Wanda wanted to go to college at Ouachita, a Baptist college in her home state of Arkansas.

“You don’t want to go there,” her daddy said. “The only people who go there are preachers and you don’t want to marry a preacher.”

He agreed to send her to Arkansas State, much closer to home and no preachers. At least, no single Baptist preachers.

And, he was right, but he was also wrong.

He was right in that there was no single Baptist preacher there her freshman year. But, he was wrong for the rest of her college career.

I transferred to Arkansas State at the beginning of her sophomore year. I was single, and I was a Baptist preacher.

I was also smitten with her the first time I saw her.

I asked her for a date . . . she told me to drop dead . . . in a Christian lady type way, or course.

For the next two years, I tried to impress her, only to fail.

Finally, at the start of her senior year, she came to her senses and asked me for a date.

I accepted, and became one of the several guys she dated her senior year.

When I proposed in August after we had graduated, she called her mother and told her that she had decided to get married.

“That’s fine,” her mother replied, “which one is it?”

“It’s Ernie,” Wanda said.

“Oh, no,” her mother stated.

But, her mother accepted Wanda’s decision with grace and was a marvelous mother-in-law.

Wanda has been an amazing part of our ministry from day one. No one will ever know all the things she does to make our ministry possible.

If for no other reason, churches ask me to come so that they can be with her.

She is the most amazing person I know; I am thrilled, excited, and full-filled in having her as my ministry partner, my best friend, and as my wife.


Dr. Ernie Perkins