Preface:  I wrote this a day or so ago.  I will admit it is quite emotional as I reread it in the peace of my own home 🙂  Please pray for those closest to Kevin…He will be severely missed.

Psalm 61:1-4  Hear my cry, O God; Attend to my prayer.  From the end of the earth I will cry to You.  When my heart is overwhelmed; Lead me to the rock that is higher than I.  For you have been a shelter to me, a strong tower from the enemy.  I will abide in Your tabernacle forever; I will trust in the shelter of Your wings.

I am currently on a KLM flight from Uganda to Amsterdam.  We have 4 hours left of this red-eye flight and sleep seems to be escaping me.  The cabin is quiet and dark but my mind continues to turn.  Over and over, memory after memory.  It’s not anxiety, it’s not doubt—it’s grief.  As I found out the news of a dear friend’s death this morning, all I could think is, “Oh, God! Get me home to Seattle!”  We are too far away to have too many details and yet, it doesn’t really matter.  He is gone.  If we lived for answers, we would have died long ago.

Kevin Kim.   For the sake of my sanity and yours, this post is not one to ask questions, interrogate God, or blame/doubt/accuse.

My last conversation with Kevin was at our church’s annual Vision Banquet on September 12.  We were sitting beside each other at the table and Kevin was asked to move over a few seats to make room for another.  He graciously did it but was disappointed we could not talk more at the time.  I reassured him we would have plenty of time to talk at a later time.

He had kept saying, over the course of the last few months, whenever I would see him, “Rhonda, I am going to have all the girls that have been cooking for me (and others), over to my house.  I am going to cook you all the best meal to thank you.  It’s going to be the best meal you’ve had”.

Kevin was one of the most genuine, gentleman-ly, kind, thoughtful, wise men I know.  He was young for sure but he could find common ground with just about anyone.  He was the one who helped to plan and cook for my fundraiser in July to get me to Uganda. I can still see him barbecuing the hot dogs on the grill outside on Tracy’s patio.  He was so excited to help me raise money.  He wanted me to put a Pay Pal on my blog and ask people to donate.  I couldn’t do it.  He was bold and innovative in his approaches to increasing business but always generous, never competing with his friends.

For my birthday celebration and 2 others on Aug 14, he set up the rooftop of his condo building to help us celebrate with 30-40 people—he was a perfect host, never complaining, happy to serve.  The next day, my actual birthday, I was going out with 2 other girls for dinner and he wanted to come.  I was thrilled he would want to come—I remember him telling me if there was any guy I was interested in, he was more than willing to help make sure they were good guys.  Call me emotional but it touched me so much that a guy would say that and be so genuinely concerned about my relationships.  I tried to explain to him why there needs to be more guys like him, ready to help a sister—I don’t know that he completely understood my viewpoint but he listened like he did.

Last summer (2009) a bunch of us went to Lincoln City to hang out for the weekend at the vacation home of a friend’s parents.  At the end of the weekend, he kept talking about how he couldn’t wait to have his kids (when he had some) bring over their friends to his house and he would get to cook for them, showing them a great time.

As the tears flow freely, in this dark airplane, I’m overcome.  Overcome with thoughts about a man who was so full of life, full of vision, full of purpose.  I think he still has my  thick Smith Wigglesworth book I loaned him a few months ago.  He had never heard of Smith Wigglesworth, which I found surprising at the time—Kevin loved talking about God and the great things God could do and would do.  Forever the encourager, it was always refreshing to talk to him.  That reminds me!  When we were in Lincoln City, he was fishing and I pulled up a seat next to him on the dock, reading a book by Oswald Chambers.  I would read different parts out loud and he would then expand on what it meant to him.  He didn’t mind at all me interrupting his dock fishing.

I know he wouldn’t come back if I was to ask him to right now because he is now looking Jesus in the face, but oh Kevin, how I am going to miss you!  There will only ever be one Kevin Kim, who would say the darn-dest things, “I just want to be shredded and call it a day”.