Rejection, simply defined, is the sense of being unwanted, the feeling that although you want people to love you, no one does. Or it is wanting to be part of a group, but feeling excluded—somehow always being on the outside looking in.
One reason why so many people suffer this problem today is the make-up of our society and its pressures, particularly the break-up of family life. In this article, Derek Prince examines the roots of rejection and how they affect our thoughts and behaviour.
If I were to ask you, “What is the opposite of rejection?” you would probably reply, “Acceptance,” which is the correct answer. In this article and the next we will concentrate on how to move from rejection to acceptance.
We begin our study with a picture of rejection found in Isaiah 54:6. This is a very poignant picture of a brokenhearted married woman.
“For the Lord has called you like a woman forsaken and grieved in spirit, like a youthful wife, when you were refused,” says your God.
The picture here is of a young woman, recently married, who finds that her husband does not love her. Maybe he has no time for her or shows no interest in her. Possibly he is even preparing to divorce her to find another wife. Scripture describes her as “forsaken and grieved in spirit.”
There is a type of wound which is very hard to bear. It is described quite accurately in Proverbs 18:14: “The spirit of a man will sustain his infirmity, but a wounded spirit who can bear?” (KJV). This woman was obviously suffering from just such a wound in her spirit.
We can put up with a wounded body, but a wounded spirit is an unbearable affliction.
Scripture also says in 1 Corinthians 2, “For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God” (verse 11). The spirit of a person is deeper than the mental understanding or the faculties of memory and reason, and that spirit is the only thing that knows all about you. Your mind doesn’t know all about you. There are things about you that your mind hasn’t yet discovered. It is very possible to carry wounds for years that your mind never knows about. This can be borne out, I believe, by the following observation.
Have you ever noticed when some people get the baptism in the Holy Spirit—even strong, self-reliant men—that they seem to crumple and begin to sob? I have seen it happen scores of times. When I see that happening, I say, “Now the Holy Spirit has reached down into that person’s spirit, and He is untying all those knots that have been tied inside him for so long. No one else could ever get there to untie the knot but the Holy Spirit.”
I was praying with a young man one time and this happened to him. Though he was already baptized in the Holy Spirit, the Lord had just met a deep need in his life. By nature, he was a rather well-controlled and poised young man. But when the Holy Spirit touched this issue at the heart of his life, he began to sob like a little child. I said to him, “Now look, don’t turn this off. Don’t reassert your self-control. Let it come, because you couldn’t buy a moment like this for a thousand dollars. It’s precious.”
All this is to illustrate that there is an area deep down inside you that your mind doesn’t know about. Sometimes your mind even refuses to face up to the facts about that area inside you. Psychologists and psychiatrists acknowledge the fact that there are some wounds so painful that the mind refuses to focus on them. It just turns a blind eye in that particular direction. Nevertheless, the wound is there—deeper than the mind, deeper than reason, deeper than the memory. It is in the spirit.
Rejection, very frequently, is in that deep area in the spirit. And often, because it’s so deep, people do not even realize their problem is rejection.
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