Stories & Commentaries

About Stories & Commentaries

From time to time, the North American Division shares commentaries on issues and/or events important to Adventists in this division. We also publish stories, which sometimes include interviews and features, to inspire our leaders and members.

Jordy Barnhart

From Camps to Church: A Blind Musician Shares His Faith Journey

Jordy Barnhart is a legally blind musician who lives in Waynesboro, Pennsylvania. During the interview with Kimberly Luste Maran, Barnhart shared how Christian Record Services for the Blind — an organization of the North American Division that offers free resources and scholarships, and sponsors summer camps for the blind and visually impaired — helped shaped his faith.

stock photo of man holding thank you card

The Delight in Their Eyes

Some claim that in 1992, Hallmark Cards started “Clergy Appreciation Day.” After all, giving us a reason to buy a card is good for business. Others state, however, that the concept of clergy appreciation began way back in AD 65-66, when the Apostle Paul wrote to young Timothy: “Let the elders who rule well be counted worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in the word and doctrine” (1 Tim.5:17, NKJV). While Hallmark may have helped us focus our appreciation by buying cards and gifts from their stores during October, Paul reminds us that it is biblical to honor and care for our pastors.

Dakota pastor

God’s Promises Shine During COVID-19 Pandemic

Like an uncontrollable wildfire, COVID-19 rapidly spread around the globe this year, causing all our lives to change. However, I quickly learned that there is power in God’s promises to overcome any global catastrophe.

woman wearing mask and reading a Bible

Before You Reopen Your House of Worship, Consider This

Is there a spiritual imperative for houses of worship that can be met only by conducting in-person services? And does that imperative outweigh the very real physical risks? If a member becomes ill and dies of COVID-19 contracted during church attendance, will reopening still have been worth it? Considering how was can keep each other safer during a time such as this is a biblical imperative.

Two paths in a forest.

Two Roads: The Quest Toward Healing and Transformation

A testimony written by Gabriella Phillips, director of Adventist-Muslim Relations for the North American Division on how she is helping a friend fully trust God as she seeks to heal relations with her children.

Reedsburg church sign with pastor Stephen Hall

Times of the Sign

What can we do? That thought occupied my mind as I watched the nation again turn its attention to another senseless killing of a Black individual in America at the hands of the police. What could our churches do, in this moment? ... As I arrived at church, my attention was drawn to the sign that sits beside the road running past the church. Pulling into the parking lot, I felt the conviction of the Holy Spirit gently respond with the answer to my question: “Start with the sign.”

Joel Joey Barajas

An Interrupted Gambler: From Poker Player to Pastor

Prior to his enrollment at Walla Walla, Joel "Joey" Barajas attended a community college in Seattle to be near his older brother, who was studying at the University of Washington. Barajas and his family are from Mattawa, a town in the center of Washington with a population of approximately 4,600 people. When his brother went off to school, he invited Joey to visit. He moved and once there, instead of picking up books for studies, he picked up an addictive hobby: gambling. Eventually he decided to be more intentional about school— and his relationship with God.

India Medley

Personalizing God's Promises

This is a brief profile of an Adventist who works in an essential role during this time of uncertainty and crisis — a glimpse into India Medley’s life and faith. We thank her and many others for their service, and encourage our readers to continue to pray for them.

stock photo of diverse people linking arms

God’s Agents of Positive Change

Today, we take a stand against racism. Today, we commit to stand up against injustice. Today, we commit to be the voice of those who do not have one. Today, we commit to do what God requires of us: “to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly.”

nad Headquarters

Amid Increased Racial Tensions, NAD Issues Statement Calling Members to Serve as Conduits of Peace

The Seventh-day Adventist Church in North America hears the voices of Black Americans and others, and calls upon our churches and members to serve as conduits of peace and hope to our Black brothers and sisters. We recognize their pain and the injustice they face, and strive to serve as their voices when they are silenced by those seeking to quiet them.