A highly successful businesswoman who's held top positions in Fortune 500 companies worldwide says she's leaving all of her financial success and security behind in order to help the unreached hear the Good News.
"Many come to the saving knowledge of Christ through His Word, through getting their hands on His Word," Ana Mims told The Christian Post in a Skype interview on Wednesday.
Mims, who lives with her 11-year-old daughter in Singapore, told CP that she's following God's call despite initial fears and reservations in taking up a role with Wycliffe Bible Translators in the United States.
"It's one of those things in life where they pick you, and you don't pick them. I didn't actually pick Wycliffe; I think the Lord sort of did that for me," she added.
Born in Havana, Mims and her family immigrated to the U.S. as refugees on one of the Freedom Flights from Cuba, and had to break through language barriers and learn English. Although she was raised as a Roman Catholic, she said she was 18 when she gave her life to the Lord. While she was interested in getting involved in ministry work early on, she felt God was telling her back then that it wasn't the right time.
So Mims embarked on a 28-year business career where she achieved success in serving as a legislative specialist, government relations and operations director, vice president of communications, and CCO at Fortune 500 companies across Europe, Latin America, Asia and the U.S.
It was late one evening when she was reading information about trauma counseling for women and children in war-torn countries that she first heard of Wycliffe Bible Translators, an organization that helps people translate the Bible into their own languages.
"I was always looking at how to get involved in missions or giving to some groups that are underprivileged in some way around the world. It is something that has always been in my heart since I've been a Christian," she said.
Despite feeling that she wasn't the "market audience" for that in the Christian realm, as she was "not a very churchy Christian," she left her contact information with Wycliffe, which began several rounds of communication back and forth.
Mims thought long and hard about whether joining Wycliffe was the right move for her, given that she also has to provide a stable future for her daughter.
But then, she said, she felt God's call.
"All of a sudden there was this shift inside of me that said 'Ana, you have to pursue this. Now is a different time.'
"It has very much taken me by surprise that what has always been 'No, this is not for you now,' suddenly became 'Now is the time,'" she added.
Mims, who will be working as senior director of corporate communications for one of Wycliffe's sister organizations, noted that she's leaving behind a high-paying corporate lifestyle, along with material comfort and financial security for herself and her daughter.
"I live in one of the wealthiest per capita countries in the world. I am surrounded by a lot of wealth. I've lived in a high-rise with a private elevator that leads right to my apartment," she said of life in Singapore, adding that one of her hobbies used to be racing Porsches.
"I have been blessed with a lot of success, and obviously with that success has come a lot of remuneration. And so to go to a place where you're used to earning a salary, to a role where you are not paid a salary per se, but you build a group of financial investors that partner with you financially, and their support financially is how you get paid, that's quite different. That's how the Lord sent the disciples out," she said.
Mims also shared with CP some of the questions she had for God: "Wait a minute, Lord, I am a single mom, I am raising an 11-year-old, and this is not the right time for this. How could you call me for this now?"
She noted that serving in ministry full time was very new to her. "How am I ever going to live like this? How am I going to survive like this? What is my lifestyle going to look like?" she wondered.
Mims said she knew in her heart that she was going in the right direction, however, as that is what she felt God wanted from her.
"A God that has always been faithful to you, a God that has provided for you in so many ways — when you have history with someone who has been loyal and faithful to you, you know you can count on them.
"I could hear the Lord saying, 'Do you trust me that I am going to provide what you need, provide what your daughter needs, that I am going to meet you right where you are?'"
Looking back at her successful corporate life, Mims recognized that it was God who took her there.
"When we are sitting in those high places, it is easy for our pride to tell us 'It's me, I'm so good, I'm so intelligent,' but it's really the Lord who opens the door, the Lord who enables us, the Lord who bring us to those places."
She explained that she still has days of doubt, but that is when her faith rises up.
"The Lord is good because He didn't lead me this far to fail me. I encourage myself in the Word that tells me who He is, and the testimony He has given me that He has been faithful to me in many ways and will continue to be so."
"My experience was a laying down of my life to the Lord, it was a full conversion," Mims continued. "I don't see my life as my own. I have desires, wants, needs, but I always present those to the Lord."
She recalled sitting in training at Wycliffe with people who had been in ministry out in the field doing Bible translation, and hearing their stories of impacting and changing people's lives. That is when it dawned on her the importance of being in a support role.
"The whole mandate that we have as Christians, to go tell to the whole Earth the Good News, just the sense of knowing that the work that I'll be involved will enable the Gospel to go into places where the Gospel has not yet been" is what inspires her, she said, along with helping people understand a concept as critical as salvation.
"All of those years I spent in the corporate world, learning my craft and learning all those things that the Lord needed me to get good at so that now I can enter ministry, I think is just awesome," she said.
Mims believes that God has His reasons for saying "not now," and reflected that without her business background, she would have never had the level of experience to step into this role now.
Speaking about her goals, she said that ultimately she wants to see more people come to the saving knowledge of Christ.
"The short term goal is that the work that I do in the communications role will enable the whole of the organization and all of the teams out in the field to be better equipped and do better at what they do to get the Word into the hands of those that need it," Mims said, expressing her desire to help "extend the Kingdom of God on this side of eternity."