God’s purpose as described in the Scriptures, something special happens to your life. You’re in alignment.”
In an interview with Michka Assayas, he said, “The point of the death of Christ is that Christ took on the sins of the world so that what we put out did not come back to us, and that our sinful nature does not reap the obvious death. That’s the point. It should keep us humbled… it’s not our own good works that get through the gates of heaven… If only we could be a bit more like Him, the world would be transformed.”
His name is Paul David Hewson, better known as Bono.
He is an American freestyle skier. He won the gold medal at the Winter X Games #16 in the SuperPipe in 2012, 2013, and 2014. He also won gold at the 2013 FIS Freestyle World Ski Championships. Most recently, at 23-years-old, he went to the winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, and returned home with a gold medal in Men’s Halfpipe.
He became a Christian as a teenager and his faith is an important part of how he sees himself as a competitor and athlete. He said, “For me, if you’re going to go so far as to believe something, then it really should be a big part of whom you are. So, whenever I’m out there skiing, I try to be the same person as a skier as I am in church on Sundays. I try to be the same in everything that I do. I really feel blessed and fortunate to be a part of such a cool sport.” He added that his dream is to “take what I love to do and inspire other people…Show people that the world is beautiful. Yes, there’s ugliness mixed in, but God created us all with the potential of enjoying this place.”
He and his wife run the youth group at their church in Nevada and he said he could even see himself as “a pastor of a church at some point.” “If that’s the way it works out, or if that’s God’s plan for my life, then that’s something I’d be totally okay with, but if not, then I’ll do whatever else comes.” In the meantime, he runs a non-profit fund called the Clean Water Project, which aims to provide clean drinking water to people in Malawi.
She is an American speed skater who has competed in the sport since 2006. She was named to the U.S. team for the 2010 Winter Olympics and reached 12th place in the 3000 meter competition and 8th place in the 5000 meter competition. She won the 3,000-meter women’s speedskating event at the Olympic Trials in Salt Lake City, Utah, on December 27, 2013. She is currently competing with the U.S. Olympic team in Sochi, Russia, at the 2014 Winter Olympics.
When she started training for the Olympics in 2006, she had every reason to give up. For two years, she had to search for the right coach, had very little financial support, and had to work to pay for groceries, rent, and coaching. On top of that, her father passed away in 2001, and her mother began undergoing chemo treatments before passing away soon after. Many people around her expected her to quit and give up on her dreams, but she had her faith in God to rely on.
She said, “I had accepted Christ just before I made the decision to train for the Olympics in ice speed skating in 2006. I was training at a gym and I started pouring out some of my troubles to a woman. Without hesitation, she asked me if I would like to pray. We prayed right then and there on the floor at the gym. I said yes, and that is when the magic started to happen. It goes to show that God is everywhere! God is on the floor of my local gym and He is in my bedroom at 3 a.m. when I am pouring my life out to Him!”
Her faith is a source of strength and inspiration for the times when she feels like giving up. She said, “it was strange that God didn’t solve all of my problems. But it seemed as though He was giving me the strength to handle more!” She had to remind herself every day why she was pursuing her dream. She told herself that whether she succeeded or failed, she would learn something. She said, “I realize that it’s not about me at all. It’s about finishing what I started… I’ve just kept growing since the time I accepted Christ, and it’s not anything sudden. I realize now that I’m never going to stop learning.” She thanks God every day for the lessons He has taught her in her journey. Even with the risks of moving, training, and uncertain outcomes, she says there is one thing she has learned, and that is: “Success is not defined by the outcome, but by the courage it takes to chase God-sized dreams.”
She is an American bobsledder who has competed in the sport since 2007. She won the silver in the bobsled two-woman event with Shauna Rohbock at the 2009 FIBT World Championships in Lake Placid, New York. Named to the U.S. team in 2010, she along with Erin Pac won the bronze medal at the 2010 Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver. In 2013, she and brake-woman Katie Eberling won the silver at the FIBT World Championships in St. Moritz. She is currently competing in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.
Though she always dreamed of being an Olympian, it wasn’t an easy road to get there. Before taking up bobsledding, she was the first softball recruit at George Washington University and quickly set nearly every offensive record. However, she said, “My sophomore year, our softball team was doing really badly and our season ended up getting canceled. So, that being the center of my life, I got really depressed. I didn’t know what to do and I didn’t know what my purpose was. I just started researching religions. Something inside of me told me I needed more than this.” While reading a book about spiritual things over Christmas break, she became overwhelmed with emotion, and said of that time, “It hit me that Jesus is the way. I can’t explain it by anything other than that. It was so strong and powerful; I knew that I needed to change my life.” When she returned to George Washington University, she began to understand what it means to be a Christ-follower. She joined Athletes in Action, began studying the Word, and growing in her faith.
In 2003, she was invited to try out for the 2004 Olympic softball team but the experience did not go well; she says she “crashed and burned.” After retiring in 2007, she took up bobsledding and she has worked hard to become one of the top female bobsledders in the country. After winning the bronze in 2010, she said, “To walk away with a medal was the accomplishment of a lifelong dream. It’s hard to put into words how incredible that experience was. That’s one of those moments when you know how real God is. I think I won that medal to glorify Him. One of the big reasons I was put in bobsled is to help people not only reach their goals, but come to Christ. God put me here for a specific reason and I don’t think it’s just to win medals. At the end of the day, I’m in this sport to glorify God, so if that means I come in last place or I win the gold medal, that’s what I’m going to do.”
He is a tight end for the Denver Broncos. Before going to the Broncos in 2012, he was drafted in the fourth round of the 2008 NFL Draft by the Indianapolis Colts. He played college football for the University of Kentucky, and as a senior, he earned first-team All-SEC honors from both the Associated Press and the coaches polls.
In 2007, he was named the SEC Scholar Athlete of the Year and elected to the first-team Academic All-America squad by the College Sports Information Directors of America. He was the 2007 recipient of the Bobby Bowden Award, a national honor presented by the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.
He helped his teams, the Colts and the Broncos, win the AFC Championship, the Colts in 2009 and the Broncos 2013. He recently helped to lead his team, the Denver Broncos, to a Super Bowl berth in the January 19th’s AFC Championship Game against the New England Patriots. His team played the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl 48 on February 2, 2014.
He said of his faith, “I’ve been blessed with two great parents who taught me how to do things the right way and that provided a great foundation for my spiritual life. Today, I am very thankful to have a life partner in my wife and a son. This has given me a great responsibility to lead my family in our faith, relationship with Christ, and provide the same foundation that my parents provided for me. To me, this is the thing that matters most in life.”
“My faith is important because it’s the core of why I believe we exist as humans. Faith allows us to spend an eternity with God and it fuels my every day actions. I’ve seen how having faith in God can change lives and it certainly has changed mine….God has to come first in all of our lives, then family second. Everything else that we chose in life comes after. Football is very consuming and I love being able to go out and compete week in and week out, but you have to elevate the other two (faith and family) because they are most important and the cornerstones of our lives.”