Whoooo! It has certainly been too long! My typical schedule of writing biweekly took a teeny tiny little break. July was such a busy month for us in terms of baby prep. We had my husband’s birthday, my glucose test, 3 prenatal appointments, our baby shower, and maternity pictures. And I’ve really started to get into the third trimester at this point, which means this momma is T-I-R-E-D.
We are now less than a couple months away from our due date, so I’m really starting to feel the pressure to prepare for our baby girl. However, I cannot kick the feeling that no matter how much I organize, nothing can truly prepare me for my grand entrance into the life of motherhood. Despite my over-preparation, I still think there will be a lot of surprises!
The subject of rejection is something that has been on my heart for a while, and since I’ve had the time to actually write lately, I thought I’d share some encouragement for people who may have dealt with, or are dealing with, rejection.
The time when I have felt most rejected in my life is when I have extended myself, my love, or my time towards another person who does not reciprocate those same efforts in return. Before I studied this in the Scripture, that realization was extremely hurtful. It can really eat you up when something that seems so right, such as giving/generosity/serving feels so wrong and yucky! However, it is only when we look at it through our human eyes and process it with our tiny little 3-pound human brains that we get stuck in the web of not knowing whether we should continue to extend ourselves to others or imitate their behavior and close ourselves off instead. Once we take our thoughts beyond the natural and into the supernatural, we can begin to see things differently.
Below I elaborate on several perspective-altering Scriptures related to rejection. I pray that they would fill you with truth and that you would find freedom from the pain of rejection; past or present.
Rejection From Giving and Not Receiving: Hebrews 6:10
Through struggling with my own feelings of rejection, and sometimes unappreciation, I’ve discovered one of my favorite verses (quite possibly my favorite verse) in the Bible.
“God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them.”Hebrews 6:10 (NIV)
This verse is simple, but it says a whole lot:
- It’s not for nothing. I know that one of the natural thoughts I have when I extend myself to somebody who doesn’t reciprocate is “why am I even ________ if their not going to appreciate or reciprocate”? This verse provided an answer: because it shows God love. To help God’s people is an expression of love towards God himself. When we do the things we do without getting anything back in return, it is not for no reason.
- God is not unjust. He is a just God. The definition of “just” is based on or behaving according to what is morally right and fair. The Scripture says that he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him. He is fair. He knows it isn’t easy to continue to exhibit moral principles in the face of rejection. Which bring us to my last point that:
- God sees. If God is saying that he will not forget, then we know that how we exhibit ourselves and act towards God’s children does not go unnoticed. When faced with rejection, it can dredge up feelings of loneliness or a feeling that nobody understands you. But you can take comfort in the fact that God sees exactly what is unfolding in your life, and you are not alone.
Rejection From a Lack of Acceptance: Psalm 118:22
Oh, this Scripture gets me FIRED UP! Again, it’s simple; not many words. But what it means in the face of rejection is huge.
“The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone.”Psalm 118:22 (NIV)
Dictionary.com defines “cornerstone” as something that is essential, indispensable, or basic; or the chief foundation on which something is constructed or developed. This Psalm here is a foreshadowing of the rejection that Jesus would face, and honestly still faces, to this day. In Luke 17:25 (NIV) Jesus is saying that the Son of Man (he, himself) would suffer and be rejected by his generation.
This is Jesus we’re talking about. Conqueror of death.
I think it’s safe to say that the people who rejected him underestimated who He was and His eternal purpose.
So, could it be safe to say that there are people you may come in contact with that underestimate who you are and fail to recognize your purpose with the importance that it warrants? It’s probable.
When Jesus mentioned the fact that He would be rejected, He was just stating a fact. It didn’t deter Him in any way. He didn’t cry about it, He didn’t try to force them to accept Him instead of reject Him, and He certainly didn’t let it stop Him from doing what He had to do to fulfill His God-given purpose.
Let’s follow that example.
Rejection from Abandonment and/or Neglect: Deuteronomy 31:8 and 2 Timothy 4:16-17
It could be a breakup or divorce. It could be parental or family-related. It could be a friendship. These are all areas where we would expect another human being to be with us and fulfill our relational expectations. When they don’t fulfill our expectations (neglect), or they leave altogether (abandonment) it can spur up feelings of rejection. This Scripture provides some reassuring news to those dealing with these kinds of hurts.
“The Lord himself goes before you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”Deuteronomy 31:8 (NIV)
We see this in action in one of the letters written by Paul in 2 Timothy. He writes:
“At my first defense, no one came to my support, but everyone deserted me. May it not be held against them. But the Lord stood at my side and gave me strength, so that through me the message might be fully proclaimed and all the Gentiles might hear it.”2 Timothy 4:16-17 (NIV)
Deserted. Lack of support. Paul was seemingly left on his own. However, he writes in His letter that the Lord was right there with him, strengthening him during that season. This illustrates the faithfulness of God to show up when other people may not show up how we expect them to. Take comfort in the fact that no matter who walks away or doesn’t fulfill your expectations, God will always be there to fill the void.
When these feelings of rejection threaten to overwhelm our hearts, it usually doesn’t come by itself. Bitterness, anger, sadness, depression, and other yucky feelings usually tend to stroll not too far from the rejection that may come. If we let the feelings of rejection go unchecked, then it can wreak havoc on our lives and begin to take control of how we act towards others. Be free of that!
I encourage you today to manifest a level of authenticity in yourself that ensures that you know who you are regardless of how other people perceive who you are. Exhibit the kind of integrity that releases you from the compulsion of having to alter your character based off another person’s actions. This is Christ-like.