"The righteous person may have many troubles, but the LORD delivers him from them all." Psalm 34:19 (NIV)
I scooted into the restaurant booth beside my daughter Ashley. Her first-semester college grades had been posted for two days, but she'd refused to look at them. We decided to review them together at one of our favorite restaurants.
Together is a great way to press through something you're afraid could make you feel a bit undone.
School hasn't always been easy for Ashley. When she was in the eighth grade, her teachers requested a meeting to talk with us. We were stunned to find out she was failing every class.
It wasn't from her lack of effort. She needed some special tutoring that wasn't available at her current school.
Immediately, I knew that would never work. I also think the school knew this wouldn't work. So, they offered to help us have her transferred to a different school.
It wasn't intended as a rejection. But it sure felt like one to Ashley's tender heart.
Yet slowly, little successes at her new school gave her enough confidence to believe it was possible to turn things around. And by the end of that year, she was on the dean's list. By the time she got into high school, she was making great grades and even graduated with honors.
Now in college, Ashley had chosen an academically rigorous major. She'd given it her all. But the exams carried a lot of weight toward her overall grades, and she just wasn't sure how she'd done. And although that eighth-grade rejection was very far from her at that point, the fear still lingered.
The enemy loves to take our rejection and twist it into a raw, irrational fear that God really doesn't have a good plan for us.
This fear is a corrupting companion. It replaces the truths we've trusted with hopeless lies. Satan knows what consumes us controls us. Therefore, the more consumed we are with rejection, the more he can control our emotions, our thinking and our actions.
So, what's a brokenhearted person to do? We must take back control from something or someone that was never meant to have it and declare God as Lord. To see how we can practice this when the worries of rejection try to control us, here are three things to help us remember and proclaim.
1. One Rejection is Not a Projection of Future Failures
It's good to acknowledge the hurt, but don't see it as a permanent hindrance. Move on from the source of the rejection, and don't let it shut you down in that arena of life. It has already stolen enough from your present. Don't let it reach into your future.
Renounce the negative talk that can hinder you, and replace it with praises for God, Who will deliver you.
2. There is Usually Some Element of Protection Wrapped in Every Rejection
This is a hard one to process at the time of the rejection. But for many of my past rejections, I can look back and see how God was allowing things to unfold the way they did for my protection.
In His mercy, He allowed this.
3. This is a Short-Term Setback, Not a Permanent Condition
The emotions that feel so intense today will ease over time if we let them. We just have to watch how we think and talk about this rejection. If we give it the power to define us, it will haunt us long-term. But if we only allow rejection enough power to refine us, the hurt will give way to healing.
As I sat in that restaurant with Ashley and helped her process her fears through the filter of truth, courage emerged that no matter what happened - good or bad - she could trust God.
Finally, she clicked open the email revealing her grades. Not only did she pass, she was on the dean's list. Tears!
I was so thankful that day that hers were tears of joy. But I'm also well aware that in the tomorrows that come, things could be different. Rejections big and small just seem to ebb and flow in and out of life. Troubles will still find us. But the Lord doesn't just deliver us from some of our troubles. Our key verse, Psalm 34:19, tells us He delivers us from them all! "The righteous person may have many troubles, but the LORD delivers him from them all."
And I'll give that truth a big, huge AMEN!
Father God, I won't always understand why. But I do understand Your goodness to me in all situations. Help me replace the fears threatening to consume me with truth. I know You love me, You are for me, and I can absolutely trust You with all of my heart. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
Together really is a great way to press through the difficult seasons of life. Surrender your deepest hurts by processing them in a godly way with Lysa TerKeurst as she shares from her own struggles in her newest release, Embraced: 100 Devotions to Know God Is Holding You Close. Order your copy here today.
REFLECT AND RESPOND:
Look back at the three truths Lysa shared that you must remember when feeling rejected. Which one do you need to proclaim over your life today? Join the conversation, and let us know on our website!
© 2018 by Lysa TerKeurst. All rights reserved.