Handling Rejection

Handling Rejection

Handling Rejection

Everyone loves being loved and accepted by all. The sound of rejection—the mere thought of it—doesn't go down well with the average human, but everyone must have faced rejection at one time or the other. We can't run away from it as rejection is a part of our everyday lives, more so for us believers. Just take a look around you: babies being rejected by the ones who brought them into this world; parents being rejected by their children; people's love overtures being turned down; we could go on and on. This past week, I got a rejection email for a job I had applied for. The previous week, I was asked to rewrite a screenplay I had written. In my job, "rejection" is common place. It will be silly of me to say to the client, "I have put in my best in that script. I do not appreciate that you think that I can do better." That will be a terrible way to handle rejection.

I am reminded of Jesus. The Bible records that He was the only begotten of God (in simple English, He didn't have any siblings) and the only Heir to everything owned by His Father, who so happens to be the owner of heaven and earth. He had a great idea: to give to everyone His life, thereby bringing us all into His family as legitimate children of God. I picture him saying, "You know what, I don't want to be the only begotten of God anymore. I want every human to be begotten of God as well." (See Romans 8:29). Yeah! Back to me and being rejected by my client. If I had known that my client wouldn't have appreciated the direction in which I chose to go, with respect to the script, I wouldn't have even bothered going in that direction, even though it is my opinion that that direction was, probably, the best for the story being written. Jesus, being omniscient (knows everything), was fully aware of the fact that He would be rejected by millions of people He chose to die for, yet He chose to carry on with the good He purposed in His heart. Hallelujah!

The Bible is furnished with stories of men and women who triumphed in the face of rejection. I think about Bible characters like Jephthah. The young man was the son of a prostitute, and so was despised by his family, and community at large. Trouble struck and the people were in need of a captain to help fight their wars. It was only then that they remembered they had a brother called Jephthah. Another interesting Bible character who suffered rejection was Jabez. His very name spoke of how much disdain his mother had for him, for every time she called the name she christened him, Jabez, she reminded him of what she thought of him: pain. 

Let's take a look at three ways to handle rejection:

1. Take it to God in prayer: The Bible records that Jabez, very much pained by the fact that he caused his mother so much pain, prayed to God about it. Let's take a close look at his prayer as recorded in 1 Chronicles 4:10, "Oh, that You will bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory, that Your hand will be with me, and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain." What a prayer! It is obvious that Jabez did not seek to put the blame for being rejected on anyone. He faced it head-on. He must have taken a retrospective assessment of the whole situation and simply sought a change so as to be a blessing (not a cause for sorrow) to everyone he came in contact with, and God granted His request.

2.      Wait for it: yes, the door has been shut against you. You might have been rejected for whatever reasons, but there will be other opportunities to show just what you are capable of. For Jephthah, ostracised from society, it was the drums of war. The Bible records that he seized his opportunity when it came as recorded in Judges 11:9, "…if you take me back home to fight against the people of Ammon, and the LORD delivers them to me, shall I be your head?" The leaders had no choice but to agree to his terms. Having said that, it must be noted that the leaders must have seen something special about Jephthah to have gone to him. I said that to say that it's not okay to sulk and be hateful in the face of rejection. Like Jephthah, we should see it as a call to work on ourselves so much so that those who rejected us will take notice of our shine. 

3. Cut them some slack: Not everyone who says NO to you hates or despises you (or your work). The earlier you come to terms with this, the better for you. I have learned from the Scripture that it makes for better handling for me to make excuses for people. Put yourself in their shoes if you must. Maybe the client said NO to the job because something else was needed at that point in time. Maybe she is not returning my calls because she is in a terrible place at the moment. Maybe he said NO to me because he has already asked someone else out and does not want to toy with my emotions. Giving people the benefit of the doubt makes for better handling of rejection. 

Now, back to Jesus and His offer of life eternal. If you haven't embraced him yet, now is a good time to. You really do not want to reject this life. I embraced the life of God many years ago and I haven't regretted that decision for once. Let me assure you that accepting Jesus is the best decision you can ever make. If you want heaven to rejoice on your behalf, kindly say this prayer with me: 

Heavenly Father, I thank You for loving me, so much so that You sent Your Son, Jesus, to die for me. I accept the payment for my sins today. In Jesus' name I've prayed. Amen!Heavenly Father, I thank You for loving me, so much so that You sent Your Son, Jesus, to die for me. I accept the payment for my sins today. In Jesus' name I've prayed. Amen!

Welcome to the family of God!