When No One Else Gets What You’re Doing

HouseDoes your life mystify others?

Do you see head tilts, raised eyebrows, or furrowed brows while describing a challenge you’ve taken on, a ministry you’ve entered, or a choice you’ve prayerfully made?

In other words, do you have a vision for something that others cannot see?

My husband is redeeming a house from condemnation – and he’s making me live in it as he does it.

It’s horrible for a homemaker to live inside a construction project but the upside is being wed to a man who sees the potential in a wreck. When I look at our house, that’s what I see. A wreck. My husband has a vision for what it will be. He lives here with joy because in his mind, it’s already there.

He sacrifices, works long hours, and makes the crazy choice to live with rooms sans walls, ceilings, or floors (for like, a really – really – really long time) because he has a vision for the result. I live in it with him for the same reason except that my vision is not for the house but for a marriage and a life, that honors God.

I understand about building towards a vision no one else can see.

Every Christian builds toward an eternal future. Each sacrifice, unseen act of obedience, step of faith, or act of devotion contributes toward a vision that often only Jesus can see for us. I trust that when I move closer toward the freedom I have in Christ, He sets another stone in the fireplace of my room in heaven. Every act of obedience adds a floorboard. Every time I trust Him enough to set aside my comfort for His adventure, He sets a beam in place in my great room. And I receive, not only the promise of reward in heaven but access to the eternal life now as I engage in the adventure of following Jesus.

When others look at my life, they don’t always get it. What they see looks incomplete. It can appear random. Parts even seem unredeemable. I notice raised eyebrows, quizzical concern, wide-eyed wonder at some decisions – and it used to get to me.

Not anymore. The closer I get to Jesus, the greater view I have of the vision of a future that spreads out eternally with Him. What other people think, matters less and less. What matters is the material with which I’m building and the joy of working with a Master Craftsman.

Noah saw the vision. He endured rejection, scorn, and jeers of those who suffered from a failure of imagination and faith. He saw the vision through to the end, working alongside our Creator God.

Noah was like us, you know. He got tired. He was tempted to give up. He experienced pressure to second-guess what he’d heard from God, to compromise, or to abandon the work all together. Anyone aiming to build an eternal life will be similarly tempted. But he endured.

Some of you have huge dreams – reach an unreached people with the gospel, write a message that touches millions, found a mission that transforms thousands of lives. Others of you have quieter but no less powerful visions – raise a family that honors Jesus, forgive the people who nearly crippled you in childhood, represent Jesus well at your place of work. Large or small – the temptations are ever present, the labor creates the same amount of sweat, and the reward for persevering will be just as sweet. The blessing is not in the size of the vision but in the ecstasy of accessing our eternal life on this side of glory.

Paul said this to the Philippians: “And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” Philippians 1:6 (ESV) That excites me. Because as I build toward the vision Christ has given me, He is building the vision that is me. I was an idea He felt worth creating and He’ll keep working until I am complete.

If you’re tired, tempted to quit, discouraged or disheartened, you need to write that verse in a place where you can see it, memorize it, and trust it.

Don’t give in. Be like Noah. Be like my husband. Be like Jesus as He works on me. While I live in a wreck, He has also chosen to live in the wreck that is me – redeeming this old soul from condemnation, restoring me to my former glory, and creating a home within my heart where He can dwell.

I’ll let you in on a secret. Noah’s greatest building project was not the Ark. The greatest thing Noah built was His walk of faith with God. My husband’s greatest building project isn’t this house, it’s his vision for a way of life he’s modeling for the generation yet to come.

Persevere. Make tough choices. Choose the narrow road less traveled. Lay another brick on the wall of the vision of your eternal home and know that while others may roll their eyes, Jesus has His eyes on you, loved ones



This is a blurry photo of my actual living room – and it has looked this way for four years now. (lest you think I exaggerate about the house.)

Do you need prayer because you’re faltering as you work toward your vision? Leave a comment below or on my contact page. Or, invite me to your church home and let me encourage your women’s group or Bible study group in person.

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    The Conversation

  1. Lori J says:

    Hi Lori – ‘Be Thou My Vision ‘is my go to worship song when I’m alone and need spiritual recharging. Thank you for sharing this rendition.
    I recently read something that I think you will like. Ephesians 2:10 says that we are “His workmanship” — that word workmanship is ‘poiema’. I love what Harry Ironside says about it; this word is only used twice in the New Testament. First in Romans 1:20 where Paul is speaking about the testimony of creation and tells us that the invisible things of God are understood by the “things that are made” (which in Greek is ‘poiema). So creation is God’s first poem and it witnesses to His eternal power and glory. Then in Ephesians we see that redemption is God’s second poem. God has the heart of a poet and we are “syllables in His great poem of redemption” (Ironside). We are His workmanship — something that He has made. Our poetic, artistic Creator calls us His poem — created to do “good works. He gives us the vision for those works, then empowers us to do them so that He receives glory from our lives. “Be Thou my vision . . . Thou in me dwelling and I with Thee one.”
    Enjoy Him!

  2. Betsy Ryan says:

    As an one who creates paintings, arranges flowers and writes psalms, I was smiling as you nailed my ongoing experience with the stares and gawks I sometimes get, when explaining what God’s vision is for my life. I’ve learned not to be offended; be more discerning about who to share with; and yes, know that God’s grand design for my life will bless others, as it blesses me. I’ve learned to rejoice, even when others clearly think there’s nothing to rejoice about! (Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep.-Romans 12:15)
    And so, the relationship grows, as I gladly catch His imagination and make it unfold to spread more love, joy, healing, comfort and peace! (I, too, loved this version of Be Thou My Vision. At times, I’ve swapped out Thou for You, etc. to reach unchurched people.)
    I’m new to your Blog, and I am enjoying it immensely! Thank you for your God.Lovin’ candidness and Heaven.to.Earth testimonies.

  3. Cyn Rogalski says:

    WORD. Needed to hear/read/soak in this today. Thank you Lori.

  4. Rhonda Corey says:

    ‘What matters is the material with which I’m building and the joy of working with a Master Craftsman.” Love this! THIS is what matters most!

  5. Carla Allaire says:

    Amen, Lori! We lived 25 years in various stages of remodeling, so I feel your pain 😉 I lived many years on the fence, not wanting people to look at me funny–not realizing God was looking at me funny because I was so shallow. But He had a vision for me before I ever was born, and that vision WILL be revealed. He brought to me the realization that in these Last Days we can do WHATEVER we want towards greatness in Him. Do you want to raise the dead for His glory? You shall. Do you want to preach? You shall. If your will is lined up with Abba’s, GREATER things than Jesus did will we do. This is an exciting time–a scary time, but exciting. He is looking for those who have found out the world has NOTHING for us, and we now turn our lives over to Him, completely and wholly. I pray we all get the vision.

    • Ciro Pennino says:

      I truly ask for prayer and confirmation of what I feel the Lord prompting me to do.
      I feel to leave everything I have and own to move and I need confirmation like a 2 by four over my head to take this journey. Please pray for me and my children (13-12), I am a single dad with a good friendship with x wife and the biggest challenge is leaving them behind to move many miles away and many think I fell off the deep end and will say I am abandoning my family but if God is telling me this then I must trust him regardless of what is at hand.


  6. Maxine D says:

    Thank you – so many people look at me sideways when I say my greatest achievement has been to raise two God fearing children :-).

    Thank you for your prayers as requested earlier – DH is making a good recovery and is much more stable on his crutches.