Dear Father, the 2018 NFL Season began last night with the reigning Super Bowl Champions, the Philadelphia Eagles, defeating the Atlanta Falcons 18-10. Father, I ask for Your blessings on this season. I ask that none of the players in the league will experience a career-ending or life-threatening injury. I ask for the safety of the fans in every stadium. I ask that You protect the teams as they travel from city to city. I pray for Your blessings on the chaplains that serve each franchise. I ask that their ministries will touch the hearts and minds of leaders on each team. May the most vocal players in the league take an interest in You. May their be spiritual transformations on each club that lead to players across the league, like Carsen Wentz, the franchise quarterback of the Eagles, to become outspoken representatives for You and Your Son, Jesus Christ. Amen.
Dear Father, Anne Graham Lotz is one of the five children of Rev. Billy Graham, the evangelist who passed away in February. She was diagnosed with breast cancer last month exactly three years to the day after she lost her husband. Father, I ask You to have mercy on her. May she become a breast cancer survivor, one of the inspiring stories that give hope to other women who receive the diagnosis. Defeat the cancer through the work of her medical team. Give her a message of her deliverance through Your grace that inspires many women around the country. Amen.
Dear Father, Burt Reynolds was an American actor, director, producer, author, singer, and a one-time heartthrob with the ladies back in the 1970s. He died yesterday of a heart attack at the age of 82 after several years of heart problems. He is perhaps best remembered for his role as Lewis Medlock, the man who led his three friends on a tragic canoe trip in the 1972 movie “Deliverance”. He was also known for his work on the television show Gunsmoke and in films such as The Longest Yard, Smokey and the Bandit, and The Cannonball Run. Burt, who once turned down an offer to play James Bond, had turned to acting after his promising career in football was decimated by injuries. Though he married and divorced both Judy Carne and Lonni Anderson, he claimed that Sally Fields, his one-time girlfriend, was the love of his life. An entrepreneur who ventured into NASCAR and the restaurant business, he experienced bankruptcy in 1996 and foreclosure in 2011. He became addicted to painkillers at one point in his life after suffering an injury. Father, be present today with Burt Reynold’s close friends and family who mourn his passing. Yes, comfort them. Attend to them emotionally and physically. However, I ask that You use this time of reflection on life and death, by those who grieve, to connect with them in a new and transformative way. I ask that You will spark new relationships with You among His family and friends in the months ahead. Amen.
Dear Father, Jair Bolsonaro, 63, the leading far-right candidate in Brazil’s presidential election, is in stable condition after being stabbed at a campaign rally yesterday. His stabbing comes in the midst of his controversial campaign where he has offended many, especially gang members, with divisive comments. He has spoken favorably of a violent military regime that formerly controlled the country. As a result of Brazilian election laws, Bolsonaro does not have access to television and radio. He must generate support through raucous campaign appearances around the country. His detractors have noted that his campaign is likely to derail as he recovers in the hospital, unable to continue his appearances. However, his supporters believe the stabbing increased his chances of victory as Brazilians respond with sympathy. Violence in Brazilian politics, especially over the last few years, has become a frequent occurrence. Adelio Bispo de Oliveira, 40, a former member of the Socialism and Liberty Party, has been arrested and charged with the stabbing. Father, bring healing today to Mr. Bolsonaro. Give the doctor’s the skill and expertise. Heal his body. I do ask that You inspire him to take this time to examine his relationship with You. May Your people, people who have truly been transformed by the love of God, minister and counsel him in the weeks to come, sparking within him a desire to know You better. May Your will be done in the Brazilian elections. Amen.
Dear Father, the people of Sweden will vote in legislative elections this coming Sunday. Experts are predicting the Sweden Democrats, a far-right party with an anti-immigration message, will surge as the public responds to the hundreds of thousands of asylum seekers who have entered the country since 2012. Many believe the immigrants have created problems in health care, unemployment, and crime. The left-wing block of Swedish political parties are expecting about 40% of the vote. The right-wing block is expecting about 37% of the vote. With neither coalition having a majority, the Sweden Democrats party is expected to have a strong voice in Swedish politics. Father, may Your will be done in Sweden. May the man or woman of Your choosing serve in the nation’s highest office. Bring about a spiritual revival in this Scandinavian nation. Awaken Your church and shake the earth with the growth of Your church in Sweden over the next ten years. Amen.
Dear Father, Geoffrey Owens played one of the regular characters, the son-in-law, on the hit television show The Cosby Show. However, he has not been able to find work in Hollywood and took a job as a cashier at a New Jersey Trader Joe’s to support his family. He is in the news because a customer recognized him, took his photo, and essentially “job shamed” him on social media. Many people have responded in support to Geoffrey, as he has received offers for gifts of money and apparently acting opportunities. The customer has been lambasted for essentially mocking a job that millions of people across America have. The customer has since expressed her remorse for her actions, actions that led to Geoffrey resigning from his position. It has also been reported in the news that Dawn Wells, “Maryann” on “Gilligan’s Island”, is in financial trouble. She has setup a GoFundMe page, seeking donations from fans. Father, please meet the financial needs of both Geoffrey and Dawn. Give them many reasons to thank You for Your amazing provision for them. I do ask that their hearts will seek you. Bring about their spiritual transformation. Give them both a powerful testimony of Your love that inspires many. Father, I also pray that You will do a work in the life of the customer who took this action at Trader Joe’s. Work in her heart that she may turn to You for forgiveness and direction. May this experience spark her own spiritual transformation. Amen.
Dear Father, IndyCar driver Robert Wickens suffered a fractured spinal cord and neck, as well as other serious injuries, when he crashed at the Pocono Raceway in August. He has had surgeries this week to repair fractures in his legs and hands. Doctors do not know yet the extent of the injuries to his spine. Wickens car apparently struck a car in front of him and then flew into a wall. Father, Robert is in serious need of Your rescue. Attend to him this very hour. Take over the medical team, giving them the expertise they need to most effectively treat his wounds. Help his body to heal, from head to toe. Give him peace, rest, and ease his pain. I pray that You will also ease the impact of the emotional trauma he experienced. Help him to recover from that. Give his family and friends grace to attend to his needs. May this crash lead everyone who has been impacted by it into a deeper relationship with You. Give the Wickens family reasons to praise You for walking through this crisis with them. Amen.
Dear Father, last year, Kate McClure was driving in Philadelphia when she needed gas money. Johnny Bobbitt, a homeless man, gave Kate his last $ 20. She was allegedly so impressed by his kindness that she, along with a Mark D’Amico, setup a GoFundMe page to raise money for Mr. Bobbitt. Contributions totaling $ 400,000 came in for Johnny from generous people around the country. Kate and Mark allegedly promised Johnny that he would be placed in an apartment and receive a new car. However, the good story has turned bad. Kate and Mark have been accused of stealing the money donated for Mr. Bobbitt and spending it on themselves. They have received nationwide criticism, including death threats. They went on national television with Megyn Kelly to plead their innocence, saying much of the fees were spent on Johnny’s behalf, including putting him up in a hotel immediately after the first encounter. They also claim that Johnny has misused the money they have paid to him, purchasing more drugs. The police aren’t so sure. Kate and Mark’s new automobile has been impounded as examiners seek to determine if it was purchased with funds from GoFundMe. The couple claims they purchased the car from money they earned through their jobs. Johnny has filed a lawsuit against the couple with attorneys donating their time. GoFundMe states that Johnny will receive the full $ 400,000. Plans are coming together to pay back the donors. Father, sort this out. May justice prevail. May the innocent be proven innocent and may the guilty be proven guilty. I ask that this experience will lead all three of these individuals into a deeper relationship with You. May it cause them to understand their spiritual need and may it cause them to reach out to You for answers. Transform their hearts and lives. Give each of the three people a testimony that inspires others. I ask that all three of the people will make a positive difference in this world, genuinely delivering hope to the hurting. Amen.