Facing Evil in the Courtroom: How a Moment of Prayer Changed Everything
I got caught in the middle of an ugly lawsuit. I was promoted to president of a division within a public company. The executive I replaced sued for wrongful termination, and he was seeking damages—serious money.
I had met this man at a company conference a couple of years before his termination. He was immediately likable, but there was something about him I didn’t trust. He was known as a tough boss with an autocratic style. And he was held up by the leaders of the company we worked for as a profit machine. He made oodles of cash for himself and the company.
At that conference, we found ourselves alone in the same room after his division presentation.
I asked him, “How is your division organized?”
“Simple,” he said.
He drew a small circle in the middle of the flip chart. He turned to me and said, “That’s me. Then there is everyone else.”
It was a short conversation.
After taking over his organization, I was appalled at how he treated people. I met two of our professional services employees on a visit to Nebraska. These two women were from Ireland and were on this account for the last five years. They were promised US long-term work visas; this man said they were being processed. He lied to them. He never submitted their visa applications.
Now, they were working illegally. They were slaves to this man. If they said anything, they would be deported immediately.
This is who I was about to face in the deposition. I was convinced this man was evil. I felt it when I met him; now, I knew it after taking over his company. I could feel the evil. I’d never had this feeling in my life until that time.
The upcoming meeting put me in a fight-or-flight state. I was cranked up and anxious. I knew I had to attend this deposition. I knew I would have to face this man. I knew I was in for a fight, and it wasn’t even my fight.
On the way to the deposition, I walked past St. Patrick’s Cathedral in NYC. Without a thought, I walked into the church and sat in a pew toward the back of the sanctuary. I prayed for the first time in fourteen years. I asked God to protect me from this evil man. To protect my family.
I felt safe again. At eight years old, I felt that same feeling of safety at Christmas Eve Mass with my mom. It all came back. God answered my prayer. I was now equipped to face this man for the two-day deposition. I can’t explain what made me feel equipped. I just knew I was equipped and ready. It was all going to be fine. I was safe.
Do you believe that spirituality or faith can play a role in giving you strength in your career? Share your experiences.
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