Tuesday, January 16, 2018

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There's one kind of mail from the bank that nobody wants to get - you know, that notice that you've overdrawn your checking account! Yeah, especially when they sock you with a penalty for it! It can happen because you've been traveling or unusually busy, or you know, kind of cutting things pretty close financially, or just because you inadvertently wrote some checks before your recent deposit has cleared. You can't try to buy or pay before the money is there to cover it, or you'll just end up paying for that.

  • stress
  • struggle
  • mercy
  • burdens

Monday, January 15, 2018

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It was the house Grandma and Granddad built with a little help from their granddaughter, who happened to turn out to be my wife. That was over forty years ago. Grandma and Granddad are gone, and the house was in the hands of renters for a number of years. And the landlord, my wife's dad, lived hours away, and his age and his health prevented him from keeping up with what was happening. And man, I'll tell you, the house and the land around it, not good stuff was happening. When he deeded that house to the rest of the family, they weren't real pleased with what had happened over the years. The house was rundown; the carpet was infested with bugs; various encroachments had slowly whittled away about three acres of the property, and fences had been moved. That's a long list. And nobody in the family had to do anything to accumulate this mess. All we had to do was do nothing.

  • Salvation
  • Jesus
  • purpose
  • eternal life
  • neglect

Friday, January 12, 2018

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It's one of those photos you never forget – like, you know, the picture of those American soldiers raising the flag on Iwo Jima. You've probably seen the photo of those three weary, dusty firefighters raising the American flag in the ruins of the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. USA Today says "it may have been the blackest day's blackest hour" when that picture was taken. It was becoming apparent that there would be few survivors, and another tower – 7 World Trade Center – was about to fall. An evacuation order was issued to all firefighters searching in the rubble. But one firefighter saw something on a docked boat – a debris-covered American flag on a broken pole. With the help of two other firefighters, he found a large metal flagpole jutting at a 45-degree angle from a ledge about twenty feet above the ground. They climbed up and they rigged the flag to the pole, totally unaware that a photographer was watching and capturing it for all the world to see. A woman who taught nearby, summarized what that moment meant: "People were grasping for hope," she said, "and suddenly there it was."

  • faith
  • stress
  • struggle
  • darkness

Thursday, January 11, 2018

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When the President of the United States declared a war on terrorism, the lives of millions of American military personnel suddenly changed dramatically, and the war still rages on. Some of the first to be affected were the crews of our major combat ships, like aircraft carriers. In a matter of days, thousands were shipping out; maybe you remember those days. Reporters were trying to guess what their destinations were. But, of course, not even the crews knew. Except for a few commanders, their orders were unknown.

  • rescue
  • faith
  • God's will
  • outreach

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

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Three feet of snow! That was a weather record I didn't really want to participate in. But, sure enough, we woke up that cold New Jersey morning to three feet of snow that had literally buried the metropolitan New York area. Even New York, the city that never sleeps, had been effectively shut down by the storm. Our little guy really wanted to go out in the snow that blanketed our backyard. So we bundled him up and we watched as he ventured out into that white stuff. And he promptly disappeared! I went out after him and, as short as I am, I just about disappeared myself. It took quite a while for that snow to become manageable and for life to get back to normal. And it wasn't the last snow dump of the winter. But for those of us who have lived through some pretty long and tough winters, there is one word that sustains us through it all. You know the word: spring.

  • rescue
  • stress
  • Your Mission
  • struggle
  • outreach

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

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I know this is going to come as a shock to you, but there were a lot of rumors in college that I was behind some practical jokes and pranks that happened while I was there. That's hard to imagine, huh? I mean, it probably wouldn't come as a total surprise to some of those folks if finally I ended up in the penitentiary. Fortunately, my sentence was only about four hours, because I did end up at Alcatraz. Yep! Now, we had taken some young people out to that famous prison in the middle of San Francisco Bay to do a special radio program. Of course, it's been some years since any prisoners were held there on what they called The Rock, but it is still quite a place to see. While we were there, we experienced this awful claustrophobia of being locked in one of those little cells; the isolation of being in solitary confinement. For the closing segment of the program, we walked out of one of the prison gates and down to the rocks outside that overlook the bay. One of the young people with us was walking out with me, and he made quite an observation, because it was really a tremendously commanding view. He said, "Just think, there was only a wall between them and all this beauty."

  • Salvation
  • Jesus
  • forgiveness
  • alone
  • lonliness

Monday, January 8, 2018

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When our son entered high school, he carried with him the study habits that had served him well in junior high. They didn't serve him well in high school. He learned a whole lot about studying his freshman year. His grades weren't awful-they were just, you know, like below his potential. So the last part of the year, we resorted to, uh, martial law. We enforced three hours of study nightly and we allowed no calls...no going out until his homework was done. Now, turn the page to his second year in high school. I'd go into my study at night and I'd find him with these books and notebooks all spread out across my desk. Sometimes I'd tell him there was a phone call for him. And he'd answer, "Tell them I'll call them back later. I'm not getting on the phone, Dad. Not his year; not till my homework's done." I didn't have to discipline my son. He was disciplining himself.

  • Sin
  • distractions
  • temptation

Friday, January 5, 2018

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As your parents get older, they love to tell those stories again, and again, and again. We've enjoyed hearing some of the family stories that my wife's Dad had to tell. And, you know what? It filled in a lot of blanks, as we tried to put together the history of the last couple of generations. We asked him once about that little girl named Ada. My wife's grandfather, Granddad Glenn, had one child – her Dad. And he wanted a sister! So, Granddad Glenn traveled from their small town to a major city to check out the adoption possibilities at an orphanage there. I don't know if he was prepared for the reception he got there. Everywhere he went, children asked him if they could go home with him. But there was this one dark-haired, dark-eyed little girl who just would not leave his side. Her name was Ada. She wouldn't let go of Granddad's hand, and she kept looking up at him with her big brown eyes and begging him, "Please let me go home with you. Please take me." He did. And my wife's Dad got his sister.

  • Salvation
  • forgiveness
  • love
  • Home

Thursday, January 4, 2018

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When my wife and I inherited her grandparents' old farmstead in the country, we knew it was going to take some work. We were just grateful that we had a place to kind of get away, you know, and get some "r and r". We had several workmen there, racing a deadline to get some building and remodeling done before we had a lot of company. Well, on Thursday, they brought in some of the specialized tools they would need to finish the job on Friday. We went to bed Thursday night looking forward to having everything finished the next day. Now I don't usually wake up in the middle of the night, but this particular night I did. As I looked at our glow-in-the-dark digital clock, I noticed its' red numbers were flashing the same time at me, over and over again. This is not a good sign. Power outage! I almost went right back to sleep, figuring the power would come back on sooner or later. And then it hit me. Those workmen are going to be here shortly after sunrise, and they're not getting anything done without those special tools. And those tools won't work without power. Believe me, we didn't get back to sleep. We got right on the phone to the power company! Actually, hey, I did my part. I identified the problem. I asked my wife to get up and make the call. What a guy!

  • prayer
  • spiritual enemies
  • spiritual weapons

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

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On a visit to the home area where my wife grew up, she took me to this picturesque spot along the beautiful river there. When she was a little girl, she and her whole family went swimming there with the pastor of their church and his wife. That little patch of river became the scene of a dramatic rescue that afternoon. The pastor almost drowned and my father-in-law jumped in and literally saved this pastor's life. I learned recently that that pastor was one of four people that my father-in-law saved from drowning in his life. He got very serious about that when he told me the reason why. He told me about a time when he was a boy, and he literally watched two young girls drown in a river before he even knew how to swim. Immediately after that he learned to swim and to rescue drowning people. You know what motivated him? I'll tell you what, in his own words, he said, "I saw someone I couldn't rescue and I decided right then that would never happen again."

  • rescue
  • outreach
  • 3 open prayer
  • hope story

            

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

(870) 741-3300
(877) 741-1200 (toll-free)
(870) 741-3400 (fax)

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