Prayers for the Week — God is our Refuge

God-Our-Help_scripture This week, my friends has seen a lot of troubles for believers and non-believers alike.  As a result, I thought I would share with you all my belief — and I can think of no greater verse to share with you today than Psalm 46:1, as depicted in the photo above:

“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.”

Such a simple verse, isn’t it, and yet, it is packed with such power!  When I read this, I immediately knew that, regardless of the problems I face or anyone, for that matter, faces, if we rely on our God, He will provide, and He will take care of us.

My friends, I have praises and prayer requests aplenty this week, so let’s get right down to business, remembering, though, as we read, that God is with us — if we invite Him to join us!

Praises!

Lord, we have so much to be thankful for!  Let’s take a moment to thank You for all of the blessings that you have bestowed on us!

  • I first want to take a moment to thank you for my family — night and day, through thick and thin, regardless of the circumstances, we know that there is Love in our family — and that because of that, we can get through everything that the world throws our way.
  • Lord, I also want to thank you for the blessing we have of having our health, and our jobs as well.  While the world struggles at times with feelings of entitlement and laziness, most of us strive to improve ourselves through good old fashioned hard work — something that many people have forgotten the definition for.
  • Lord, I also want to thank you for the blessing of being able to study your word in a country where doing so will not land you in jail, or persecuted in other ways.  It is something that those of us in the United States and other free countries take for granted at times, I think, but I try to remember to thank you for the blessings of freedom.
  • Lord, I also want to praise you for ANSWERED PRAYERS!  This became evident as recently as this past Friday, when a dear Sister in Christ was full of despair, and simply through the act of prayer, you gave her that special Peace that only you can do — and once she had Peace, the answer to her problem was revealed by You, so thank YOU for helping her!  Likewise, my dear niece Stephanie, who faces many trials and tribulations, has at least had some prayers answered — she now has more information than she had previously, and with Your help, and Your blessing upon her team of doctors, You will see her through this, You will keep her husband Shane safe, and You will see Stephanie restored to the healthy, vibrant Child of God that we know her to be!  Thank You Lord in advance!
  • Lord, I lastly want to thank you for all of the other things you do for us — things seen and unseen, asked for and only thought about, and prayers that you answer when we don’t even know how to frame them in words.  Thank You, God, for all that You give us, especially for your Son Jesus!

Prayer Requests

  •  Lord, while we saw direct evidence of how Your Will can conquer considerable hurtles, still, that family has many needs.  My Sister in Christ’s son is a veteran of our armed forces, and he suffers from PTSD.  Lord, please stay with him and help him with this tragic disease, heal him if it is your Will, and keep him safe.  Thank You Lord for answering these prayers for us!
  • Lord, please keep Stephanie close to You, and Shane also, so that they may both make it through their challenges and be reunited in two short months.  Lord, Thank You in advance for staying close to them during this time, and may their love for one another be even stronger than it was before Shane left for training.
  • Lord, while this seems small perhaps, I want to ask for your prayers for my friends Jodi and Mary, Amanda and Chip and Jeff.  We had a server experience issues, and that caused all of our sites, mine included, to have difficulty during this week.  Hardest hit was my dear friend Mary, who’s site lost data all the way back to February!  While a loss for me is more in the “inconvenience” role because I don’t do as much with my site, for Mary and Jodi, a loss of that magnitude ends up being a huge financial burden on them, espeically Mary, because of her online store.  It was a big support failure, and we have learned lessons, but Mary is going through some huge amounts of work to recreate things that were lost.  Lord, please, if it is Your Will, help Mary by giving her the ideas that she needs to not only recover from her loss, but turn it into a huge gain now — and down the road.  Thank You in advance for helping us out!
  • Lord, I just found out that my friend Bambi, who’s daughter is only two years old — is sick and is being looked at.  Lord, I know what it’s like when your child is sick, and also how scary it can be for both the family and the child, so Lord, while we don’t know what the problem is, we know that You do, and we ask that You guide the skillful hands of the doctors as they see what is wrong and work together to solve her distress.  Lord, healing prayers are what we are praying at this time, and we know that You are with this strong Christian family and their little Angel.  Thank you!
  • Lord, the last thing I want to ask for prayers for involves all of the prayers that people haven’t shared, but have need on their hearts.  Lord, You know all of thoughts, feelings, needs, and wants, and you know what is going on in our hearts when we can’t even formulate the words.  Lord, take those prayers, please, and act on them as your Will deems necessary, and thank you for everything!

Do you have prayer requests that you need to share and have us pray over?  If you do, I implore you to share them in the comments below, and watch as hundreds of people pray for you and your needs, and see what the Power of Prayer can do in your life!  Thank you for stopping by, for reading these praises and prayer requests, and thank you for praying.  I hope everyone has a great week, and may God shine His blessing upon you, and keep you safe from harm!  Remember Psalm 46:1 — He is our refuge and strength, our ever-present help in trouble.

Amen.

Prayers for the Week – The Bible IS the Word of God

Proverbs 30:5-6

A friend and I were talking the other day; we discussed how different the world is now from when we were kids.  My friend told me that the world is actually safer now than it was when we were kids — but what had changed was that we are so connected to everything that happens everywhere that we are, in many respects, being bombarded by information overload.  When you think about it, the old adage, “Ignorance is bliss,” can truly be counted as a blessing.

What does that have to do with the Bible verse that I shared with you today as the opening for Prayers for the Week post?  Well, the way I see it, Proverbs 30: 5-6 shares a warning for us all — to remember that the Bible is the Word of God, and that we should accept it in it’s entirety, and not to read anything extra into it.

At times, I need to remember that we live in a fallen world, and that the god of this world is none other than Satan, the Prince of Darkness.  His goal is to turn as many of us from God as he can, and the best way he does this is by introducing doubt and uncertainty into the world, and by getting us to doubt the things that we need to rely upon everyday of our lives.  In my life, I try really hard to focus on five crucial things:

  1. To remember that the Bible is the inherent Word of God.
  2. To remember that Jesus gave Himself up on the Cross for me, to save me from my sin.
  3. To remember to give Jesus thanks for dying on the cross for me, and every day I pray to God to take care of us all.
  4. To try to get in some reading in the Bible to arm and equip me throughout the day.
  5. To strive very hard to share my faith with others and witness for my Lord.  Too often I fail in this endeavour, but I keep trying.

The world is so much smaller now, so much more connected, and yes, there are a lot of problems, but it seems to me that far too often we are trying to remake the world as we want it to be, and not asking God to make the world the way He would have it.

We are flawed, my friends; we sin, we are far from perfect, and we rely far too much upon ourselves and not nearly enough on God.  I am the perfect example of this — far too often I sow my own road — often without even knowing where that road leads!

It is my belief that the Bible IS the Word of God, and that nothing needs to be changed in that regard.  If we keep our eyes on the Lord, and ask Him for guidance in the path we should take, He will lead us down the path that we should be walking, and head straight towards the Promised Land.  It really comes down to trusting and obeying God, doesn’t it?

Well, my friends, I hope you think about your relationship with God, and how strong it is.  Do you tell God what to do, or do you ask Him to lead you the way you should be led?  I think for me, the answer is both — but I am striving to allow myself to be led by my Lord.  I urge you to do the same if you aren’t already.

Praises!

  • Lord, I would like to thank you for all the fathers that you have put on the earth.  Thank you in particular for my Dad, for his health, love, praise, and discipline when I needed it.  Thank you for allowing me to learn so much more from him than I ever thought he had to teach me — and for being able to recognize the truth in so many of his teachings now that I am a dad.  Lastly, Lord, please allow my Dad to be with us for many more years, so that I could continue to learn from him and pass that wisdom on to Sophie.
  • Lord, I would also like to thank you for keeping us safe this week, and for prayers answered, for worries displaced, and for helping us to raise our daughter to be a Child of God.  Please keep her safe during the summer, and help us to help her develop good habits during the summer so that she can continue those habits for years to come.
  • Lord, I would also like to thank you for my summer Bible study group of men.  We are going strong through the summer, which is new to me, and I ask that you keep us focused on our study so that we could continue all the way until the Mens Study continues in the fall.  Thank you for all that you have given to us each week, and please keep all of our men and their families safe during the weeks ahead.
  • Lord, I would like to give Highest praise to you for my friend Tabitha, whose son was baptized last Sunday! Praise the Lord for another Brother in Christ to celebrate!  One more Brother in Christ is one less soul that could belong to Satan!
  • Prayers and Praise for the sister of my friend Kuleen! She gave birth to her baby during the week! Congratulations for them all, may they all be safe from harm!
  • Lord, thank you for the gift you have given to my friends Chris and Early — the gift of loving and adopting a beautiful little girl from Poland. We have prayed for her and them before, and You answered our prayers. She recently celebrated her 2nd birthday, and she has adapted to her new lift very well, so thank you Lord!
  • Lastly, Lord, I thank you for the gifts that you have given to me — particularly, this gift of writing that allows me to reach out to people all over the world and share my hopes and fears with them, to pray for them, and to invite them to share their prayers and praises with me.  It is out of this gift that I have been able to initiate my own small ministry to help those (through prayer) that have no voice of their own.  Lord, please allow this to expand and spread throughout the world even more.  Thank you God!

Prayer Requests:

  • Please pray for my friend Scarlett. She posted this on Facebook:“There is a celebration in heaven as my aunt passed away a few minutes ago. She is reunited with her ten brothers and sisters and her Mother and Father. Yes, the sting of death is for those left behind.”Please pray for her and her family, and celebrate her Aunt and her life at the same time. Thanks!
  • Please continue to pray for my cousin Kelly, who is undergoing a procedure on Monday and is nervous about it. She has been battling for several months now, so this is the next step in that treatment plan, but it is a big step. Also, please keep my Aunt Ginny and my Aunt Carol in your prayers as well as they continue to battle their own diseases. Also, please keep my cousin Barb’s husband Tim in your prayers as well. Healing prayers for all of these people, please, and thank you!
  • Please keep my friend Melissa in your prayers — and also prayers for her dog Lucy. Lucy has a disease and needs to have one of her legs amputated, so please pray for her healing and for her family as well. I know it may seem odd to be praying for a dog to some of you, but it is important because dogs, cats, and other animals that we have in our lives are part of our families, a very important part, and when they are ill, it affects the whole family as well, so please lift them up as well. We are all God’s creations, and Lucy is no exception. Thanks everyone!
  • Continued prayers for my cousin Barb’s husband Tim. He is almost finished with his cancer treatments, only 2 more treatments to go and then they see the doctor again to see how things look. He’s in a bunch of pain, though, so please continue the prayers for his healing and comfort. Thanks!
  • As always, Lord, please look at the lost, those that don’t have the courage or voice to share their needs and concerns.  Please keep them close, all of them, and allow us to work through you to bring those that don’t know you into the family of believers.

Lord, please remind us throughout the week that You are near, and that You are in control of our lives.  Allow us to be receptive to what you would have us do, and to act on your will when You call on us.  It is in your name that we pray with Thanksgiving, Amen!

 

Friendship Friday: Meet my Sister-in-Christ Brenda!

Epcot World Showcase, Norway, Troll

My Sister-in-Christ Brenda and I when we met for the 1st time during the 40th Anniversary Celebration!

Those of you that are regular readers of My Dreams of Disney will have met my dear friend Brenda before; some of you may even know her yourselves!  Brenda is one of the incredible travel agents that Pixie Vacations employs, but more then that, Brenda is my true Sister-in-Christ, and I consider myself a Blessed man because I was able to meet her, both online and in person.

Brenda is one of those people that, when you meet, you instantly have a connection with them, you feel like you have known her all your life.  Brenda and I met because we are both writers for the blog Chip & Company, and also because we both are huge Disney fans (duh!) — but it goes deeper then that.  In essence, Brenda is one of those people outside of your immediate family that you can tell anything to, and you know that not only will she have a wealth of advice for you, but she will also just listen, not judge you regardless of the circumstance, and gently correct you if you are wrong — just like Jesus would have us do.

One particular thing that stands out most about Brenda is how much love and care she has for her fellow human beings.  I’ll never forget the day that Brenda called me; she told me that she was really worried about our good buddy Ken, who had been sick.  Brenda had sent him a card to cheer him up, and she hadn’t heard from him.  It turns out that Brenda was right to be worried, and we learned that we had lost our brother a little while before, but just didn’t know it.

It is that love and compassion that Brenda has for all of us that are fortunate to cross her path that make her my inaugural choice for Friendship Friday!  I would like to send a very nice thank you to my good friend Heidi for coming up with this idea!  If you would like to see who she has written about today, why not check out her post by clicking on the button below!  Thank you for stopping by, and Brenda, thank you for everything that you have given to me in the short time that we’ve known one another!  I love you Sister!

If you are planning a Disney trip and would like some expert help, why not give Brenda a call or shoot her an email?  Here is her contact information:

Pixie Brenda
Pixie Vacations Authorized Disney Travel Specialist
281-935-7518
brenda@pixivacations.com
 

Welcome Back to My Dreams of Disney!

Welcome to the new and improved My Dreams of Disney site!  With the incredible help of my friend Jeff at Techallogy, the site has been transferred off of the Blogger platform, and onto a self-hosted WordPress site!  Today is the second birthday for My Dreams of Disney, and I would like to send a special thank you to each and every one of you for making our site one that you come to for your classic Disney Fix!  Over the past two years, I’ve had a lot of fun and made some great friends, so I thought I would give them a little blog love today:

  • Chip from Chip & Company — Chip took me on in November of 2010, and has become a great friend both inside and outside of the blogger world.  Chip & I are collaborating on a giveaway starting on Monday, so get ready to enter!
  • Beth from Pursuing the Magic — Beth is one of the best people I know, and is both the creator of Pursuing the Magic and the wildly successful Magical Blogorail!  She started the Magical Blogorail Red line in February, 2011, and I was one of the charter members for that line!  Thanks for including me, Beth, it’s been an incredible run!
  • Deb from Focused on the Magic — When it comes to photography skill, there aren’t many people out there that I think have the skills that Deb does!  Deb hosts the weekly series “Wordless Wednesday” and you have seen my work depicted on there numerous times!  Deb, I’ve got next week’s picture already in mind, even if it doesn’t match the theme!
  • Amanda from Disney’s Cheapskate Princess — Amanda is an incredible friend, and one that I have actually had the pleasure of meeting!  She is a lover of all things Disney, and her new blog, Disney’s Cheapskate Princess, is all about the best ways of saving your money to make it to Disney on a budget!
  • Natalie from Meet the Magic and The Disney Moms — Natalie is the creator of the site Meet the Magic, and used her persuasion skills to create The Disney Moms site, of which I am a member as well.  If you haven’t seen either of these sites, check them out, you won’t be sorry!
  • Jodi from Magical Mouse Schoolhouse — Jodi is an incredible friend, who happens to have a wildly popular site that focuses on activities that you and your homeschooled children can do at Disney to continue the learning outside of the classroom!  As she says on her blog (and in her new book, I might add!) “You can learn while you play when you discover that Disney IS school!”
  • Last, but certainly not least, I need to give a shout out to my incredibly dear friend Brenda from Ideally Disney.  Brenda is a terrific person, a Sister-in-Christ, and one that I love with all my heart.  We had the fortune to meet at Walt Disney World during the 40th Anniversary of Walt Disney World, and it is a meeting that I will never forget!  Brenda is also a Pixie Vacations Travel Agent, so look to her for your travel needs!
  • The list of names could go on for an hour, but I’ve got to go to work, so I’ll stop it here.  Just know that the Disney friends I’ve made are incredible, and ones that I treasure to this very day!

Of course, this site wouldn’t even be possible without the love and support of my wife Cindy and my daughter Sophie — they are Disney Fans just like me, and this morning Sophie asked if we could go on a Disney Cruise next year!  I’m not sure if that is in the works just yet, but it is certainly something to keep in mind!

That’s all I’ve got for now, thank you for hanging with us over the past two years, and for making My Dreams of Disney your Dreams of Disney also!