WHEN WE’RE REJECTED
“For my father and my mother have forsaken me, but the Lord has taken me in.” (Ps 26/ 27: 12)
The Psalms give expression to practically every human experience and emotion, from immense gratitude and joy, to the most difficult kinds of pain, like the one expressed here: Rejection.
Rejection can be an emotional wound from childhood, as the Psalmist mentions above, or it can come at other times in life, in smaller or greater doses: Being fired from a job, being turned down for a job or school of our choice, or being not loved/dumped by the person we love, or betrayed by a spouse, or not making the team, or generally not being accepted for who we are, etc.
Rejection can damage my life as few other things can, if I don’t hand it over to God’s unchanging love and light, as the Psalmist does above, in prayer. The wound of rejection, when left unhealed, can lead to all sorts of distortions in our journey: For example, resentment, jealousy, self-pity. It can lead us to rebel, or even to fabricate a personality, just to be accepted. Or, conversely, to reject everyone and anyone, just so we’re not the first to be rejected. We may have the need always to be right, and become unable to accept constructive criticism, because of this inner insecurity.
In any event, today the Scriptures remind me that I am not alone in the very common human experience of rejection. Men and women of faith have cried out to the Lord in a similar experience, throughout the centuries, and He has not failed to be there, and to heal their wounds in His unchanging love and grace. Christ Himself was no stranger to this experience, after all, because “He came unto His own, and His own received Him not.” (Jn 1:11) So let me remember today, if I deal with any rejection, great or small, that I find myself in quite illustrious company. Let me hand it over to Him, in prayer, shedding His healing light on an age-old matter.