Tuesday, October 17, 2017

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During an opportunity I had to work with my son on some Native American youth outreaches, one of our attractions that night was various basketball competitions. Alex was one of those who showed up to compete in the 3-point shooting contest. Alex is probably about 12, and he appears to have Down's Syndrome. But he doesn't let any Special Ed limitations slow him down. Alex plunges right into things. It's neat to watch. Now, his shooting didn't win any prizes, but his attitude sure would have. In fact, later in the evening, I saw this very special scene at the far end of the gym. Our son, Brad, who is a moose, was holding Alex in his arms and letting him shoot baskets from that improved altitude. Alex was loving it. But the best part came a few minutes later. I glanced down the gym floor and I saw a similar scene – except this time it was Alex lifting up a boy smaller than he was so that little guy could shoot some baskets! Wow!

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  • family
  • friends
  • coworkers
  • encouragement

Monday, October 16, 2017

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My wife, Karen, was waking up to a sound she hadn't heard before and she couldn't identify. It sounded like crinkling cellophane, and it was coming from inside our bedroom walls! Now, somehow I missed this little symphony, but Karen sure picked up on it. Since we were pretty sure no one was actually crinkling cellophane in our walls, we looked into other possibilities. Like carpenter ants, for example. And sure enough, that's what it was! Those little marauders were feasting on the wood in our house, and they were gradually eating our home! We didn't even have to think about what to do. "Hello, Mr. Exterminator?"

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  • parenting
  • marriage
  • family
  • temptation
  • healing

Friday, October 13, 2017

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I was traveling to South Africa, and I had this 18-hour flight layover in Rome, and I wanted to see as much of it as I could. A friend of mine picked me up at the airport and we began this whirlwind day by taking me to the Coliseum. As we left, we were surrounded by five or six gypsy children who started talking all at once. My friend actually told me to hang onto my stuff, which I desperately tried to do. I had my wallet in my front pants pocket as a precaution, my passport in my sport jacket, a camera bag, and an umbrella because it was raining. Those kids were good at what they did. They did everything to distract us as they tried to grab something of value. Well, my friend fended them off using his umbrella like a sword, and then we breathed a sigh of relief as we checked to see if we had everything. We had just rounded a corner when I saw this little gypsy girl - maybe five years old or so - running over the hill toward us. She was waving something blue in her hand. It was my passport. Unbeknownst to me, the kids had gotten my passport, and unbeknownst to them, this little girl had brought it back to me. It was a little miracle actually, and it was a good thing. I wasn't about to get into South Africa without my passport!

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  • Salvation
  • Jesus
  • religion
  • heaven

Thursday, October 12, 2017

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Not long ago I got to take one of my favorite East Coast walks. You know, growing up in Illinois, I didn't know much about the ocean. So when we moved to New Jersey, I quickly developed a pretty deep love for the ocean. So it's no surprise that Ocean City is one of my favorite places to go, right? And I love to walk out on the long, rock jetties that reach out into the sea from the beach. I really love it at high tide when the surf's crashing in around those rocks. When you see some of those monster waves surging toward those rocks, it looks like there's going to be a classic confrontation between the irresistible force (the ocean) and the immovable object (the rocks). Well, I'll tell you, the ocean sure overwhelms everything else in its way. But every time those rocks I stand on meet the mighty power of the sea, the winner is always the same. The wave is shattered. The rock remains.

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  • pain
  • faith
  • hurt
  • stress
  • struggle

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

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Ronald Reagan led one of the most extraordinary lives of the 20th Century-a life which he sadly and progressively forgot in the last years of his life. His long battle with Alzheimer's Disease acted like a cruel eraser. It removed recollections of what he had done and even who he was. After Ronald Reagan's death, we learned a lot more about what happened during his long journey into darkness. Memory of his years in Hollywood just disappeared, and then he couldn't remember being Governor of California, and ultimately he lost all that had happened in his years as being President of the United States. But one memory stayed alive almost until the end. In the office that Nancy Reagan set up for him, there was a picture on the wall; it was a picture of the Rock River in Illinois. When visitors would ask him about it, after most of his life was there no more, he would brighten and he'd say, "Oh, that's where I was a lifeguard when I was 17. That's where I saved 77 lives!"

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  • rescue
  • family
  • outreach
  • friends
  • coworkers

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

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During one summer with our "On Eagles' Wings" Native American outreach team, we had some 5,000 miles to cover in about five weeks. In order to make it to all the reservations to which we had accepted invitations, we needed a comfortable bus. And God wonderfully provided that through some brothers in Christ. Now our bus driver, Josh, really knew his way across the West, and my wife Karen really didn't. It was often her job to drive another vehicle that we needed. That meant traveling many unfamiliar miles, but she found a way to simplify the process. She just kept her eyes on that bus. If Josh turned, she turned. If Josh stopped, she stopped. She made sure she could even recognize the lights of his bus in case they got separated. Karen said this trip that could have been so difficult and confusing turned out to be pretty relaxed and simple. She didn't try to figure out the route for herself. She had a great trip because one thing governed all her choices-following the man who knew the way.

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  • faith
  • prayer
  • daily devotions

Monday, October 9, 2017

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Tall grass-dead mower. That was my sad situation last spring. I tried everything to get my power mower going, but it really didn't want to start. Of course, that didn't stop the lawn from growing, no. I went away for a little while, came back, and the grass was now taking over. (Get your machete, Ron.) Well, I played with my mower again and again, and it still didn't respond. We were starting to look like maybe the set of a "Tarzan" movie. And my mower, oh it didn't care. So I started looking for alternative equipment to get the job done. Let's see, my hair clippers. Yeah, how about that uh...the ones you use for your haircuts? I was desperate, but I did not try to cut the grass with my hair clippers. No, they work great on hair; they would not work great on my lawn. But, on the other hand, how would you like to get your hair cut with a lawn mower?

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  • Salvation
  • Jesus
  • purpose
  • meaning of life

Friday, October 6, 2017

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New York City is a bit of a shock to any first-time visitor. It's especially jarring for someone who has spent her whole life on an Indian Reservation. Now, Linda was from the Navajo Reservation in Arizona and she was part of our ministry's Native American Youth Outreach Team that we call "On Eagle's Wings." She was able to see New York from a distance at first. There's the Empire State Building, there's the skyline, and she said she wanted to see it all up close. Ha! Well, that may have changed now that she has seen it up close. See, she went in with us when I spoke in the city one night and the traffic and the crowds; man, they were all over the place and they made her feel like maybe she was on a battlefield without a helmet. She also found certain aspects of the city exciting and she might go back. But as our team was driving along the Hudson River, we were headed for the George Washington Bridge and Linda must have been reflecting on her life on the reservation for a minute because she just looked up into the Big Apple sky and she just said two words, "No stars."

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  • Salvation
  • Jesus
  • distractions
  • temptations

Thursday, October 5, 2017

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If you grew up on a farm, there's probably a dog in your memories. For my farm girl, Karen, that dog was a Collie cattle dog named King. King was great at rounding up her Dad's cattle. All Dad would have to do was to whistle that certain whistle, and King would start circling and circling those cattle until he herded them in. But there was a problem. One day a chicken got out, and King killed that chicken-which gave that valuable dog the taste of blood. They tell me if you can't cure that in a dog, you can't afford to keep that dog. The dog either has to be killed or disciplined so he'll never forget. So Dad took that dead chicken (now, get this) tied its legs around King's neck with some twine. Needless to say, this dog tried everything to shake that dead chicken, but as the day wore on, the bird he killed did not improve with age. No, by the end of the day, King's head and tail were hanging very low. Look, it's a painful way to learn the seriousness of what he had done, but not nearly as painful as the alternative.

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  • hurt
  • forgiveness
  • Sin
  • guilt
  • discipline
  • consequences

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

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Birds had moved into the vent in the exhaust fan of our kitchen range while we were on vacation. Isn't that nice? They set up their little nest and made themselves really at home. And, man, were they noisy neighbors! The nest was so huge it made the fan unworkable. And some lovely spiders were hanging down from the hood on the stove. Our problem was that trying to remove that nest might have killed that nest full of baby birds. Well, we couldn't see them, but man, we could sure hear them when they were hungry! So, we waited until Mom and Dad bird took the babies out. A couple of weeks later, after we were sure they were gone, I got a long stick and I proceeded to rake out the rest. But when we removed the nest, we discovered a little surprise. Well, no, actually, a big, fat surprise. There was the fattest bird we had ever seen, sitting in the nest. As my wife went to get gloves and a box, he got away. But it literally took a major earthquake to get that bird out of his nest!

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  • evangelism
  • rescue
  • outreach
  • the harvest
  • witness

            

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

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