Thursday, February 8, 2018

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Ten suitcases and two trunks. Yep, that's what our daughter took to college with her that first year. Using some of my frequent flyer free tickets, we all flew to Chicago to take her to college. And her two brothers - oh, they were just thrilled to help move their sister's whole life. But something very strange happened when we landed at Chicago's O'Hare Airport. They closed the airport. Record-breaking rain had flooded the airport approaches so no one could come or go, including flight crews and people picking up passengers. And as we joined thousands of other passengers trying to find some food, a phone, a room, we had a distinct disadvantage. Mount Luggage! Yeah, it was very hard to go anywhere with all that baggage!

  • pain
  • hurt
  • forgiveness
  • guilt
  • my past
  • victim

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

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Somewhere back in the deep storage of your brain file, you probably remember him from World History class: the emperor Charlemagne. Actually, Charlemagne was the most powerful European ruler of the Middle Ages, leading a people he called the Franks to rule most of Europe. Under his rule, many people got baptized into the Church. It was pretty much expected of his soldiers, for example. In fact, they would go down to the river en masse and take the plunge. But one source reports that there was one thing that was a bit unusual about the baptism of those soldiers. When they would go under the water, they would hold one hand out of the water with their sword in that hand. They didn't want that hand baptized. That was the one they wanted to be free to use to kill whoever they needed to kill.

  • sacrifice
  • temptation
  • offering
  • spiritual commitment

Monday, January 22, 2018

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One of the most amazing Christian warriors in my lifetime was a man who came to be known as Brother Andrew, or 'God's Smuggler'. He risked everything to get God's Word into spiritually closed countries where that was virtually impossible. Many have considered him a spiritual hero. No one could doubt that he was, at the very least, a bold risk-taker for Christ.

In his biography, he tells about an incident in his early life as a follower of Christ that showed him the kind of God he was serving. After some pretty wild years without the Lord, he came to Christ and almost immediately felt the call to begin training for ministry. He went to this small Bible school in Scotland, and before the students were allowed to graduate, they were given a very unusual assignment. They were asked to go out for a month to do evangelistic outreaches in Scottish villages, and they were given some money to live on - one British pound, to be exact. For those of us who are Americans, it would be like being given a dollar to live on for a month. The students were to go with that one bill and eat, and sleep, and rent halls, and buy refreshments, and hold outreaches, and return that one bill at the end of the month. Brother Andrew's team went out and they did just that. Except he returned with enough money for the school to send out two missionaries!

  • rescue
  • faith
  • God's will
  • outreach

Thursday, January 18, 2018

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When I look out my window I can see everything clearly. But if I need to read these notes right in front of me, I have to put my glasses on. When I'm driving down the road later today, I won't need my glasses. I've got no problem seeing the road ahead, the cars around me, that road kill I want to avoid. But if I need to pull over and look at my map, forget it – I'd better have my glasses or I'll never find that small town I'm looking for. I am, as they say, farsighted.

  • friendship
  • fault
  • family
  • forgiveness
  • Sin
  • your relationships
  • coworkers
  • judging

Monday, January 8, 2018

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When our son entered high school, he carried with him the study habits that had served him well in junior high. They didn't serve him well in high school. He learned a whole lot about studying his freshman year. His grades weren't awful-they were just, you know, like below his potential. So the last part of the year, we resorted to, uh, martial law. We enforced three hours of study nightly and we allowed no calls...no going out until his homework was done. Now, turn the page to his second year in high school. I'd go into my study at night and I'd find him with these books and notebooks all spread out across my desk. Sometimes I'd tell him there was a phone call for him. And he'd answer, "Tell them I'll call them back later. I'm not getting on the phone, Dad. Not his year; not till my homework's done." I didn't have to discipline my son. He was disciplining himself.

  • Sin
  • distractions
  • temptation

Thursday, January 4, 2018

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When my wife and I inherited her grandparents' old farmstead in the country, we knew it was going to take some work. We were just grateful that we had a place to kind of get away, you know, and get some "r and r". We had several workmen there, racing a deadline to get some building and remodeling done before we had a lot of company. Well, on Thursday, they brought in some of the specialized tools they would need to finish the job on Friday. We went to bed Thursday night looking forward to having everything finished the next day. Now I don't usually wake up in the middle of the night, but this particular night I did. As I looked at our glow-in-the-dark digital clock, I noticed its' red numbers were flashing the same time at me, over and over again. This is not a good sign. Power outage! I almost went right back to sleep, figuring the power would come back on sooner or later. And then it hit me. Those workmen are going to be here shortly after sunrise, and they're not getting anything done without those special tools. And those tools won't work without power. Believe me, we didn't get back to sleep. We got right on the phone to the power company! Actually, hey, I did my part. I identified the problem. I asked my wife to get up and make the call. What a guy!

  • prayer
  • spiritual enemies
  • spiritual weapons

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

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Ahhh, Nantucket! My wife and I had some wonderful, romantic times on that picturesque little island 30 miles off the coast of Cape Cod in Massachusetts. The little village of Nantucket is just full of colonial charm. And everywhere you look you find reminders of its glory days in the whaling industry. I was surprised to learn, though, that during those glory days most of the town actually burned to the ground, right to the docks. It was a tragedy that nearly put Nantucket out of business. But it was a tragedy that never had to happen. It was an ugly, four-letter word that ultimately destroyed Nantucket, and the word wasn't fire. It's a word that's still destroying things.

  • rescue
  • outreach
  • christians
  • denomination
  • teamwork

Monday, November 27, 2017

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Skunks are kind of cute; you just don't want to get near them. Humans seem to understand that pretty well. Apparently, some dogs just don't get it. Like the one a pastor friend of mine told me about. The dog belongs to a man in his congregation. Somehow his canine companion got into a tangle with one of those striped kitties. Needless to say, the dog reeked! His owner did his best to bathe him thoroughly. But the smell was still so strong that, before it was over, literally the poor man got so sick in the night he had to go to the hospital!

  • Sin
  • distractions
  • temptation

Thursday, November 23, 2017

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During holiday seasons in America, and especially Thanksgiving, you can actually call the Butterball Turkey Hot Line. And, yes, you can get an answer to whatever turkey questions you may have. A famous news commentator said that they had monitored that hotline last Thanksgiving; and one lady called and she said, "I've had this turkey in my freezer for 23 years. Can I still use it?" Okay, this is a true story! The man on the hotline said, "Well, if your freezer has been set on zero degrees the whole time and it hasn't been defrosted, then the turkey is probably okay. Maybe the taste isn't though." Well, the lady decided she wouldn't use the turkey after all. She said, "I know, I'll give it to the church."

  • offering
  • titheing
  • commitment

Monday, November 20, 2017

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It was one of those real short nights. I had just spoken for a large youth event, and the night went late for the best of reasons: God brought hundreds of young people to faith in Christ that night. The counseling of all those kids took a blessedly long time. Now Jason, who was one of the organizers, took me to my hotel that night and he told me he would be picking me up in a few hours for my very early morning flight. I said, "I'm sorry you have to get me so early when you've been up so late." He said, "Oh, don't worry. I'll just roll out of bed, throw on a baseball cap, and come on over." (Which, by the way, I think is the major reason there are baseball caps.) Well, bless his heart, that's just what he did. When we got to the airport, I asked him if we could pray together before I went on my plane. He respectfully took off his baseball cap, and we had a neat time of prayer. When I opened my eyes at the end, he still had his cap off. And a very creative hair style - I mean, it was all over the place! He even laughed about it. The cap covered what he didn't want anyone to see-except when he was praying.

  • Sin
  • confession
  • foriveness

            

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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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