As hard as it’s been to have boundaries and to say “no”, what’s it like to be on the receiving end?
How does it feel when gravity works against you… when the very thing you want isn’t out of reach, but refuses to stretch its limbs to pull you close enough to let the static between arm hairs collapse and touch?
…and what’s more than how it feels? How do you deal with it?
If you’ve ever applied for a job you’ve really wanted and believed you were more than qualified for, chances are you put in a lot of time and effort to inflate the minds of recruiters and hirers with the most tediously neat abstract portrait of you. You may have felt amazing after interviewing, you know, prayed and thanked God afterward, called your mom, dad, or best friend with an “I just KILLED that interview!”… and since they love you and believe in you, I’m almost sure the response was something to the affect of, “I’m sure you got it, you deserve it!” And maybe you did, at least once… but in life, there are often times where the perfect opportunity seems lost. You receive a nice letter from your dream employer that reminds you that you are an excellent candidate with tons of great skills and character qualities… but just not what they’re looking for – and then you question “what’s wrong with me?”
If you’ve ever applied for a relationship you’ve really wanted and believed you were deserving of, chances are you put in a lot of time and effort to inflate the mind of the consumer with the best of your humor or the nerdiest of your vocabulary… or obscure his|her eye with the neatest stroke of lipstick, the sharpest line from your clippers, the bounciest curl from an iron, the most fragrant spritz of cologne. You may feel amazing every time you separate from that person’s presence; you know, hoping for the best when she walks away, praying and thanking God for acquainting you two, texting your best friend with a “Yo, she might be it.” … and since they love you, I’m almost sure the response was something to the affect of, “Word? That’s what’s up!” or “Awww, I’m so happy for you!” And sometimes, all of this is
true & right… but in life, there are often times where the perfect opportunity seems lost. You receive a nice text, voicemail, or date ending conversation from dream love that reminds you that you are an excellent candidate with a beautiful smile and spirit… but just not what they’re looking for – and then you question:
WHAT’S WRONG WITH ME?
I tell you guys all the time that I am no guru. I don’t know it all, and therefore lack a ton of answers! But what I do know is that someone else’s desire to set a boundary that disagrees with your hopes
does not equal something wrong with you!
I’d like to say that rejection is this tiny little devil in a long red dress, wearing black lipstick and spiked stilettos. I’d like to say that rejection works in opposition to God’s plan for our lives. I’d like to say that we should stand firm against those who reject us, that we might always get exactly what we want! But who would I be if I did? What would I be a proponent of?
Being on the receiving end of rejection works in opposition to our succorance. It tends to leave us feeling alone, unworthy, perhaps even ashamed. We question our flaws because of what someone else thinks of us, but what does that really mean? Am I really any less valuable a worker because one, two, or even 30 employers don’t believe me to be their best fit? Am I unattractive on the inside or out just because one, two, or three million men don’t wish to come into union with me?
It’s like asking if I’m any less human because I love my dog. Exactly.
Now, let’s not be cynical and pretend we can hit an A-frame and Aerial over every wave of rejection that comes our way. The word no is a bouldering boundary. It shocks us. It is effective for the no sayer just as it is the no hearer. It is an extension of one person and what he or she desires. I t d o e s n o t d i c t a t e w h o t h e o t h e r i s . When feeling rejected, we tend to isolate, DON’T! You are more likely to dwell in an irrational, negative place this way. Lean on a friend, or a trusted companion|confidant who deserves to share in your story… but do not lean on an enabling agreer! Unfortunately, while these people make you feel better for the moment, when they’re gone, you have done, well -nothing- to recall who you are and what you’re worth.
Our plans will not always align with the plans of others. I’d imagine God laughs at that considering half the time, our plans probably don’t even align with His! Each of us desires and should be granted the freedom to choose our love & loss. When we apply for things, we are choosing to reject other opportunities. The same happens when we are on the receiving end. My prayer for all of us is that we remain large-minded and see a world of destined opportunity, and not contingency. I pray that we are not so taken aback by rejection that we fall victims to our own perfectionism. I pray that neither our mistakes or decisions nor those of others and their indecisions keep us stagnant and unforgiving. I pray that we put forth the effort to develop and not just believe in our potential. I pray that we never forget to dream big, think big, and work big that we might be ready when our days come.