Thursday, November 1, 2007

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On a visit to her home area in the Ozarks, my wife took me to a picturesque spot along the Buffalo River. When she was a little girl, she and her whole family went swimming there with the pastor of their church and his wife. That little patch of river became the scene of a dramatic rescue that afternoon. That pastor almost drowned and my father-in-law jumped in and literally saved his life. I learned recently that that pastor was one of four people my father-in-law saved from drowning in his life. He got very serious when he told me the reason why. He told me about a time when he was a boy, and he watched two young girls drown in a river before he even knew how to swim. Immediately after that he learned to swim - and to rescue drowning people. You know what motivated him? In his own words, "I saw someone I couldn't rescue and I decided right then that would never happen again."

Monday, October 22, 2007

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"Daddy, would you play with me?" I can still hear those echoes from when our kids were little. I can still remember how preoccupied I was a lot of times when they asked that. So I can relate to the man who was reading his Sunday newspaper - you know, one of the big ones that comes in volumes. His little guy kept tapping on the newspaper and asking his Daddy to play with him. Dad kept giving him little things to do to keep him occupied. Finally, he tried another way to be able to finish his paper. He tore out a page that had a map of the world on it and he ripped it into pieces. He said, "Scotty, put this puzzle together. As soon as you've got it finished, I promise I'll come and play." Two minutes later, Scotty was tapping on Dad's newspaper again. "I'm finished," he said. And there it was - the whole map of the world, together on the floor. Dad said, "Son, how did you ever put that together so fast?" His little guy replied: "It was easy, Daddy. There was a picture of a man on the other side. If you put the man together right, the world goes together just fine!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

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Over the years, I've had the privilege of meeting a lot of men and women who work in law enforcement and I really appreciate them. Some of them have helped out with security at events where I've spoken. In one city, I met some pretty impressive guys who worked on a SWAT team; those guys who are sent in as rapid assault teams in those particularly dangerous situations. Bobby was one of them. They called him "The Slammer." Sounds like someone from the World Wrestling Federation. But they call Bobby that because he's the one who takes out the door when they're raiding a residence. And looking at how he's built (I mean, I think his arm is bigger than my waist) you can see they picked the right man for the job. If you want to door removed, "he da man!"

Thursday, October 4, 2007

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Few people captured the American imagination like America's first astronauts. That's why, for many of us, names like John Glenn are on a list of 20th Century heroes. John Glenn was, of course, one of the first men to ride a rocket into space. Then, years later, as a "senior citizen" he amazed the world by doing it again. So when John Glenn gives advice to today's space shuttle astronauts, he's got credentials! I love what he is reported to have told the Columbia astronauts before what turned out to be their last flight. He said, "Hey, don't forget to look out the window!"

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

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Jessica's all grown up now. She almost didn't make it past 18 months. You may remember when, as a curious toddler, little Jessica fell down a deep shaft in her aunt's backyard in Midland, Texas. That shaft was far too narrow for any rescuer to go down, and she was wedged in a position that virtually immobilized her. If you remember that incident, it's because we all watched the drama unfold on television for three nerve-wracking days. By the time it was over, Jessica was America's little girl! When the rescuers realized there was no easy way, no conventional way to save little Jessica, they devised a whole new way of getting it done: by digging a wider shaft parallel to the one she was trapped in, and then a tunnel connecting those two shafts. That's pretty ingenious! Finally, a rescuer was lowered into that second shaft. Minutes later, we all smiled and cheered as the rescuer emerged from that shaft with an armful of Jessica, holding onto him for dear life.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

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I’ve flown into the Anchorage, Alaska, airport before, but I’ve never driven around that airport before. I was returning my rental car, which had to go to one terminal, and I had to race to make my plane at the other terminal. It was still dark, which didn’t help in reading the signs at an unfamiliar airport, and somebody else must have my sense of direction. I thought I was heading for the rental car return until suddenly it looked like I was heading out into nothing that looked like an airport at all. As soon as I realized I was going the wrong direction, I knew what I had to do. I turned around as fast as I could and drove very quickly in the right direction. And I made it!

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

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It's got to be one of my favorite plays - "Fiddler on the Roof." The story is virtually a modern classic, telling with this incredible charm and warmth the story of 19th-century Jews in Russia. All the joys of Jewish faith and Jewish family are there, along with the pain of persecution for being Jewish. Tevye, the milkman, is the colorful father of the family; a man who is forever arguing with himself. If you're familiar with the play, you'll remember how his conversations with himself - and even with God - will go back and forth as he talks himself in and out of opposite viewpoints. Tevye will present one view, and then inadvertently he will say, "On the other hand..." and he'll talk himself out of it. He doesn't actually reach many conclusions!

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

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When I'm speaking for some event, my needs are pretty simple. Just get me a bottle of fresh water, and I'll be able to keep going like the Energizer Bunny. Recently, I realized that I was heading into a speaking session without my trusty bottle of water. Someone directed me to a hospitality room the host had set up for those on the program. I bypassed all the goodies and I reached for the first bottle of water I saw. As I sat on the front row of the auditorium, awaiting my time to go up to the platform, I mindlessly twisted open the cap on the bottle so I could get a swig. Well, much to my surprise and chagrin, the contents immediately began erupting out of the bottle! I hadn't read the label, and I didn't know what was inside until I opened it. It was sparkling water, and it was sparkling all over me!

Friday, June 29, 2007

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We hear millions of words in our life - especially if you spend much time around me or our family. We forget most of the words we hear, except for some that are just too important to forget. Like our baby's first words, or the last words of someone we love, or the words that end up changing our life. Our five-year-old grandson called me one day and said, "Granddad, I stayed up extra late tonight till I could talk to you and tell you what I memorized." It took me a while to recover from what he said, and I'll never forget it.

Friday, June 22, 2007

On the September 11th we'll never forget, she was the last person brought out alive from the rubble of the World Trade Center. Fleeing down the stairs from her office on the 64th floor of the north tower, Genelle Guzman got as far as the thirteenth floor when the building collapsed around her. Suddenly, she was in total darkness, she was buried alive and she was unable to move much of her body. Genelle cried out to God for help. And that help came in the person of a rescuer breaking through the rubble and grabbing her hand. In her darkest moments, Genelle Guzman promised her life to Jesus Christ. Her emotional miracle was the total peace she has had every day since then; a peace that her psychiatrist, who's worked with many nightmare-plagued survivors, simply could not understand. In his book "Breakthrough Prayer," Jim Cymbala quotes Genelle's bottom line on what happened to her as she told it to her amazed psychiatrist. She said, "The tragedy I suffered was something I needed to go through in order to know Him."



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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