We had the good fortune of connecting with Aljenon Cooper and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Aljenon, can you tell us more about your background and the role it’s played in shaping who you are today?
I am a native of Los Angeles! My background and upbringing not only had a major impact on who I am today, but also where I am today. I was given up at birth by my biological mother due to the influence of drugs in her life at that particular time. Fortunate enough to know my biological mother and have what we now consider a toxic relationship with her, I grew up experiencing the aftermath of rejection and abandonment. There were many days that she would make promises and not keep them. What stands out most would be the times that my mother would tell me she was coming to see me or pick me up and she would never show up, wouldn’t answer the phone, or call me. Noticing the difference that she put between my siblings that she raised and me. There was a time I could not talk about what I had gone through without becoming emotional. I would even have dreams of some of the mistreatment and I would wake up with my pillow wet with tears. As God would have it, at the age of 4 days old, he placed me in the home of a God-fearing and loving mother, that would love me as her own and treat me like a prince. I didn’t understand it all then, but now that I see the path that God has me on I understand it was necessary for me to go through what I went through. If I was not given up, adopted, and experienced the hurt and pain, I would not know God like I do today. This experience taught me that sometimes we are better off with a persons absence than we would be by their presence; and, we have to give up our right to hurt in order to receive our healing.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
That which sets me apart from others is that God has given me a story and testimony like none other. I wasn’t born in this thing, and as a matter of fact I did not believe that God could use me in the capacity that He has because I wasn’t “connected.” In other words my father wasn’t a pastor or bishop, my mother wasn’t a well known evangelist. However, God went through great lengths to position me where I could learn about him and answer the call to His voice. I am 29 years old and just celebrated 17 years of ministry. Every day wasn’t a good day, I’ve experienced discouragement and sabotage along the journey but it was all to build my character. In many instances I was the first or only person my age to do some of the things that I have accomplished and like most trailblazers I received ridicule and to be honest, I cried that I received backlash for simply trying to carry out God’s will for my life. However, I cried but didn’t quit. I had to remember that before anyone could form an opinion about me or what I was doing, God had a plan for my life. I want the world to know in spite of what your story is or where you have come from God has a plan for your life! Before you were formed and fashioned in the mind of God, He knew you and had a plan for your life.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I would begin with a trip to Venice Beach – there is so much culture there! I’m big on brunch, so I take everyone to M’Dears Bakery and Bistro or Red’s Flavor Table. I also like this restaurant called My Two Cents. We would have to take a stroll down Hollywood Blvd. Hiking at the Culver City stairs. Shopping in Beverly Hills, Century City or the Grove!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I would be remiss to not acknowledge and shoutout my mother that raised me, Mrs. Mildred Cooper. The sacrifice that she made in order to take me in and for not shortchanging me one bit. I could never repay her for all of the love, prayers, teachings, encouragement, and affirming that she has given me; and, to this day she still gives me! I would not be where I am today without her.