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Raising Girls - Getting Past the Lie of Rejection

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#1 Jonathon


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Posted 09 January 2018 - 11:04 AM

Five steps you can take to get back on track.

“We feel like the Holy Spirit is calling you elsewhere.”

Each word pierced me like a dagger to my soul. After pouring hours, sweat, tears, and passion into a church I loved, the leadership decided I was not enough. I was not enough. Those four words penetrated my mind and colluded to form a lie that began to shade how I viewed all other circumstances. The feeling of rejection paralyzed me, preventing me from moving forward in ministry. Sitting comfortably on a back row of a worship center, unnoticed and safe in my own self-pity, seemed a more enticing option than working through my pain.

On my first Sunday attending a different church, the associate pastor introduced himself and asked me a key question: “Are you surviving or thriving this morning?” With more honesty than expected, I blurted, “I’m surviving, but I hope to thrive again someday.”

The word rejection comes from a Latin word that means to be thrown back. When we experience rejection, the feeling not only stops us in our present pursuits, but it sometimes causes us to retreat from progressing because we fear future failure. In psychology, this phenomenon is called learned helplessness. We are most vulnerable at the point of rejection. We experience disapproval or repudiation, and that experience becomes a catalyst for self-defeat. I internalized the end of my tenure at the church and allowed lies of rejection to infiltrate my thoughts. Every time I started to move forward in ministry, the fear within me told me that I wasn’t good enough and there was no way God could use me.

Because we live in a fallen world, rejection is a certainty, but Jesus gives us the ultimate example of how to thrive through rejection. If we look ...

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#2 Mark


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Posted 13 January 2018 - 11:03 PM

I was not able to access the full article but the passage you quoted prompts me to reflect that the leadership of the church were very arrogant to pronounce on where they thought in their wisdom that the Holy Spirit was calling the author. They had a responsibility to say if in some particular respect he was not serving the church, but that is quite a different thing. 

#3 Papa


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Posted 14 January 2018 - 04:47 PM

You were rejected by a group of people calling themselves a church.  Apparently you did not meet their preconceived notions of what a member of their group should be. But this does not mean you have failed as a person, nor that your gods have rejected you.  That church is composed of human beings with the usual flaws.  You have flaws, too, as do I and every person reading this forum. 


Your test, as a caring person, is to go beyond this setback and see what other options are available.  Do not fall into the "They didn't like me, so I must be bad."  syndrome.  You indicate that you are in the ministry in some capacity.  That means that you are somebody who cares about others.  You also have beliefs which are now somewhat shaken.  That is  a natural first-reaction to rejection. Don't let it consume you.


There is something called "survivor syndrome."  People who have been through famine or concentration camps sometimes don't fully recover from their anxieties.  They sometimes hoard odd bits of food, water or other things in the fear that it will happen again.  Don't let yourself become a survivor.  As your new pastor said, you must be a "thriver."    Look beyond the past and see what you can do to improve yourself and help others.   


One door has closed, but many more remain to be opened.

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