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

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

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It was before Christmas, and I went shopping for toys for my kids. Now you might not think there's anything unusual about that – unless you happen to know that all my kids are grown up now. But that doesn't mean they can't have one little spark of childhood left in them, right? For example, I always buy my daughter a doll for Christmas; I always have, I always will. And we've got one son who for a long time was a big fan of a certain Sesame Street character, and he had a collection of everything Ernie. Yeah, believe it or not! Well, there came a time when this Ernie toy was one of the hottest Christmas items on the market, and I wanted one for my son, the Ernie enthusiast. I discovered the toy in September in a store before it became an officially hot item. I held it in my hand. I could have bought it, but I said, "Naw, Christmas is a long way off. I can always get it later." Wrong! When "later" came, no more Ernies to be found.

  • Salvation
  • Jesus
  • too late

Monday, January 1, 2018

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It was the countdown week to the birth of our first grandchild. And, as you might expect, there were some of those mother/daughter conversations about what this experience was going to be like. You know, birthing this child that you've carried for nine months. I didn't think I had a lot to contribute, so I kind of bailed on this conversation. And while our daughter was still at home with some of those first contractions, I overheard her mother giving her some insight-the words of the veteran who's been there and knows what's ahead. She said, "Now, you're going to reach a point where you'll feel like you just can't take it anymore. Well, that's when you've got to hang on, honey, because that's when the baby comes."

  • pain
  • hurt
  • struggle

Friday, December 29, 2017

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When I was at a theme park, I ended up on one of the longest lines they had. It was the line for those little "Grand Prix" racing cars. All of us--I mean all of those kids wanted to get on that little race track and pretend that we, ah no, they were a race car driver. It's fun, but it's fantasy. Oh, there's an accelerator, but your speed is pretty much limited no matter how much you floor it. Oh yeah, there's a steering wheel; you can turn it, but your turning is totally limited to the track they have your car on. Sure, you can hug that wheel and stomp that accelerator, but the sorry truth is this: you don't have control of that thing.

  • faith
  • stress
  • struggle

Thursday, December 28, 2017

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I was learning to ride a bicycle, and my dad was my teacher. Across the street from our apartment was a schoolyard as big as a city block. Like most city schoolyards, it was all concrete, no grass. In the middle of that big expanse was the only obstacle for a bike-riding rookie-a big old metal flagpole. But how could anyone run into that when he had the whole schoolyard to learn in, right? It can be done. Yeah, there I was, wobbling along, trying to learn to keep my balance on two wheels with my dad just behind me. Suddenly I heard him saying, "Turn, boy." My hands were frozen to the handlebars. I was sure turning either way meant crashing on that hard concrete. Again, "Turn, son!" I was closing in on the flagpole. Now it was a desperate cry from the lips of a disbelieving father, "Turn or you're going to hit the pole!" Bonngggg! I hit the pole. I still have the chipped tooth to prove it.

  • Salvation
  • Jesus
  • forgiveness
  • eternity

            

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

(870) 741-3300
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