By now you probably know our story. After 47/48 years in our hometown, we left everything we’d always known and all of our friends and family to pursue the calling in our hearts. The first step was finding a new school for our boys. That school happened to be in Texas.

The rest of the story? We’d have to wait and see and let it unfold. We were trusting God for the details and the next steps – and to reveal His plan, His vision for us. Dot by dot, sentence by sentence the next steps began to fall into place. Story Builders was born. It was our inspired desire to use our respective 20+ years of professional experience to build custom homes for families – to reflect their story, to help tell their story.

We knew we needed a product of our own to point to – to demonstrate Derek’s design and the craftsmanship we wanted to bring to this market in a new way. When a lot became available in a neighborhood we admired we were excited to jump in. One year ago we purchased that acre of dirt.

Oh what a year it has been! After months of building a business, a budget, a team, designing a home and obtaining permits and the go ahead, we finally broke ground in late July.

And then the rains came down. It rained and rained. “Wettest season on record” they said. We faced many other obstacles over the next few months, including Derek battling a debilitating back injury that kept him home bound for days at a time.

The roller coaster ride continued – from potential buyers (read “someone else paying the bills”) to disappointments. I’m not gonna lie, there were many moments where one of us would question “Are we on the right track?” As long as we didn’t have those moments on the same day we were OK.

About a month ago, the end of the build came into sight. And we had to dig down deep for our faith. Fortunately all that is required is faith the size of a mustard seed. Some days that seed was all we had.

And then one Tuesday a lady and her son and her realtor asked to come see the house. She brought her husband back that night. By Wednesday we knew they loved the home. She told her realtor “It is as if they were building the home for our family.” Funny, but we were. We knew there was a family out there who would love this home and desire to make it part of their story. Early that Sunday morning we met at the house to finalize details. Derek and I left that meeting and went off to church in awe and wonder. We were completely humbled. We realized God was showing us the end of this first chapter.

The next morning I woke up early, grabbed a cup of coffee, and climbed back into bed to read for a bit. Our church is in the middle of a campaign called BEYOND (Eph. 3:20 ‘…he is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us).

This was that day’s word:

“Vision is a powerful motivator. When we receive and embrace God’s vision for our lives, He empowers us to work together toward the fulfillment of that vision. Just imagine what God could do if we tapped into His vision for our lives, our church and our community.”

But how do we know if the stirring in our heart is our own longing or God’s vision? “First, God’s vision always aligns with His mission and is bigger than you. If you can accomplish it in your own strength, it’s probably not God…Second God’s vision always releases passion in you. God’s vision will not let you go. It draws you in. It captivates you and pulls you toward God’s goal for your life.

Finally, God’s vision impacts future generations. Psalm 127:1 says, ‘Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it,’ and verse 3 continues, ‘Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord.’ You see, a God-vision is something that can only be accomplished through Him, but ultimately it has to do with family. It leaves a lasting impact that is felt for generations.”

My friend, I share this story to encourage you. Yes, these are our unique facts, but the principles belong to all of us. Seek God’s plan. Ask Him for His vision for your life. Then pursue it with everything in you. Surround yourself with people who will continue to build you up, even when your faith is the size of a mustard seed. But never ever give up. His timing is perfect. There may be a lot of uncomfortable moments of stretching and growing along the way, but none of them will be wasted. Your character will be strengthened for the next chapter of your story.

We cannot wait to see what our story beholds…