This year has done well in teaching me about life. One major thing I had prior struggled with was rejection. I saw rejection as not good enough. Though sometimes true, I now position rejection as the hand of God, a favour of God.
Rejection is tough. I would avoid it if possible, to “preserve” the useless pride I had. I would avoid asking certain people for things or putting myself in a situation where I thought the likelihood of rejection would be high. Unanswered DMs, emails, and requests are the killers.
But rejection I have learned is the evidence that you tried. You gave it a shot.
When you position rejection as a hand of God, you ask what the purpose is.
In 2019, I submitted a couple of literary pieces for publication. I was rejected for most of them. Those emails of rejection are horrible no matter how harsh or kind a reviewer is. It is the physical thing that says ‘we cannot consider you because your writing is not good enough for us’.
However, this year, something changed. No, I have not received a thousand yes. No. What happened is I took those rejections to mean I needed to improve on my writing. I did and continue to do.
I have significantly improved. And the funny thing is when I took those pieces for which I was rejected and re-read them I realised every rejection was justified. I would not accept my own writing now in the state it was. This became clear when I improved.
There are three Bible verses to remember when it comes to rejection:
- Joshua 1:5 (Hebrews 13:5) God says He will never leave us nor forsake us, He will never reject us. He is always on our side.
- Jeremiah 29:11 and Romans 8:28 God is working ALL THINGS for our good and this includes rejections.
The moment life on earth is positioned from a place of purpose you will see things get much better (not easier). It gets better because you understand someone is working actively, mixing all that happens into something glorious for you. Someone who turns things around ALWAYS for your good.
A rejection does not mean give up. If what you are doing is your purpose, gives you life and you know it is what you were made on this earth for: do not give up. A wise person said the biggest fight on this earth is the one for yourself. To be other people is easy but to be that unique you is the biggest challenge: ask many pacesetters.
Many people, institutions, even your church can come against you that you try to be who you believe God has called you to be. People will say no to you even the ones you love. For when God needs work done, He will move things and people out of the way. He will not let the emotions you have for other people get in the way of what He is building for you. Just because you love someone does not limit God from his purpose, especially if your purpose will be furthered with someone else.
As you embrace rejection as the hand of God you will see how much of a favour God is doing you.
One more thing, I think it is futile to hate people or label them as bad or wicked for their rejection or spend time brooding over them for their rejection. Can you imagine Jesus after those episodes with Judas and Peter, brooding and telling everyone how the two had treated him? Cursing them and insulting them for their wickedness and betrayal? Jesus had purpose only on his mind.
He persevered with a mind focused on God, the goal before him.
In the story of life, there will be many actors, some will come your way to bless you, others will come to exalt you, others will lie about you, and some will leave you in wonder at their wickedness. It is just so.
I heard a pastor say, “God plans persecution for every Christian’s life”, perhaps harsh but true because persecution though harsh is also working out for your good and God’s glory. Consider Job, God knew everything about his persecution. What about 1 Peter 1:7? Has your faith been tested yet? God did not call you to easy but His presence is assured.
If you forget everything above, remember these two things.
- God loves you and created you for a purpose on earth. He is gonna work that purpose to fruition. It will grind you, smoothen you, and make you perfect for His glory.
- Rejection has purpose, check the Bible, every time rejection takes place, it is for a higher plan. Joseph was rejected by his brothers for a coat and dreams. Do you think Joseph would not also have loved to belong to the fold of brotherhood, to be loved as a brother should? Genesis 50:20 says it all.
‘You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people.’
I am still learning, but what I know is that when rejected, it does not mean you should be immune to the pain or pretend to be strong.
Hurt, cry, pray, ask God why, and remember God is in it. He is working it out for your favour. Push on, find alternatives, find other ways, your destiny is in God’s hands.