God Reports
11/30/15 at 04:04 PM 0 Comments

Christian football receiver sets new record for UCLA, offers thanksgiving to God

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Jordan Payton

By Mark Ellis and Michael Ashcraft

When Jordan Payton outstripped UCLA’s record for receptions, he thanked hard work, his parents and God.

“Just a true blessing – something we all set out to do when you play football if you want to leave a legacy wherever you’re at,” Payton said. “For me, just staying dedicated, staying true to myself, trust in the Lord. He was just blessing me by allowing me to break the record.”

Payton caught his 194th pass on Nov. 21, surpassing the previous benchmark set by Craig Bragg in 2001-04. With seven catches for 105 yards, Payton helped the Bruins upset Pac-12 leader Utah and keep alive UCLA’s hopes for a championship game.

After four years at UCLA, Payton has caught passes for 2,600 yards and 13 touchdowns. With size, strength, speed and sticky hands, he has also caught the attention of several NFL teams.

Rising fame has not shaken him from his Christian roots.

“For me, Christianity is my lifeline,” Payton said. “As I become more noticed and people can recognize me more, I just depend on God more and depend on His works, and to lead people to Him. For me, I use it as a tool. I pray every day, pray with the team, after practice and before practice, before the games and after the games. I just continue to walk with Him and lead people into His path.”

Payton is not the only Christian on the Bruins. “Of 110 guys on the team, 90 to 95 guys pray before and after games,” he said. “The Fellowship of Christian Athletes have a great turnout to all their meetings. The chaplain before games, we have a great turnout. So guys are definitely walking with the Lord.

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