Jen Zelop is both a radio host and a businesswoman. She runs Transformation Talk Radio and the website
THRIVE by Jen, both of which offer insight into spiritual growth.
Through both of these mediums, she broadcasts her passion for personal development and spirituality, which she believes are inextricably linked.
In the Growth U Podcast, Jen opens up about her decision to invite God into her everyday life by going to school to become part of the ministry, as well as the motivations that led her to this point in her life.
Even as a little girl, Jen felt the desire to help others. If there was a baby bird on the ground, separated from its mother, Jen would feel compelled to help. If there was a dog in the middle of the road, Jen would feel the impulse to try and find its owner. When the commercials would come on asking people to donate so that children in other countries wouldn’t starve, the tears would roll down Jen’s face like twin waterfalls.
Despite these early feelings, Jen didn’t give herself over to them for almost 25 years. It wasn’t until then that she really felt God nudging her in a specific direction. With enough life experience to give her courage, she finally gave in to her empathetic nature and began taking classes at the ministry.
In 2012, Jen’s life went through a major metamorphosis. All at once, she was raising her children, growing a business, ending a relationship, and starting another. This wave of responsibility forced her to harden her resolve.
In 2015, with this new strength in tow, Jen was introduced to Growth U, a community of people who help each other better themselves. Hearing their speakers, Jen realized that she had been running on autopilot up to that point, and had been suppressing her true feelings.
In December of that same year, Jen had a complete breakdown. In the darkness of her bedroom, she completely surrendered herself to God. While she had always been religious, it had been more of a passive faith. In her own words, it often consisted of “God, I have a party today–let’s not make it rain.”
Now that she had turned the spiritual corner, Jen fully embraced Growth U, which she now describes as “faith in action.” Their team helped her pinpoint and conquer her feelings, as well as to let love spearhead her decision-making. At that same time, Jen had begun thoroughly studying the Bible. The combined force of Growth U and her religion allowed Jen to regain control of her own life.
Jen describes the relationship between faith and free will as a “God and Devil” dynamic. We have the choice to choose between the hard way and the easy way, and quite often, we choose the easy way, even when the hard way is the most beneficial. Jen frames this idea using her own instinct to “go small,” which was the theme of her decision-making for some time.
However, with the help of Growth U and regularly praying for God to give her strength, Jen was able to break the pattern and “go big.” She describes going small and going big as the difference between staying the same and treading new paths. While the latter is scarier, it can also be the most fulfilling choice.
When Jen was first delving into the personal growth practices of Growth U, she was getting some pushback from her preacher. This caused her to rethink her relationship with Growth U. However, she eventually came to the conclusion that everyone has their own journey to personal development and God. In other words, judgment isn’t as useful as encouraging someone to take the right path for them.
In her own balancing between free will and faith, Jen cites the story of Jonah from the Bible. God tells Jonah to relay some information, but Jonah utilizes his free will to refuse. Later, God picks Jonah up and moves him, then once again instructs him to relay the information. Jen uses this example to illustrate her idea that God won’t make decisions for you but will nudge you in the right direction. At the end of the day, you must use your free will wisely.
Even if judgment comes from a hardline, faith-based perspective, Jen contends that it’s counterintuitive to a healthy lifestyle and that it actually moves you farther from God. And as you move farther from God, you move into an arena of fear, owned and operated by the Devil.
In fact, Jen says this fear still hits her often, sometimes 20 times a day. The difference in how she handles it now is that she understands fear for what it is: a feeling. That understanding allows her to move past it with great ease and speed. This understanding is what she calls “fuel for the flesh.”
Jen goes on to say that actions are going to be taken anyway, so instead of taking them out of fear, we should take them from a place of love.
Jen Zelop can be found on both Facebook and Instagram. She also has a blog called “Everyday Living with God” on her personal website. She finds that the number one comment she receives on her blogs is a compliment regarding her willingness to discuss her relationship with God. She believes this blunt spiritual talk is especially helpful to those who need guidance but aren’t sure where to find it.
She doesn’t take all the credit for the blog, however. First and foremost, Jen credits God for lifting her from her old life and giving her the courage to spread the word of her spiritual transformation. She also gives credit to Growth U for giving her faith the fuel it needs to flourish.
Jen concludes by once again encouraging people to reach out to her with their stories or if they need help in overcoming their own spiritual obstacles.