What Rejection Taught Me About Jesus
This semester has been rough so far. I have noticed that I am very homesick, and I constantly think about the next time I can go home. I have begun questioning why I am not happy here. In my heart, I know that God is with me always but I don’t know, I feel like it’s not enough right now. A couple weeks ago, I heard about an opportunity that I thought would change my whole perspective.
I discovered that Resident Assistant (RA) interviews were going to commence. It felt like a wake-up call. It felt like a chance for me to make a difference. I truly believed in my heart that I would make a wonderful RA. I wanted a chance to help incoming freshman by making them feel like they belonged and that college could be their second home, because I have not felt that way.
I really did think that I had the qualities to get this opportunity. However, I was rejected at my first interview.
I was heartbroken. I could not believe that my abilities were shrunk down to just observing what I had said (or not said) in the group interview. How could they not see that I would have poured my heart and soul into this job?
“As you come to him, the living Stone—rejected by humans but chosen by God and precious to him—” 1 Peter 2:4 NIV
After thinking this to myself over and over again, I realized that I was putting these people at the same standard as God. For God is omniscient, all-knowing, and no one else is. While God can see every aspect of my heart and soul, they cannot, so it was completely unfair for me to assume that they could. I was seeking validation and purpose in the wrong place. For we must seek validation from God, that can without fail, supply affirmation.
“Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.” Hebrews 4:13 NIV
On top of that, who am I to say that I would be great at this position? There were so many other great candidates.
Our greatest failures come when our pride thinks that we better than we actually are.
We must be willing to first seek God properly, and when we do that, we can then see ourselves in our true form. It is only then that we can do our best Kingdom work.
“When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.” Proverbs 11:2 NIV
I watched a sermon by Levi Lusko on insecurities. He said that when we find out who we are, it doesn’t matter what we aren’t. In order to figure out who we are, we must ask three questions:
- Who do I say I am?
- Who does God say I am?
- Who do I believe?
While I may have thought that I had all the qualities to be a good RA, Jesus says that He wants to use those qualities elsewhere. For God has a plan.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jerimiah 29:11 NIV
Even though I know that I didn’t get this position for a reason, it doesn’t automatically make me feel better about the rejection. I sometimes still think that I was wronged in some way by not getting the chance to show all of my capabilities. However, God isn’t worried about their possible wrong to me. He cares about my reaction to the situation. Even if my point is “right”, that doesn’t mean that my reaction is.
“He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city.” Proverbs 16:32 KJV
I tried to put myself in a position where I thought that I could make a difference. However, when the world rejected me, I rejected God even though I know that I am chosen, loved, called, and equipped to make a difference elsewhere. For God did not offer this rejection, so I don’t have to keep it. He has an everlasting amount of grace and acceptance.
“Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.” Luke 12:6-7 NIV
Alex // @alex_is_baker