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Articles written by Joel Kletzing

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  • Talking About Dark Times in Life

    Joel Kletzing, Faith Correspondent|Jul 11, 2024

    A woman named Amanda who had suffered a miscarriage wrote an article in which she described the dark time in her life that resulted from that loss. As the article unfolded, it became clear that it was not really about darkness, but about the light that she found as she dealt with the heavy grief that overtook her. Here are some of the things she shared. From Genesis 1 she was reminded that God creates, and that what He made on each day of creation was good. This basic truth seemed to serve as ballast for her as she was tossed about by powerful... Full story

  • What Can We Learn About True Independence?

    Joel Kletzing, Faith Correspondent|Jul 3, 2024

    Independence is a tricky concept. It conjures the idea of being free to do whatever you want to do. But if your imagination and desires are tainted in a way which keep you from pursuing what is truly good and beautiful and true – specifically what is good and beautiful and true and of a quality that can satisfy a person forever, then the freedom to do whatever you want, to chase whatever deep impulses well up inside of you, would actually be a form of slavery since you are not able to grasp what is good, beautiful and true when measured on a...

  • Revisiting the Story of Samson

    Joel Kletzing|Jun 27, 2024

    Recently I was reading through the book of Judges and came across the story of Samson, one of the people God raised up to deliver His covenant people from oppressors in turbulent times. Samson was an unprincipled fellow. His parents were informed before his birth that he had a special calling and were given principles by which Samson was to live. Instead of reserving himself for God’s calling, he chased after what his eyes found attractive but did not fit within God’s principles, and he brought terrible ruin on himself. Have you ever heard of t...

  • The Thin Line Between Innocent Fun and Temptation

    Joel Kletzing, Faith Correspondent|Jun 20, 2024

    Can you recall watching a toddler absolutely wreck a room while the parents laughed at how “cute” the behavior was? You might have been highly irritated, feeling sure you would not allow such wild behavior in your own child. The child could grow up to be an undisciplined, out-of-control monster! That scenario seems like a fitting analogy for what Satan was enticing Jesus to become in the second of the temptations recorded in Matthew 4. Satan wanted Jesus to pull off a wild stunt, jumping off the highest pinnacle of the temple in front of cro...

  • Difficult or Challenging Prayers

    Joel Kletzing, Faith Correspondent|Jun 13, 2024

    People have written some difficult and challenging prayers over the years. For example, a British fellow in the 1800’s named Thomas Arnold prayed – “Gracious Father, be pleased to touch our hearts in time with trouble, with sorrow, with sickness, with disappointment, with anything that may hinder them from being hard to the end, and leading us to eternal ruin.” And John Wesley from the 1700’s prayed “Lord God . . . let me be employed for you, or laid aside for you, exalted for you or brought low for you . . . .” Why do I classify these prayers...

  • The Devil is Like a Roaring Lion

    Joel Kletzing, Faith Correspondent|Jun 6, 2024

    Months ago in Kenya our van driver told us there was a lion laying in the tall grass along the road. We couldn’t see it. It took help from the guide, but then its face became clear. Someone on foot would have walked right up on it. 1 Peter 5:8 warns Christians, “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” Satan is out to destroy the faith of God’s people and mar as much as possible the reflection of God’s glory in us who were made in His image, murdering souls. Matthew 4:...

  • God Cares About Those in Need

    Joel Kletzing|May 30, 2024

    When our family returned from a trip to Kenya and presented our report to our church family and friends, the part where we described the neediness of children caused an audible, collective groan. We spoke briefly of the lack of food and medicine and clothing, and those facts really grabbed some people, to the point they wanted to contribute to meeting at least the needs of one or two children. Driving through the Cove in the weeks immediately after our return I didn’t see women carrying sticks to take home in order to make a little fire and c...

  • The Impact of Christ's Love in the Midst of Persecution

    Joel Kletzing|May 23, 2024

    Our congregation supports a pastor in a country where being a Christian can prove dangerous. He was recently imprisoned because of hatred from enemies of Jesus. The reports were amazing to hear that even while in prison he was loving people and sharing the good news of forgiveness and new life through the Savior named Jesus. I can’t think of another religion where God gives what He commands. We are commanded by God to be holy, and He gives us Christ who was holy in our place and then died to make us holy. This is the message the pastor p...

  • Lesson from Time in Kenya About Fear and Humility

    Joel Kletzing, Faith Correspondent|May 16, 2024

    When our family was in Kenya, I counseled our teenager to forget whatever he may have learned about driving there. I could never have imagined my wife being calm if she were riding in a vehicle where there seems to be no rules. One day she looked at us with a calm smile and said with a tone of voice that exuded peace, “This is really amazing. It looks like we are going to hit those cars head on.” God gave her peace. From my vantage point the only explanation was that she was surrendered to God’s plans. Have you ever heard someone say somet...

  • Thoughts on Ascension Day

    Joel Kletzing|May 9, 2024

    One Monday at one of the jobs I worked during college, a supervisor showed up for work, and she looked awful. She looked like she had been in a terrible accident. She was limping and could hardly walk. Her face had terrible bruising and was swollen. She could barely move one of her arms. We crowded around her, wanting to know what happened over the weekend. Here’s the story that explains what we saw that Monday morning. She had a new little puppy. It was time to take the puppy outside. This w...

  • Grunters....

    Joel Kletzing|May 2, 2024

    Grunting, I suppose, is famous from caricatures of what “cave men” were like or from Tim the Toolman Taylor from the decades-old show “Home Improvement.” But grunting is actually a useful tool for men in 2024. It has proven useful for me when my wife is asking my opinion on something for which I can find no personal opinion no matter how deeply I look within myself. Sometimes, a grunt can serve to show that I am listening and give acknowledgment, but at the same time it is completely non-committal to any of the options in play in the convers...

  • Preparing for Life's Journeys: Lessons from Africa and Dubai

    Joel Kletzing, Faith Correspondent|Apr 25, 2024

    Our family recently returned from a trip to Africa with a stop in Dubai along the way. We are blessed in many ways, but one blessing that stands out to me is that of my wife and all the research she did. She researched things like what type of bug spray could help ward off the dangerous malaria-bearing mosquitoes but not harm us at the same time, where to obtain the metro pass in Dubai (as well as how to use it), what documents are necessary to enter Kenya these days, and the best neck pillow, etc. Maybe you’re a person who takes a relaxed a...

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