August 4, 2020

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One of the first books I remember hearing my parents read to me, and actually one of the first books my kids remember us reading to them, is that famous little classic, "The Little Engine That Could." You probably remember the story of that load of toys that no train was able to pull up the mountain to get those poor little children their toys on the other side. Well, no train that is, until this unlikely little engine volunteered to give it a try. And against all odds, he made it, puffing out those four inspiring words - listen, if you remember them, say them with me now: "I think I can! I think I can!" (Yeah, you got it!) And he inspired us to believe that we could do anything if we had that same confidence. Unfortunately, I have a scandalous secret to tell you. The little engine lied to us!

July 31, 2020

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One Christmas our youngest grandson was visiting at our son's house, and he was fascinated with the extensive Christmas lights that his uncle had strung around the outside of his house. I should tell you that one of our grandson's first words was "light," and lights were one of the first thing he would point out in any room. He was almost obsessed with them! As night fell and our son's Christmas lights came on, our grandson surprisingly wasn't very happy. We thought he'd be amazed by all those lights, but instead he just kept pointing out this one short stretch of lights that wasn't working and repeating, "Lights off. Lights off." Forget the hundreds of lights that were on!

July 20, 2020

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In a few places in the world, there is a man who literally embodies a nation. For the Middle Eastern kingdom of Jordan, for many years King Hussein was that kind of man. His stature on the international scene could be measured by a lot of influence he had on the Middle East peace talks and even by the unprecedented coming together of friends and enemies at his funeral. But those who loved him most, of course, were his own countrymen. He was gone from Jordan for many of what turned out to be the last months of his life - gone for treatment of a deadly cancer. Just weeks before his final trip for treatment before the cancer claimed his life, King Hussein returned to his beloved country - flying his own airplane. It was a dramatic return for a king who had been gone so long, and the welcome he received was pretty amazing. As a display of affection and loyalty, people slaughtered sheep and goats right on the street as his motorcade passed by. One man even sacrificed a camel that was valued then at $10,000. They literally poured out their love for their returning king.

July 13, 2020

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Our boys were blessed with some great football coaches when they were in high school. They worked their players hard. Let me tell you, they conditioned them well, and they produced champions. One lesson the coaches taught our team certainly went against their natural instincts. I mean, no one is real anxious to get injured. A player's natural tendency is to hold back a little when they're making a hit on another player, or when they're blocking, or when they're tackling so they won't get hurt. You know, you want to be careful so you're not injured. Well, the coaches tell you that's a mistake; that's the best way to get hurt is to play tentatively, play half-heartedly. Here's how they put it, "Either give it all you've got or don't play." Okay.

June 29, 2020

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Somehow, children become very effective psychologists without ever taking a day of Psychology Class. They learn to push Mom and Dad's buttons really well. They learn to play Mom and Dad against each other to guilt trip their parents. (I wonder where they learn that, by the way?) They learn to pout - all kinds of methods of getting their way. Fortunately, most of us parents gradually develop some immunity to being manipulated by our kids. But I've got to tell you, there's one thing my kids would say to me that grabbed my heart and wouldn't let go and almost always worked. It was those times they just said, "But, Dad, you promised!" Man, those were convicting words. If I had promised, I just had to do everything within my power to keep my promise.

June 26, 2020

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I don't think women have any idea of the power they have over a man. Listen, I've seen a 250-pound he-man reduced to quivering jelly by a little 95-pound blonde. Most guys can relate to the trauma of trying to work up the courage just to call a girl for a simple date. I can remember looking at the phone for 45 minutes, rehearsing all these impressive lines and the macho tone I was going to use. But it didn't matter how long I thought about it, when I finally heard that little voice on the other end of the phone say, "Hello," my reply would come back with this pitiful, "Hello-oo-ooh."

June 11, 2020

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Our daughter was gone for the morning and a friend had come to babysit our two grandsons. That was a brave lady! Actually, she had a relatively problem-free, crisis-free morning, except for one time when she just had to reprimand our three-year-old angel. Being a firstborn, he was very sensitive to being corrected. His later comment indicated that he had clearly recorded what was a very gentle reprimand - the kind you do with a smile on your face, not a snarl. When Mom returned and asked our little guy how his morning was with "Miss Wilma," he invented a new phrase to describe her correction. He said, "Miss Wilma got mad at me; she got happy mad."

June 8, 2020

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Okay, if you had been my next door neighbor, you could have pointed over to the yard and said, "Look at that grown man gathering sticks." Excuse me; I don't have the kind of a boring life where I just go around gathering sticks all the time. It's for a purpose. We put all those sticks into this kindling box in the garage, and then we happen to like having a fire in our fireplace. And I learned that the basic old Boy Scout law that you've got to have kindling to get a fire going. It's true!

May 20, 2020

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If you're a baseball fan, it seems like winter is going to last forever. Then you hear those wonderful words: "Opening Day!" Snowballs turn to fast balls, and you're happy again. You know, over the last years, one of the great stars in baseball has been Albert Pujols, who for many years made records on St. Louis Cardinals. And he has had some great seasons, acknowledged by many to be one of baseball's all-time greats.

May 19, 2020

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Sadly it seems to be in every summer's headlines - fires raging in the West. Millions of acres destroyed by fires that can range for weeks on end; fires that bring a lot of bad news. But, you know, fires like these aren't all bad news. Now, there's no doubt they cause tremendous damage, but over the long haul, they also can produce a lot of new life. Somehow, nature renews itself with fire - a lot of old and dead stuff is burned away, new vegetation begins to grow, and new life actually begins to spring up.

            

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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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