Everyday we each wake up choosing what we believe for the day and what ideas we reject. And everyday we face some kind of rejection. In elementary school the level of rejection we received might have been based upon who’s picture was on our lunch box
The Avengers- you are in! Sheri Lewis and Lamb Chop- forget about it: you are rejected!
In highschool rejection was more about your social experiences and/or what brand of clothing you wore. One thing I do know, from that first time I felt rejected by my classmates I knew that this feeling was bad and was one I wanted to avoid.
The question was, to what lengths would I go to avoid being rejected? With each of us possessing an innate longing to be accepted, how does “choosing rejection” make sense?
This morning I found myself reading the story of Stephen. Stephen was the first martyr for Christ (he was killed for his faith in Jesus Christ). I think it is fair to say that he knew a thing or two about “choosing rejection“.
If he is simply a normal guy, then why would he choose to be rejected by his peers and reject any possible future he might have on earth for Jesus Christ?
- To accept one thought means to reject another. If you choose to really believe something there is always a secondary thought that you have essentially chosen to reject. For example: If I choose to put the needs of my husband before my own I am rejecting the idea that my needs are more important than his. As a Christ follower we are called to reject the “truths” our world throws at us and cling to the “Truths” we find in scripture. Today, what Truths are you rejecting and what truths do you cling to?
- People only choose to be rejected when they deeply care about something. What do you value most in your life? What matters more to you than being accepted by others? What are you ultimately willing to die for- like Stephen? Does your life reflect that?
- The Bible clearly states that if we choose Christ we WILL BE rejected by this world. Are you willing to face rejection for this man? We may not all be called to die for our faith as Stephen did but we can learn a thing or two from him. Are you willing to lose your life to Christ? The idea of “losing our lives for Christ” must be important if it is repeated over and over again in the New Testament: Matthew 10:39, Matthew 16:25, Mark 8:35, Luke 9:24, Luke 17:33, John 12:25, Philippians 2:17.
- Psalm 118:22- The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone. A “cornerstone” is essentially a foundational stone on which walls are based and joined. Without it the walls cannot stand. Is Christ your “cornerstone”? Are you willing to face rejection for his sake? Where in your life are you rejecting Christ as “cornerstone”?
Additional Scripture for thought:
Psalm 101:4– I will reject perverse ideas and stay away from every evil.
Deuteronomy 5:9– You must not bow down to them or worship them, for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God who will not tolerate your affection for any other gods. I lay the sins of the parents upon their children; the entire family is affected–even children in the third and fourth generations of those who reject me.
Psalm 51:17– The sacrifice you desire is a broken spirit. You will not reject a broken and repentant heart, O God.
Proverbs 15:32– If you reject discipline, you only harm yourself; but if you listen to correction, you grow in understanding.
Isaiah 7:15– By the time this child is old enough to choose what is right and reject what is wrong, he will be eating yogurt and honey.
2 Timothy 3:5– They will act religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly. Stay away from people like that!
2 Timothy 4:4– They will reject the truth and chase after myths.