March 28, 2019

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A runaway train: that's how they billed the upcoming story on the evening news, and I stayed tuned. They weren't exaggerating. Somehow a freight train (this actually happened in Ohio a few years ago) started rolling down the tracks with no one on board. It kept rolling for many miles across the Ohio countryside, sometimes at speeds of nearly 60 MPH. It was pretty amazing to see the footage of a railroad intersection, lights blinking, gates down, cars stopped, and here is a train just rolling through without anyone at the controls. Well, using a combination of ingenuity and heroism, they finally managed to get a couple of men aboard who were able to stop it. And that's a very good thing!

March 25, 2019

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I was with some missionaries in Guadalajara, Mexico, and David was there leading a team that was reaching young Latin Americans through a historic youth broadcast we had going. Now David is a big guy and I had my picture taken with him; he was wearing a tie - I was wearing a sport shirt. It looked like "bring your son to work day." Guess who looked like the son. Because of the crime rate in David's area, he and his family needed a guard dog, and they had one; a big one that's a match even for his master, David. The dog was appropriately named General and he was pretty much in charge at the house. When David came home from a night of ministry, General was right there at the gate, waiting to play. Playing with this aggressive German Shepherd could cost you a finger or two if you're not careful. But, somehow, David had done a good job of mastering the dog. In fact, I heard him tell General, "Get your bowl, and I'll feed you!" General just wanted his master to give him food, but David wanted him to go for it. So, this German Shepherd bolted up the walk to his big, empty plastic bowl, grabbed it in his iron jaws, and trotted up to his master with it. Sure enough, if he got his bowl, his master would fill it.

Friday, March 15, 2019

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There's nothing I appreciate more than a good night's sleep, because sleep is something I don't get a lot of. Deprivation creates value, you know. Frankly, if the bed is decent, I don't care too much about the surroundings. A night's sleep is a night's sleep and the whole time I'm asleep I don't know where I am anyway, right? So that's my philosophy of sleep. Aren't you impressed? Now, apparently, some nights' sleep are a big deal to some people, especially if it means sleeping in the historic Lincoln bedroom in the White House. You know, over the years, there's been a lot of discussion about major contributions to Presidential campaigns and those who have given a lot, being given the privilege to spend the night at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue; or as one senator called it, Motel 1600. I guess if any place to sleep is special, being in the White House, just down the hall from the President and the First Lady, that would be it. People come away from that experience, even rich and powerful people who have seen and done it all, really impressed by being in that historic, powerful place for just a night. I've never stayed at the White House, but wait until you hear where I just came from!

Friday, March 1, 2019

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I used to laugh at my roommate in college when he'd get a love letter from his girlfriend. He was kind of weird all day. He'd go off and he'd read that thing, you know, four or five times. And I'd go, "Hey, Buddy, there's nothing new in there. It says the same thing every time." Well, there was no laughing when I was separated from the woman I loved and ended up marrying. No, Karen and I were separated for the summers, and boy, I'll tell you what. I would write a letter to her just about every day, and she'd write a letter to me just about every day. I've got a whole suitcase full of those letters it's still nice to go back and read. Because I'll tell you, what made my day was going to that mailbox and getting some mail and knowing there would probably be mail there from somebody who loved me very much.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

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It was Valentine's Day and it turned out to be a milestone day in my relationship with the girl I considered to be the best catch in our class. I knew she had been seriously dating someone else for quite a while, and I had to plan my moves very shrewdly or I'd scare her off. So, we had what we both called this "brother/sister" relationship. Oh, sure I wanted it to be more, but at least I could spend some time with her this way without scaring her off. Well, one day I'd had enough of this platonic relationship stuff. She was actually bringing a Valentine's cake up to some radio staff at our college and I happened to be there. We got into a pretty intense discussion there, standing by the water fountain. And finally I blurted out what I'd been feeling for a long time, "I'm sick and tired of just being your 'brother.' I want it to be much more!" There it was, man, all or nothing. And what happened? I married the girl! (OK, this is the part where the audience cheers.)

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

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We call him Evil Bert. He's not a nice guy at all. I was speaking for our Warrior Leadership Summit conference for young Native Americans when Bert made his appearance. Actually, I had asked a friend to make a puppet for me to use. That puppet had a dark mustache, dark eyes, a dark beard, and a wicked expression. I affectionately called him Evil Bert. Evil Bert carried a plastic bat in his hands as he and I walked through the audience. Suddenly, Bert would lash out and hit someone with his plastic bat. People wisely started ducking when he got close. The really smart young people there figured out the dark secret about Evil Bert. It wasn't really Bert that was hitting them. It was the guy who was using him as a puppet. That would be me.

Friday, January 4, 2019

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You know, there's a stretch of Oklahoma, including Oklahoma City, that has been called "Tornado Alley." On the Weather Channel, a lot of spring and summer days show that part of the country colored in the bright red that indicates severe weather. The most powerful tornado America ever had so far roared through the Oklahoma City area just a few years ago. As I drove through that area on a spring day between storm systems, I couldn't help but be impressed with what I saw as I drove by a church. Right in front of the church you could see an open door sticking up out of the ground. The church actually has a storm cellar right out on the street, and the door was wide open!

Monday, December 10, 2018

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Every child's dream-Disney World! Our three-year-old granddaughter had counted down her visit there for weeks. And she was absolutely giddy as she finally entered the Magic Kingdom. One ride she really wanted to try was the flying elephants. Actually, the flying Dumbos, named after that elephant with the oversize ears that enabled him to be a flying elephant! Dumbo basically just goes around and around; he's a ride for little kids...kids like me. Now when you pull the bar in your Dumbo car, it starts to go up. Not super-high, but high enough to get a nice view of a lot of things in the park. And our granddaughter began making those Dumbo circles with her uncle, and he started to pull the bar up to help the flying elephant fly. It was not to be. Our little princess would have none of this going higher business...nope! Too scary! She made it no secret that Dumbo was to fly at the lowest possible level...and stay there.

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

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Look, sometime in your life, somewhere you've probably run into a waiter or waitress with a stinky attitude; maybe even two or three. But a lot of times you can't blame them totally, if you see the way a lot of them get treated in a day's time. They're not America's best treated people unfortunately. Maybe that's why I've made it sort of a personal crusade to brighten their day a little bit by remembering their name, smiling, saying thanks and sometimes even goofing off with the server a little bit. Sometimes, when they come back during the meal they ask, "How is everything?", and I'll say, "Oh, wonderful! You're a great cook!" It's always fun to watch their response. Usually they just stop cold for a minute. Sometimes they'll laugh; sort of embarrassed, you know, and they'll say, "Oh, I don't cook it!" I know that. They're delivering what someone else created!

Monday, October 22, 2018

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Connie was in the campus outreach club I ran near her high school. In some ways, she was a typical teenager. In other ways, her life was very different from her peers. Every morning about 5:00 A.M.-while her peers were still sound asleep-Connie was at the local ice skating rink, practicing. And when her friends were all enjoying their summer off, well, she was in Colorado in a rigorous training program for ice skaters. A few years later, my wife and I were in Holland teaching a European youth workers conference. As I was in our bungalow, preparing for the next meeting, I had the TV on in the background, with a telecast of the Winter Olympics going. I wasn't paying much attention because the commentary was in Dutch, and my Dutch isn't what it used to be. But suddenly I heard a name I recognized-Connie's name. I looked up in time to see her on the screen, proudly representing her country in the quest for Olympic glory. You know what? I knew how she got there.

            

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Ron Hutchcraft Ministries
P.O. Box 400
Harrison, AR 72602-0400

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