God’s Hands in Our Story

0 comments Posted on December 1, 2016

by Chip & Joanna Gaines

I’m the type of person who can wrestle with something for a long time, but when I finally make up my mind, I’m all-in. This was one of those times. I was lying in bed with Chip one night, and I spoke it out loud. I didn’t pose it as a question. It wasn’t something I needed advice on. I was resolved: “Chip, we’re shutting the shop down.”

magnoliastoryChip was curious as to why I had come to this decision, of course. And I told him confidently, “God told me to do it.”

How could he argue with that?

In March of 2006 we sold off everything—the inventory, the displays, even the cash register. And it was hard. That shop was my dream, a dream that had landed on my yellow steno pad after I came back from my eye-opening internship in New York City. It was the first dream of mine that I’d seen come to fruition, and in many ways it was like our first baby.

Chip and I had remodeled that old shop with our bare hands. We’d laughed about how many nails had been driven into the old floorboards—there were thousands of them!—and thought about the guy who had put in so much time and effort all those years ago just to make sure those floors were as solid as could be. We were proud of everything we’d done to accentuate the work of those who came before us and to turn that quirky little building into a shop that exceeded the dreams I’d drawn out on paper a few years earlier.

chipjoannagaines-stepsBut the shop was more to me than an accomplishment or even the fulfillment of a dream. It was something Chip and I had dreamed and accomplished together. From scratch. It wasn’t his business that I added to, or my business that he added to. It was ours. At some point every day, no matter what he had going on out at the various job sites, Chip had been there with me, sitting in that little back office at the desk right next to the Pack ’n Play, doing his thing while I did mine.

That’s when I heard that gentle whisper, Joanna, if you trust me with your dreams, I’ll take them further than you could have ever imagined. It is no easy thing to trust in God, to walk away from a career, to give it all up not knowing if you can ever get it back or even come close. But I did it. I heeded his voice, and somehow I found peace about it.

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