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After they leave our ministries

For years, one of my high school students wrestled with the story of Jonah.

She knew it well – at least the Sunday school version of it. She'd grown up hearing about how Jonah disobeyed God and got swallowed by a big fish. While inside the fish,...

The good stuff

Today, I'm linking up with Kate Motaung's Five Minute Friday. The rules: Write for 5 minutes flat – no editing, no over thinking, no backtracking. 

This week's prompt: Surprise. 

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My husband was ready to have kids long before I was.

I...

A life of adventure and love

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Today, I'm linking up with Kate Motaung's Five Minute Friday. The rules: Write for 5 minutes flat – no editing, no over thinking, no backtracking.

This week's prompt: Share. 

Christmas Shopping With Dad 2015

As I stood in the bathroom doing my hair, I heard my dad...

When you finally believe the words

Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your name
Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your glorious name

You give and take away
You give and take away
My heart will choose to say
Lord, blessed be Your name

The first time I heard these...

Why I'm Proud to be a Selfish Parent

In a recent sermon, mega church pastor and evangelical Christian leader, Andy Stanley said, “We want churches to be large enough so that there are enough middle schoolers and high schoolers that we don't have one youth group with middle school and...

What I'm Into (February, 2016 Edition)

What I'm Reading:

Fiction:

I read a LOT during February, completing six fiction books. Among them, my favorites were:   

The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom. I don't know how I missed this when it came out in 2010. It was SO good -...

11 Signs You're Burning Out

There are a few times a year when I hit a ministry slump: January / February and then again in August.

In both cases, exhaustion contributes to my slump. I enter January exhausted from the holidays only to then go full-throttle into two of my...

I don't ever want to forget

Today, I'm linking up with Kate Motaung's Five Minute Friday. The rules: Write for 5 minutes flat – no editing, no over thinking, no backtracking.

This week's prompt: Forget.

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During this season of motherhood, there is so much I don't ever...

We need leaders not chaperones

Shortly before our annual winter retreat, a parent asked me, “Do you need any more chaperones for the winter retreat?”

For a second, I honestly didn't know what this parent was talking about.

My youth ministry doesn't have chaperones.

It does,...

Jen Bradbury on Youth Ministry

Jen serves as the director of youth ministry at Faith Lutheran Church in Glen Ellyn, Illinois. A veteran youth worker, Jen holds an MA in Youth Ministry Leadership from Huntington University. Jen is the author of The Jesus Gap: What Teens Actually Believe about Jesus (The Youth Cartel), The Real Jesus (The Youth Cartel), Unleashing the Hidden Potential of Your Student Leaders (Abingdon), and the forthcoming A Mission That Matters (Abingdon). Her writing has also appeared in YouthWorker Journal, Immerse, and The Christian Century. Jen is also the Assistant Director of Arbor Research Group where she has led many national studies. When not doing ministry or research, she and her husband, Doug, and daughter, Hope, can be found traveling and enjoying life together.

More about Jen

Jen's Books

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Unleashing the Hidden Potential of your Student Leaders

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The Real Jesus

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The Jesus Gap

What Teens Actually Believe About Jesus

Based on National Research

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