A note of caution before you read this story. I am going to be very honest with you. You may not like or respect me after I share my feelings. People ask me how and why I share what I do and my answer is because we are all similar. We ALL feel certain things although we don’t admit them. I do. If you can learn one thing in my stories about walking this life out with God, then I have done what the Lord has called me to do. Care about his people.
The dream ended and I slowly came awake. As I snuggled into my pillow before opening my eyes I let the dream linger. I knew what it meant and where it had come from. I said a prayer of acknowledgement to the Lord. “I know Lord…. I get it. Thank you for caring enough about me to discipline and correct me.”
Cresting the top of the hill I was mesmerized at the beauty of looking out over the city. It was early morning and some lights still twinkled. Yet what caught my attention was a mountain straight out in the distance exploding with fire and sparks of hot rocks with lava flowing downward. Driving down the hill I watched as the lava surged closer. Coming to the end of the street I made my turn but could see the effects of bubbling beginning to occur on the roadside. Considering alerting friends of pending disaster, I somehow knew this was my own personal disaster.
Wide awake, I recalled the week before. Rushing in the store to get the fresh baked rolls I’d ordered for my daughter’s baby shower. I grabbed the shopping cart and looked up to see “HER”. My entire body felt an electric shock as I shook my head in disbelief. This couldn’t be happening today!
I had many things to do in three hours. Why did this have to happen now?
I hadn’t seen ‘HER” in over a year and still wasn’t ready. Luckily she hadn’t seen me yet. Her back was turned but I knew I was going to have to walk by her to enter the store. With sunglasses in place so she couldn’t see my daggers, I marched in.
She turned and saw me. I think I heard a gasp or at least wanted to. Ignoring her, I walked by and went to nearest produce stand. Moving all the way around the banana’s so that I could justify looking back over where she was, but I couldn’t see her.
Yet, I didn’t have to find her for the all-out war going on in my head. Although NEVER in my 56 years of life have I been in a fist fight, I longed to pull her hair out. Oh, if I turned down an aisle and she was there I was going to say……. THIS! But by the next aisle it had changed to…. THAT! Whatever, the fight was on.
If she dared go down the same aisle as me there was going to be a show down and I was getting worked up. She was going to know how much she ruined my life, and all the damage she caused. And yes, I even wanted her to know how much I hated her. (Gulp, I finally admitted it.)
Although I never saw her again in the store by the time I made it back to my car (expecting it to be vandalized or a dirty note on it) I was an emotional mess. I was shaking.
Driving home I asked the Lord, “What is wrong with me? I know I have to forgive her! But Lord, look at all the damage she did! And she doesn’t even think she did anything wrong. She ruined our lives! But I know, I know, I know I have to forgive her.”
I remained silent and heard His voice. “The problem is Dana you don’t “want” to forgive her.” Of course He was right. I don’t. I want to make her hurt.
Therefore, the dream made sense as I reflected what the Lord was saying. I pondered Hebrews 4:12-13:
For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires. Nothing in all creation is hidden from God. Everything is naked and exposed before his eyes, and he is the one to whom we are accountable.
My innermost thoughts and desires had been exposed. A volcano of various emotional upheavals came erupting through the surface. Unforgiveness, hate, revenge, wrath, rage, anger, retaliation, were the fiery rocks spewing through the air and I was a hot mess. I was the only one getting burned. Not her…. me.
Unforgiveness causes us to fill up with negative combustion that we were never meant to hold in. Often we expect the other person to be injured, yet we only injure ourselves. We lose our peace, our walk with the Lord is hindered, and we alone suffer.
Lord, I am going to hold onto Hebrews 4:16 for my life. Instead of wobbly knees I am going to approach the throne of grace with confidence, that I may receive mercy and find grace to help me in my time of need. Because Lord, I am in need – Not only for your forgiveness, but my lack of forgiving others. Thank you for holding me accountable.
But mostly, Lord thank you that even when I am completely wrong, you still love me.