Did you learn how to handle rejection during your formative years? Me neither. Most of us struggle to learn how to handle rejection as adults. It isn’t easy.
Even Jesus suffered rejection during his ministry, and people still reject him. Can we expect anything less in our lives? I don’t think so.
Jesus consistently drew his sense of self-worth and identity from his Father. He wasn’t threatened by another’s rejection because he knew that the One who loved him most would never reject him. Ditto for us:
But by His doing you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption, that, just as it is written, “Let him who boasts, boast in the Lord” (1 Corinthians 1:30–31 nasb).
How do you handle rejection?
- Do you detach yourself from the situation or work harder to be a people pleaser?
- Do you quit the job, the relationship, or the dream?
- Do you just take the blows and then move on?
- Do you examine the experience to learn from it?
- Do you seek revenge?
- Do you avoid rejection by living on the surface instead of risking depth in relationships or in work?
- Do you cry, scream, or just pout?
Knowing how you currently deal with rejection issues can work in your favor, because if your rejection handling skills aren’t working, it’s time to pick up some new tools.
How to handle rejection
Think about the last time you felt rejected.
- What were your thoughts during the experience?
- What thoughts did you believe, and which ones did you reject as unhealthy?
- How did you talk to yourself? Was it according to the truth of Scripture and your understanding of who you are in Christ?
- Did you choose to say and do things that reflected healthy self-talk?
- Were you able to name actions you could have done different that might have helped avoid the rejection situation?
- How long did it take before the feelings of rejection were replaced with peace?
- What did you learn?
- How are you different today because of the rejection and what you learned from the experience?
Now repeat this exercise for every rejection opportunity you encounter in life.
Rejection is something we all have to learn how to handle. Knowing how to take our thoughts captive during the experience leads to drawing our sense of self-worth and identity from God instead of the negative situation.
Growing with you, Susan
“Jesus likes it when we share.” -Adelaide, age 3: Pass this along to everybody and their brother. OK, maybe not everybody’s brother, but you know . . . all of your friends would be nice.