Thursday, May 4, 2017

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Maybe you’re like me; you're one of those people who lives in a climate where there are four seasons, where the fall and spring are spectacularly beautiful and where winter is really winter, and summer is really summer. There’s probably one change of seasons that is probably anticipated by you more than any other-the end of winter! I’ve always lived with four seasons, and I like them all. I just think one of them lasts a month or two too long. That’s why I was so excited during a February ministry trip to South Carolina. I was living up north at the time, and so we had this serious winter. Now February is still winter a little while longer, but in South Carolina, the trees were starting to bloom! Not only were the flowers out on the trees, the shorts were even out on the humans! I don’t remember seeing dogwood blooming in February! That was early even for the mid-South, but there had been a string of days in the 70’s with temperatures that were still mild at night. So those little flowers said to themselves, "Hey, it’s warm, guys! I guess it’s time to bloom! You think they might have said that?

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  • family
  • friends
  • your relationships
  • coworkers
  • encouragement
  • attitude

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

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When that terrorist bomb ripped apart the Federal Office Building in Oklahoma City on that infamous April 19 years ago, Mark was on the scene within ten minutes. Today that scene of horrendous carnage and violence is a tranquil Memorial Site in downtown Oklahoma City. One night when I was speaking in that city, Mark (who was a police officer) took me there for a personal tour that was pretty moving. Gesturing toward that quiet memorial area that stands where the building once stood, he showed me where the nursery had been, from which he had carried the youngest victims of the bombing. And he pointed to the area where he had assisted in the dramatic rescue of a woman who thought she was going to die but was brought out alive by some valiant rescuers. Mark remembers making a quick call to his wife that day, telling her and his daughters, "I love you. I'll see you later" not knowing how much later that would be. As he and the men around him looked at the sagging wreckage over their heads, Mark just said to his supervisor, "I think we’re going to die here." They must have all thought that. But they refused to leave because lives were at stake.

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  • rescue
  • friendship
  • family
  • fear
  • outreach
  • coworkers

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

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It was my first Valentine's Day without the love of my life since I was 18. I found the Valentine card that I sent her a couple of years ago. In it, I wrote: "I have never loved you more. You never cease to amaze me, amuse me, and captivate me." As the sun came up on my first Valentine's Day alone, I realized I had a choice to make. I could either spend the day mourning what I had lost, or I could celebrate the decades I did have with this remarkable woman, and I chose that. I'm glad I did.

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  • loss
  • Death
  • Salvation
  • Jesus
  • marriage
  • wife
  • husband
  • real love

Monday, May 1, 2017

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It's been a long time since I've had a pregnant woman in our family. But years ago, my wife, Karen, handled it beautifully. I offered to take some of that load, but apparently some things just can't be delegated. Now, the time came around for our daughter to have her first child some years ago. She lived close to us, so we got to walk down Pregnant Avenue with her. It was exciting! It was amazing how things our daughter might have normally done without even giving it a thought she wouldn't let herself do while she was pregnant. I think she was kind of watching what her Mom did. You know, she knew what her Mom had done. She refused to eat anything with certain artificial ingredients in it, things she loved. But she wouldn't touch them while pregnant. She had some headaches, but she would not put pain relievers into her body. No antihistamines, no matter how frustrating her cold symptoms got. She added a powerful new factor in deciding what she would and wouldn't do: the passenger she was carrying - the baby!

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  • parenting
  • friendship
  • temptation
  • witness
  • coworkers

Friday, April 28, 2017

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Ten more minutes and my wife would have never been born. The story that changed everything is hope for any of us who love someone who's making some very bad choices. My wife's grandfather, Bill, had given up on life. Trashing a profitable career for the alcohol and cocaine he could not resist. He was labeled with a prison record, he was penniless, he was hopeless and he was suicidal.

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  • rescue
  • faith
  • family
  • outreach
  • friends
  • your relationships

Thursday, April 27, 2017

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Ian is one of the more amazing people I've met. The people who knew him publicly, when they were with him privately it was a shock. He had been the leader of Youth for Christ's highly effective ministry in New Zealand. As you would converse with him, you would quickly learn that Ian had a stutter - which sometimes made it difficult just for him to get through a sentence. It was noticeable, but it wasn't important. I mean, Ian was a godly, magnetic person. But when you saw him in action before a crowd - as I did at a national youth convention with 3,000 teenagers - get ready for a shock. I mean, I felt bad, wonder-ing how he was going to communicate effectively to all these teenagers with a stutter like that. To my amazement, I discovered there suddenly was no stutter. His speech was perfect! He emceed, he preached flawlessly. That's what was so amazing about Ian - something happened to him when he had to speak well. And to you.

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  • rescue
  • outreach
  • missions
  • Moses

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

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When I'm speaking for some event, my needs are pretty simple. Just get me a bottle of fresh water, and I'll be able to keep going like the Energizer Bunny. You know, I realized once that I was heading into a speaking session without my trusty bottle of water. Someone directed me to a hospitality room the host had set up for those on the program. I actually bypassed all the goodies and I reached for the first bottle of water I saw. As I sat on the front row of the auditorium, awaiting my time to go up on the platform, I mindlessly twisted open the cap on the bottle so I could get a swig. Well, much to my surprise and chagrin, the contents immediately began erupting out of the bottle! I hadn't read the label. I didn't know what was inside until I opened it. It was sparkling water, and it was sparkling all over me!

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  • friendship
  • family
  • your relationships
  • coworkers
  • attitude

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

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If it's about the Revolutionary War, I'll probably try to go there. My poor family has been dragged to more historical houses, battlefields, and Colonial restorations. Fortunately, we lived in the town where George Washington actually had his headquarters at one point during the War. So when they had a special militia re-enactment, we went to see it. But it was more than just muskets and bayonets. They had Colonial craftsmen there, too. Including the old blacksmith. He was there in the barn, next to his blazing fire. When I walked in, he was working on these big iron nails - which my wife thought would look nice as hooks and hangers on our mantle at home. They're still there. It was intriguing to watch the blacksmith do his work. Actually, he took a shapeless piece of iron, he heated it in that fire until it was red hot - and it was soft enough to shape - and then he hammered it into something that hunk of metal had never been before - something useful. I know. They're on our mantle, remember?

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  • pain
  • hurt
  • stress
  • struggle
  • purification

Monday, April 24, 2017

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We met Dan and Rita and their dog when we took our Native American team to a reservation in South Dakota. They live in this dusty little village, doing their best to make a difference for the people there. They've got this little dog named Gal. Now most dogs are pretty aggressive in meeting strangers-they come right up to you, even on you. But not Gal. No, she retreats when she sees people. She cowers actually; she trembles. Dan and Rita explained why. Their dog had been severely abused by several previous owners before they got her. So she has a hard time trusting even people who want to treat her right, but she's missing a lot of loving that way.

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  • Salvation
  • Jesus
  • forgiveness
  • the cross
  • real love

Friday, April 21, 2017

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One football team owner called it "the single most impressive symbol of being a champion in all of sports." Yep, he was talking about the National Football League's Super Bowl ring. The rings on Super Bowl champions are worth many thousands of dollars each one! Can you imagine losing something that valuable, that irreplaceable? Former Oakland Raiders champion, Gene Upshaw, can remember that. Yeah, he can imagine it. To keep his Super Bowl ring safe at home, he put it inside a bank that looked like a Pepsi can. Problem: he forgot to tell his housekeepers. You know where this is going? Yep, they mistook the bank for an empty pop can and tossed it out, ring and all.

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  • value
  • worth
  • Salvation
  • Jesus
  • forgiveness
  • abandoned

            

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Ron Hutchcraft Ministries
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Harrison, AR 72602-0400

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