Sunday, May 24, 2015

Call Story: Min. April Jackson

Today, we had the pleasure of licensing April Jackson as a minister of the gospel. It was a wonderful service and April preached an awesome sermon as she detailed the trials of Paul and encouraged us with the refrain, "Giving Up Is not an Option." What we share here is a portion of her call story. 

by Min. April Jackson

Today has to be one of the proudest, yet the most humbling moments of my life! As I sit here, reflecting over my journey, I can remember back to my teenage years, when I was asked to give a Sunday School Review at First Baptist Church Chelsea, and SEVERAL people told me I would be a minister one day. I shook my head no, thinking that I was just doing what was asked of me.

I remember as a young adult, reading thought provoking devotionals at Christ Communion COGIC, every week during Announcement time, that every one affectionately called "Spiritual Food For Thought". I was told that they were waiting on me to accept my call as an Evangelist Missionary. Again, I shook my head no, as I just liked sharing the devotionals every week.

I remember that, a few years later, all members of Come As You Are Christian Center were required by the Pastor to prepare an Inspired Teaching, developed from a scripture that the Pastor selected. Again, at the end of my Inspired Teaching, people were determined to call me Preacher. Again, I shook my head no, I wanted to leave that title for those who were already in the pulpit.

Then, when I came to Gifts of Life Ministries, I thought I could hide in plain sight for a while, but apparently my gifts appeared, despite my best efforts. Without any single event like the ones mentioned above, I was told that there was a call on my life, and that I was running from it. I wondered what it was they were seeing, because I was trying (and failing) to hide.

I later enrolled in the Netters Certificate of Ministry classes at Memphis Theological Seminary, and at the beginning of each class, I would listen to everyone else introducing themselves as Minister and Reverend and Pastor, and my introduction was always the same...I'm just here to learn and get a deeper understanding of scripture. Even the instructors were giving me the side-eye, saying they were waiting. I wrestled, and I fought, until I had no other choice but to let God have his way.

I accepted God's call, and today, I delivered my first sermon. I would like to take this time to thank EVERYONE who saw something in me, and told me so until I could see it for myself. Recognizing that I am still a work in progress, I can only wonder what God has in store for me. But I do know one thing for sure...GIVING UP IS NOT AN OPTION!