“3 Now Israel loved Joseph more than any of his other sons, because he had been born to him in his old age; and he made a richly ornamented robe for him. 4 When his brothers saw that their father loved him more than any of them, they hated him and could not speak a kind word to him. “
Gen 37:3-4 (NIV)
Rejection. It is one of the most painful human emotions. It is common to the human experience, but some people, it seems, experience more than their fair share. Rejection causes a person to doubt themselves, who they are in God, and their overall worth. Repeated rejection can cause a person to see themselves, instead, through a distortion lens.
Rejection can be blatant and harsh. However, its sting is no less painful when it is implied by exclusion or by simply being ignored.
In this passage, Joseph was his father’s favorite. None of the brothers doubted that, because he paraded about in the coat-of-many-colors his father bestowed upon him. Each time they saw him coming in that coat, it was like a beacon sign flashing- “Dad likes him better!”
And thus began the sequence of events that would fulfill the dreams that Joseph had. But first, he had to endure the pain of having his coat of favor stripped from him, while being thrown in a cistern to await his fate.
If you follow the story out, you see the favor of the Father still resting upon him. God caused him to find favor with Potiphar, and once again, Joseph has a garment of favor stripped from him- this time courtesy of Potiphar’s lying wife. He fled in righteousness, only to leave her holding his coat- both the proof of righteousness and the article used to accuse him.
Ultimately, Joseph was raised from the prison to the palace. Now robed in royalty, he was second in command in all the land. After much pain… His dreams were fulfilled.
We are rejected in life for many reasons. Regardless, we have to remember that we are beloved of God.
When life sends us the message that we are not good enough, we must recall that we are draped in His robes of righteousness. We must seek God’s acceptance of us as our highest aspiration, the only acceptance we truly require.
If you are suffering the pain of rejection, ask your Father to heal you and confirm your worth in light of His opinion. Live for an audience of One.
Oh, Lord, you know the pain of rejection better than anyone. You suffered at the hands of those you lived, and died, to love. Sooth our hearts and help us see ourselves through Your eyes. Let your acceptance and approval be our only source of validation. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
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