Friday, November 2, 2018

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Our family was staying in, well, as the camp song says, "a little cabin in the woods." As soon as we got unpacked, our seven or eight-year-old son went for an exploratory bike ride up the trail. When he returned he got going a little fast, and then he hit this patch of gravel right near the cabin. The bike spun out from under him and he hit that ground pretty hard. When he got up, there was a lot of blood around his mouth. He had broken a tooth and it punctured his lip. So, we raced him to a hospital emergency room where they fixed him up with a few stitches. Now, he took the second bike ride that day. That was the tough part; especially after what had happened on the first bike ride. But his Mother and I encouraged him to get right back on his bike. We knew if he didn't, it might take him a long time to get the confidence back to ever ride again. Well, sure enough, the boy bounced back. In spite of his fall, he decided to ride again and he kept riding for many years after that. 

Thursday, October 25, 2018

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If they ever ask me to be a participant in those Nielsen ratings of who's watching what TV show, they'll probably find me watching the Weather Channel more than a lot of viewers. Oh, not necessarily because I'm intrigued with low-pressure systems, or barometric readings, or cumulonimbus clouds, (See, I do watch.) but because I want to see my future in the places I might be traveling to. But sometimes, they don't have the weather on. I remember a while back they had a primetime documentary show called "Storm Stories." Now while the story of a storm that happened twenty years ago isn't going to help me plan for tomorrow, the stories were pretty dramatic. They often featured amazing accounts of the people who survived major weather disasters-and the people who didn't. It was especially interesting to see what steps would help you to be a storm survivor rather than a storm victim.

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

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I used to think flying would be glamorous. See, when I was a kid, we'd take my Dad to the airport for an occasional business trip, and I used to think, "Man, that's exciting! I wonder if I'll ever do that?" Well, I've gotten to do plenty of that! Sometimes it's a two-hour flight say to Chicago, or a five-hour flight to the West Coast, and sometimes it's a marathon like eighteen hours to Africa or Asia. Now I'm leaving something important and I'm going to something important at the other end. But for most people, the travel time in between is just dead time. Not for this kid. I ask for a window seat where I don't have to do any getting up or passing things. I make my little office nest there and I get tons of work done! For me, that time in between my two important places isn't just headphones, movies, plastic lunches, or reading about life jackets. In fact, there's no phone calls, no interruptions. It's some of my best time to write, create and prepare. Hey, the time in between is important, too!

Monday, September 24, 2018

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Our children got together and gave us a special gift for a milestone wedding anniversary – yep, a couple of nights in the beautiful place where we honeymooned years before. Part of the gift was a picturesque, horse-drawn carriage ride through some of the area's beautiful scenery. At one point, our carriage was headed up a relatively steep hill and another carriage was starting down that hill, full of people. It had to be a real workout for the horses, believe me. Our driver pointed out something that I found intriguing. He said, "Notice that the driver is holding the brake on as they come down the hill. That's to keep the horses from bearing a load that's too heavy for them to bear. With the driver holding the brake, they still feel like they're on level ground." Huh!

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

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When our son and his family lived in another state, man, we cherished visits from him, his wife and our beautiful granddaughter. She was two at the time, but she seemed to have the vocabulary of like a five-year-old. Besides being unexplainably beautiful (being my granddaughter, that's miraculous), she really knew how to communicate – with words, with gestures, with facial expressions. We loved our time with her, and she seemed to love her time with us. But, well, this wasn't home. They lived many miles from here. She needed to be home ultimately, sleeping in her bed, playing with her toys, being around the people she loves there, and enjoying her personal world. This is where she visited. That's where she lived. She was in the car with Mommy and Daddy, all strapped in her toddler seat and ready to pull out of the driveway to head home. Oh how she cried! She begged me to get in. She begged me to sit down. Her crying broke a grandparent's heart. But once she was home she loved being where she lived. It's just that leaving is so hard.

Thursday, August 2, 2018

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Driving is never more exciting than it is during a major snow storm. In fact it is so exciting, you ought to avoid it. Sometimes you just can't. I was scheduled to speak at this retreat in the Poconos Mountains one January weekend and a major snow storm moved in right on the Friday when everyone was supposed to be traveling to Pennsylvania from New Jersey. So I waited all day for the call, I was sure it was going to come. "Sorry, it's been cancelled." Oh, I got the call; yeah, they were still going. And by that time it was dark, it was snowing very impressively and I got on the Interstate. I traveled at a very reduced speed and it looked almost impossible to make it until I spotted my friend up ahead. Well, my friend the snow plow. He was clearing a lane as he went. So I just fell in right behind Mr. Snow plow and followed him through the storm all the way to the Pennsylvania line. Oh, that works!

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

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Over the years it's been an honor and a pleasure to speak for a lot of professional football chapels. You should have seen me with the New York Giants. I was like the New York dwarf! Hey, listen, I'm tall inside okay. Their "thank you" for speaking was two tickets for the game; great seats reserved for the chapel speaker – midfield under cover. Of course, any time you go to a public event like a game or a concert or a show, you hope for great seats. On occasion, I've even looked up a seating chart for the facility where an event was being held so I knew what seats to ask for. Unfortunately, well, you've got to pay a little for the best seats, but you get a view that most folks can't see.

Friday, July 13, 2018

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If you ask our kids about four or five of the most indelible memories from their childhood, I think at least one is bound to bring up the night of the hurricane. Some friends had offered their home on Eastern Long Island; we could use it for our vacation. I wonder if they had advance word that Hurricane Belle would make it all the way up the East Coast that week and smack Long Island right on the chin? Thankfully, the home we were in was on a cliff above the ocean so we didn't have to evacuate. But we made all the appropriate preparations. We loaded up on batteries and candles, stored water in the bathtub, and lined the freezer with newspaper in case the power went out. The leading winds of the hurricane started blowing in about bedtime that night, and I mean, you could hear it howling around our bedrooms upstairs. The kids were pretty unnerved (including this kid). So, we all moved out of our rooms to the downstairs living room. We laid out some sleeping bags, and we slept side by side together in the living room. The kids loved it! They actually said, "Hey, Dad, hurricanes are fun!" Really?

Thursday, June 28, 2018

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My friend Rich had just come through a major battle with cancer with heavy radiation therapy, and that's what helped him win. The only problem was the radiation left him feeling pretty weak and depleted. So, he would work a short week at his business and then he'd retreat to this little cabin that he and his wife had way back in the woods. One day Rich was down by the stream and feeling pretty tired. So, he lay down right there by the water and fell asleep. When he woke up, he was startled by what he saw. There were vultures circling him! Yeah! Now, you wouldn't believe how quickly Rich got up! I can just imagine him shouting to the vultures, "Hey, you birds, I may look dead to you, but I am still alive!"

Thursday, June 14, 2018

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There is no way we could have taken our "On Eagles' Wings" team of young Native Americans across Alaska without the help of our wonderful missionary partner Grant. He made the arrangements for us in village after village, helped fly us across the area, and took on much of the follow-up. Grant is a pilot. You almost have to be when the villages you serve are often hundreds of miles from the nearest road. Now, you can imagine how hard it hit us when we heard that another pilot had crashed and totaled the plane that Grant's ministry depended on. This was some years ago, but we still remember it. I mean, miraculously, no one was seriously injured, but Grant was without a plane and without any funds to replace it there for a while.;

            

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Ron Hutchcraft Ministries
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Harrison, AR 72602-0400

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