Edited and Updated on March 28, 2023. I am reading a book on rejection. I think this author is effective. She is a counselor and has written a series on the areas or issues of life common to humans like rejection. Our writing styles and her approach to counseling are similar in that there are core issues behind the behavior and behind the behavior are patterns of familiar yet unhealthy thinking. While she quotes Biblical verses, they are relevant to the content and can be passed over. While the author presents theological complex thoughts, it’s real life and digestible, the author uses real situations, from her professional experiences, clearly and concisely written without compromising the truth!
I have felt conviction and experienced freedom in the area of rejection. About 10 years ago (written in 2015), I realized some areas that my wounded heart spilled into my current life. Part of what was wounding was the way I had responded to those wounding behavior when they happened. I made judgments about people and situations, I lost trust, and some of my idealistic views were scoured by the darkness of humanity.
The more often I identified and named the incorrect thinking about the events of rejection, the more I was better able to work through experiences of rejection. I found that old wounds of the seeds of rejection planted from different relationships were showing up in current relationships. The evidence was in the misplaced responses to rejections, not as a result of the current situation necessarily but rather rooted seeds of rejection that needed uprooting which brings me to the crux of this post.
In striving for affirmation and acceptance we soon discover the futility of looking at temporal things. Clearly, Jesus understood this because we read in John 2 that He “did not commit Himself to them (the many that believed in His Name when they saw the signs which He did) because He knew all men, and had no need that anyone should testify of man, for He knew what was in man.” (v. 24-25) Ouch, but thank you, Jesus, this is so freeing, even Jesus was tempted to look to his friends for applause.
For me, feeling seen, or should I say not feeling seen has been a really wounding place. Lately, over and over the connection between rejection, value, and feeling unseen keeps popping up. Not that I just now am seeing (pun intended) where I have been rejected but more so how I have responded to that rejection.
All through Scripture is the usage of God’s eyes:
The eyes of the Lord are on those who fear him; “the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous,” “the eyes of the Lord are in every place;” let this alone sink into your soul! There’s more though:
We are the apple of His eye (Deut 32:10, Zec 2:8);
For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to him. (2 Chron 16:9a)
This list is not exclusive, and we don’t find many other anatomical parts of God in Scripture except in a few places like His “arm” is outstretched and not too short to save for example; his “ear” and hearing our prayers and maybe somewhere there is the implication that he is using his feet, but His eye is used over 88 times in Scripture.
The eyes being the pathway to the soul are powerful. Rejection is seen in the eyes. We feel valued in being seen, which is why so often we look to man to see us, to feel accepted and affirmed making rejection the most powerful emotion I believe.
June Hunt, in her book: Rejection: Healing a Wounded Heart says:
“Nothing cuts to the core as deeply as rejection. Even death, while heartbreaking doesn’t leave such lasting wounds!”June Hunt
I believe the only way to be healed of rejection and truly feel seen is by seeing God!
Christianity isn’t what “I do” for God. We don’t read our Bible for the sake of reading, we read the Bible to see God! Ironically though, faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
In the times that I receive accolades for sharing a word of wisdom, or answered prayers as a result of interceding or helping in a time of need, I remember how frail man is. I remember that one day they may be thanking me and the next I could fail them in some way and they reject me. Grace is free but grace is messy! Love is messy!
I pray we are healed from the wounds of rejection. And that we are set free from the patterns of thinking that lead to more rejection. Lastly, I pray that we see God every time we open our Bibles and press in until we do; that the Holy Spirit would enlighten the eyes of our hearts and that we would be sanctified and made whole and complete until the day of Christ Jesus because we know we are accepted by God, Amen! (Ephesians 1)
What say you?