This I command you, that you love one another. If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.” (Jn 15: 17-19)

Thus the Lord comforts us, in those cases when we suffer rejection in “the world.” At times, we might venture to seek “love” in the wrong place; from a person or people not “our own.” And we don’t realize this, until we suffer rejection. While rejection is always painful, here the Lord reminds us that it can actually strengthen our sense of vocation, of having been “called” by Him, or “chosen out of the world,” to His specific purpose for each of us. This purpose or “vocation” involves the specific person or people we are called to love and serve, and by whom we are loved.

Today, if I have suffered rejection, let me be grateful for the clarity it offers me, as to where I belong, according to my vocation. Our Lord was also rejected by certain people, who led Him to the Cross. But that Cross also drew to Him all those who were “His own,” as He predicted: “And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all to myself.” (Jn 12: 32) So let me be lifted up today, by the cross of rejection, rather than bogged down by it. Because it draws me into the place I belong, into the arms of my Self-offering Lord, outstretched on the Cross.