The last couple of weeks for me have been interesting to say the least. I have had the unpleasant opportunity to come face to face with two negative situations in my life which caused great pain and suffering, emotionally, financially and spiritually. Both situations resulted in relationship breaches and up until today I felt as though they destroyed me to a degree I couldn’t recover.
Broken Armor is a manuscript I penned and planned to publish. It details the 20 plus years I served as an Armor Bearer in my former church. I wrote on many accounts of the way someone, I first admired and aspired to be like, treated me but in the end began to despise. Despised because of how others and I were treated, but also angry with myself for continuing to let it happen.
I thought I was writing it as a starting point for discussing how armor bearers are being treated negatively. I only spoke of my issues although I’ve traveled and seen similar accounts in the church too many times to mention. I thought I was going to help others who may have been in the same situation I found myself to be apart of.
I was wrong.
I am going to help those I spoke of, but not with Broken Armor. It took me awhile to understand this, but the way I wanted to handle the situation wasn’t the way God wanted me to handle it nor was it my purpose.
I honestly believe the book would have helped some, but doing it according to my purpose will reach those and more, and more importantly reach those it needs to reach. That’s what’s important and that’s what I had to accept.
Coming to this realization wasn’t easy. I reluctantly began thinking about shutting down this project. Again I say RE-LUC-TANT-LY! Mostly because I didn’t want to let go of the hurt it caused me and I wanted people to feel that and understand what I went through.
Again…I was wrong. It’s not my right to have people hurting. If anything I needed to be uplifting. I found myself, in a way, doing what was done to me, but only wrapped in a different package.
Leave it to Facebook to save the day. I happened to read a status update from a good friend of mine who wrote about if he were to publish many of his drafts, things would be interesting. I commented and thought nothing of it and someone else commented something like “tell us!” My friend replied that the posts were for his sanity and not for public viewing.
And that’s when I heard “His post, your book, one in the same…let it go”
For a brief moment I contemplated all the hurt, anger and resentment I would be releasing and I was scared because I didn’t know what would happen if I let it go. But I had to realize attracting all that to me wasn’t doing anything but holding me back. So I had to, for my sanity, succumb to the letting go process and begin to heal, forgive and let the true purpose do it’s work.
About seven years ago I was in the process of buying a sign company. I saw it as the next level in my graphic design business. Theresa and I secured loans from two investors and all we needed was someone to broker the deal. It was a profitable business and the owner was ready to sell. We even found a “Curves” that was for sale for a rock bottom price and we were going to purchase it as well.
Long story short, we had two brokers and both ran off with our money in fees and left us without closing any deal. Both said it was no problem; we had the cash for down payments we just needed to finance less than half the selling price.
I haven’t seen or heard from the first one since he fell of the face of the earth. Nor had I encountered the second person…until a few days ago in an elevator of a public building.
Just to paint a little picture for you, since the deals didn’t go through we had to pay back our investors so they wouldn’t suffer. That was a conscience decision we made, but that decision took away from our personal bills. Our loans were double digit thousands…still paying today. The business we were going to purchase would have enabled us to do both, pay our bills and repay our investors, but that didn’t happen and my family suffered. We lost our home, my wife and I’s relationship really took a hit and for a long time I mentally and emotionally shut down. I didn’t want to take him to court, I wanted to do him harm, which is way out of my character…but I wanted him to suffer.
Seeing him in the elevator brought all that up and more. Funny thing is that I wouldn’t have noticed him if he didn’t ask me did I know him. As I told him who I was, all those feelings of wanting to do him harm were rushing all over me. I clinched my fist so tight I had fingernail imprints in my hand, which is hard to do with short fingernails.
But before I left the elevator he asked me if he could make it right. And I said OK. Even though that went against every fiber of my being. The thing that caused me to do this was strange to me, but all those feelings didn’t feel right like they did the last time. They weren’t meshing with my current lot in life. He and what he had done didn’t seem important now. Even though the negative feelings seemed in the now, they were actually in the past and like Broken Armor it was time to let it go.
Will he make good on his promise. I don’t know, I really don’t know. But the only way for me to move forward is to release him, the first broker and the situation.
How can I do this?
I realized that I always said both these situations “destroyed” me. Until I recognized they didn’t and the negative emotions/feelings were doing me far more harm than good. What they did do was give me the best lesson of my life to date…
The lesson of forgiveness.