Loving people with the heart of Christ in the heart of Wabash.

Philippians 2:3-5

Magnolia Blossoms

We’re in wedding season. And as a husband myself, I am reminded every 4th of July, not only of the great nation in which we live, but more importantly of the great lady to whom I’m married. Every 4th of July, Amy gets fireworks for our anniversary—displayed just for her. Wink!

One couple who has captured our attention is Chip and Joanna Gaines, the husband-wife stars of HGTV’s hit series Fixer Upper. Their romance got off to what can only be described as an unlikely start.

Joanna worked in her father’s auto shop in Waco. She even starred in its local TV commercials. Chip began to make it a habit of dropping by.

When they finally sat down to talk, something clicked. Could Chip pick her up for dinner sometime? Sure, she replied.

He arrived 75 minutes late for their first date. By the time he stood at her front door, Joanna wanted to have nothing to do with such an irresponsible, thoughtless person. She ordered her roommates not to let him in. They did anyway. There stood Chip—with a shaved head.

It was not a great look.

It turned out that Chip had run a razor over his head to express solidarity with a friend undergoing chemo. Maybe this guy wasn’t such a jerk after all.

Joanna soon discovered that Chip was impulsive, unorthodox, and outrageously big-hearted. She, on the other hand, is calm, diligent, and organized. They were perfect for each other.

After four children and four years in the national spotlight, they are TV stars who don’t even own a TV. They watch episodes of Fixer Upper only when on the road or invited to the homes of friends.

“It’s truly only because a fiercely faithful, brave and bold husband pushed me to pursue my dream that it ever came to be,” Joanna reflects. She describes her specialty as “making old things new and seeing the potential in every project—no matter how hopeless it may seem in the beginning.”

That speaks to the name they have chosen for all of their home renovation enterprises: Magnolia (one of which sits in between our sanctuary and education building).

As Joanna points out, magnolia trees have astonishingly compact flower buds. They seem plain, ordinary, and tightly bound. But when the time is right, they explode into bloom—approximately 30 times larger than the original bud.

Likewise, Jesus speaks of the Palestinian mustard plant, whose seeds are so small they are easily overlooked. Yet when rooted in good soil, a single seed can grow into a plant that towers high enough to accommodate perching birds.

Big things have small beginnings. Abandoned houses can become beautiful again. Weary hearts, when drenched in hope, can once again find a reason to sing.

May your friendships, families, and marriages be drenched in that hope today.

Jonathan signature updated transparent

Leave a Reply


Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner