I have had my fair share of rejection. I think of elementary school. The only thing that it worst than being last picked is not being picked at all. Never getting asked out on a date…ever. Not getting into graduate school the first time. All of that pales compared to the rejection I have faced in the past month and a half. Being unduly fired from my job. To the more current circle of no’s from the leasing offices I have
Rejection should make you feel like a loser. Shoot I know I did. This whole weekend I felt like loser. Heck, if we are being real here, today I feel like a loser. I have a college degree. I am working on a Masters. I am responsible. I was darn good at my previous job. In fact, I would go so far to say I am highly competent. It is rare to give me a task that I cannot do. So, why is the best job that I can find one in which I am working part-time, on an hourly budget, and essentially a job I could do with simply a high school diploma?
Rejection is humiliating because to some degree, I know that I can do the job. I can afford the apartment. I can do whatever, they are telling me I can’t seem to do. It is humiliating because I am hopeful. I
have had so much hope, and I now feel like I cannot spare my last few coins of hope on anything that seems too far-fetched. I cannot give it to jobs I have applied for. I cannot give it to apartments that are perfect in every way, but keep saying no to me. I am tired of telling my friends and family about potential jobs that don’t want to hire me or potential apartments that don’t want to house me. I am tired of having to share the failures.
Rejection is humbling because it forces me to self evaluate. When jobs and leasing offices reject me, I know it is not personal. However, when I hear no after no after no, it begins to tear at me as a person. It is personal to me. The are not rejecting my application. They are rejecting me. It makes me feel like there is something wrong with me. That I am not good enough. I am not smart enough. I am not competent enough. I am not enough of anything to be given a chance to prove myself. And that my friends hurts. Anyone, who struggles with their worth and value will get where I am coming from. After a month and a half of rejection, I feel like a fraction of the person that I am. Emotionally, I feel like my energy either goes to just not crying or choosing happiness.
I mean I love the Lord so much. So, I don’t want people to think that I’m doubting His faithfulness and goodness to me. I also don’t want the reader to assume I am throwing a pity party. However, I think it would be an outright lie to not also share that there is a REAL struggle in all of this. That the prosperity gospel is one written for the spirit and soul of a man and not the pockets. That the notion of God never giving you more than you can bear is downright bull. This is more than I can bear. This is crushing me. My back is broken by the weight of this. Yet, I still look for deliverance. I think that is why rejection is so scary, because I know God has not forsaken me. Because, if He had I could easily throw in the towel, drop out of seminary, go home, and forget about Houston and everyone in it. More than that, if there was anyone who could rightfully reject me it would be God. Nevertheless, I know He is still present even as all of this is happening. One of the qualities, I love most about Him is His intentionality. The beauty and purposefulness of His creation. The artistry and functionality of Scripture. The elegance in which He provides redemption for a world so vast, but so small. It is amazing and scary. Because this same God was intentional in allowing my life going this way. He was intentional in my departure of a job knowing I had done nothing wrong. He is intentional about my living circumstances. He is intentional as I venture into the valley and the shadow of death. And, He was intentional in allowing to be the next phrase being, “yet I will fear no evil for Thou art with me.” He ALLOWS for me to pressed, but no crushed, persecuted, but not abandoned, struck down, but not destroyed, rejected, but not forsaken.
Finally, rejection is hilarious, because for me I have to find a way to laugh at life or I’ll cry. So, I didn’t get picked to play kickball. I have saved my classmates from the embarrassment of watching me run. It is also funny because I have the calves of a horse and could kick that ball with impressive and freakish velocity, their loss. So, I didn’t get asked out on a date. Well, there is something majestically awesome about being the only senior on royal court to not have a date. Also, hilarious to interact with men, with no desire for them to see me sexually. So, I didn’t get into graduate school. I moved to a new city and started seminary. I made some major life changes. So, I lost my job and still don’t have a place to live…I’m trusting that at some moment in time, there will be a funny second half to this. It is not today, but it is some day. It is one day.
Lord, you know this is only a fraction of the emotions that I feel. You are present as I sit in silence in my car. You are there as the breeze shifts my tears across my face. You are there as my anger blends with confusion. You know I can’t handle it. You know the purpose behind this. You are purposeful in this. I don’t know. I have no idea. I am scared. You know the effort it takes some mornings to just breathe.
You have not rejected me. My Lord, You have not forsaken me. You have not turned Your face from me. You love me. Even in this moment when I feel my earthly value diminishing, You still ascribe value to me.The Lord is my Shepherd. I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores me soul. He guides me down a path of righteousness, for righteousness is who He is and His character. Despite, my ventures in valley and shadow of death, You, God, are with me. Your rod, it comforts me. Your staff, it comforts me. You prepare a table before me, in the presence of those who seek to harm me. You anoint my head with oil and my cup overflows. Surely, Your goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life. As, I dwell in the house of the Lord forever. Psalm 23