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Coping with RejectionPosted Friday, December 23, 2011, at 10:17 AM
"Eliab, his older brother, heard David fraternizing with the men and lost his temper: 'What are you doing here! Why aren't you minding your own business, tending that scrawny flock of sheep? I know what you're up to. You've come down here to see the sights, hoping for a ringside seat at a bloody battle!'"
(I Samuel 17:28, MSG)
David was the youngest of six brothers. Because he was the youngest he was often looked down upon and quite frankly, not much was expected of him. Although David had a pleasant appearance; he was ruddy, short, and wasn't considered to be as attractive as his older brothers.
Now David was sent by his father to take food to his brothers and the rest of the army, however, when he arrived, he didn't receive the acceptance he desired. Nope, no hugs or kisses. No one embraced him or rolled out the red carpet. There was no "welcome" mat when he arrived. In fact, they rejected him and accused him of being prideful. They ridiculed him by saying, "Why aren't you tending that scrawny flock of sheep?" The only job he had was tending to the sheep and he was belittled because they weren't even good sheep ... they were scrawny!
Yet, David was a man of noble character. He was loyal and faithful to his father and older brothers. David wasn't rejected because his character or conduct was unworthy, it was simply because he was the youngest of eight sons. Still, this did not deter David from walking in constant victory. Even as he tended his father's sheep, he would single-handedly slay lions and bears. God saw something in David that his father and his brothers failed to see. "For the Lord sees not as man sees; for man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart." (I Samuel 16:7)
The truth is, when there came a time for the prophet Samuel to anoint someone as king, David wasn't even invited. So small was David in his father's house that it wasn't considered necessary to include him in the family when the prophet of God called them to a sacrificial feast. This shows the low regard David had among his own family. First, his father doesn't even mention him to the prophet. Second, he wasn't even invited to the sacrificial feast. Third, he would not have been brought unless Samuel insisted on it. Fourth, his own brothers didn't even welcome him as he was bringing them food. No doubt David was dealing with feelings of rejection.
During these seasons of testing, remember that Christ himself was rejected by many. Even the elders and chief priests who had long awaited for the Messiah refused Him. The very people that He died to save were the very people that rejected Him!
Similarly, David was sent to help his brothers, feed their weary bodies, and save them from the giant -- Goliath. Although initially they did not receive him, ultimately, all were able to see his victory as he slayed the giant.
When dealing with rejection, one may feel "out of place." In reading the examples of David and Jesus, it is evident that the very people that you are sent to help may be the very people that despise and reject you. It is to the accusers' foolishness and lack of wisdom that causes them to reject people.
Rejection, when it hits close to home can be especially painful. After all, no one wants to be closely examined under a microscope just for it to result in disapproval. Sometimes it is the people closest to you or the ones that you trust the most that will try to deter you from what God is doing in your life. In order to combat feelings of rejection, it is important to recognize what God says about you. In knowing this, you can walk in consistent victory, withstanding every rejection and accusation. No doubt, just like David, those who accuse you and reject you will ultimately see God's victory in your life.
Christina is the founder of Relentless Love Ministries and lives in Linton. She is an active speaker, guest lecturer, and published author. For more information, questions, or comments, email email@example.com .
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