Friday, March 31, 2017

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There was a time when single parenting was kind of an exception in America. Not any more - millions of families where it's just a mom or a dad now. There's been a lot of conversation and a lot of articles written...a lot of commentary about the impact of not having a dad who's really being a father to you. A little while back, one of the leading health officers in the United States said, "The greatest issue facing us is fatherlessness." Then Time Magazine commented on women who actually choose to have a fatherless family. Here's what they said: "They are bringing a child into the world with a hole at the center of his life where a father should be."

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  • Salvation
  • Jesus
  • family
  • real love
  • prodigal son

Thursday, March 30, 2017

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My friend, Tom, has a taste for some of the beautiful things in life like great food for example. In fact he's a wonderful chef. I think I'm still wearing some of his culinary creations on my body. Tom also really appreciates nature including plants. I have been fascinated to hear him tell of some of the incredible creations of God that live in that world of plants and flowers that I don't know much about. The last time we saw him, he told us about a flower called the Night Blooming Cyrus which he said he's only seen bloom once. That's because they don't do much when folks are awake. In fact they only bloom for 2 hours a day, he said, and that's from midnight till' 2 A.M. But for those who stay up late or set their alarm there is the splendor of a richly colored flower that measures about six inches in bloom. It's beautiful late at night.

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  • pain
  • faith
  • struggle
  • hurting

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

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In much of America, spring announces its arrival with an explosion of color. Those yellow forsythia flowers start popping out on bushes, the daffodils start to poke their heads through the ground, and the trees around our headquarters suddenly color the landscape with those delicate white flowers. Now, my wife, who I think was a certified plantologist, told me that those are ornamental pear trees. When I asked her about the "ornamental" part, she pointed out to me that they produce beautiful flowers, but these pear trees don't produce any pears. I guess that's why they're ornamental.

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  • rescue
  • outreach
  • ministry

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

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Professional tennis star-a nun. What? Sounds like two different stories doesn't it? In this case, it's the same life story. Andrea Jaeger first picked up a tennis racket at the age of eight. By 14, she was a tennis pro. Soon she was challenging tennis greats like Chris Evert and Tracy Austin; she was ranked number two in the world. Then came a serious shoulder injury that required seven surgeries and she was forced to retire. She took her prize money, she moved to Colorado, and started a charitable foundation that helps sick, abused, and at-risk children. So she became an Episcopal nun, and she was actually burying her life in a ministry to needy children. According to USA Today, after her injury she was told, "Your life's over. You've failed. You'll never amount to anything." Oh, were they wrong. The article on her new life concluded this way: "Her name will never be etched on Grand Slam hardware, but she can live with that. 'It's like I have kids' names in my heart,' and she says, 'That is life's trophy.'"

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  • rescue
  • family
  • outreach
  • friends
  • coworkers

Monday, March 27, 2017

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My plane had left the gate at O'Hare Airport in Chicago and I thought we were on our way. Wrong. First, they routed us across the backside of the airport-I think that might have been in Wisconsin actually. Then, after a slow, meandering tour of that huge airport, we finally ended up in a long line of aircraft waiting to take off. Well, after a while, I get a little impatient. That's OK. What's important is that the pilot was not getting impatient. We don't want him to go until the tower says it's OK. You see, he knows you don't take off until you've gotten clearance from the tower-no matter how long you have to wait.

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  • faith
  • struggle
  • patience
  • God's Timing
  • God's Plan

Friday, March 24, 2017

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Sometimes during pro-football games, the camera focuses on a single player on the sidelines, the guy who just made that great play. And he'll look at the camera and he'll say those two words they almost always say, "Hi Mom!" See, it's just an indication of the debt that a lot of people owe to the love of their mother.

Six-year-old Stephen will owe a debt to his Mom that he can never repay. He was horseback riding with her and with his older brother and sister and they were near this ranching town in western Canada. A cougar ran right in front of Stephen, spooked his horse, and Stephen was thrown to the ground. Well, the cougar immediately pounced on that little boy. And his mother, Cindy, leaped from her horse, grabbed a stick and started hitting that cougar knowing that that cougar would turn his fury on her. Stephen's brother and sister dragged him to safety and then they rode for help as fast as they could. Stephen lived. His mother, Cindy, didn't. She took all the fury of the cougar so the son she loved wouldn't have to.

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  • sacrifice
  • Salvation
  • Jesus
  • forgiveness
  • Sin
  • safety

Thursday, March 23, 2017

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It was pretty funny. Our kids had reached the age where they were old enough to tell us how we did parenting them. In fact, we had gotten into one of those uproarious "remember when" conversations. The subject was various times that we had disciplined them. We explained to them how we had tried to discipline them by the principle of natural consequences-experiencing the most natural negative outcomes in the area where you disobeyed. So if you did something bad with your mouth, you didn't get to use your mouth for a while-or you got it washed out with soap. If you did something bad with your hands, you didn't get to use your hands for a while. At which point our eldest son said, "But I never did anything wrong with my bottom!" Which may be more information than you want, but that kind of launched a discussion of great spankings we have known-including the ones we are now told didn't hurt. Well, this went on for over an hour. It was a laughing and loving and learning time for all of us, and it was a reminder of what is probably a parent's biggest challenge.

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  • parenting
  • family
  • love
  • discipline

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

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It was the biggest snowstorm of the year. Not the kind you dig out from very quickly. The news reported that one of America's major cities had been virtually shut down by this massive carpet of white stuff. And the evening news showed one hazard of such a storm that was really out of the ordinary; a hazard that shouldn't have happened. The man in the news had started the challenging job of shoveling the sidewalk in front of his house, which happened to be on a main street. At the same time, of course, the city snowplows were doing what they should do. They were busily moving the snow that was clogging those main streets, and that's when it happened. Somehow it was captured on video for all of us news watchers to see. The snowplow roared past the man on the sidewalk, showered him with this heavy shower of snow spraying out either side, and literally buried Mr. Shoveler in a sudden avalanche from the street and from the sky. The snowplow plowed onward, and the operator never even knew what he had done. Thankfully, the man on the sidewalk was able to dig out unharmed, but he was stunned. After all, snowplows are for unburying streets, not burying people. Right?

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  • rescue
  • family
  • Your Mission
  • distractions
  • coworkers

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

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A beard really changes people-especially men. You can make a man look older, scruffier, wiser, or more suspicious. A beard does amazing things. Some wives and girlfriends can't wait for their guy to grow it. Others can't wait for him to shave it. My friend, Lou, spent much of his time clean-shaven. He also spent many of those same years as an alcoholic. They were terrible years for his wife and for his daughters. One day, Lou became so desperate he surrendered the control of his out-of-control life to Jesus Christ. From that moment on, the Savior beat that bottle that had always beaten Lou, and right about then, he started to grow a beard. He actually has had it for several years, but a couple of years ago he decided to shave it one morning. He walked out to his family, and he said, "Hey, what do you think?" His little girl started to cry. She begged her Daddy to grow his beard back. See, the old face made her think of her old Dad. She was afraid the old Dad was back.

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  • moms
  • Salvation
  • Jesus
  • family
  • dads
  • forgiveness

Monday, March 20, 2017

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Waking up early most mornings is not an option for me. If I oversleep, it means missing a plane or a speaking commitment or radio broadcasts or some deadline or some important meeting. In other words, my clock radio had better work...and it does. Even on the days when many other clock radios might not. Because the power went out during the night, let's say. There have been mornings when I have been awakened by my clock radio-looked over at the other one in the room and seen it blinking at me some time when it was the middle of the night. See, that clock was plugged into the wall and sometime during the night the external power supply had failed. Good thing I wasn't depending on that one! But mine always comes through-because it's powered by batteries! You see, what keeps it going is inside!

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  • pain
  • faith
  • stress
  • struggle
  • Joy

            

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Ron Hutchcraft Ministries
P.O. Box 400
Harrison, AR 72602-0400

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