I am afraid of rejection. Maybe if I say it out loud it will somehow take away the irrational fear that I sometimes feel. Maybe if I confess this fear then some of you will be able to face the same irrational fear that is gripping you and also shove it to the side.
I am not sure when the fear of rejection started but I can remember feeling uncomfortable even when I was younger. Do you remember the days when kids would divide up to play a game? I can recall that two children would be the captains and then they would take turns picking one child apiece until everyone was on a team. I was afraid that I would be the last child picked.
I can remember going on field trips and getting on the school bus and there would be children sitting in a seat with their legs stretched out so that no one but their friend could sit with them. Wandering up and down the aisles looking for a place to sit was embarrassing until someone would take pity on you and let you sit with them.
Even as an adult I find myself trying to protect myself from rejection if at all possible. When I started this blog I didn’t tell anyone. I didn’t want people I knew to laugh at me. I was afraid that they would be able to see that I was going to be rejected by the whole internet. I would think, “what if no one ever finds the blog?” and “what if I get comments that tell me that I don’t know what I am doing?” I thought that if everyone rejected me then at least only I and my sister would know. Somehow I thought that would lessen the blow from feeling rejected because the truth is, I didn’t know what I was doing.
I realize that what I was really seeking was approval from someone. I wanted someone to say, “I choose you!” It didn’t matter to me if they were going to choose me to play on their team in sports or if they were choosing me to sit with them on a long bus trip or if they were choosing me as a friend and advisor on the internet. I just wanted to be chosen, I wanted to be approved of, I wanted to be their friend.
Today, while I was sitting here writing this, it hit me like a ton of bricks that I was seeking approval from “mankind.” Is that really who I need to be worried about rejecting me? Now I can see that the answer to that question is NO. I need to be worried about what my Father in Heaven is thinking about me. I need Him to choose me, to approve of me.
Isaiah 41: 9-10
9 I took you from the ends of the earth,
from its farthest corners I called you.
I said, ‘You are my servant’;
I have chosen you and have not rejected you.
10 So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
I hope to be strong and to walk with my head held high. I hope to continue to realize that the approval of others is not my end game. It is not how many “likes” a Facebook post gets, it is not how many “comments” a blog post gets, but instead, it is how many times that the Lord says, “well done my good and faithful servant” that truly matters.
Have A Blessed Sunday!