June 17, 2019

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Lake Cumberland is a nice place to go in central Kentucky. It's not a nice place to have come to you. That's what the Army Corps of Engineers has been concerned about. The Wolf Creek Dam holds back millions of gallons of water from Nashville and other communities along the Cumberland River. Well the Army engineers had expressed some growing concerns about a possible dam break. They said a break could kill many residents and it could cause over three billion dollars in damage. A Corps spokesman said that the failure of the dam wasn't imminent at that time but that evacuation plans would be a good idea. So they decided they would lower the water level in the lake and try to fortify the dam, because they said that dam was all that stands between a lot of lives and a major disaster.

June 14, 2019

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When I was in South Africa, our hosts were kind enough to take me to an incredible game park where I could see African animals in the wild. And I did! Rhinos, giraffes, ostriches, and baboons - not the kind of animals you usually see wandering around, say, New York. But the highlight was coming around this curve and meeting a great bull elephant in the road. He put on a real show for us for several minutes. I picked up a local newspaper a while later and saw a news article with that game park as the dateline. The article was about the young male elephants there-the ones the rangers call the teenagers. Apparently, in recent months, those teenage male elephants had been on a reign of terror in the park, doing things that elephants don't usually do. They had attacked other animals like rhinos. They had attacked tourists, inflicting death or serious injury. And finally the park officials got it figured out what had gone wrong with these young males. When they were newborn, they were taken from another game park and brought to this one. But their fathers - the bull elephants - were not brought with them. So these teenage elephants grew up without a model of how a grownup male should act - and they were out of control.

June 13, 2019

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When one of our kids would be going through a sick spell, I used to tell them they needed to get lots of sleep. That's because (this is what I'd say) "when you're asleep, the good soldiers come out and fight those bad soldiers that are making you sick." Okay come on, it's not advanced microbiology, but it works for me. Actually, one of the amazing things about these bodies God has given us is how our body kicks into action when it's been invaded by an infection. All those antibodies go to work (good soldiers), and those white blood cells start coming out in force. In fact, one way doctors look for infection is to check your blood for the elevated presence of white blood cells. They're multiplying fast when the "bad soldier" germs try to take you out.

June 12, 2019

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My friend Dave got tired of wearing glasses. But if he didn't, he was dangerous. After consulting with a specialist, he determined that he was a candidate for this Lasik eye surgery. During the procedure, a laser beam was aimed at the parts of his eye that limited his vision and the light of that laser changed everything. Guess who doesn't need glasses anymore? All because of the power of focused light.

June 11, 2019

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Tommy Rieman was a teenager pumping gas in Independence, Kentucky, when he enlisted in the United States Army. Today, he wears the Purple Heart and the Silver Star of an American hero. He was, in fact, introduced to the nation during President Bush's 2007 State of the Union Address. There's been been a lot of disagreement about the war in Iraq, but there wass no disagreement about the heroism of soldiers like Sgt. Rieman. The day his squad was ambushed by enemy fire in the midst of a reconnaissance mission, they were outnumbered ten to one. Their vehicles kept moving as Sgt. Rieman dove into the backseat and used his body as a shield to protect his gunner. As they sped away from the ambush, they found themselves ambushed again by some fifty enemy attackers. Rieman was shot in the right arm, he was shot in the chest, he had shrapnel wounds to his chest and stomach and ear, and his squad was out of ammo. In spite of all those wounds, Tommy Rieman began firing away with his grenade launcher at their attackers. Finally, the enemy's guns fell silent. Then Sgt. Rieman began tending to his wounded.

June 10, 2019

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We were between ministry engagements, and we took a short timeout in a picturesque mountain community in the Southeast. It's the oldest town in the area and its buildings make you feel like you've stepped back into the 1890s. It's got rambling Victorian mansions, soaring spires, it's got this classic railroad station. We stopped to ask a local man directions, and somewhere in the middle of his answer he made this observation about his town, "You know, this place is sort of like a movie set. There really isn't much here, but it sure does look pretty."

June 7, 2019

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I know advertisers have to hate it, but the truth is that a lot of times we remember their commercial, but we forget their product. Recently, I saw a commercial like that. The ad really impressed me, but I have no idea what they were advertising. Anyway, it showed some scenes from explorations of space and some appropriate galactic scenery. And then, these words appeared on the screen, "The last frontier isn't space." OK, then what is it? The next words answered that question. "It's the human imagination."

June 6, 2019

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When our friends got married some years ago, they decided they wanted to live and farm in a largely undeveloped area of the Ozark Mountains. They had some interesting neighbors - one in particular. He looked and talked and smelled like a true man of the mountains who had little use for "civilization." After they declined his invitation to dinner a few times, they finally consented. It was a memorable night. They stood on the porch of his cabin as he pointed to the hens running around the yard and said, "Tell me which chicken you want for dinner." They did and then they got to participate in executing the lucky winner. The conditions in which dinner was prepared would have given chest pains to any health inspector.

June 5, 2019

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I think my fascination started at a historic old life-saving station on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. It was there that I learned about the heroism of those crews who once manned those life-saving stations all along the maritime Atlantic coast. Their heroism actually gave birth to what we know today as the United States Coast Guard. Their motto says it all: "So others may live." Some of that modern-day heroism was portrayed in a movie called "The Guardian." It's a story about that elite group of 280 men and women who are known as rescue swimmers - the first responders who jump from choppers into violent seas to rescue people who otherwise would die there. In the movie, a veteran rescuer shows a film of a burning ship from which he helped to rescue some desperate crewmen. He frames the essence of their mission in some sobering words: "They're looking for a miracle to save them. You have to find a way to be that miracle."

June 4, 2019

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Our friends Roy and Judy have been married for almost 30 years. But there are two words that took a beating early in their marriage and they still get a rise out of Judy to this day believe it or not. The words "trust me." You know there's got to be a story here. Years ago, Roy decided to try his hand sailing one of those little Sunfish type sailboats. He wanted Judy to go with him. Her back was really bothering her, but he assured her that he knew what he was doing. Of course, every guy does! "Trust me," he said. One problem: as they sailed away, the rudder kept coming off. That's all. That's rudder, as in what steers the boat. Well, Judy was extremely unhappy when rudderlessness ultimately led them to capsizing - a boat with a ten-foot mast stuck upside down in six feet of water. Beautiful picture huh? So much for "trust me."

            

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

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