In this column, we discover more about our Baptist whānau, meeting someone in our team of 40,000 each post. In this edition we are getting to know Blue Bradley, who is many things including Director of Northern Easter Camp, and an elected member of our Baptist Assembly Council

What is something you think everyone should experience at least once in their life? 

Take a long walk. My wife and I have walked the Camino Santiago in Spain twice. Hands down one of the best things we have done in life. It’s amazing where God will show up when you get away from the normal routine of life. It doesn’t have to be Spain; plenty of great walks here in Aotearoa. 

If you could be a pro at any one thing, what would it be?

A really great singer/songwriter. A great song can make you shed a tear, change your life, help you love/forgive others and remind you about how to live. I think many songwriters are our modern day prophets, they challenge us about how the world could be and what matters. Who wouldn’t want to write great songs?

What is a random interest that has completely nothing to do with your study or work? 

I am the envy of many because I own a 1962 EJ Holden Special Station Wagon, and I am restoring it to be better than new. I know many may look at it as a rust bucket that’s been sitting there way too long, but they don’t see the beauty I behold. Not long now!!! (It’s going to be a minute).

What is the oddest fact you know?

I know that frogs close their eyes when they swallow. I know this is useless information for daily life. That is unless you use it in a sermon to highlight what happens when we swallow half-truths that hurt us and others. Do we also close our eyes? 

What is the most boring thing you’ve ever done?

Systematic Theology. I’m sorry, but I’m just wired for other things. I loved my other subjects at Carey :)

What is your favourite way of connecting with God?

I’m a Strengths Coach, and I get to hear about what makes people tick, their hopes, passions and dreams. I hear the thread of God in their story, and I see a glimpse of the imago Dei in their eyes. In those moments, I often feel like I have encountered God through the fellowship that has happened between us. It’s a privilege to sit with people, listen to their story, and see them for who they are.

Can you describe a significant moment when you experienced God’s love?

I was praying for our young people on the stage at Easter Camp. I felt the Spirit of God overwhelm me and hold me. It was so overwhelming that I ran off the stage, hid my face, and wept. I often hide my face when I am overwhelmed by the presence of God’s love. Isn’t it so funny that the very thing I long for, love, can be the most terrifying thing to encounter? Maybe it’s because that’s where I feel most vulnerable. I think we can all be a bit like that at times. It was a significant moment for me that still fuels me in my faith. 

What is your favourite thing about the neighbourhood where you live? 

I live in such an eclectic community in Morningside, Auckland. You don’t find the perfect community to live in; you create it. After chipping away at community projects for fifteen years, I’m amazed at how strong we are together. Crave Cafe was flooded three times in the recent weather, and fifty community members came to help. While Community Spirit is not uncommon around the country at the moment, it’s one of the things I love most about living here. 

What do you love most about being Baptist?

I think one of the best things about being Baptist is our long history with youth work. Young people are amazing, and we have done youth work really well in the past. We have hit a few bumps over the last few years, but we are gearing up to help youth work flourish in Baptist churches.

Photos: provided by Blue Bradley

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