Over the last few months, we’ve been praying – quietly, fervently, patiently awaiting the Lord’s provision.
And then the ground began to rumble as I started to receive a string of e-mails, “You’ve been nominated,” “We’ll need a personal bio” and “Yes, you need to be present to win.” So the next few weeks were full of excitement and activity, nailing down details and nervously wondering about what might lie ahead.
Still reeling from long flights and a bit of cultural re-adjustment, I’m getting a manicure with flashy red nails and pondering it all.
I was that girl — comfortable being sassy and all prettied up. The doctor’s daughter who for the majority of her growing up years, didn’t realize that most people don’t have their own swimming pool in their backyard. And then….. I moved to Bolivia. And I saw the world for what it is. My nails got dirty, my heart broken. I confronted evil in the lives of my friends and within myself. Lived in the midst of the suffering.
By Andrea Baker
Then I walk into this Gala, in the Fox Theater no less, where I once dreamed of performing on stage there. My family nearby, because this is my old stomping ground. And like many who return home changed, I felt like a fish out of water. Numb, overwhelmed, wide-eyed.
I smiled, I chatted, I enjoyed the amazing food and loved briefly connecting with these world changer’s whose bio’s and work I had poured over.
I teared up as we sang,
“Your plans are still to prosper, You have not forgotten us.
You’re with us in the fire and the flood.
Faithful forever, Perfect in love
You are sovereign over us.”
For all that our community holds, all that we’ve seen and lamented and fought for. I prayed and declared again, “Yes, Lord. You are faithful.”
(and then I worried about all my smeared mascara….)
I’ve spent a good portion of this year reflecting on God’s faithfulness. My husband and I recently celebrated 10 years of service in Bolivia. And I’ve reminisced over the hundreds of ways the Lord has manifested His goodness. I don’t ever want to forget.
I wish now that I could have soaked it all up a little more – enjoyed that incredible lobster and all the glamour. And as I sit back and reflect on it all now, I can’t help but be impressed with how surreal it was. All that pomp and circumstance for…. loving Diana? Choosing to enter in? How do other people do it? Move in and out of these drastically different worlds so effortlessly?
Maybe we won, because we don’t care about all the attention. I have no idea where I’ll pose that gorgeous hand-blown glass award. Maybe we won because Presence does matter. I had a speech ready just in case: Over the years so many people have asked us, ‘How many have you saved? How many have you rescued?’ And it’s always an awkward question, since we typically don’t boast big numbers. And at times, I’ve wanted to say, “No one has asked me how many I’ve loved.” And I have loved many. I think that counts for something, because in the end, love does matter. Beautiful, unconditional Love has transformed my life. And there’s nothing more significant than that. In the end, love wins; love transforms.
I’m still overwhelmed by it all. Honored beyond belief and extremely humbled. But mostly just anxious to return home to my simple life in Bolivia. I’d love for you to continue with us in this amazing journey.