Tuesday, August 30, 2011

I Was Forgiven

She was half my age, smart, arrogant and had no personality.  She was my boss.  She told me, "I don't want to know about your personal life, your kids, your family.  Just do your job, get the results and we'll get along fine."  And then I watched her systematically work to get people fired who had been on the job for 10, 15, 20 years.  I watched her destroy a single mom who became ill with cancer and needed her job to survive.  I heard her tell employees that she wasn't looking for personal relationships and that they didn't need to come by her office unless she invited them to come there.

I hated her...I did.  I did my job and watched others around me fall like flies.  I hated her.  My heart grew dark and cold.  I went to the CEO and told him that I couldn't watch her eliminate any more people.  He said she was too valuable to the company, she was young, a go getter, and so I must go.  I hated her.  As I left, my little box packed with personal belongings, I gave her a smug smile that said, "I'm free of you and of your evil reign of terror."  I hated her.

Why would someone who took pleasure in causing mayhem and destruction around her, prosper and be promoted, while hard working, dedicated people lost their jobs with no warning and no where to go?  I hated her.  It took me a while to recover before I could even begin a job search.  I tried to stay in contact with others who had been so cruelly treated, but I was so filled with hate, that it was better to stay away.

I went to church, I prayed, I read Scripture, but I couldn't shake it...the hate...it began to have a foothold in me and a root of bitterness was formed.  What was I to do?  How could I be set free?  Even though I was no longer at that job, she continued to control me by the hate in my heart.  One early morning I was driven to my knees.  Tears poured down my face, off my chin onto the floor.  I told Him of all her wickedness and evil deeds.  I rehearsed all she had done to my friends and co-workers.

I heard in my heart, "I don't see her that way".  What, God - you don't see her that way?  "I see her through the eyes of Jesus.  I see her how I created her to be."  But Lord, how do you see all the people she's hurt?  "I'm talking about how I see her", I heard in my spirit.  "She needs your prayers.  She needs your forgiveness."  Oh Lord, please don't ask that of me!  Please don't ask that right now.  "She needs it.  I love her."  My fists were so tightly clenched, my jaw ached as I gritted my teeth.  "She needs forgiveness" I heard again.

In a flash, I saw her through the eyes of Jesus.  He gave me a glimpse into her soul.  She was weak and frightened.  She was curled in a ball in the fetal position.  I saw it all then, in my heart...she needed forgiveness.  I knew in an instant that I would forgive her, but I had to do something else first.  I asked Him to forgive me, to clean my dark soul and wash away the hate.  He did it in the blink of an eye.  I knew it.  I was forgiven!  I was clean!  I felt light and free and whole.  The anger and bitterness disippated.  I can't even begin to describe what that felt like.  Like sunlight was streaming through me and the swirling that had been in my head was gone.

I went back.  When I stepped back in her office, I smiled at her again, just as I had smiled at her the day I left.  Only this time, it was a smile of love, tenderness and compassion.  I spoke to her kindly, told her that I forgave her and hoped that all was well with her.  She looked startled and gave a slight smile, but caught herself.  I turned and left there knowing that I had done what He asked me to do.  What she did with it from there, was between her and God.  But I was obedient and I was forgiven and it was the best feeling in the world.

What a hard, hard sweet lesson I learned on that day that I was forgiven.  I was bathed in His light and God pulled me through.  I was blessed and taken on a completely different path than I ever expected after that.  God is faithful.  God is good.  And I'm forgiven.

This happened many years ago, but I'll never forget it.  Today's word is "forgiven".  What have you been forgiven of?  What's your story?

Read other wonderful testimonies of forgiveness at Heart to Heart with Holley.

From His Lap,

34 comments:

  1. If you have hate in your heart, let it out. There is nothing more strenuous on ones body and soul than holding a grudge against someone. Great story

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  2. You are so right, Triple Threat! It eats away at our soul and immobilizes us! Thanks so much for stopping by!
    Blessings,
    ~Erin

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  3. This was beautiful; There is usually something we need to ask forgiveness for, no matter how bad the other person as acted.

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  4. Oh, Shanda, I was mortified that I had let it get to that. I didn't know it was possible to feel that way about someone. It was a very long time ago, but it was a lesson that has stayed with me. I'll never go there again!
    Blessings,
    ~Erin

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  5. Hi Erin - this post is my heart! I am battling so to hold back tears right now. for the last 4 yrs we have been going through family stuff like this and it continues. All I know to do is constantly run to Jesus because I don't know what else to do. I can't fix it, but I can pray and constantly forgive and try to see them as God sees them.
    Thank you
    God bless
    Tracy

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  6. Tracy,
    It is so hard, I know! If you break through just once and feel the sweet release of the hatred and the rush of clean forgiveness rush in, it sets you free. I will pray for your situation, that you have the eyes of Jesus and know how much He loves you!
    Blessings,
    ~Erin

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  7. Unforgiveness is such a barrier isn't it and I can so relate to many times of Christ's forgiveness as I read and the joy and release it brings! Love it when the Lord shows us the hurting person and what is really going on behind all they are doing. Changes everything.

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  8. Erin, go read the posts on the People of the Second Chance blog (http://www.potsc.com/blog/) about being Never Beyond forgiveness. This is a wonderful post!

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  9. What a beautiful example of forgiveness, repentance, and the peace that passes all understanding. Susan

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  10. Saleslady,
    Thanks so much for stopping by! You are so right...the love of God changes everything!
    Blessings,
    ~Erin

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  11. Sandy,
    I am a member of People of the Second Chance! I love them!!! This incident happened so very long ago. I look at people so differently now than I did then. You are such a blessing!
    ~Erin

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  12. Thank you, Susan!! I learned my lesson!!
    ~Erin

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  13. Erin, I feel like every day I come to your site and start my comment with "that was a beautiful post." And I'm going to do so again today! LOL!

    It really was beautiful and I can relate a little bit. When I worked for a large bank in CA we had a bunch of new consultants come in and "take over". They changed the way we did business and took a lot of people down in the process. They were cold in their words, mean in their actions, and not willing to listen to reason. Even though they knew nothing about our industry, they did their job with arrogance.

    About 4 years later, the owners of the company decided they no longer wanted a presence in the auto industry or in North America and laid of thousands of people (my hubby included). I remember feeling so much hate for those consultants and blamed them for our pain. It took a long time for me to get over it and really forgive them. It's freeing to forgive.

    Blessings,
    Rosann
    http://www.christiansupermom.com/

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  14. Rosann,
    Isn't forgiveness freeing?? Both receiving it and granting it. It's life changing. I'm so sorry that happened to you and your husband. God probably took you in a direction that you never expected!
    Blessings,
    ~Erin

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  15. Erin, Thanks for being so courageous and writing about this healing experience. You've given me the courage to post a story about an experience of forgiveness that I had. My experience took me to a whole new realm of forgiving and I learned so much more about how the atonement works. It will be on my blog sometime soon.

    Love ya!

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  16. Oh, Becky Jane, I can't wait to read it. Be sure to let me know when you post it!!! It does take you to a whole new realm, doesn't it!!
    I love you!
    ~Erin

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  17. Oh, Erin, it is so hard sometimes, isn't it? But obedience releases our shackled feet to walk in love, forgiveness, and peace. It's the first step that is the hardest. Praise the Lord that you took that step. Such a wonderful post!

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  18. It's a hard lesson to learn, Lynn! But I don't think it's one He'll have to teach me twice!
    Hugs, sister!
    ~Erin

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  19. Hi from your newest follower from the Mod'N'Natural Blog!

    We would love to have you join us for the Worship Wednesday Blog Hop :o)
    http://naturalmommas.blogspot.com/2011/08/worship-wednesday-8312011.html

    ~Rebecca~

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  20. I think we have all struggled to let go of anger, resentment, and even hatred towards those that have wronged us, and it takes a lot of prayer, meditation, and God's grace to overcome all those negative feelings. There is no better feeling than to give forgivness! Praise! :)

    Love this post Erin; thanks for sharing this from your heart. :)

    Denise

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  21. Rebecca,
    Thank you so much for stopping by. I will try to make it for worship Wednesday.
    Blessings,
    ~Erin

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  22. Denise,
    God's grace is the key, isn't it?! I'm so thankful His grace is new every morning and I can start all over again. Thanks for your kind words!
    Blessings,
    ~Erin

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  23. I think forgiveness happens every day for a thousand small things...
    Sandy

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  24. Sandy,
    You are so right! I'm so grateful that forgiveness is available even in the small things everyday. This is a big instance where unforgiveness was taking it's toll on me. It was many years ago, but I shared it because I thought it might be helpful to those who are carrying big hurts that they can't seem to let go of. Thank you so much for visiting my site!!
    Blessings,
    ~Erin

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  25. Erin,
    That story was so beautiful... it is amazing what God's love will do. I know first hand what hatred will do to your heart... thanks for sharing this story. I wonderful if it changed her heart?
    I hope you are enjoying your visit with your Father.
    Take care,
    Love ya,
    Lisa

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  26. erin, so many of us can relate! Thanks for sharing this...i have familial situations that require forgiveness often...not that there are new offenses all the time, but there are times that the enemy of my soul wants to remind me of them. And i must choose to forgive again.

    I have been forgiven so much, dear Erin, that i couldn't write it all out!! But He is so faithful, and worthy of all our hearts.
    Bless you, sister.

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  27. Lisa,
    It was a hard lesson to learn and I never want to have to re-learn it! I have seen her out publicly and she has been very friendly to me.
    Blessings,
    ~Erin

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  28. Jeanette,
    I'm so glad that I'm not the only one who has dealt with such feelings and then forgiveness. He is so faithful and worthy of all our hearts!!
    Thanks so much for stopping by!
    Blessings,
    ~Erin

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  29. Erin, visiting for the first time from Tracy Teppler's blog...she guided us here. So glad I stopped by. What a beautiful testimony about the power of forgiveness. Thank you for sharing it.

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  30. Eileen,
    Thank so much for visiting! Don't you just love Tracy. She is such a blessing to me. Have a wonderful week, walking with Him!
    ~Erin

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  31. Erin, I love how you said it was a "hard, hard, sweet lesson." That's how it is with God... we have to go through the "hard" to get to the "sweet" of everything. I'm visiting from Tracy's blog :) Great post!

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  32. Heidi,
    Thank you so much for visiting! I'm so glad we have met via Tracy! She is such a blessing. You are so right...we must go through the hard to get to the sweet!
    Hugs!
    ~Erin

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  33. Erin - this is beautiful. I had a similar situation at work a few years ago. I tried to leave, but instead God moved my supervisor away. After some time, God showed me that I was to forgive her. (Oh, that hurts, doesn't it?) But forgiveness is so liberating, so freeing...

    Thank you for sharing this beautiful, heart felt post.

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  34. Joan,
    I'm so glad that situation worked out for you!! What a blessing. Isn't it awesome how freeing forgiveness is...in the giving and receiving!
    I'm so glad you came by for a visit!
    ~Erin

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Thank you for giving us a little nugget of truth from your heart!

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