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Perhaps you want to know why you got rejected in the first place. You might want to know why that guy or lady turned you down. Maybe you're curious to know why you did not make the cut, get the job or didn't get your email, voicemail or text message returned.

Rejection is something that we all deal with in life. We experience it at different places: at home, work, social events, school and church; and in different forms: abuse, adversity, failure, eviction, job loss, breakup etc. Despite the scources of rejection, it can be an invaluable blessing to us. To understand this truth, it's necessary for us to deal with rejection properly. If we don't handle rejection the right way,  rejection will mishandle us the wrong way.  

During card games, cards are dealt to each player in the game. It's the objective of the card player to use the card he is given to win the game. Likewise, life deals us cards of rejection. It's up to us to deal with this card of rejection in a way that we will win in life. This is possible when we allow God to instruct us on how to deal with rejection. When we adhere to His wisdom, not only will we be able to deal with rejection, we'll also be able to get a great deal out of it.  

Rejection is a wake-up call. It's an alarm clock that God uses to wake up our "callings". You and I have a purpose in life. One of the ways that we discover that purpose is through rejection. Before I elaborate further, perhaps you want to know why you got rejected in the first place. You might want to know why that guy or lady turned you down. Maybe you're curious to know why you did not make the cut, get the job or didn't get your email, voicemail or text message returned. Whichever case, the fact remains that we do indeed experience rejection from people. But why? The reasons vary.

Even so, I believe that there are three main reasons why people reject us. 


  1. People reject us when we don't meet their expectations. In this case we are rejected for being wrong or doing wrong. By being wrong, I mean that we are wrong for what they want. We are not what they are looking for. We are not qualified. This is where you get rejected because you don't have the looks. You don't have the qualifications. You don't have the connections, education, or experience. You are simply wrong for what they want. For example, a guy does not get a job because he does not have the education and experience. A lady is rebuffed by a guy because she doesn't look like Angelina Jolie. By doing wrong, I mean that you get rejected for doing the wrong thing. For example, a guy is fired because he put his supervisor in a head lock. A husband is divorced by his wife because he was unfaithful. By being wrong or doing wrong, we don't meet some people's expectations, and therefore they reject us. Perhaps you're one of those saying to yourself: "Wait a minute. I have the education. I graduated cum laude. I'm in excellent shape, and Angelina Jolie and Kim Kardashian ain't got nuthin on me. I have the work ethic. I walk in integrity, but yet I'm still being rejected." Well, if this is you, then you weren't rejected because you did not meet expectations. You were rejected for the reasons below.
  2. People reject us when we exceed their expectations. In this case you get rejected for being right or doing right. By being right, I mean that you are just too exceptional for what they want. This is where you hear a recruiter say something like, "You are overqualified for the job, we can't afford to pay you, so you are not hired." This is where a lady is rejected by a guy because her pay grade is higher than his. She lives in her own house while he lives in an apartment with his mum; his mum's apartment. She is cool with where he is, but he's not cool with where she is. He is intimidated by her success and pushes her away. She exceeds his expectation. By doing right, I mean getting rejected for doing the right thing. This is where you get rejected by coworkers because they want to cut corners, but you want to express the right work ethic. While others want to fool around, you want to maintain your virtue and integrity. Consequently, individuals keep you at arms' length because they feel like you are making them look bad. The third reason why we experience rejection from people is somewhat a combination of the first two. This is where you get rejected for doing right and wrong at the same time. You might have done the right thing, but at the wrong time.
  3. People reject us when we try to do things with them at the wrong time. In this case, you are rejected because of the timing of what you were trying to do. For example, a guy's interest in a lady is rebuffed by her because she was healing from a recent breakup. A lady's proposal to enhance her company is refused because the company she works for was badly affected by the recession in the economy. It was the timing that led to the rejection of those individuals. In his book "21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership," Dr. John Maxwell makes a profound comment about timing: "The wrong action at the wrong time leads to disaster; the right action at the wrong time brings resistance; the wrong action at the right time is a mistake; the right action at the right time leads to success." (Maxwell, 1998, 197)

People may reject you because you don't meet their expectations, you exceed their expectations, or because you tried to do something with them at the wrong time. Despite this truth, this information is not what I want to leave you with. This information might be a good conversation starter, something to think about, something to discuss or debate with your friends, or a barometer for you to gauge why you experienced rejection in the past or even now. What I do want to leave you with, and is the most important point of my discussion, is why God allows us to experience rejection.

O.J Toks
All rights reserved. Used by permission


Author Biography

O. J. Toks
Web site: O. J. TOKS
O.J Toks is happily married to the love of his life, Dana. He is the founder of O.J. Toks Ministries, which presents and hosts While You Are Single. Rejected for a Purpose: How God Uses Rejection to Help You Find and Fulfill Your Destiny, an unprecedented life-changing book that has received rave reviews.

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