Kim And Kayla Woodhouse, Stories Of Faith, Perserverance And Joy.

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Where Have You Been?

Kim Woodhouse

I get asked this question a lot. Especially lately. And I’m wondering if anyone else might be in the same boat. Do you feel like you’re treading water? That life is too busy or just passing you by?

I want to completely transparent here – hopefully, you know that’s what I’ve always aimed for, but sometimes it’s just stinking hard. The past few years have been weird and hard to say the least. We got away from blogging because we just needed to. Then the desire and the urge would come back and — me especially — I would think, “it’s time to get it rolling again.” Then life happened and I instinctively pulled back. Either because it hurt too much, there wasn’t enough time, or my focus was in a different place. And that’s okay. But when I received a lot of private messages and emails (and “a lot” to me is more than fifty – that may not be a lot to you) :) from wonderful readers and friends this past week it caused me to really consider some things. People who wrote,

“are you okay?”

“I miss your blog. Why aren’t you writing it?”

“Where have you been?”

“You were always real and I need that”

“I went to your blog and you haven’t written in a long time…”

– then I started to really examine what was going on, what I was feeling, and how to express that. Hoping that someone else might feel the same way or at least understand.

I used to be a super-social person. Yes, I said used-to-be. I still love people, I do. But now, I enjoy much quieter times. Even though a big part of our writing ministry is traveling around and sharing with people (sometimes thousands of people at a time) – my favorite part is one-on-one. And as I sit here and try to find how to express my heart, I’ve made a short list of what’s going with me.
One - the whole “fame” thing is just weird. Plain and simple. Growing up as a pastor’s kid and then marrying a pastor and being in ministry for all these years didn’t prepare me for the weirdness. The way people treat me is often different (and I’m not just talking about name-dropping or wanting to take a picture with me or following me around in the grocery store) and I’m still trying to figure that out – because to me, I’m NOT famous. Not at all. I’m Kim. Can’t you see me over here? Just regular, old, normal, plain, me.
Two – I’ve gotten older (gasp!) and not always particularly wiser. It shouldn’t surprise us when someone does something to hurt us because we’re all sinners. But it does. Sometimes, someone I’ve chosen to trust is not always the best choice.
Three –  As I’ve watched how social media has changed everything and tipped the world on its side, I haven’t always liked what I’ve seen. I don’t want to be something I’m not.
Four - and this is the most important – My focus has to be God-centered first and foremost. That’s where I want it to be. That’s where HE wants it to be.

So where does that leave me? I don’t really know. I often wonder if anyone actually wants to read anything I’ve written. Do I actually have anything important to say? I don’t know that either. :) (I know, I’m full of great wisdom and answers today.) But an email this morning prompted me to get on here and write. This reader told me I could share a portion of her email here:

“… I don’t know you in person but you’ve touched my life in huge ways. And I got to admit in the beginning it was through this blog. I know you haven’t blogged much lately and I’m not trying to make you feel guilty about it but a friend sent me to it years ago and I started reading. Then I picked up one of you books. God got a grip on me like never before and drew me to Him. I drove four hours to go to a church [name omitted for privacy] you were speaking at and I cried until my eyes were so swollen I couldn’t see. It was life-changing and beautiful for me. I’m saved now. I wanted to go to your line and meet you that day after the service but I chickened out. But not because of you.  My life is so different and I’m so thankful…Again I don’t want to make you feel bad but I thought maybe you needed encouragement from a reader to continue. I see so many authors touting up and down about what they writing who they’re hanging out with and which book is coming out when and for how much. But you always made me feel like you were real. You say things that make me think and ‘step on my toes’ like you say. I felt like you were my friend and I know you. I don’t know what’s keeping you from blogging but as I prayed this morning I knew I had to write to you. Maybe you’ve been hurt or you’re tired or you don’t know how many people you touched and reached on a regular basis…please don’t give up.”

Hmmm… don’t give up. Had I given up? Have you given up? Do you think that maybe in this world of constant busyness, constant noise, constant voices, constant FB updates, tweets, and everything else that your voice doesn’t matter?

I don’t have any beautiful answers to these questions, but I will say that your voice matters. That God hears each and every one of us. And that He wants us to use whatever we have for Him. He knows exactly where we are. He knows how we’ve been hurt. He knows it all and He’s walking beside us. Everyone’s journey is different. And they’re all difficult. But we can walk beside each other as well, encouraging to keep going. One day at a time.

“Where have you been?” I’m still here. Taking one step at a time and trying to figure things out just like you. I pulled back and closed off because it was easy to do :) and just needed the kick in the pants and encouragement to keep going. (Sigh – I’m sorry.) Thank you. Thank you for being there. Thank you for being who you are.  I don’t know what God has in store, but I’m looking toward that finish line and know He’s cheering me on.

Stand firm. Keep the faith. Keep going. Don’t quit.

5 Comments

  • Nita Hancock says:

    Kim,
    You are such an inspiration to me, and I am so thankful and blessed that God saw fit to have our lives cross. Love you! Nita

    • Nita Hancock » you are so sweet – thank you so much for stopping by and for your awesome note. I’m thankful to God as well! Looking forward to getting to know you even better :) Love you!

  • Carrie says:

    I was reading all the comments on Facebook and had to come here and give my two cents. Thank you sharing. THank you for being so honest and transparent and not having all the answers.
    PS I’m glad youre back

  • Kelsey says:

    I just watched your episode on YouTube. Your family’s story touched me once again. As a young Christian woman with a medical condition/disability, it always brings joy and encouragement to my heart to see how others handle the situation they are put in, and how God has brought them through it, including by encouraging others. You certainly seem to be doing that. I also hope that the house Kayla and Josh are growing up in is keeping you all healthy, happy, and safe. May it always be a place of love and encouragement.

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