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our values and truth

Not everyone has earned the right to speak into our lives.

It doesn’t mean there aren’t nuggets we can receive from them that help us to learn and grow and change.

And, simply, we will always have feedback in our lives that doesn’t deserve to be held close to our hearts.

However, checking this feedback with the people who know us, love us, and hold us to our values and truth will help us in our growth.

Years ago I was asked to speak at a ministry event for teen girls struggling with anxiety. A week after announcing me as part of the lineup, I was told I had to delete my social media past, specifically all the curse words I had ever posted or I could not be part of the event.

It was an organization with much more influence than me and it definitely made me doubt myself (past and present) for a while. Eventually, I let them know I would not be part of their event.

And honestly, I really wanted to give them some choice words… ?

It is not lost on me, that today, several years later, I have a devotional for kids dealing with anxiety published by HarperCollins that is doing extremely well.

Of course, I’ve grown a ton in these last few years.
I know the love of God more than ever before.
And yes, I still love a well-placed, deserved, and much-needed curse word.

May we remember:
The minute we try to please everyone is the second we abandon ourselves.
Not everyone has earned the right to speak into our lives.
Not everyone will like us.
And most of all, God loves us


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.

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