David Baker - Associate Pastor of Worship Ministries
Here I was, calmly minding my own business when a good friend of mine (I won’t tell you his name, but his initials are Shane Smith) called me and said, “Bake, there’s a good friend of mine transferring from SWOSU in Weatherford to Central State in Edmond where you are. I told her you would watch over her and take care of her while she was there.” He told me her name, but I don’t think I remembered it…
A week or so later, on Wednesday, September 30, 1981 in the middle of the afternoon, I was at the Baptist Student Union (now known as Baptist Collegiate Ministries) when this knockdown beautiful blonde walked through the front door. I didn’t want her to feel alone, so of course I went over to meet her! (That’s just the way I am – always thinking of others before myself and trying to make others feel comfortable!) I discovered that this young co-ed was the person that Sha…. eh, my friend, told me to be on the lookout for!
I discovered that she was from Yukon, and as fate would have it, I was to work with the choir that evening at FBC Yukon as I was going in view of a call to be their Interim Minister of Music the following Sunday! As a good Southern Baptist, always seeking to invite the lost and wayward to Jesus (it had nothing to do that she was knockdown beautiful!), I invited her to join me for church that day. She let me know that she enjoyed her Sunday School class at Trinity, but said she would think about my invitation to join me for church after her class.
To be honest, I didn’t see her or think of her the rest of the week.
The following Sunday after worship, several folks came up and thanked me for being there and expressed hope that I would be their next worship leader, albeit as an interim. And then, there SHE was! She, too, expressed her enjoyment of the service and then asked me if I would like to join her and her family for lunch at her house. I looked around for any of the committee who might want to take me to lunch, but saw none and accepted her invitation!
The next week, we saw each other every evening at the BSU revival on campus.
The following Sunday, October 10th, I met with the committee from Yukon FBC and talked about our future together. My grandparents were celebrating their 50th anniversary in Wheatland, and I asked this beautiful blonde if she would like to go with me. She agreed and, following my meeting, off we went.
Leaving the celebration a little early, we went to my uncle’s house also in Wheatland where I was able to watch the Dallas Cowboy football game. During halftime, or maybe it was just during a commercial, I turned to this knockdown beautiful blonde and asked her to marry me. (WHAT?? Yeah, I did!) SHE … SAID … “YES!”
Just 10 days earlier, I learned that this knockdown beautiful blonde’s name was Jerri Lynn Casto. And now, a scant 10 days later, she agreed to let her name be changed to Jerri Lynn Baker! Last Sunday was the 40th anniversary of that day where she said YES!
When Jesus asked to come into my life at the age of six, He also asked to change my name. Not changing it on any documents or anything like that, but to change it in my heart and to forever be identified with Him.
Acts 11:26 - So for a whole year Barnabas and Saul met with the church and taught great numbers of people. The disciples were called Christians first at Antioch.
May all of us who bear the name of “Christian,” or “Little Christ” be identified as such because we look like Jesus!
And thank you, Sweetheart, for saying “Yes!” 40 years ago! I’m glad you were brain damaged at the time… Or at least not thinking straight! LOL!
Because He lives!