WWF Superstar Goes Public With His Faith

 

Professional wrestling’s Million Dollar Man took an unusual turn after he met Jesus during a 1993 youth convention in Chicago: He went underground.

by Ken Rodriquez

While other celebrity athletes emerged on the Christian speaking circuit only months after their conversions, Ted DiBiase disappeared from public view. Declining invitations to share his testimony, DiBiase embraced a rigorous discipleship program.

Only recently has DiBiase begun sharing how God humbled a World Wrestling Federation superstar. His story, Every Man Has His Price: The True Story of Wrestling’s Million Dollar Man (Multnomah), was released last fall.

A defining moment in DiBiase’s new life unfolded on the day of his conversion. As a man approached him about sharing his testimony, a friend intervened, "I said, ‘Ted won’t be giving any testimonies for two years,’" Hal Santos said.

Santos, pastor of Full Gospel Tabernacle in Fairview Heights, Ill., had invited the wrestling star to the youth convention. When DiBiase made a public profession of faith, Santos took responsibility for discipleship.

Santos taught DiBiase how to pray, encouraged him to read Scriptures and made sure DiBiase became accountable for his actions while traveling with the WWF.

"I needed those two years," says DiBiase, 44. "I went through some real growing pains. I fell on my face a number of times, but I said, ‘Lord, don’t give up on me.’"

DiBiase, his marriage restored, is managing world champion tag-team partners, the Steiner Brothers, and telling his story. "I want to share the joy Jesus has put in my life," he says.

DiBiase speaks before thousands at churches and rallies all over the world. He does not regret the way Santos brought him along slowly—allowing him only a few speaking engagements after his two-year discipleship in 1993 and 1994.

"Ted didn’t speak in our church until 1996," Santos adds. "I would recommend Ted without any reservation to speak because he went through the process of time."


Reprinted by Permission, Charisma Magazine.