Our daughter's all grown up and a mother herself now. But she still remembers the day she got lost at the grocery store - and all the feelings that went with it. She was four - her baby brother was in the grocery cart - she was walking ahead of us as we browsed the aisles for our next meals. Somehow, she got way out ahead of us and into another aisle. She kept walking until suddenly she realized that her parents were nowhere around. She remembers it as one of the traumatic moments of her young life - she said, "The aisle was so long, the shelves were so high, and I felt so alone."

There are few moments in recent American history that are more indelibly etched in our memories than the explosion at the Federal Office Building in Oklahoma City in April of 1995. We've all got mental images of the twisted rubble, the terror and grief on victim's faces, and the heroic efforts of the rescuers to get into that building and save the survivors. There were also heroes behind the scenes as well. For example, there was a convention of restaurateurs taking place in a downtown hotel that day. Like so many people in Oklahoma City that day, as soon as they heard about the explosion and the rescue efforts, their plans changed. Suddenly, they set aside their convention schedule and commandeered the hotel kitchen - and dedicated themselves to supplying meals to the rescuers so the rescue work could continue uninterrupted.

It's a true story, courtesy of Ida Mae Kempel. The names have been changed. Jeremy was 12 years old but he was only in the second grade, seemingly unable to learn. His body was twisted, his mind was slow, and his teacher, Doris Miller, often became exasperated with his squirming and his grunting noises. But at other times, he spoke pretty clearly and distinctly, as if a spot of light had penetrated the darkness in his brain. No one could have guessed that Jeremy would end up teaching his whole class - and his teacher.

It was the end of the day at the 1968 Mexico City Olympics - only a few thousand spectators were in the stadium as the last of the marathon runners were carried off in exhaustion to the first-aid stations. More than an hour earlier and Ethiopian runner had been the first to cross the finish line in this grueling 26-mile event. As the remaining spectators prepared to leave, they were stopped by the sound of sirens going off and policemen blowing whistles. There, entering the stadium came a lone figure wearing the colors of Tanzania - his name was John Akhwari. He was the last man to finish the marathon.

Our bedroom is on the southwest corner of the house - and that's the direction stormy weather comes from more often than not. So, believe me, we can tell when the weather's changing - especially when the season's changing. Often, in the night, our weather alert system goes off - then the severe thunderstorms come roaring in - the lightning keeps illuminating our backyard - and the wind and rain come slamming into the wall between our bed and the yard. You can sure tell when the season's changing!

If you're an older "Star Trek" fan, your guy was Captain Kirk. If you're a younger "Star Trek" fan, as in "Star Trek - The Next Generation," then your guy was Captain Picard. And if you've never watched "Star Trek" any generation, you could care less. Kirk and Picard were the captains of the Starship Enterprise. And no matter what conflict or calamity they encountered, those guys were in charge. I've been told that Captain Picard would speak three words after he gave an order - and you knew who was in charge. With this commanding tone, he would simply say - "Make it so."

Last fall, we were having a fun family outing at a nearby theme park – until we found out that our grandson was in the infirmary with his parents and with the park’s emergency medical staff. The problem was that he had somehow gotten a small metal object in his eye – which resisted all efforts to remove it. Well, without hesitation, we quickly brought our park outing to an end and headed for the hospital – where, thankfully, a specialist was able to remove that object from his eye. But we had to take it seriously – he had something potentially damaging in his eye – and that could affect how he sees things from now on.

Our daughter gave us one of the greatest gifts of our lives when she and her husband gave us our grandson. We all got the blessing, but she had to do the work. And now she’s getting ready to do it again! Yep, grandchild number two! Now I know it’s not the process of having the baby that made her go through this again. Her first pregnancy wasn’t a whole lot of fun, and labor, well it really wasn’t fun at all. But in spite of that painful process, she’s doing it again – because of the beautiful result it produces.

It took a while to determine the winner of the 2000 Presidential election in America – but as soon as George W. Bush was declared the winner, he and his staff went into high gear to staff his new administration. It’s got to be pretty exciting to pick up the phone and hear someone from the President’s staff inviting you to join his team. Right after the Inauguration, I watched the swearing in of Bush’s White House Staff. You could tell the significance and privilege of what they were about to do. They committed themselves to some pretty high standards of integrity and morality. But nobody seemed to mind. They understood what an honor it is to be asked to serve in the administration of the most powerful man in the nation.

For a lot of people in California, the year 2001 began in the dark! The headlines kept telling us that millions of Californians were having to endure what was called “rolling blackouts”. Apparently, when the energy industry was deregulated, it was supposed to lead to utilities buying power at lower prices – instead, prices skyrocketed. And deregulation also forbade them to raise prices to the consumer. Whatever the cause, the result was clear. For certain designated hours, the power company had to turn off the power to different areas at different times. So when the blackout rolled into your area, you suddenly had no electricity – and if you had something to do during that time that required that power – tough!

            

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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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