|  Blog Post   |  Accepting the Unacceptable: Sometimes We Don’t Get the Miracle

Accepting the Unacceptable: Sometimes We Don’t Get the Miracle

To accept the unacceptable.

I’ve done it once.
No kids.

I grieved. A lot.
Still. Do.
I healed. A lot.
Still am.
I’m okay. Better than okay.
I love my life, even without our three forever wonders.

Can I do it again?
Accept the unacceptable?

I am over four years into a major health battle, the last 21 months of it very dark and very painful.

This weekend we went back to church in person for the first time in a while. We haven’t been back for many reasons, mostly the convenience of online worship. However, also because I need more than a rah-rah Jesus is good sermon and a community of people who, for the most part, have no clue and are decently unwilling to truly empathize with what my life has been like these last 21 months because most people can’t and won’t.

For some reason, we went this weekend.
And the message was about Jesus, the healer, and miracles.
Then they ended on one of my favorite songs.

And I didn’t feel seen by my loving God.
Simply I was pissed.
And I mean pissed for the entire service.

Because yes, Jesus is our God who heals, the way maker and miracle worker.
And sometimes, He chooses not to.

Sometimes He doesn’t heal, make the way, or work the miracle for us.

I want God to heal me miraculously.
I need him to.
And what if He won’t?
He hasn’t yet?
What if He never does?

Because as of now, not for any lack of asking, begging, praising, repenting, refining, and believing for, on my part and the people who love me, He has chosen not to heal me. Sure, there has been a lot of healing, with much effort on my part, and there has not been a miraculous healing.

It wasn’t until I was sitting in service trying to control the tears and the visceral shaking of my body from the combination of the always cold auditorium, my emotions, and my pain level that I realized just how angry I still am. I am keeping this scorecard of how much I’ve already suffered. Haven’t I been through enough already? I have a literal lifetime of hardship, particularly medical trauma. For far too long, the story spoken over me and by me has been that I am the worst-case scenario, the unluckiest, doomed.

And here’s the thing, I’d rather just know for sure.
That for sure, this is my life – a life filled with daily pain – rather than believing for something He may never do.

In my wrestle, one of my best friends was willing to sit in the mud puddle with me and asked me:

Do you believe He could heal you if you stopped believing and praying for it? What if abundant life is not having all we want/need and rather is living as freely as we can in the context given? What posture keeps your heart soft?

First, fuck me.
Second, get, have, keep, take care of, and love friends who are willing to wrestle on the hard stuff and ask the impossible questions.

I’m beginning to lean in and accept that my life abundant, the one without the anger, is perhaps accepting that I may never be healed.

To stop asking for, living like, and yes even believing for this miracle of a full, no pain, healed body and life.

Because sometimes, we don’t get the miracle we need.

What if my miracle isn’t healing, it’s that I am still alive?
Still here. And healing parts of my heart, mind, and story that I’d long thought were permanent agreements to darkness. Like, I am not doomed; I am devoted, loved, and favored.

What if my miracle isn’t healing, it’s that I don’t hate God?
Not even a little. I know Him more and better, and I love Him in deeper awe. And I feel more profoundly loved and known by Him. I’ve seen the face and heart of God more in and through this long health journey than ever before.

And I am not willing to give that miracle up, so I will accept the unacceptable again.

What if accepting this unacceptable isn’t doubting my God’s ability or even desire to heal me completely, even in the way I want and need? Instead, it’s allowing the true, miraculous healing of my heart to finally fully take place?

To walk into my life abundant – the life of awe, wonder, and devotion to love no matter the kind of healing received.

And if your reaction to all these words is to dare to tell me that my unanswered prayers and lack of miracle is punishment for my sin or it’s because I haven’t asked enough or right or perfectly you’ve chosen unloving and bad theology over a living, hurting person and over Love. I suggest you take that to Jesus and keep it away from me. And also, I recommend a great book that will introduce you to Love coming out June 7th, written, yes, by me.

Because maybe true courage and faith are accepting the unacceptable and still choosing to believe.

Because the only thing worse than not being healed in the way I want and not getting my miracle is believing that I am unloved and without a Sovereign God.


Justine is a Licensed Professional Counselor with more than 25 years of experience in traditional mental health and personal and professional development. Justine has been certified in the work of Dr. Brené Brown for ten years. Justine is the author of eleven books, including five Amazon bestsellers covering subjects such as infertility, faith, and grief. She has been honored to do two TEDx Talks, The Permission of the And and The Donut Effect. She travels nationally and presents virtually to global audiences delivering keynotes, workshops, retreats, and trainings on topics such as leadership, courage, resilience, mental health, preventing and coping with burnout, and courageous and curious conversation, especially in creating cultures of belonging and diversity, equity, and inclusion. Justine lives in St. Louis with her husband Chad, their three dogs, and for four months of the year hundreds of monarch and swallowtail butterflies.


  • March 8, 2022
    Dara Shae Turner

    I needed to hear this so much. It reminded me of the story in Daniel when the 3 men refused to serve other gods or worship idols. “And who is that God that shall deliver you out of my hand ?”, the king mocks. And they answered ….”If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king.” “BUT IF NOT, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.”

  • March 12, 2022

    Thank you for sharing this. I am finding myself resonating with so much of what you’ve written. Holding onto hope, and also letting go of control- that’s really hard. Learning how to hope in Him even when He’s not doing what I want is really hard too. I feel that the circumstances should change, but even when they don’t, sticking around and showing up honestly is all I can muster right now.


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