Saturday, December 7, 2013

What I Have In Common With Walt Disney!

As many of you may already know, December 5th was Walt Disney's 112th Birthday.
But what you may not have known is it is also my wedding anniversary. Now, I know you are probably thinking I planned that, especially when it is obvious that I have a slight Disney obsession, but I have to be honest, I didn't have a clue when Walt's birthday was 18 years ago! Sure, I grew up going to Walt Disney World as a child and enjoyed many visits to the parks but it wasn't till I was an adult, with my own child, did my love for Disney begin.
 It is also no surprise that my love started with the man who created it all, Walter Elias Disney. I have had the pleasure to read many great books about him over the years (oh how I wish I could of meet him) and it isn't just the fact that he was a talented artist or a visionary of his time, no, it is the little known facts that have made me grow to love the man and all that he has created.  
First and foremost, did you know that Walt was a Christian?  He came from a Congregationalist Christian background and was even named after his father's friend and their family's pastor, Walter Parr. In 1949, Disney wrote in Guideposts magazine: "I believe firmly in the efficacy of religion, in its powerful influence on a person's whole life. It helps immeasurably to meet the storm and stress of life and keep you attuned to the Divine inspiration. Without inspiration, we would perish. All I ask of myself, 'Live a good Christian life.' To that objective I bend every effort in shaping my personal, domestic, and professional activities and growth."
I am sure Walt's Christian background also influenced his love of people and most importantly his love of family. Walt was know for driving his girls to school each day and either Saturday or Sunday was always Daddy's Day. Did you know that Walt adopted his second daughter, Sharon? After a few devastating miscarriages, Walt & Lillian decided to step out in faith and adopt a baby girl in 1936. Besides his love and devotion for his own girls, he shared that love with the whole world in his family friendly cartoons, movies and theme parks.

I honestly could go on and on about the wonderful things Walt has done but lets not forget, it all started with a mouse, who just happens to be the most recognized icons in the world today. Walt's character, Mickey Mouse was designed as a purely innocent creature, filled with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, and goodness. Did you know that these characteristics are also mentioned in Galatians 5:22 by Paul when talking about how our lives will be when filled with the fruit of the Holy Spirit?  I don't think it is coincidence that all of these godly virtues are wrapped up in Mickey and in his followers.

 So, Happy Birthday to a brilliant man, filled with the love of the Lord, the love for others and good old family values. I would like to think that it is divine alignment that I get to share my anniversary every year with the birth of this wonderful man!