NFL Hall of Famer and former Buffalo Bills quarterback Jim Kelly recently shared how much God has changed his life following his recent public declaration of faith during a baptism over the summer.
The 63-year-old who led the Bills to four Super Bowl appearances in the 1990s, took to Instagram last week to share a video of his baptism in a swimming pool.
“I’m not a man of many words and I don’t speak ‘Christianese.’ All I know is that God changed my life,” Kelly wrote in his post. “After Hunter [my son] went to heaven I was so lost and angry at God. But God loved me anyway and he never gave up on me.”
Kelly’s son, Hunter, died in 2005 at the age of 8 due to a rare genetic condition called Krabbe disease. Before his passing in 2002, Kelly gave a tribute to his son during his Pro Football Hall of Fame acceptance speech.
Kelly has also endured battles with a cancer called squamous cell carcinoma in his upper jaw. After undergoing a surgical procedure for his cancer, the illness returned to his body in 2018, requiring more surgery.
In his Instagram post, Kelly stressed that “God helped me humble myself and seek him for help.”
“Becoming a Christian is the best decision I’ve made in my life,” Kelly stressed. “I wish I would’ve come to him sooner. But, His timing is perfect.”
“Finally, I was baptized. I have so many people to thank especially all of the people who have prayed for me for so long. THANK YOU.”
In his post, Kelly thanked his friends and his men’s fellowship group for helping him to “be a better man.”
He also expressed gratitude to his wife, Jill, for never abandoning him and encouraging him in his faith and thanked his two daughters for helping him be a better dad.
“Thank you Hunter. It’s because of you that I know Jesus and I will see you again,” Kelly stated.
Jill Kelly also posted a video and graphics of her husband’s baptism.
“The very best of Summer 2023. Jim’s t-shirt says, ‘God’s Real.’ He is,” Jill Kelly wrote on Instagram.
“I have witnessed God at work in this man’s life for over 30 years. … And I can tell you that God isn’t just REAL, He is faithful, trustworthy, kind, loving, compassionate, powerful, gracious, GOOD, merciful, forgiving … and so so much MORE.”
In another Instagram post, Jill Kelly discussed her thoughts on the meaning of baptism and what it means to have had her husband partake in the declaration of faith.
“For those wondering, … here’s what I know and understand about baptism: it’s biblical,” she wrote.
“Jesus is our example. He was dedicated to the Lord as a baby and baptized as an adult before starting His earthly ministry. It’s an act of obedience,” she added, referring to Matthew 28:19-20.
“It’s an outward expression of an inward change of heart. A change of heart that comes through faith in Christ that only God can ultimately provide. It’s a move of faith that unites us to Christ and His people,” she concluded in the post, referencing Ephesians 3:20-21.
Pastor Derwin Gray, who played for the Indianapolis Colts from 1993 to 1997, commented underneath Jim Kelly’s social media post:
“Let’s go! We are in the same team now! Team Jesus,” Gray wrote.
Before baptizing Jim Kelly, his pastor spoke optimistically about Kelly’s spiritual journey.
It’s been “15 years of Bible study and prayer and growth,” the pastor said.
“We’re proud of you, how far you’ve come, and where you’re going, it’s even better.”
The pastor asked Kelly if he loved Jesus, and the former QB shouted:
“Yes, I do.”
Nicole Alcindor is a reporter for The Christian Post.
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