When You Are In a Place You Never Want To Be (In Weakness)

Gold Brush Stroke

“There comes a time when it takes more faith to fall apart with Jesus than to stay strong enough to stop it from happening.”
Bonnie Gray, Finding Spiritual Whitespace

I’m writing this post from a place I never want to be, a place I especially never want others to see.

This is a place of brokenness and emptiness. A fragile state where I’m falling apart inside; tearing up with a change in the winds.

Here, a blanket of gloom hangs on me like an over-sized wet jacket. Dragging me down and holding me there.

It’s a difficult place from which to write. Because it’s one I’d rather not share.

faith to fall apart whitespace

Always Strong

You see, I’ve always been strong. At least I’ve always tried to appear strong.

With the loss of each of my five preborns, I shriveled up a bit more inside yet always projected a resilient spirit to the world. 

When my daughter entered this world with a cleft palate, I assured everyone that all would be fine.

When nursing her became an issue, I fought through the setback.

When she quit breathing at 6 weeks, I stayed strong and focused through her hospitalization.

And when it became evident she had lifelong global disabilities, I passionately sought answers and resources for her, but not support and encouragement for myself. 

Through my nearly 25 years of marriage and almost 20 years of parenting our four children, I resolutely refused to give into each storm that threatened to sweep me away. I refused to admit I was drowning. Because I knew I should be 





God Says So

I reasoned that God even said so. Check out these verses:

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed…” (Joshua 1:9),

and “Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them,…” (Deuteronomy 31:6). 

It sure looks like I was right, we are to be strong. But read a bit farther, who are we to be strong in? Ourselves? Certainly not!

The end of Joshua 1:9 and Deuteronomy 31:6 both tell us to be strong because the LORD our God is with us. And Peter tells us that

after [we] have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you” (1 Peter 5:10, emphasis mine). 

So we are to be strong, but strong in God’s power, not in our own.

So we are to be strong, but strong in God's power, not in our own. Share on X

I have the “be strong” part down but have been missing who to be strong in. Instead of resting in the God of power, I erroneously believed I could get through on my own power. 

Acknowledge Your Weakness

Do you try to walk this journey in your own strength? Like me, do you tend to hide your weaknesses? 

The Apostle Paul got it: “But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me” (2 Corinthians 12:9).

Boast in my weakness? Wow, that’s a bit counter-cultural, isn’t it? 

But I am slowly learning that my weakness, your weakness, it’s not something to hide.

God knows we are weak and broken. That’s the reason our Father sent the Holy Spirit—to give us strength. That’s the reason He sent the Savior—to mend our brokenness. To restore our favor with Him. To give us light in the darkness. 

I’m finally awakening to Yahweh’s offer of rest for our weary souls. But for me, it’s still a struggle. 

You see, I have to admit I need rest. I have to acknowledge I’m tired.

God beckons us be still with Him and be restored, but we have to slow down enough to be in His presence. God offers us His power, but we have to allow our weakness to be exposed.

God offers us His power, but we have to allow our weakness to be exposed. Share on X

And, oh my friends, that is so hard!  

Are you feeling weary today? Burdened by a world in which darkness hasn’t yet admitted its defeat? Join me as I explore finding soul rest in the shadow of El Elyon, the Most High God.

Prayer for the Weary Soul copy

Prayer for the Weary Soul

Lord, I feel broken and wrung out today.

I have little strength for these day-to-day battles.

My soul is so very weary.

But it is in this place of brokenness I receive your rest.

Here is where my soul can be restored.

Father, I offer You my weakness and gratefully accept Your strength.

In Your infinite grace and mercy,

You give me the power I need for this day, for this hour.

In our flesh everything is futile, but in Christ, all is possible.

In Jesus’ glorious name, I praise You.


Reflections: Where are you looking for soul rest? Are you trying to handle circumstances in your own strength or God’s? 

For the next month or so on Thursdays, I’ll be exploring “spiritual whitespace” or soul rest with Bonnie Gray at FaithBarista.com. Bonnie’s first book, a deeply moving memoir of sorts, Finding Spiritual Whitespace: Awakening Your Soul to Rest, releases June 3. It’s perfect timing for this soul-weary gal and I’m sure for many of you. Won’t you join me as we find rest in the only place it exists, the bosom of the Lord.  

Linking with

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By His Grace,



  1. Patty Muich on May 29, 2014 at 6:48 pm

    My heart aches with all your losses. I am glad that you did not give up honey. I also could understand on having to show strength. We are Mom’s. We are the Fixers that keep the family humming along smoothly. I think the hardest thing was realizing that I was broken and had to ask for help. I loved your post and nice blog.

    • Julie Sunne on May 29, 2014 at 8:57 pm

      “I think the hardest thing was realizing that I was broken and had to ask for help.” Oh, I agree, Patty. Admitting it takes courage and faith. Thank yo for your kind words.

  2. Renee on May 29, 2014 at 8:02 pm

    It is so true we try to be strong on our own….stay strong…..determined……not appearing weak. But you speak truth~ we can only be strong in Christ. HIS strength. Thank you for the wonderful reminder….and honesty.

    • Julie Sunne on May 29, 2014 at 8:58 pm

      You’re welcome, Renee. Speaking it is the easy part, living it, now that is difficult. Blessings.

  3. Amy Jung on May 30, 2014 at 5:37 am

    This is as sweet post. I appreciate your openness of your past losses and current struggle. I can relate all to well with both. Blessings as you navigate this time in your life….looking forward to hearing more. It’s hard to write from this state but, it seems God has given you something to say to others about it that is quite encouraging and so important for us to understand. He wants us to be dependent on Him. How can we have that which He most wants when we are always striving to be strong (in our own strength)? Thank you for sharing…

    • Julie Sunne on May 30, 2014 at 9:19 am

      Thank you, Amy. I was raised to be strong (in a loving home) as I ran with older brothers. It came naturally. But sometimes that self-strength can be a curse when we lean on it instead of its Author. Praying for rest from all the striving.

  4. Florence Ukpabi on May 30, 2014 at 7:37 am

    I’m really sorry because I wrote you a long reply that got wiped out when I logged into Discus – but I hear what you say and what you are going through. I learnt this the hard way when my body packed in on me, it is only through YHWH’s grace that the pieces are being picked up again.

    You are not alone, this place although hard and often difficult with the breaking and making of new habits is a place of healing too.

    In my thoughts – blessings of His shalom to you x

    • Julie Sunne on May 30, 2014 at 9:21 am

      Oh, I’m sorry Florence! Sometimes this technology can be a pain.

      Thank you for your encouraging comments. Looking to the Lord for a deep restful healing, one where I can let go and let God. Sounds lovely.

  5. Trudy Den Hoed on May 30, 2014 at 12:07 pm

    My heart breaks for all of your losses, Julie. I’m so sorry you had to go through all this. Praying God will give you further healing and some beautiful whitespace resting in Him with all your brokenness. I, too, try to be strong for everyone around me, and I’m trying to work on that. It’s such a new thing to me what Bonnie says about it taking more faith to fall apart with Jesus. I love the prayer! Thank you!

    • Julie Sunne on May 30, 2014 at 10:11 pm

      I guess we’ll be struggling through the “releasing” process together, Trudy. Each morning I get up and begin handling my day myself, even though it starts with prayer and time in the Word. Maybe finding whitespace and soul rest begins with releasing each day to God from the moment we first wake up. Let Him decide the layout of each one. Grateful my prayer blessed you.

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Julie Sunne

Hello, I'm Julie, an imperfect wife and mother of four. Life in this broken world is not always easy. Yet, joy can be found in each day through the grace and mercy of the Lord Jesus Christ.

I find it's easy for our day's blessings to get lost in its happenings. But God's "mercies never end" (Lamentations 3:22) and His "grace is sufficient" (2 Corinthians 12:9).

May the posts and pages on this site offer you a measure of peace and encouragement.

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