Inspiration from The Magnolia Story


Last week I mentioned on my January Mood Board that I’d been reading Chip and Joanna Gaines’ book The Magnolia Story that One Cute Cowboy got me for Christmas.  I finished it this past weekend and it left me inspired, driven, and with a sense of things are going to work out the way God has them planned.

For those of you who aren’t addicted to HGTV like my husband, and have no idea who Chip or Joanna Gaines is, they are a married couple that have a show on the HGTV channel called The Fixer-Upper. They live in Waco,Texas and buy and restore or “flip” houses in the area to make them the dreamiest, most amazing houses the buyer could imagine. They’re endearing, and you can tell they work hard, but have so much fun doing it. Their chemistry is palpable and by the end of the episode you can’t help but feel like you’d be great buds with both of them. If you’ve never caught a show, I highly recommend it. Tuesday nights at 8:00 central time.

Back to the book. I had a bit of an epiphany while reading Joanna’s words, she reiterated time and time again that it was she and Chip’s trust in God that led them to where they are in life now. She would voice her dreams and the desires of her heart to God (and Chip for that matter) and though it might be immediate or in time, God bestowed those things upon her. Now, I know this is no new revelation, that trusting in God brings great things, but for some reason, reading her words, and hearing it in what seemed like a friends voice, it made new sense to me. Speaking, out-loud the desires of your heart to God. I know I’ve prayed to God for things to happen, or not happen. For this or that to work-out, but have I ever just dreamed out-loud to God?  I know when I was in college, one of my professors were alway saying, “Be sure people know your dreams. Tell everyone you know what your dreams are! You never know what could happen because of it.”  Why not tell the one person who can literally make anything happen?! Now, don’t get me wrong, I’ve prayed about the desires of my heart to God, but I guess I’ve always figured he knows my heart and deepest desires, why speak them all to Him? Reading Jo’s words only made me realize, yes, He most certainly knows our deepest and truest desires but He also wants a relationship with his children. He wants us to speak to Him like we would a loved one, because He is love. 

It’s a little bit hard for me to put into words how this epiphany has changed my way of thinking, and somewhat changed my dialogue with God. But this brought something new to the table for me. I feel like this book has only enriched my relationship with God. Not only has it made me start looking at things in a new light, I feel energized after reading this book. It was inspiring. I think Chip & Joanna are just inspiring people in general, but this book really makes you start to examine what you want out of life. What are you striving for in life?

I highly highly recommend this book. It’s a fast, entertaining book that will only leave you with a smile on your face, and I pray some hope in your heart. I know it did mine. You can even buy it on iTunes for audio for you non-book-readers out there. Go check it out, I promise it’ll be worth your time.

The Magnolia Story

 

*ASpottedHeart

 

Book Review: The Blue Bistro

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I consider myself an avid reader. Last year I didn’t get near as many books read as I would have liked, so this year I’ve set out to read as much as possible. I started out my year reading a couple of Elin Hildebrand’s books, Winter Street  and Winter Stroll.  I loved everything about the books! The characters, the dry humor, the crazy family, and the interesting story. So that naturally made me want to read more of her writing.

Adrienne Dealey has spent the past six years working for hotels in exotic resort towns. This summer she has decided to make Nantucket home. Left flat broke by her ex-boyfriend, she’s desperate to earn some fast money. when the desirable Thatcher Smith, owner of Nantucket’s hottest restaurant, is the only one to offer her a job, she wonders if she can get by with no restaurant experience. Thatcher gives Adrienne a crash course in the business…and they share an instant attraction.                                                                                                                                                                                 But there’s a mystery about their situation: what is it about Fiona, the Blue Bistro’s chef, that captures Thatcher’s attention again and again? And why does such a successful restaurant seem to be in it’s final season before closing it’s doors for good? Despite her uncertainty, Adrienne must decide whether to open her heart for the first time, or move on, as she always does.

I picked up The Blue Bistro because it sounded like a good little story, but I had no idea I’d fall in love with this book’s story! The setting, the characters, the food…ALL of it!

The main character, Adrienne, is a girl that I admired her constant courage to step onto a new road. It pretty much had me hook, line, and sinker from chapter one! The male lead, Thatcher, is someone anyone would like. He has a suave-ness that is intriguing from the get-go. I loved the quirkiness of the story itself, and it was only the topping on the cake, that the bistro itself was very charming and had endearing quirks about it as well.  You can’t help but wish you could stroll down to the Bistro for their famous pretzel bread, or go down to have a glass of their Laurent-Pierrier pink champagne.

This is one of those books I flew through, but tried to soak in every detail. It only left me wishing it would keep going on forever. Hildebrand has a smoothness about her writing, and an intriguing way to her characters that I’ve really enjoyed in the books of hers I’ve read so far. I’d recommend this book to anyone that’s wanting a good, easy-breezy read. I can’t stress enough how much I enjoyed this story, and I can’t wait for a couple of years to go by, so I can revisit this story and read it again. 🙂

Next up: The Rumor

What books are you currently reading?