My Trip to Magnolia Market: Dreaming, Risking and Hearing from God


Children tossed bean bags into corn hole boards, groups posed for selfies in front of the designated areas, while husbands graciously toted shopping bags, and employees smiled wildly and offered direction and instruction. The air was deliciously thick with the aroma of gourmet hot dogs, grilled cheese, and ice cream, and though my head ached for coffee, I was content to people-watch from my sun-drenched spot at a picnic table. My husband came with hands full of food, and as we sat chatting, the familiar sound of church songs filled the small cracks of silence not consumed by laughing children and shrieking women.
My senses had been on overload from the moment I saw the looming white and rusted silos. As we walked down the street from our parked rental, the sweet scent of sugar, flour, and butter greeted us. Every employee flashed smiles that oozed with a genuine love for their job, and their words were warm and neighborly, just as you’d expect when visiting the South. Every room burst with details— nothing too tiny to be overlooked. Apple, Nordstrom, Disney, Nike— these were the brands that I compared my experience to. Magnolia was a well-oiled machine that moved effortlessly and with precision.
I sat finishing my crepes— my mind-swirling with questions, and ideas, simultaneously. I don’t think it’s possible to experience Magnolia Market and not be incredibly inspired. In the middle of this mecca of beauty and design, there was one question that I felt growing louder and louder. From deep in my heart it bubbled up from a faint whisper, into something I could not ignore. I looked up at my husband, suddenly unable to ignore this feeling any longer:
“Do you think this is what she had in mind?” When he responded with, “who?” I realized I needed to clarify.
“Joanna. Do you think when she first considered buying the Silos that this was what she pictured?” I waved my hand back and forth to emphasize my question and met his gaze. “Do think this has surpassed even her dreams?” My final question finished my thought, and I smiled. He’s known me long enough to have an understanding of where this inquiry was going.
Later that night, after much sight-seeing, driving, and conversation, we circled back to my questions. I shared what I felt God had been speaking to my heart as I sat alone at the picnic table. What began quietly had been crescendoing all day long, and now it was erupting. Luckily my husband has seen what happens when I need an outlet for my passion-filled heart; he smiled, shifted on the couch, and motioned for me to continue.
Our conversation ended with humble prayers offered with great confidence— that God would open doors, increase our faith for the future, and grace us with the courage and endurance needed to persevere. We asked God to dwarf our dreams and to encircle us with others who are willing to risk. We opened our hands and surrendered our hearts. We talked about the future with hope. We built ourselves up with the promise of God— with His word that says that “He is able to do far more than all that we ask or think.” (Ephesians 3:20)
Friends, this is where I want to camp out permanently. In the zone where what I can see— the dream that feels enormous— is just a glimpse of what God sees. I hope you do too.