Thursday, August 18, 2005

Fettuccini Alfredo! It's that great Italian dish that has buttered noodles served in a rich, creamy cheese sauce. Unfortunately, one news magazine in an article on nutrition and our health called it a "heart attack on a plate." That may be a bit of an overstatement, but the fact is that a lot of foods do contribute to the slow shutdown of the valves that happen to carry the blood and oxygen into your heart. I love what one commercial calls it -- blood sludge. Medical people refer to the hardening of the arteries -- the process in which foods that are high in cholesterol and fat start building up hard deposits in your arteries. If this hardening in your heart is allowed to continue long enough, it is not a laughing matter. It really can threaten your life.

Tuesday, August 2, 2005

Recently, I spoke at a church and I followed it up with a question and answer time. The questions ranged from things about our ministry, to questions about reaching lost people, to my family. It was a little of everything. One man in the back asked a question that was even a little amusing. He said, "Where do you get all this energy?" I have been accused of being the Energizer Bunny, but the ironic thing is that I had come into that church totally depleted by a heavy weekend of outreach. I was wishing I could just go to my room and sleep, to tell you the truth. In fact, I even told the pastor that the meeting isn't going to be very long because I was too exhausted. It went for two hours! Physically, I think I must just have deep reservoirs of adrenaline. Adrenaline is our friend at times when we just don't have what it takes physically to meet the demands of the moment. Adrenaline is that amazing substance that you don't have when you don't need it, but that surges into your system at just the moment you do need it. And you are able to do things that if I had asked you earlier you would say you could never do.

Friday, July 29, 2005

It may have been the scariest moment of my life. I was only ten years old, but I remember it like it was yesterday. I was with my friends in Lake Michigan. We started out just wading, but they kept getting deeper - until the lake bottom dropped off sharply. My buddies started swimming. I didn't know how, and I was too embarrassed to tell them. And I started taking on water fast. I went under once, I went under twice, and I was desperately thrashing around. As for my buddies, they thought I was just clowning around. Can you imagine me clowning around? Well, I was drinking the lake. I can see that water burying me there like it was yesterday, and honestly, I was almost a goner. And then he came - the man from the shore who saw my predicament and he jumped in to do something about it. He had come to rescue me. I grabbed him with both hands. I hung onto him as if he were my only hope. He was.

Monday, July 18, 2005

Lori Piestewa was the first woman killed in the Iraq war. She was a Native American and a single mom with two children. She died in an Iraqi ambush, and her good friend Jessica Lynch was wounded, captured and rescued. You may remember that. She was determined to help fulfill Lori Piestewa's dream - to have a house for her parents and her children. Jessica Lynch contacted the TV program, "Extreme Makeover," to see if they could make it happen. Their popular program shows them doing amazing makeovers of people's homes in a very short time, re-creating them into houses that are far beyond anything the owner's ever dreamed. And they did it again for a war hero's family, moving them from their deteriorating trailer home into a wonderful new home. Given those good TV ratings that show has, apparently a lot of people love to watch these amazing transformations.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Pete came to me with a very unusual request when we were freshmen in college together. He asked me who I thought were the five best girls to date in our class. Just call me Dr. Love. I gave him my top five list; four of whom I had been out with in my mad "date them all" freshman rush. There was one I hadn't dated - a beautiful, perky brunette. Well, after I gave Pete that list, I began to ask myself an obvious question. Why hadn't I dated that brunette? So I did, and I did again, and again, and I still am. By the time we graduated, we were engaged to be married. Pete was a New Englander. He was a man of few words, and he wrote only six words next to his picture in our senior yearbook, "You believe in your product. Pete." Yes, I did. That beautiful girl and I got married one week later.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Remember those classic Alka-Seltzer commercials - the two tablets dropping into a glass of water to the tune of "plop, plop, fizz, fizz"? Usually they showed someone eating something disagreeable just before bedtime. Right? And someone who could only be rescued from terminal indigestion with a "plop, plop, fizz, fizz." Several years ago I met someone who knew the agony of late night stomach revolt. Terry works in the theater on Broadway in New York. He told me many show people just can't eat before they go on, so they're starved by the time the show is over and they get cleaned up. It's around midnight then. And Terry said they would go out together for a big dinner and shortly thereafter head home for their night's sleep and their night's wrestling match with what they had just eaten. Eating's nice - if it's followed by digestion!

Thursday, July 7, 2005

I had just finished speaking for a Christian leaders' gathering that was part of the countdown to a Franklin Graham Festival. The setup team there was in their early days of working together on this massive mobilization. The team leader thought it would be a good idea to get his team together for a few minutes after the meeting ended, and he invited me to join them. Then he handed me a cluster of helium balloons tied together. Suddenly, I felt like I'd gone from speaker to like circus clown. And, you know, I've read Winnie the Pooh stories to our kids enough that I couldn't help picturing Pooh Bear being carried into the sky by just such a bunch of balloons. After all, I'm not much bigger than Pooh Bear. But in spite of my trivial imaginings, the team leader there had a holy purpose for having me stand there with those balloons. He asked his team members to spread out around the room. They ended up widely separated. He asked them to get as close to me and my balloons as they could. Within moments, those workers, who had been so scattered, were shoulder to shoulder in a clump around me.

Monday, July 4, 2005

The love of Mary Ann's life, Tom, was coming for a visit. He lived in another state, so those visits were really special. He was due to arrive Friday night or Saturday sometime, and Mary Ann's room had been declared a federal disaster area. Finally, on Thursday afternoon, she decided she'd better get busy trying to recover her room. It was in pretty embarrassing condition. You know sometimes you have to make things messier in the process of getting them put away or thrown away. Mary Ann's room was at that point on Friday morning when the phone rang. It was Tom. He was calling to say he loved her and that he was looking forward to seeing her soon. That was all the incentive she needed to finish the job. Unfortunately, she didn't get that opportunity. Tom had called from downstairs. He had arrived earlier than Mary Ann expected. So in he walked and there she stood, dressed in her "grubbies," hair matted on her forehead, surrounded by an indescribable mess!

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Little Jessica suddenly became America's child the day she fell down that narrow shaft in a backyard in Texas. Here was a toddler, wedged nearly upside down, in a shaft far too narrow for a man to navigate, and unable to help herself in any way. It didn't take long for the press to descend on that little hole in the ground to cover this valiant effort to try to save little Jessica's life. Pretty soon countless people across the country and around the world were rooting and praying for her life. I was one of them. At first, there appeared to be no way out of this deadly situation, but the rescuers weren't giving up. They began to build a wider shaft parallel to the one Jessica was trapped in. She'd been in there for nearly three days when a rescuer finally went down that new shaft and through the tunnel they had dug to Jessica. Minutes later - a scene many of us will never forget. In the glare of the press's massive lights, a battered but breathing little girl emerged from that hole with her arms tightly around her rescuer.

Monday, May 23, 2005

My son bought an old Mustang when he was in high school (not the kind with four legs. I mean the kind with four wheels). He used money he got from selling some of his valuable baseball card collection. Some years later, he wanted to sell it and put the proceeds into the work that he is doing with Native Americans. He was home for a little while and that's where the Mustang was, so he put an ad in the paper about it. First day - no calls. Second day - no calls. He wasn't expecting a line at the door exactly, but he thought he'd get a little more response than that. Then he found out why the phone was silent. He checked the ad and found that the paper had goofed and published a phone number that was a wrong number. But what a difference that one number made! When we dialed the number in the paper, there never was any answer. And since it takes a couple of days to change the error, the wrong number made more encore appearances in the paper. You gotta feel bad for some guy who's looking in the paper, sees a car he wants at a price he likes, and dials the magic number that cannot possibly reach the person who has what he's interested in.

            

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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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