|  Blog Post   |  You are more loved than you can imagine, I promise.
Dare to Lead Quote

You are more loved than you can imagine, I promise.

Storytime, grab your cuppa.

Yesterday I experienced one of the holiest moments of my life.

Some may call it serendipity or coincidence.

I call it God.

I no longer believe in coincidence, happenstance, or randomness.

I believe in first nudges, holy yeses, and holy moments and that everything, even the tiniest (and yes, hardest) of things, passes through the hands of a loving God.

And if you’ve heard my story, I didn’t always believe this. In the darkest of dark of my life, I finally refused to let people or the hard parts of my story steal God from me.

Plus, if there isn’t a plan to somehow make it all good, better than good, even the dark, then what is the point?

I didn’t find the Stan Hywett estate until too late on my first day in Ohio. So I went yesterday after my event, even though I was hurting and exhausted. I had planned to see the Lodge right after the manor and, for some reason, turned towards the gardens first.

What I didn’t know is that these choices were orchestrated.

As I walked to end my visit at the Lodge where AA was conceived, I was overwhelmed with a full-circle moment. I started my career 24 years ago, working with clients who struggled with addiction. And here I was, in the midst of a very full speaking schedule living into a dream I could never have even dreamed up myself, headed to see where Bill W. and Dr. Bob had their first conversation that led to AA. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve read the Big Book or how many times I’ve discussed and assigned page 449 to clients way back when.

I walked into the tiny home to three men reading the signs in the kitchen. They then moved into the living sitting and talking. As I made my way to the living room to read the signs, they boldly asked me if I was sober too. Between the three of them, they have 100 years sober. And from there, the four of us had one of the holiest conversations I’ve ever had the honor of being a part of. We talked about our stories, shame, diagnosis, surrender and acceptance, parenting, God, connection, inner child, shadow, what has saved us and helped us along the way, and how wild and good and loving our God is that he would orchestrate this seemingly random and anything but random encounter.

And just to make sure we didn’t doubt Him at all, the guys are playing golf today at the club I’m speaking at… Wonder if I’ll see them again?

I don’t know exactly how it works, but somehow, in the darkest of dark of my life, I have found the brightest light. And it has left me in complete awe and wonder of everything in this life. And somehow, I will figure out how to write about it and, most of all, live it out so that others can feel this loving light and receive it for themselves.

You are more loved than you can imagine, I promise.


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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