I would be lying if I said that I have never been rejected, more so if I said that I did not react (irrationally) about it. See, the moment we feel rejection for whatever reason, I believe the first thing we tend to do or think is that it is personal. That it is about us as people.
I have come to learn and realise that rejection is common to all. It can happen and most probably has happened to all of us. The severity of it can vary of course, but it is rejection after all.
REJECTION IS COMMON TO US ALL
A cool thing to note is that it was common to some of the Bible‘s most famous figures. We read about it in the Word, and the fact that these people and their stories are written in the Bible, gives me hope that even I can get through it.
Noah was rejected and ridiculed by his society.
Joseph was rejected by his brothers.
Moses was intermittently rejected by his followers.
David was rejected by both his brothers and by King Saul initially.
Elijah, Elisha, and Jeremiah were rejected by the kings and leaders of their day.
The disciples were rejected by the religious establishment.
Jesus was rejected by his home town, religious leaders, political leaders, and he is still rejected today.
Let me bring it a little bit closer to home – personally, you may have been rejected by your loved ones, perhaps your parents have greatly discouraged you or are/may have been extremely critical.
You might have been fired, demoted, retrenched or reassigned.
Or, maybe the rejection comes from people you look up to and admire – teachers, coaches, employers, someone in a position of authority, friends, and spiritual leaders.
We cannot avoid rejection or make other people accept us; but we can avoid living in bondage. But how can we live above that? The trick is to not allow yourself to live a life of rejection.
- Counter the feelings of rejection with God’s word. When you feel worthless or unloved or unloveable, you need to remember that Jesus wants you to walk in the reality of who you are in Him. He wants you to know the full expression of the Father‘s heart for you. This is the opposite of what the enemy wants. Meditate on Scripture. Psalm 139 is a good chapter to read.
- Love and accept YOURSELF. Ever heard the expression “You can’t love others if you do not know how to love yourself”? I used to wrestle with this because fundamentally I disagreed. Until a time came where I had nothing to offer because I was shortchanging on loving myself and seeing myself the way God does. I have not completely gotten over that but I am not giving up. No way!
- Reject fear! – Reject the fear of man – because Proverbs 29:25 says ”The fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe.” Reject the fear of failure. Reject the fear of doing over. Realising that fear is False Evidence Appearing Real is a way you and I can overcome fear as a concept. And as a Spirit. 2 Timothy 1 v 7 states this – “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”
Willow Drive Baptist Church published a handbook on rejection; an excerpt from the book goes like this:
“There is a definite connection between rejection and the fear of man. We don‘t want to be rejected by others, so we fear or [are] overly concerned about their view of us. We want others to like us, so we do whatever is necessary to keep peace or we live under the constant concern of what others think.”
Look at ‘rejection’ as a re-direction, like this quote by Dr. Steve Maraboli
“Every time I thought I was being rejected from something good, I was actually being re-directed to something better.”
― Steve Maraboli, Unapologetically You: Reflections on Life and the Human Experience
Choose today to take a stand against living in the bondage of rejection. Dare to be misunderstood, for the sake of the Kingdom, just like Jesus Christ. Endeavour to care more what God thinks about you first before you stress yourself to death about what man thinks of you. Yes be accountable to your leaders and fellowship communities but remember to always aim to please God first!