Do you ever feel as though you’re accepted but don’t belong somewhere? Like people know your name but they don’t actually know who you are? 

When we meet someone, what’s the first things we say or ask?

What’s your name?
What do you do? 
Are you married? 
What does your spouse do?

Suddenly without realizing it, the more that we learn about a person in those first moments, the more we begin to label and put that person in a certain “box”. Well,

I’m Kaylie Michelle Poole. 
I’m an occupational therapy assistant at a skilled nursing facility. 
I’ve been married for a little over three years. 
My husband is a pastor. 

That minimal response is enough for many to put me in a box and think of me as a certain type of person. Yet, that doesn’t even begin to explain who I am as a person. It’s funny how our flesh has this overwhelming desire to belong, feel wanted, loved and known. 

So here I am, wanting you to know me for more than my name and who my husband is. My name is Kaylie. I’m perfectly broken in a million different ways. While I grew up “in the church”, I never grew in Christ. My world and faith were rocked my freshman year of college leading me down a path of sex, drinking, anger, lust, selfishness, pride, lies and much more. I would look in the mirror for years and see this girl pushing and fighting to be right or known or seen without realizing that I was already seen and loved by an almighty gracious loving God. 

But I still struggle. Temptations and thoughts that shatter me to the core.
“I’m not good enough for this role.”
“I’m too different from these women to ever belong here.”
“My past will scare them away.

The devil gets me where I know I’ve failed. But  when I start to question these thoughts, I have to remind myself that Jesus would never place those ideas and words in my head to cut me down. 

Because I do belong! I am different! I do have a past, but it’s my story and it’s a beautiful one of God’s love, grace and redemption over a broken unworthy sinner. 

It’s okay to be imperfect. I’m the prime example of that! I may come to church in flannel and chaos with my hair wet because I got out of bed not twenty minutes before. While I am different, I am who I am! I love Jesus, Hunter, coffee, naps, the mountains, serving others, Christmas and so much more! 

Let’s grow together and get to know each other for more than just our labels.  Let’s be awkward and different together!

– By Kaylie Poole