Celebrating Life in Recovery

The Hardest Part Of Forgiveness

Three Angels Broadcasting Network

Program transcript

Participants: Cheri Peters (Host), Michael Ehm


Series Code: CLR

Program Code: CLR00041B

00:14 You know, I don't know about you but I can feel the
00:16 healing happening even on the set, as I look at
00:19 Michael when I first met him my feeling was that I just
00:23 didn't even want to like you.
00:25 Then I hear your damage as a child and where you came
00:28 from, and all those kind of things,
00:30 and literally in a nice way,
00:32 the Holy Spirit confronts me on my unforgiveness.
00:35 And as I'm listening to your story and how God brought
00:40 you to a place where you can look at Ecclesiastics and
00:44 start talking about vanity and vanity then back to your
00:47 childhood and continue there, cause I think it is amazing.
00:51 I want to say that it's really funny that if
00:55 you would have told me at one point that some of my
00:58 healing was going to come from a club owner, or a
01:01 manager I would have said you are crazy.
01:03 And I want to thank you because I feel that some of my
01:06 healing is coming from you today, with this testimony.
01:09 So talk about, what did you find - while I was
01:13 reading Ecclesiastical all that night.
01:15 I found many different things and basically, I found
01:18 that a person as in myself had accumulated a lot of
01:22 things in life that meant nothing - right.
01:24 I learned that there were no U-Haul trailers behind
01:27 hearses and I wasn't taken anything with me - but you
01:30 had all this stuff, all this money - everything.
01:33 I had everything that everyone wish they had and I also
01:35 was not married and I'm still not married,
01:38 did not ever have any kids.
01:39 Everything was paid for it was just all money to me.
01:43 I had somebody come into the club that was going to be
01:48 doing some foreign work, mission work, not missionary
01:52 work, but civil service work.
01:54 And it made me consider things about doing some things
01:57 for free, and he was in there for a going away party, that is
02:00 really all relevant to this, but I considered - but in
02:03 that life you wanted to know what was the angle - yeah.
02:06 Do you know what I mean, everybody has an angle.
02:08 So what you mean you're doing it for free?
02:09 Yeah - or just doing it out of the goodness of your
02:12 heart - yeah you think you going to be doing this for
02:14 two years and I never thought I would do some like that.
02:16 So I start considering that here, I have taken so much
02:19 in my life from people, it's time to give back.
02:21 Perhaps I'm thinking.
02:23 So in that club and I want to say, Cheri, and also for
02:28 your viewers here, that praise God we have a God who
02:33 meets us where were at.
02:34 Amen - no matter what side of the coin you are on - He
02:37 loves us, like you say He is crazy about us.
02:41 And I use it a lot to begin about you - do you - He is
02:44 He is crazy about us.
02:46 He pulls us close and I started seeing myself as this
02:51 little boy with my hand in Hand in His hand.
02:53 Anytime I go through some difficulties I just revert to
02:56 that little boy and just think I'm this little boy, He
02:59 is my God, He is my Shepherd.
03:01 He's my leader, and I follow Him.
03:04 And listen to that small voice that often look for.
03:07 I felt something was pulling me, was leading me.
03:11 So I had walked out of the clubs and laid the keys down
03:13 and literally within ten minutes I was outside the club.
03:17 My brother asked me, are you serious, you're just joking
03:20 around, we've got a New Year's party going on.
03:23 Because this is a two thousand - you just can't walk
03:25 out - no you just can't we've got a New Year's party
03:27 you're kidding me, no, you're serious.
03:29 You're going to walk away from the money?
03:31 The cars, the House, you're inheritance?
03:33 Yeah, that's what it's going to take and at that time.
03:36 I thought I would be better off being a wino, hanging
03:39 out in San Diego looking at the sun go down.
03:41 Then two to keep dealing with this stuff and I wasn't
03:44 happy, maybe there was some happiness in that.
03:45 But I was going to go out there and find out what was
03:48 going to make me happy.
03:49 Still thinking, what was going to make me happy.
03:52 But as I started looking more at this book and starting
03:54 reading it, this book starts speaking to me
03:57 that there was life in this book, and it was giving me life.
04:00 So I started my studies with the church,
04:05 one thing led to another.
04:06 I heard Doug Batchelor, he spoke about that - he's
04:11 awesome isn't he - oh he's wonderful.
04:12 There is a lot of people that are at church that are
04:14 awesome, I was like who are these people, I haven't been
04:16 who are they?
04:18 They talk about this David Asscherick and they
04:20 said that this guy is a little radical.
04:21 I've got to tell you, Doug Batchelor one time,
04:23 because when I go to see him. I'm just get off the
04:25 street and just getting off the drugs and he's talking.
04:27 He is in the back getting ready to come on stage.
04:30 I don't know if you call it a stage when it's in the
04:33 church, but you know, what I mean.
04:34 So he's got to come back, and he stuck himself in the
04:37 eye with a stick, and I'm thinking oh man.
04:40 So he comes out, and he is like blood red, and he says
04:44 something and starts his revelation series, and pretty
04:47 soon he looks up and says, I just want you to know, kind
04:51 of like I'm not high, I just
04:53 injured my eye, I stuck myself tonight with a stick.
04:56 And I'm thinking nobody's going to think you're high
04:58 with just one eye is red, and one eye is totally clear.
05:01 But I feel in love with him, because I thought for an
05:03 addict we always it is so real.
05:05 It really is for someone saying, this is where I come
05:08 from, this is what I still struggle with.
05:10 I still think you think I'm high sometimes and I just want
05:13 you to know I'm not.
05:14 I love God and so he was very real.
05:17 So when you came in, you got hit with some men that were
05:20 very real in their recovery - I read the David
05:23 Asscherick story, from going from a punk rocker and ten
05:25 years later, - a skater - and then preaching the word.
05:30 You know, he pours his guts out, I want to say stage
05:34 to but from the pulpit.
05:35 It went to his school, I went to Arise.
05:37 So this is from your recovery, you literally stepped in
05:42 and started getting mentoring by these men of God.
05:46 How cool is that - actually six months after walking
05:49 out that club on July 15 - you know what I just thought
05:52 of shame right now, I'm glad that you didn't run into me
05:55 first, because I might have injured you and I want to say
05:58 I'm sorry for that.
05:59 I worried about that - yeah, because some people probably
06:02 did look at you like, who are you to come in here.
06:04 Not many people stepped up to that, I'm glad that it was at
06:07 this point right now.
06:08 But you laid me low, laid me low and made me think
06:10 and consider that I will share this with some of my
06:12 team members.
06:13 I've thought of you when I was even at the school Arise,
06:17 someone said to me, I don't even know why this school
06:21 let you in here.
06:22 Why they would even have you around all these young
06:24 girls around here - wow.
06:25 I felt so dirty, and I felt so bad - as if you weren't
06:28 forgiven - yeah.
06:29 Actually I left the class and went back to my room, and
06:33 normally you would get anger with something like that.
06:36 Well, I give you punch, you know, but I didn't even feel
06:39 that - you were just so crushed - I was crushed.
06:42 I just really said Man, this is not going to work.
06:45 As I started thinking over the event, I thought that in
06:48 my other life, that I just knocked this man back a few
06:50 feet and I didn't.
06:53 Then I realized that something was working in my life,
06:55 because I did not feel those feelings.
06:57 So, I want back to that classroom, we were studying on
07:00 Romans that day, so how cool is that!
07:02 The thing was on Romans.
07:03 The healing started beginning in that and I started
07:08 doing other things, reading more in the word.
07:10 Yeah, it's just been wonderful God has - we are going
07:15 to open it up for questions or comments.
07:17 I just want to say, I'm honored to sit next to you
07:19 doing ministry - praise Lord on that.
07:22 You know, I've always got to humble myself in that, it
07:25 is always a challenge in that.
07:26 Okay, I know there is a lot of comments, but you know,
07:31 Jonathan you were like, I think you are like a preacher.
07:35 I want to know with listening to us and talking about
07:39 the different things we've talked about.
07:40 What's hit you?
07:43 I'm just seeing something really amazing playing out.
07:46 I mean something happen back about 2000 years ago, with
07:50 a little girl named Mary.
07:52 Here was a girl, she was offended by a man Simon, who
07:56 was a Pharisee, who had offended her and had led her
08:00 into sin. This was during Jesus time when
08:02 He was walking around.
08:04 That's right, and this little girl with this damaged
08:08 background goes into prostitution.
08:11 I even met a girl and she's a good friend of mine who
08:15 was offended as a little child.
08:17 From a young age she begin to fantasize about becoming a
08:21 prostitute, because she feels a loss of value that worth
08:25 was stripped from her and she would do anything
08:27 to gain it back again.
08:28 And so here's this girl Mary she is going to the city
08:31 trying to get value back again by becoming a prostitute.
08:36 And a man comes for her, Jesus and shows her true worth
08:41 and value and her heart is just melted.
08:43 Something amazing happened, here is this woman who is
08:49 responsible for destroying some people's lives.
08:52 She then looks into the eyes of Jesus and starts to
08:55 realize that this man has forgiven her,
08:57 her heart swells in gratitude.
09:01 She goes out and buys the most expensive perfume, and
09:04 she wants to anoint Jesus for His death because she
09:07 realizes that He is going to have to die for her.
09:12 And of all places to have a party, like there's a
09:15 party going on, and it is actually Simon the Pharisee
09:19 that is holding a party.
09:20 And here's the man that has offended this girl Mary -
09:25 so that Simon, it was probably her molester the person
09:28 that molested her, man - it was her uncle wasn't it?
09:31 Her uncle like some kind of guardian that was looking
09:35 after her and - so she has to walk into his house -
09:38 that's right - to minister to Christ.
09:41 That's right, and he's actually holding a party
09:44 because he was being healed of being a leper.
09:46 So he held this party and she's a woman that is not
09:49 even supposed to be there.
09:50 But she knows what Jesus is going to do and she comes
09:54 in with this alabaster box, and she breaks it and the
09:57 fragrance goes all through the room.
10:00 Everyone is staring at her.
10:02 This man Simon actually said to Jesus, if He
10:05 knew what woman she was, but kind of woman she was,
10:08 He wouldn't let her in here and He wouldn't
10:10 let her touch Him.
10:12 And what happens is Simon has this attitude against her.
10:18 Something is happening in the room, she is looking
10:21 into the eyes of Jesus realizing that she has been
10:24 forgiven by Him.
10:25 That spirit of forgiveness is laying some kind of
10:31 conviction on Simon's heart.
10:33 Jesus then turns to Simon and doesn't actually reveal
10:36 his sin openly, He just tells the parable and says,
10:39 there was two people that owed money.
10:43 One owed 58 dollars and the other 50,000.
10:46 Neither of them could repay so the owner forgave them
10:50 both, which one of these two people loved him the most?
10:54 Their response was the one that was forgiven the most.
10:58 Then Simon knows, he says Jesus is talking about me, I'm
11:03 the one that owes the most.
11:05 In that very second Mary looks from the eyes of Jesus
11:10 over to this man Simon, and he knows he is forgiven.
11:15 And it breaks his heart - and I feel like in this sense
11:20 that that's even happened.
11:22 And a hate to say that in a sense that's even happened
11:24 here, and that God says that's where true healing happens.
11:28 Not only can you receive that forgiveness, not only that
11:31 you can really understand, I have so forgiven you, but
11:35 can you offer that again to someone else.
11:38 It's huge! Here is this man Simeon,
11:42 here he looks into the eyes of the one that he has
11:46 offended and she is responding to him with forgiveness.
11:49 She is looking at him as a friend and a brother.
11:53 It just breaks his heart and from that day forth, he
11:57 actually becomes a meek and lowly disciple of Christ.
12:00 Isn't that incredible - wonderful.
12:02 It is incredible, there is something so powerful in
12:05 what Christ says, even there is a scripture were says,
12:09 that if you are at the altar, if you come to worship Me.
12:12 Come to bring something to me in praise, and you think of having
12:16 something against someone.
12:18 Go back to them straighten that out, and it is amazing
12:23 that I don't even think of that until I feel something
12:27 well up in me and I realize I still have it.
12:29 I'm still carrying it, but God says it is just huge,
12:33 forgiveness, not only receive it, but offer it.
12:37 I thank you for that Jonathan. I know Gaea you had
12:42 another, you had a question or comment.
12:43 Yeah, I relate to both of your experiences quite a lot.
12:47 especially Cheri's
12:48 When I was younger I experienced a small bit, yeah just abuse.
12:53 It changed the picture of myself from that point on.
12:57 I didn't realize the impact that it had and it took, I
13:00 didn't realize I needed to be healed.
13:03 I didn't realize that it affected my picture of God.
13:05 It is amazing to think that so many girls were all
13:08 affected by your life of sin, but all of us have lived a
13:13 life away from God and finding our way back to Him.
13:16 But we damage so many people along the way.
13:19 We ourselves need healing and the people we offend need
13:23 healing, I was just personally wondering how was it that you
13:28 yourself were able to heal and to be able to see women
13:31 as not just objects.
13:34 How were you able to forgive yourself and move on, how
13:38 is it that you are able to do that?
13:40 I believe it's an ongoing process that goes on.
13:42 How I see women, I did never see them really as bad.
13:47 I don't have like, I hate women, or anything like that.
13:52 I actually with a lot of the girls that I managed,
13:57 I loved them all.
13:58 I mean, I cared for them, but to do my job I had to veil
14:02 that off I could not let my emotions show.
14:04 I had to just do the job and you become an object of
14:08 animosity, I guess is that the right word?
14:10 Were they hate you for that, because they want to have
14:13 that connectivity, you represent like a father figure
14:16 to many of them, but they just can't get that resolved
14:19 and you just view it as a job.
14:21 When you had mentioned the play thing, that even when
14:24 you got pulled into it that they were playthings.
14:28 How do you resolve some of that stuff?
14:30 Because you know God, I just think it's amazing like I'm
14:33 listening to your testimony and think it's amazing that
14:36 I'm getting into a little bit of how healed me and
14:40 walked me through that.
14:41 How he allowed me to see men in a different way.
14:44 And I am wondering how that for you as far as women?
14:47 That is an ongoing thing, of course, I am single and
14:51 every time I meet someone, I feel I need to unburden
14:55 give them my testimony.
14:57 You wonder if that's all conducive, I did this I did that
15:00 and they did that like, Oh yeah wow.
15:02 Oh well, I will talk to you later, you know.
15:03 Not that that really has happened, but everyone has been
15:06 pretty cool about it.
15:07 But it has been damaging for me to know that I have to
15:12 drag myself over the coals for this.
15:13 I take it to the Lord, and I try humble myself as a man,
15:18 but then again, these are the choices I made in my life
15:22 and I view this is consequences of these choices.
15:25 We all make choices, and there are certain consequences
15:28 that we cannot get away from - you know, I feel like putting
15:30 my hands around your throat again for a different reason.
15:32 Because that want to say, don't drag yourself over the
15:35 coals anymore, because you know, what we can't pay enough.
15:38 That's one thing I learned in my own recovery is that I
15:41 keep trying to pay for something.
15:42 Maybe if I paid for this I could walk in forgiveness in
15:47 a more honest way.
15:48 God says, you know what you do not have
15:50 enough to pay for this.
15:52 That's why God sent His Son.
15:53 That's what Christ said, I will totally take all this on,
15:56 every single thing you ever did, every thought, whatever.
15:59 From this point on, the point that we accept His
16:02 forgiveness, it's done.
16:05 It's done and even with me coming up, you're feeling me
16:09 still having that unresolved stuff, is that by His
16:13 grace I'm going to pray that when that happens to you.
16:16 You don't try to fix it for them.
16:18 God - I want to say something to you,
16:20 I want to say something to you.
16:21 I just want you to forgive me and want everyone out
16:26 there, and all the girls that have danced to forgive me.
16:30 I didn't mean to hurt anyone, it's not my intention, and
16:34 they didn't mean to hurt anyone.
16:35 I'm sorry for the husbands I took away from their wives.
16:40 They could've been at home and have a family because
16:44 relationships are important to God.
16:46 And bringing us back in healing us is very important.
16:50 And, I thank you for this show too because there is a lot of
16:54 healing going on and I want this to go on for everyone too.
16:58 The Lord has blessed - amen, and a want you to know
17:03 that you are such a man of God, thank you for that.
17:07 You know, it's like when we talk about, it is really
17:10 interesting to me and pastor I want you to respond to
17:13 this a little bit.
17:14 It is when we talk about forgiveness in that full
17:18 circle, I want, I don't did we understand that everyone
17:22 is coming from such heavy places that it really is about
17:26 God trying to do, what God does.
17:28 He is just saying that every time you can't forgive the
17:31 person next to you, the Holy Spirit gets stuck
17:34 somewhere, and that person stays damaged.
17:36 So, for one, I just didn't have any idea I still had all that
17:40 in me, so I want to say thank you for that.
17:44 I just want to encourage you to keep standing.
17:47 I'm praying that God wows you with a woman, or a wife.
17:50 Do you know what I mean is that when that comes full
17:53 circle - that's the Lord's plans there, and I leave
17:56 that to Him because I have not been the best, well could
17:59 you say, chooser of women.
18:02 You know, there is someone that is there, and I'll just go my
18:07 course and have Him lead it step by step.
18:10 You know Pastor, you've kind of heard what we are going
18:15 through here and I'm wondering, what do you think?
18:17 As I've been listening to the testimony dialogue, back-
18:21 and-forth a certain story comes to my mind from the Bible.
18:25 And it is not about a man and woman, but about two men.
18:29 One was Stephen, and as he was being stoned, he was very
18:34 aware of off Saul of Tares standing there,
18:36 presiding over his murder.
18:39 He had no knowledge of what was to come later.
18:45 Yet, can you imagine the resurrection - wow.
18:51 And Stephen feels tap on his shoulder and he turns
18:54 around and there is Saul of Tarsus - the very person
18:57 that he doesn't - he doesn't know that it's the apostle Paul.
19:00 He remembers Saul of Tarsus, the perpetrator - exactly.
19:05 I think there will be time there for the asking of
19:08 forgiveness and forgiveness being given.
19:12 And I just thought many times that Stephen may have been
19:17 the apostle Paul had he lived.
19:19 He was quite a powerful preacher.
19:21 And the apostle Paul stepped in and took his place.
19:24 Can you imagine that those two, one who presided over
19:27 the death of the other, being best friends for all eternity.
19:31 That's incredible - that's just the beauty of the whole
19:34 point of the Gospel, and forgiveness, and what we have
19:37 to look forward to in heaven.
19:38 I see this and this type of scenario with a
19:42 perpetrator and a victim.
19:43 In both seeking and giving forgiveness.
19:47 Absolutely incredible to think about this, like the
19:52 pastor was saying, that you have that intensity, knowing
19:57 that somebody literally had destroyed your life, took
20:01 your life and realize that God brings us full circle.
20:05 I feel like that is for all of us at some level,
20:09 He brings it full circle.
20:11 How do you not only deal with your own issues, I've had
20:14 people that said my husband left for another woman.
20:18 I can't forgive them, I can't forgive them.
20:22 I'm sitting here thinking, it's for our healing for each
20:27 other to forgive.
20:28 Even if they can't receive it yet, even if they don't
20:30 even know yet.
20:31 I really believe more and more that there is something
20:35 so huge in being able to forgive each other.
20:39 God does it graciously.
20:41 Well, I also believe that in my leaving all that, and
20:47 considering my biological father who was in this business,
20:50 I started hating on him for many different reasons.
20:53 Seeing him as this evil person for all the things that
20:56 he has done.
20:57 In blaming him, and I started realizing that I had to
21:02 forgive him, but I found in a pattern in order to do
21:06 that I had to find that pattern of forgiveness in God.
21:11 When I realize that God was my Father, and He
21:14 was the one that was leading me, He said, no you
21:18 need to forgive.
21:19 This is a better way - you know that and people that watch the
21:23 show, that I had just buried my father in his addiction.
21:26 So you I'm sure would give anything for your father get
21:30 this - I would, the impact that he could make on
21:34 other people's lives.
21:35 Even if this just an impact on his life, because I told
21:39 him that all the angels in heaven, would sing and
21:41 rejoice the minute that he gave his heart to God - and he's
21:45 still in the club smoking and still it's killing him.
21:48 Yeah, he's got lung cancer right now and I am praying
21:50 for him, and I'm praying for my brothers that are in it.
21:53 They have been asking questions.
21:54 You know, it is hard to go preach to your family - you
21:58 know, I still want to say that even as you're saying
22:01 this, is that we still kind of want to judge.
22:03 You're saying, don't judge him because I want them saved.
22:08 In my sense, don't judge my family because
22:12 I want them saved.
22:13 Don't judge my sister because I want her saved.
22:16 And my sister still is in the club, you know, and
22:18 I want her saved.
22:20 So it is like, it is interesting to me sitting here with
22:22 you, because I don't think anybody can have gotten me to
22:25 look at this issue on this level.
22:27 But sitting here with you saying that God wants us all
22:30 saved and then wants us to be in a place of forgiveness
22:34 so that He can continue to bring our families to the table.
22:37 So many people come up to me and tell me that my
22:40 daughter danced or my sister dances and what do you
22:44 think of this.
22:45 What do you think about rock 'n roll, different things
22:47 has an air of sin on it and all I can say to them
22:50 is love them.
22:51 Just love them, love them.
22:53 Because that is what brought you full circle - that
22:55 love - is you felt the love of God draw you.
22:57 And only by that, and that's what gives me, - and I
23:00 don't say this too much, I say thank you for being on
23:03 show all the time, that cheesy stuff, but I don't say it
23:05 changed my life.
23:06 You know, you changed my life - we change our lives -
23:09 No No! You change my life by being brave enough to even
23:12 sit here and go through this and then by being convicted
23:15 enough, and being able to reach out and to say, forgive me,
23:17 and so you changed my life.
23:19 As a man of God, so just received that, and thank you
23:22 for being on the show, and I would do
23:24 ministry with you anywhere on the planet.
23:26 Alright - praise the Lord lets do it.
23:27 Oh man, how could you not just want to say God teach me.
23:32 Sometimes, I will realize that what I think I know about
23:35 the Scriptures, what I think I know about God, what I
23:39 think I know about all these different things,
23:41 forgiveness and love and recovery.
23:43 I don't know anything, I don't know anything I'm just a
23:46 baby and every single time God says, you know what, let Me step
23:49 you into a deeper understanding of this so you can heal.
23:53 Not so you can teach the person next door, but so you can heal.
23:57 I think it is absolutely amazing and as you sit with
24:01 this after the show is over, after this program is over.
24:05 As you sit with this open up the word of God and get
24:08 a clear understanding of what forgiveness is all about.
24:10 Stay with us, because I'm going to come back and go through
24:13 this a little bit more of what I want to just unfold to
24:16 you about forgiveness and what I have learned here.
24:18 So I'm going to, not go into it, just stay with us!
24:21 We will be right back!


Revised 2014-12-17