From the time Oasis of Hope entered my North Memphis neighborhood I began having a growing desire to serve my community. As I start noticing the positive impact that was happening, I knew I wanted to be a part of that change. I was very thankful for the presence of Oasis’ staff and volunteers, but I wanted more community people to take ownership of our community. God used Oasis to burden my heart for my community and His people.
In May 2014, I graduated from college with a Bachelor’s in Business Administration degree and I was wondering what I was going to do next. Little did I know God was going to bring everything full circle for me. Five months after graduation I started working with Oasis of Hope as their Middle School Youth Developer. Accepting this position was totally a God thing. Aside from being equipped through the things God allowed me to experience in my childhood and college years, I had no idea how to effectively fulfill my job’s responsibilities. I found peace in this truth;
“God doesn’t call the equipped, He equips the called.”
In September 2015, I also started at SOUL where I would be equipped some more for the work that God called me to do. SOUL stands for Sending Out Urban Leaders. SOUL’s mission is “to recruit, train, and resource new leaders in order to impact the youth of our city with the Gospel of Jesus Christ.” Over the course of the past two years, this mission has been fulfilled in my life. I learned so much about my relationship with God, my community, my city, and myself through this organization. I was stretched and I was placed in some uncomfortable situations. However, I have grown so much in my abilities to fulfill my job’s responsibilities because of SOUL. Through my time at SOUL, I am now better for Oasis of Hope, my community, and my city. Moreover, I am better equipped for whatever God calls me to next through the enrichment I’ve received at SOUL. I am forever grateful for these past two years! I am very certain that I couldn’t have done Urban Youth Ministry without SOUL’s resources and training.
-Jasmine Martin, Oasis of Hope Middle School Director