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How to prepare for the fall

I snapped at my boss yesterday.

I realized it a few hours later and sent him an apology in which I also said, “I’m operating out of a place of depletion and stress right now.”

That’s not an excuse. It’s more a confession of my current reality.

At...

The Face of ALS

Long before it was cool, I gave to the ALS Association.

Those gifts had nothing to do with dumping ice water over my head... Or failing to do so.

I gave because to me, ALS is personal. It's not just a rare disease. It's the disease my...

Review: Overrated by Eugene Cho

Overrated

Eugene Cho is a pastor and founder of One Day's Wages, an organization that he sacrificed a year of his own salary for in order to begin. To say the least, he's an intriguing character in today's evangelical landscape.

The fact that he believes...

5 keys for training adult leaders

All around me, students are headed back to school. As school looms before us, so, too, does the start of fall programming. In my context, fall programming for students begins the day after Labor Day. Fall programming for adult leaders begins two...

What if God isn't speaking?

Recently, I found myself in a Bible study in which the leader asked, “What is God telling you to do as a result of this passage?”

I had a moment of absolute panic in which I thought, “Nothing. Right this second, I honestly don’t hear God saying...

Mission Trip Prayer Buddies

One finding that's stuck with me from Sticky Faith is, "More than any program or event, what made kids more likely to feel like a significant part of their local church was when adults made the effort to get to know them."

One of the best ways my...

How to kill sacred cows

Every ministry has a sacred cow.

Sometimes sacred cows need to die.

But how do you kill a program in a healthy way?

Here are the steps I follow in order to slaughter sacred cows:

1. Enter a time of prayer and discernment. Since people are, by...

Where's your allegiance?

Having attended a Lutheran grade school, a Catholic high school, and a Methodist church, I grew up with very ecumenical influences. Even so, as an 18-year-old heading off to college, I considered myself to be Methodist. So upon going to college, I...

Did you know there was a genocide there?

A well-meaning woman at church recently asked me, “You're not still taking kids to Rwanda, are you?”

Unsure what she was referring to, I said. “Yep! We leave July 19.”

She then proceeded to tell be about the “border war” between Rwanda and the...

The cost of misinformation

My husband and I recently visited the Field Museum in Chicago. Knowing we'd soon be leaving for Rwanda, we made a point of visiting the museum's Africa exhibit. Near the start of the exhibit, there was a room intended to equip people with basic...

Permission to be you

During a recent mission trip, I asked various leaders to share their faith stories with everyone.

The first night, our youngest adult leader, who graduated from college just a few short weeks ago, shared hers. Without a doubt, it was powerful –...

Jen Bradbury on Youth Ministry

Jen

Jen Bradbury is a career youth worker with a diverse spiritual heritage that makes her uniquely qualified for youth work. Jen currently serves as the youth director at Faith Evangelical Lutheran Church in Glen Ellyn, IL and writes for Youth Worker Journal and the Immerse Magazine. She lives in Glen Ellyn, IL with her husband, Doug.

More about Jen

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