Luke 10:16 - “Whoever listens to you listens to me; whoever rejects you rejects me; but whoever rejects me rejects him who sent me.”
Feeling rejected is something we all feel from time to time, some of us more than others. And, most of us have made someone else feel this way at one point or another - whether intentionally or nor. I know I have. I have seen the look of rejection and dejection on my children's faces before, often times when they feel I prefer one of their siblings ideas more, or if they believe I would rather spend my time with one of their siblings. I have never intentionally tried to make any of them feel this way, but I know I have.
And I know others have often been the cause of me feeling this way. Whether or not it is intentionally done, I cannot say. I would like to think that it is not intentional. But either way, it hurts. And when this rejection comes at a time when we are trying to do what we believe we are being called to do? This makes that rejection so much worse. And yet, while it does hurt, I find myself not wanting to dwell on it, but currently unable to push past it. It seems so selfish to concentrate on this rejection now, and yet, it's not easy to push past something which feels like a very personal attack against my very core.
I have never fully been accepted by social groups. Growing up, I was rejected by the popular kids, and by the nerds, and by the jocks, and by any other clique. I had a close friend or two, but never fit in when there was more than this one or two friends - even if that one or two was part of the group. his was the same when I went to college. Don't get me wrong - I made some wonderful friendships there... friendships which are still alive today, 20 years later. But I never fit in with these friends' groups. I always felt rejected by them.
This has been a recurring theme. And now? I have lived in this community for ten years, and I still feel marginalized. I still feel rejected. I am not of any importance in this town, and hold no power of any sort, and therefore my ideas and feelings are of no value. I have lived with this knowledge for some time, and shrugged it off. But lately, and especially today, I find this truth more difficult to bear.
As I stated in a prior entry, I feel like God is calling on me. He has a purpose for me... a path he wants me on... a journey and task(s) that I need to take care of. And I want to. I wish I knew exactly what it is he is asking of me, but I am trying to open myself up and trust in him. And, I am trying to become more active in the church. I want to be more active. I want to help out and reach out. And, I am not welcome. Today, to be so outright snubbed, by various people and for various reasons - it has me feeling so rejected. So dejected. It has me wondering if maybe I am not doing the right thing. Maybe I should not be opening myself up. Maybe I do belong on the outside looking in. I do not know if these rejections were intentional or not - as one came from someone whom I would almost consider a friend, I would like to hope it was not intentional, but I don't know.
Granted, I don't expect everyone to like me. And if I were trying to completely change the church and how it is run, I could understand a little rejection. But this is nothing like that. And today was not the first and only day. It's always been there. Today, I just noticed it much more. Perhaps it's because I felt my daughter was also subject to this rejection, which has only increased the feeling that maybe I should just crawl back into my hole.
I found a very good article on rejection - it explains why rejection hurts, and how those who were abused and rejected as children have a very difficult time with rejection (and perceived rejection). And it explains why we shouldn't allow ourselves to react to rejection. For those looking for a good bible study: http://www.greatbiblestudy.com/rejection.php.
Basically, when we feel rejected, we need to remember: God doesn't reject us. He never rejects us. He will never reject us. Therefore, what does it matter if anyone else does? Of course, this is much easier said than done. But, I have a job to do, in God's name. And I must find the courage to push through, and the wisdom to work around (if not with) those who wish to marginalize me. I pray God gives me this courage and wisdom.