Ann Voskamp has attracted millions of fans with a unique writing style that’s all her own. Her ability to express thoughts and feelings as they relate to the pursuit of living a biblical lifestyle is second to none. She’s brutally honest and holds little back, a trait developed from her early blogging days that resonates strongly with her legion of fans.
We asked Ann to go back 15 years to those pre-fame early days, and tell us what kind of advice she’d dish to herself. Her answers, as always, were both insightful and edifying.
“Fifteen years ago I had four kids. I worked full time in the barn. Long Days. Listening to, they used to call them, Sony Walkmans. Listening to the Bible. Listened to sermons. This is a very different world,” she says beneath a smile.
After thinking a moment or two, Ann emerges with a classic profoundness fans have come to know and love.
“I think saying yes in small ways to whatever God calls you to, but I think God calls us to be Moses in lots of ways. He calls us to wilderness places to shape us before he calls us to anything else. So, I think to be faithful to little and small things, those things that look little and small aren’t little and small, they all add up.”
“If I was, 15 years ago, to talk to this woman now,” Ann says before thinking a moment and then regathering herself. “The soul isn’t made for fame. We spend too much of our lives in waiting rooms, thinking I need to get out of this place and get to that place. Where you are right now is where you can enter into the joy of the Lord and the presence of God. Where you are right now is where you can live cruciform. Where you are now is where you can incarnate the Gospel. There is no – everything else is a mirage.”
“I’ll tell you, being on a book tour – I want to go home. I want to go home and be with my kids. I want to wash dishes. I want to be at the back door when my husband comes in from harvesting corn.”
The beautiful thing about watching Ann explain all of this in person was bearing witness to the authenticity of it all. One of the worst fears we have as avid readers is to find out our favorite authors don’t actually practice what they preach, and it’s merely a show.
This is clearly, unequivocally, not the case with Voskamp. She welled with emotion as she talked about missing her family. It was immediately obvious she meant every last word deep down in every last fiber of her soul.
That’s why her writing impacts so many people around the world – even if she only set out 15 years ago to write for an audience of one.
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