For me, it’s not really about the decorating. It’s not even about the cool transformations that I can watch happen in the course of my lunch break. There’s a bigger reason I find myself with Fixer Upper on while I make dinner or clean my own house. The reason Chip and Joanna’s voices have become so familiar in my house is that they remind me of my calling. They give Craig and I some really good encouragement and reminders of what it means to be a “team”. 

Here’s 5 things we can learn from this Fixer Upper team that will strengthen our marriages and enable us to be in mission together. 

  1. They model having a shared calling. Although most of us don’t have jobs that are so intimately connected as Chip and Joanna, they help us see that it is possible to work together, alongside each other, and not kill each other. They truly do together what is too big for them to accomplish alone. 
  2. They value each other’s strengths. They rely on each other to do what they do best. And then they trust each other in their areas of strength. Second-guessing and trying to manage the other person take so much effort away from the task we are given to do. Plus, when we can trust them to do their piece, even if they do it differently than we would, they are unleashed with confidence. 
  3. They aren’t afraid to disagree, but they do it respectfully. Agreement doesn’t always make for the best outcome. But most of the time, after we’ve had the conversation and shared our different viewpoints, one person needs to defer – and then walk forward in unity and wholeheartedness. There’s no room for standing back and shaking our heads at what we are holding onto as a failed idea. 
  4. When something goes wrong – there’s no blaming. When they find mold or a cracked foundation, there’s no “why didn’t you see this coming.” They embrace the bad, take on the new challenge and dig into coming up with a solution together. 
  5. They laugh – a lot. They work hard, but laughter and play are always part of the workday. Now, I get that we are seeing only a small corner of the big picture of their relationship and the work that goes into these jobs. But in a way, their life is a lot like ours. Our congregations see pieces – but we strive to make sure that what they are seeing is true and representative of life at our house. 

Bonus – They share the family and home responsibilities. Whether it’s bringing pizza so they can eat together when Joanna is decorating or having the kids on the jobsite, learning how to cut down a tree – the family is integrated into the calling God has put on their lives. How many times have you packed a picnic and eaten lunch on your husband’s office floor, just so you could grab a few minutes together during a crazy season? And how about the times has he taken the kiddos so that you can disciple a group of girls or lead a missions trip (or whatever you are finding fills your soul and let’s you embrace what God is doing in and through you)? 

So grab that hammer (or your guitar, your laptop, or whatever tools that you use for your gifting) and let’s pursue this “team” thing that God has called us to. We do together what is too big to do alone. And all so that God gets the glory.