Permission to be you

Jen Bradbury
Jul 09 · 5 min read

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 – filled with the kind of experiences you’d expect of a twenty-something-year-old, yet relatable to high school students and full of Jesus.

Shortly afterward, one of my student leaders approached me. She was scheduled to give her testimony the next night and wanted to talk about it. I assumed this young leader – a soon to be high school sophomore – simply needed some last-minute encouragement about the testimony she’d written and prepared to give.

Instead, it quickly became clear to me that this student leader was actually panicking over her testimony. After hearing the first leader’s testimony, she’d convinced herself that hers wasn’t good enough. It didn’t feel like the other leader’s did, nor did it have the same format. Not to mention, according to her, the other leader’s stories were far more powerful than hers.

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