Your Relationships

Tuesday, January 2, 2007

I don't mind visiting people in the hospital. I just don't stay in hospitals myself. Visitor - yes. Patient - no. My medical value system sort of works like this: minor surgery is any operation on you, and major surgery is any operation on me. I've actually learned that there's something worse than being a hospital patient myself. It's having one of our grandchildren in the hospital, especially when the treatment means pain. I can take it when I'm the one hurting. It's just hard to take it when it's one of them. A few weeks ago, our ten-month-old grandson had to go to the emergency room in another town, and it wasn't a happy time for the little guy. They had to try multiple times to get a needle into a vein for a blood test. It was excruciating! He was increasingly traumatized by one injection after another and by that big old oxygen mask they kept holding over his nose.

As soon as I got there, I decided there was just one thing I could do that might help. It's a little song I've sung to him since the first times I held him. It's always seemed to calm him down, even when he was unusually upset. So I leaned down so my cheek was touching his cheek and I began to gently sing our little song in his ear. With medical folks continuing their necessary but pretty scary work, he stopped his panic crying and he settled down a lot. I must have stayed there for thirty or forty minutes. I think that song must have nearly driven a couple of nurses cuckoo. But my grandson - well, a little song made a big difference.

Wednesday, December 6, 2006

I only had 24 hours in Athens, Greece. Well, what am I going to do? Well, I knew what I wanted to see - the Acropolis, and there it is. It's on this hill that dominates the city, and it's there that the ancient Greeks built this incredible temple to their goddess Athena. Even after 20 centuries, I have to tell you, it's still an impressive, imposing structure and it still dominates the city. The Acropolis was the most sacred, most protected, most honored place in all of Athens. In fact, it was a serious crime to violate that temple, as it was in many ancient cultures. Hey, everybody knew the temple got first class treatment because the gods live there.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

I have to admit that my wife and I were a little naïve sometimes in the months right after we were married. It was obvious the day this fast-talking vacuum cleaner salesman showed up at our apartment door. He showed us this high-powered machine that did everything but the laundry. He lured us with impressive demonstrations, he offered us an easy payment plan, and a deal (of course) that we had to act on immediately. Well, Mr. Newlywed, here, eagerly signed on the line. "All right! Hey, I am the proud owner of a high-tech vacuum cleaner! About five times more vacuum cleaner than we could possibly need!" By the next day, I wanted out, but I couldn't back out then. In my enthusiasm, I had simply left out the most important ingredient in the decision.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

I don't have much time for TV. But when I do, I don't usually watch gymnastics. But some time ago they showed a sports feature about gymnastics on my plane flight. As usual, I had too much to do to get the headset that carries the audio, but I did occasionally glance up at the video part. It was a gymnastics meet between the U.S. and Russia. You can probably guess who I was rooting for. Now, I couldn't hear any commentary, but I saw some impressive performances by these young athletes. I also saw an occasional replay. But every time they did a replay, all they showed was the gymnast's mistakes, anything that she was marked down for, and they kept replaying it. They had executed some great moves, but no, we don't go over those - only their mistakes.

Tuesday, November 7, 2006

As most children learn, there is an art to getting what you want from a parent. And most kids should get honorary degrees in psychology for how skilled they become at doing it. Our children sure did. One approach from the playbook of the three little Hutchcrafts could be called the "United Front Maneuver." One time they pulled out this tactic was when they wanted to get pizza for dinner or to go to a certain clown's hamburger joint. Often our oldest would first dispatch the youngest to approach me with a dining proposal. You know, always use the youngest as the sacrificial lamb. Well, if that didn't work, send in number two child. If two out of three couldn't turn my heart to their cause, then the oldest would join in. And I have to confess, there were some times when I was able to say no to one of my children, or even two, but something happened in my heart when they all came to me together.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

One lousy moose; that's all our family wanted to see. The moose did not get the memo. Or he did get the memo and he took off. We were on our first trip to Alaska years ago, and all five Hutchcrafts were determined to meet a moose. After all, they're grazing in every backyard in Alaska, right? Well, the February we were there it looked like they'd all decided to winter in the Bahamas. While I was busy speaking at some meetings, my wife and kids were out driving around, of course looking for a moose. They even went to the animal sanctuary where they were told there was always a moose. Not always. Several people told us about hitting a moose that suddenly appeared in the middle of the road. Not any road we were on. Someone suggested leaving a Hershey bar on our car - something about chocolate mousse. Well, we weren't that desperate. Well, lots of looking, no finding. The next morning, we drove down the driveway of the house someone had loaned to us and guess what? Three moose, grazing at the end of the driveway. You don't find moose - they find you.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Our daughter's got this thing about lighthouses. Thanks to her family indulging her passion at Christmas and birthday time, she's got lighthouses all over her house. She's got lighthouse stationery, lighthouse rugs, and lighthouse books; sad to say, even a lighthouse on the cover of her commode. In many places, real lighthouses are mostly reminders of this maritime past when lives actually depended on seeing the light that marked the shore and the rocks. But sometimes, lives still depend on them; as in the case of a Greek ferry called the Express Samina.

Friday, October 20, 2006

I have had a lot of young women complain to me about a condition they find rampant in young men these days. I guess I will call it "commitment phobia." Now, this guy's willing to show interest, he's willing to date you, charm you, agree with you, spend money on you, and then you reach this level of mutual compatibility and that's good. And then, you're on the edge of commitment and he's gone. I hear it's pretty frustrating. I met a beautiful woman myself many years ago and we spent a lot of time together. We found that we agreed on all the important things. We reached a place of affection for each other and agreement with each other, so we were married - right? No.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

We've got a close friend who recently moved from Arizona to the Midwest. She loves the green. There's not much of that in the semi-arid area that she's from. And she loves all the things that bloom in her new part of the country, but that's not to say she doesn't miss what she grew up with. She really misses the beauty of the Southwest. Some might travel through the long, largely barren stretches of her part of the country and not see much beauty, but it's there. Sure, it's a different beauty from the lush, green parts of America, but there is a stark, wild, wide-open majesty in the desert; a beauty all its own.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Okay, here is one of my un-favorite sentences, "I guess we have to go to the emergency room!" I'm glad the emergency room is there, but I hate to go there. I remember one time our son had a mild stomach disorder and we knew it had to be checked out. Actually, we went late at night when it really gets busy. I guess it was rush hour for sure that day we were there. We had already waited for a while and finally they noticed us. They began to give some attention to our son, and then suddenly all the doctors and nurses vanished. I'll tell you why. There was a word that had been sounded across that emergency room - "STAT" - and everybody came running to an accident victim. It was a severe situation. It was life or death. "Stat" means it's time to drop everything.



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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