November 7, 2022

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We live in one of the mountainous regions of America. And, you know, mountains are beautiful once you can see them. In areas like this, you can start quite a few mornings with fog and mist. Sometimes it just obscures the mountains in the distance, and sometimes I can't even see the neighbor's yard. If you're the kind of person who lets the weather determine your mood, you could feel pretty "blah" on those foggy days. But there's something you can always be sure of when it's foggy. It's not going to be there all that long. Because even though you cannot see the sun, you know it's shining out there. It's burning off that fog until you can see the beauty around you again.

October 31, 2022

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You've probably seen pictures of an eagle, probably soaring majestically. You've actually seen some eagles? Okay. I'll bet they were soaring. It's always special when you see one. But apparently, from something I read recently, there are times that they can't even fly. and very few people have ever seen them in their bad times. According to this account, eagles do get sick, and sometimes when they're sick they're almost immobilized. They're weak, depleted, and frankly they're not much to see. When an eagle crashes like that he goes off to a place where he can be alone, often on top of a high cliff. And he lies out in the sun, face up, spread-eagled, totally collapsed. God has actually outfitted the eagle with eyes that can look at the sun without any damage, and that's what the powerless eagle does. He focuses his eyes on the sun and he lies there until his strength comes back. Yeah, the eagle crashes, but he knows how to come back to soar again!

October 13, 2022

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Our three-year-old grandson had been around long enough to show us that he's gonna be the one who lived on the edge. You know, trying daring things, and basically a physical kind of guy. Consequently, he might be on a first name basis with the folks in the emergency room. We hope not, but you know, he's already visited there more than once in his short career. The first time he got a bad cut on his lip from a fall - lots of bleeding, run to the emergency room, stitches. This medical stuff was all new to him. Oh, listen he fought it. It took four people to hold down this tiger while the stitches were put in. It was traumatic for everybody involved - including my wife who was one of those E. R. wrestlers that night trying to hold him down. The second time was when another fall caused a big cut in his chin. Lots of bleeding, run to the emergency room, stitches. Get a pattern here? Less fighting this time. Oh, it wasn't easy, but it wasn't as bad as the first time. Who knows, maybe pretty soon he'll be helping them put the stitches in!

October 3, 2022

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When you have young grandchildren, hey, you're back in the toy business again. And sure enough, man, have we had a closet full of toys that, contrary to some vicious rumors, are not mine. They are there for the grandchildren. And they quickly learn to relocate those toys from the closet to our living room every time they would visit. One of them is this furry blue puppet with bulging eyes - good old Cookie Monster of Sesame Street fame. You know him. And he's got this string in his back. When you pull it, he starts chewing and moving his arms and uttering his trademark phrase: "Cookie. Me want cookie!" Pull the string again and he'll say the same thing again. No matter how many times you pull that string, he's going to do the "cookie" thing every time.

September 12, 2022

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Even though I was really busy speaking at a conference, I was blessed with this beautiful mountain cabin as my accommodation while I was there. The best time, and about the only time I could enjoy it, was early in the morning. This cabin has a large porch. And from it you can see these majestic forest views, this awe-inspiring tapestry of green mountains and deep valleys. As I stepped out onto that porch one morning, the scenery had undergone a significant makeover. The fog was winning, and I watched as these large clouds of fog billowed up. First they filled the valley below and then steadily rose to totally obscure the mountains. It looked almost as if the mountains were being consumed by the fog. So, the morning light from the sun that should have been illuminating the area by that time was nowhere to be seen. Well, briefly. Because you know what happened. The sun continued to rise behind that conquering fog, and in a short time, that fog began to quickly shrink and pretty soon it was gone.

September 6, 2022

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It must have felt like a scene from the book and the movie called "The Perfect Storm." Their vessel was a 61-year-old wooden fishing boat, making the Inside Passage from Sitka, Alaska to Port Angeles, Washington. It was supposed to be a one-week trip. It was late in the season - a time of year when wild storms can develop. They sink ships; they take lives. Sure enough, their boat hit hurricane-force winds that threatened to take them to the bottom. At one point when green water washed over the pilothouse and the boat plunged for what seemed to be the bottom, one passenger heard the captain mutter beneath his breath. But as this 30-year veteran of Alaska's ferocious storms worked that wheel, he turned to his passenger, smiled and said two words, "No problem." No matter how vicious the storm became, no matter how perilous the situation seemed, the captain remained calm, and he helped steady his very frightened passengers...and they made it.

August 25, 2022

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It was one of those winters when the bottom dropped out of the temperature in our area. I mean, folks there just aren't used to visits from North Pole weather. For a while, our favorite song was, "Freeze a Jolly Good Fellow." I was discussing this extended freeze with a friend who has lived in the area most of her life, and she actually helped me have a very positive outlook on the cold weather. She just said, "Well, just think - it's killing a lot of bugs!" Okay! Well, with all the ticks and the other pests we had the previous summer, I guess that was good news. So the next time I walked outside and felt a blast of that chilling cold, I said to myself, "Well, I'm turning blue, but the bugs are dying!"

August 19, 2022

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I seem to vaguely remember this old nursery rhyme from when I was a kid. It went like this: "Mary, Mary, quite contrary, how does your garden grow?" If you asked our grandsons that question, they'd probably say, "Real slow!" Maybe that's why Mary was so contrary. There was a spring that the boys worked with their Dad to clear a little area in the yard where they could have a vegetable garden. And they were all excited about planting those seeds in the ground: tomato seeds, green beans, carrots, and lettuce. They went out the next day to look at what they had planted. Nothing. Then the next week, and the week after that. They watered the garden when it didn't rain. They pulled up weeds. For the longest time, they went out to that garden to see what was happening. Guess what was happening? Nothing...or so it looked. Had they tried to dig up the seeds to see if anything was happening, they would have ruined everything. But you know the story. It finally happened: The tomatoes and beans and carrots and lettuce. It just took a little while.

August 9, 2022

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When it comes to growing things, I'm not exactly Seedling Sam the Gardening Man. I grew up in an apartment in the city, OK? But my farm girl wife and some friends who have amazing green thumbs? Oh, they've taught me a lot about how things grow and flourish. I was reminded of one of those lessons when I read an article about growing blueberries in our local newspaper. Not growing blueberries in the newspaper. It was I read about it in the newspaper. And the writer of that article is a recognized expert. He's a blueberryologist I guess. He explained how one of his most important steps in making blueberry bushes fruitful is to chop off branches. Sounds destructive, but actually it's constructive. He prunes away a lot of top branches so the interior branches are exposed to the sunlight. The result? Big blueberries and lots of them!

July 21, 2022

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Our then-18-month-old grandson rapidly became a bulldozer on two legs. He didn't actually walk anywhere; he ran everywhere. And no comments about being like his grandfather here, OK? Of course, he didn't always get around like that. First, he only went where one of us carried him. Then the crawling started. He didn't do that for long. He graduated to walking real fast. And, like every baby who ever learned to walk, he began by taking a step or two and then he fell down. I guess he could have said to himself after a couple of falls, "Oh well, I guess I wasn't cut out to walk. It's just too hard. I keep falling down. I think I'll just lie here from now on." Oh, great! Now he's 18 years old, his mother has to vacuum around him. His friends come over and he says, "Hey, you want to roll into my room with me?" No, it didn't work that way. After he went "step-boom," he got back up and went "step-step-boom." And then "step-step-step-step-boom." Now you can't stop him!

            

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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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