August 3, 2020

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It was the kind of news that no expectant parents want to get from their obstetrician. The doctor told them that a recent sonogram revealed that their baby had a 1-in-10,000 heart condition. Their unborn son had a potentially devastating hole in his heart. They had to deliver the baby early, so He was pretty small, but they went ahead and they performed open-heart surgery on his heart that was only the size of a nickel. He made it, and I was privileged to be there in infant intensive care the first time that his father got to hold him - tubes and all. There, in the middle of his tiny chest, there was this 2 & 1/2-inch wound, covered by a bandage. On the one hand, it was a pretty hard thing for a daddy to see his little son, actually his only son, with that big wound. But that wound was the only way his heart could be healed.

July 30, 2020

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It's late at night and I finally made it to my motel room. It's been a long day. I want a midnight snack or at least a can of soda. As I step outside my room, I hear the "whirr" of vending machines just down the hall. I stand in front of that thing, pondering my hardest decision of the day. Then I put my money in and I push the button. Usually, I get what I just paid for, but not always. Sometimes nothing comes. I push the button again, and again, and again. Not only do I not get my selection, but the coin return isn't working either. Those most frustrating times of all, when you're desperate enough to try again, and maybe again, putting in your money - and still nothing in return.

July 28, 2020

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Weather-wise, it was one of those wild, late-winter days. We'd been running around in short sleeves with a 75-degree temperature at 3:00 in the afternoon. Spring is here! Four hours later, we were wearing heavy coats and gloves; the temperature had dropped 40 degrees! Boo! Winter's back! And needless to say, the dramatic change did not come without our weather alert radio going off and every TV and radio station in the area sounding the warning. Severe thunderstorm warning! Tornado watch! We never got a tornado, but we did get attacked by a deluge of rain, lightning, and merciless hail. Our house just happens to have a room with all concrete block and with no windows. It's good to have that room. It's good to have a safe place to go when, as the song says, "The weather outside is frightful."

July 24, 2020

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Fashion models...they're considered the "beautiful people." Right? But all too often, they're also the unhappy people. That's what our friend Lindsey explained to us after she had left an enviable position as a model with one of the most prestigious agencies in the world. For example, Lindsey told about the eating disorders that plague young women for whom a small weight gain can actually cost them a well-paying job. Lindsey explained how she and others were carefully and critically weighed before every shoot. The gain of a pound or two meant they didn't qualify anymore. You paid a price to be admired.

July 21, 2020

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Junior high band concerts - oh, that's the test of a parent's love. Yep, we got to support our kids by being at seven years of their junior high concerts. It's nice to see those young teenagers making a nice effort. It's not necessarily a memorable musical experience. Wouldn't it be interesting, let's say, to hear those young musicians trying to play a major Beethoven symphony? What if you've never heard any of his great compositions? All you've heard is that Beethoven was a musical genius. Then you hear the junior high band play a Beethoven symphony. And what do you have to say about Beethoven? "Did you say this guy was a genius? I just heard Beethoven! It was awful!" You didn't hear Beethoven. All you heard was some people doing a bad job playing his music.

July 16, 2020

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What could be more degrading than to be listed as property - owned by another human being - listed along with his corn and his cotton and his tools? But that's what you were if you were a slave for the first 150 years of America's history. It's no wonder many of those slaves risked their lives to try to be free. I saw a TV documentary on the people who risked their lives to help those slaves be free; the courageous men and women of that long escape route known as the Underground Railroad. Of course it wasn't a railroad and it wasn't underground, but it was a series of people and places that assisted runaway slaves to finally live liberated lives. Some of those African Americans who were rescued had just four words on their tombstones, words that powerfully told their whole life story: "Born slave, died free."

July 14, 2020

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My parents didn't put much thought into what they named me. They decided on the way to the hospital when they saw "Ronnie's Used Car Lot" along the way. Come on! "So could I interest you in a little '95 Chevy with low mileage?" It was just driven by a little old lady...never mind. Well, my wife and I, and then our children, have put a little more thought into the names of our kids. Sometimes we pick names that reflect something about the child's heritage. We buy those books that tell you the meanings of thousands of names. We'd pick one that says something. You know? For example, our daughter's name means "consecrated to God," which she really is. Sometimes a person's name is more than just a name; it's actually a statement!

July 10, 2020

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For my wife, it was sort of a symbol of the day she was born - daffodils. Growing up in the South, she was always able to have some fresh-picked daffodils for her birthday. But then we got married and then we found ourselves living pretty much in the North, where daffodils don't grow that early in the year. So every year, as my honey's birthday approached, I had fun trying to find some florist that somehow had some daffodils for sale, and I did. And once again, my gal had daffodils for her birthday. But even though they were very beautiful, the sad secret is they didn't last long...just like most of the flowers in the florist shop. They started to die as soon as they got cut from their stem.

July 6, 2020

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When you're the parent of a little kid, you know that one of your great challenges could be getting that little one to sleep at night. When you are the little child, you know why it's hard to get to sleep at night. First, there's that prayer. You know, the one where your Mommy has you pray, "Now I lay me down to sleep; I pray the Lord my soul to keep." OK, that's good so far. Then, "If I should die before I wake..." Wait a minute! Hold it! Not going to sleep! Who in the world put that line in that prayer? Then there's another reason little kids have a hard time getting to sleep. The monsters, you know the ones in the closet. Oh, I know we had them in my room, how about yours? See, parents never really seem to get it. But all of us kids knew that once the lights all went out, there was a really scary monster waiting in that closet. So, you lie there with your eyes wide open, afraid of what the monster might do if you fall asleep.

July 2, 2020

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I heard a while back about a novelty company that made a lot of money on people having birthdays that they might not be real excited about. You know, like those milestone birthdays: 40, 50, 60. I'll stop there. Of course, if you're sad about how many birthdays this is, consider the alternative. That means you've stopped having birthdays, and that's not good. This company actually produces a whole line of birthday products called "Over the Hill." Maybe you've seen them. There are these black balloons with these words on them, black banners, cards; all kinds of dark little reminders that tap into the very things you don't want this birthday to mean. A friend of mine was facing the classic Baby Boomer crossroads of turning 60 and was talking about it to an older man that he knew. And that man said something that made me laugh several times since then. He said, "Hey, how can I be over the hill when I've never even made it to the top yet?"

            

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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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