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Overcoming Rejection

November 22, 2006

Overcoming Rejection
By Mary A. Parks

Did you ever try to solve a problem, only to get discouraged because you couldn’t find the source? For many of us, that is our life story. For as long as we can remember, we’ve tried to make everyone around them like them. We did what we thought people wanted us to do, said what we thought people wanted us to say, acted like we thought people wanted us to act – all so others would like or love us. Deep down we know why, but often it takes years to acknowledge and come to grips with the underlying reason(s). For many who are born into relationships where our father is not present or early contact with our mother is denied due to various factors, a spirit of rejection hovers over us all of our life, often before we draw our first breath. Over the years, that rejection grafts itself onto relationships with others – parents, siblings, friends, co-workers, etc.

The rejection issue is a big one facing many in the church today. Because of our fear of rejection, we live our lives as a slave to what people think of us, instead of living up to what God thinks of us. If we continue to live only up to what people think, we’ll never please everyone. All that matters is that we please God. In Galatians 1:10, we are reminded that, “If pleasing people were my goal, I would not be Christ’s servant.”

In Chapter 3 of “Ministering Freedom To The Emotionally Wounded,” Chris Hayward talks about “Overcoming Rejection.” According to Hayward, there are four “walls” of rejection: Rejection of God, Fear of Rejection, Self-rejection and Rejection of Others.

Before we look at the different “walls,” let’s take an overview of rejection. To reject means “to throw away,” “discard.” Rejection is the act of “being denied love.” The feeling of being discarded leads us to believe that we are unloved. When we feel unloved, we deem ourselves worthless. As much as we feel rejected/unloved/worthless, that is how much we are unable to receive love, whether from God or people. Often, we hear when people tell us they love us, but we don’t truly recognize that love for the gift it is. Instead, we wait for the proverbial “other shoe” to drop, and anxiously anticipate when that love will be withdrawn.

The Enemy, Satan, is a liar, a thief and a murderer. He’s a liar because he tries to convince us that what he is saying (through our perceptions) is true – that we are worthless, unloved, un-cared-for. This idea directly contradicts Scripture. In many passages, we are told of our value in God’s sight. He is a thief, because he tries to steal our faith, our peace, our joy, our freedom in Christ. In fact, in the Greek, the word for “steal” is “klepto”. Just as in life, too often, the theft isn’t noticed until it’s too late. He is a murder because he wants us to give ourselves over to worthless pursuits – things that are empty and void of any purpose or plan, thereby “killing” any chance we have to engage in meaningful, Kingdom-building activity. He is a destroyer because he destroys (completely ruins) lives and causes regret over things undone or dreams unpursued.

But, the grace that shines through is this: Jesus is the opposite of all of that – the antidote, the remedy! He’s Truth personified. He restores instead of stealing. He rebuilds instead of tearing down, and that which He rebuilds is beautiful. He is Life itself! In laying down His life, He restores life to us.

The Enemy is tricky – he knows that he can only really make us ineffective by hitting us where it’s most vital – our faith and love. He makes us self-centered so that we cannot function in the full assurance and power of our faith. He takes the joy and peace we once knew and replaces it, over time little by little, with rejection, fear and pain.

According to Hayward, the four “walls” of rejection are:

Rejection of God: God says in His word that we are His children, that we are made in His image – beautiful. Anytime we think less of ourselves than this, we are, in effect, rejecting His word, and by connection, Him.

Fear of Rejection: We want everyone to like us. But, at the same time, we tend to sabotage our relationships. We don’t keep in touch like we should. We get close to someone and then pull back. Could it be that we are afraid of losing them at some point? Is it that, maybe, by being in control of when the relationship ends, we won’t feel rejected because we are doing the rejecting? It’s a vicious cycle – we try to run from relationships because we don’t want to risk being hurt – but in doing so, we feel more rejection, and so the next time we have the chance to enter a relationship, we withdraw further, adding more perceived rejection. It’s hard to trust people when we are caught up in a cycle of rejection – always wondering when they will end up not liking us for whatever reason. So often, it feels like it is easier to not even get involved.

Self-Rejection: Have you ever watched Sesame Street when they had the “One of these things just doesn’t belong here, One of these things just isn’t the same” segments – a group of things where 3 are similar, but 1 item is really different? When dealing with rejection, we can feel like the thing that wasn’t the same – out of place. But, to think that the first sacrifice ever (Gen. 3:21) was made so that Adam and Eve could have a permanent covering for their “shame” reminds us that Jesus’ sacrifice covers us from our hopelessness, worthlessness and worse.

Rejection of Others: A lot of people have hurt us over the years – some intentionally, some not. It’s hard to let go of that hurt. We have to remember that forgiveness is a choice, not a feeling. We may not feel like hugging the people that hurt us, but we can still choose to forgive them. In forgiving, we release our pain, leaving it at the feet of our Father. We ask God to come and fill the hollow places left when we release the pain, and we ask Him to bless those who have hurt or offended us. We do this so that we can stand before our Father and receive the forgiveness He offers to us (Matt.6:14-15). We may not feel like we have forgiven, but in that moment, we receive our freedom in Christ from the bitterness that once bound us.

Father, I want to know you as “Daddy.” I’ve had glimpses of it…seen it from a distance, but I want to know it in my heart…I’m sorry that I’ve rejected you. Forgive me for not really truly believing and living in your love. I repent of my pride, stubbornness and self-will…I reject and renounce the spirit of rejection that has seemingly overcome me. Help me to live in the promise that You have overcome the world and all that is in and of it. I refuse to accept this feeling of rejection any longer. I break any connection and all agreement with this spirit – any generational binds and ties, I break those as well…It is only through Your authority, power and sacrifice that I break down these walls of rejection in Jesus’ name!

43 Comments leave one →
  1. deltek permalink
    May 14, 2007 4:05 pm

    Thank you so much for posting this! I REALLY needed to read this today! God bless you….

    • July 10, 2010 3:51 pm

      i have dealt withthe spirit of rejection over the years sence my mother pass in april 30 2002.i have personally came in contact with people who suffered from that spirit; i had people tell me to cut the root of it to find out where it came from .well i found out it is from my child i am learning each to be strong . may GOD bless you all who is dealing with this spirt take it to the LORD IN PRAYER .

  2. May 23, 2007 8:28 am

    I enjoyed what I read! This was a start to finding out more about rejection.

  3. Ruo Se permalink
    January 4, 2008 12:54 am

    Thanks so much for this posting. I have been dealing with a peer rejection wound for nearly 20 years. This article is truly a blessing, and motivates me to move forward in trying to forgive and pray for those who rejected me in my youth. It sure is difficult, but I’m encouraged by the reasoning set forth here.

  4. Wynne Lewis permalink
    April 2, 2008 9:56 am

    Thank you for this article. I have dealt with self-rejection for a long time, stemming from others’ rejection of me. I’ve even rejected God and others so they couldn’t reject me first. Knowing that God accepts and loves me is hard to get used to. I sometimes fear that just when I enjoy that, it will be yanked away. But I remember Numbers 23:19: God is not a man, that He should lie; nor a son of man that He should change His mind…” I don’t know if I’m quoting that verse quite correctly.


  5. Queen permalink
    December 30, 2008 4:32 am

    Thank you I was just praying about breaking free from the spirit of rejection. This was a God-send! Be blessed!

  6. Alfric omondi permalink
    March 13, 2009 3:29 am

    I have struggled with this issue 4 sometime.i hope this helps me

  7. Brandy permalink
    April 6, 2009 8:22 pm

    I was just asking God last night why it seems as though he has kept me from love, it is not Him but me! I have lost countless friends because I did not return their calls, family have given up on calling me because I don’t reach out to them. But I am sad and mad because I don’t have family or friends, ironic huh! Rejecting them before they reject me. Anyway thank you for being obedient to God and posting this.

  8. Trish permalink
    May 29, 2009 11:08 pm

    Thank you for this post. It seems like there are times when God just opens the doors and lets light enter. I have struggled with many issues in my life and have just realized that so much has the root of rejection at the heart of it. I have a weight issue and I am a recovering porn addict. It was today that I realized that they are connected to the overwhelming amount of rejection I suffered as a child and adolescent. I internalized the rejection and have struggled to receive love, waiting for the other shoe to drop. I never understood it all until now. I am so thankful that God has never rejected me, even when the enemy wanted me to believe He did. And I am blessed because God gave me a loving husband and a beautiful daughter when I finally surrendered it all to Him. It has not been as easy road, but I haven’t walked it alone. I have walked it with the Lord.

  9. Ruth-Ann Hunt permalink
    August 5, 2009 5:17 pm

    ….I am the product of three generations, of females, who had lived with the spirit of rejection. I know n believe God has chosen me to break from under the yoke that has hindered n robbed my family. I have three kids of my own, of the three, two r girls n I have been told, that this particular spirit, is more likely to attach its self to females. Satan will n can’t have me nor my family. I rebuke it in the name of Jesus!!! Thank u so much for the information, it has helped me to understand just where I’m at. May God Bless u n ur ministry.

  10. September 9, 2009 1:14 pm

    Great article, thank you so much for posting this!

  11. Paulette House permalink
    September 11, 2009 3:56 am

    Thank you, I understand me a little better.

  12. Clifford Malone-Hollins permalink
    September 24, 2009 10:32 pm

    Thank you so much for sharing this beautiful article on “Overcoming Rejections.” I fell in the last catagory “rejections of others.” It took me many years to get over a particular situation that did me much harm. However, I have learn so much from your article and I will start applying all the principles you mention.



  13. L.T. Hannibal permalink
    October 21, 2009 12:21 am

    Thank you so much for posting this article. I have learned so much. I am currently doing a study on the spirit of rejection to better understand the different forms of rejecttion. I have truly been enlightened with what I have read today. God bless you in your sharing of issues that are much needed today in body of Christ.
    I am going to use what I have read about overcoming rejection and I am going to continue to search the scriptures about all the truths that MY DADDY IN HEAVEN HAS TO SAY ABOUT ME. And I am going to receive my victory!!!!! Again, thank you so…..much!!!

  14. Laurie Christiana permalink
    October 24, 2009 2:03 pm

    Great Article, It said many things I feel but never verbalized to myself. I too want to cast out the spirit of rejection that seems to live within me, reading your article helped me to realize that I dont have to live within those walls. I have the power within myself and with God to cast it all out of my programmed mind, reprogramming a new one with the disciple I have through Christ. BE GONE!!

  15. Stephanie permalink
    October 30, 2009 1:55 am

    Wow that was great. I know God led me to this, I really needed it. I have had a breakthrough tonight.I am so Thankful to you lord and for Heidi and using her for your glory.

  16. Evangelist P. Hall permalink
    November 15, 2009 12:41 pm

    Praise The Lord! I thank God for this article on the Spirit of Rejection. I am a 49 yr old wife, mother, and grandmother. And a Chosen Evangelist, I too have dealt with rejection most of my life. As I read this article, I found myself in the midst of the root cause of what my hurt and pain has been in my life. I am a born again believer. I am even studying on The Spirit of Rejection in a Bible College that I attend. I find this article to be a blessing to the multitude of souls that with come intact with this article. I pray in The Name of Jesus, that everyone who reads this article will be changed in every aspect of their lifes. From the young to the old. I realize that if we as Leaders, would pray for the Body of Christ, and bind up the Spirit of Rejection, that many lives will be changed, and we all know that the enemy has been Defeated. Amen!

  17. Evangelist P. Hall permalink
    November 15, 2009 12:49 pm

    Praise The Lord! I thank God for this article on the Spirit of Rejection. I am a 49 yr old wife, mother, and grandmother. And a Chosen Evangelist, I too have dealt with rejection most of my life. As I read this article, I found myself in the midst of the root cause of what my hurt and pain has been in my life. I am a born again believer. I am even studying on The Spirit of Rejection in a Bible College that I attend. I find this article to be a blessing to the multitude of souls that with come in contact with it. I pray in The Name of Jesus, that everyone who reads this article will be changed for the better, in every aspect of their lifes; From the young to the old. I speak, Love, Power, and a Sound Mind in each and everyone’s lives. I realize that if we as Leaders, would pray for the Body of Christ, and bind up the Spirit of Rejection, that many lives will be changed, and we all know that the enemy satan, the accuser, the liar, has been Defeated. Amen!
    May God Bless You All!

  18. Evangelist P. Hall permalink
    November 15, 2009 12:53 pm

    Also, want to say thanks to Mary Parks, the writer of this article.
    May God Bless You Richly.

  19. john mwape permalink
    December 6, 2009 3:06 pm

    Thank you so much for your article which l searched randomly on the net in my quest for the truth behind most of my lifes misery. lam African, Zambian by nationality and well educated and travelled. I have tried in vain to find true happiness and joy in all aspects of my life but seem to get a fraction of it only. I have woundered why and your article has helped to shed more light on my predicarment. I recall the words of my pastor and a friend l met in Malawi who mentioned this type of fear which almost jolted me up. I now believe that Jesus Christ was speaking to me through these people. I hope and pray that overcome this spirit and live on happily ever after.

    Praise GOD my redeemer, halelulia.

  20. December 31, 2009 2:10 pm

    Good Word for this season in my life. Praise God fordeliverance!

  21. Joshua E. permalink
    March 15, 2010 2:33 am

    Thank you. You may hear this alot but all I can say is this article is a blessing.

  22. March 29, 2010 10:04 am

    I read it aloud and without reserve, have lost myself in the reality of Jesus’ authority, power and sacrifice. Peace & Blessings!

  23. April 15, 2010 12:32 pm

    What a deep insight into the nature of God’s love for us. If we can overcome the temptation to listen to Satan’s crafty lies, we can begin to experience the joy of Father’s total love, forgiveness, and acceptance – and we can become a conduit for those to our brothers and sisters.

  24. June 6, 2010 9:02 am

    I am very blessed with this article. Thank God for the Insight. I am a different person now

  25. July 21, 2010 1:33 pm

    this was a great article it really gave me some insight, and now I know that some one else understand and know about the spirit of rejection and its effect

  26. September 3, 2010 3:35 am

    I have recently been set free from the spirit of rejection. I have been rejected by just about everyone in my life. But I dwelt with it by seperating myself from everyone that ever hurt me. I learning now that God loves me and that I was made in his image and likeness. This is an excellent article and it was a blessing to me.

  27. Jovan permalink
    September 13, 2010 2:06 am

    Thank you for blessing me with this article Lord. I pray that everyone who has ever read this or ever will read this will be permanently set free from the spirit of rejection. Father God please allow us rest and abide in your love. I pray that you would heal ever wound and remove ever stronghold that has ever been placed in the minds of your people by the enemy. I ask that you would fortify and guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. Enable us Lord to take hold of your word and be both hearers and doers of your word. I ask that you would set up hedges of protection around each and everyone of my brothers and sisters in Christ. And that your word would find its resting place in the good and fertile ground of our heart. Keep us Father God as only you can keep us. Help us daily to trust and believe in your word and not doubt or stray. Please Father God show yourself to mighty and strong in the lives of your people, destroying every yoke of bondage and every snare and trap that has been placed by the enemy. Help us never to place our faith and trust in man, but solely in you. Renew our minds according to your word. Your word declares that where the Spirit of God is there is liberty. I pray that your grace would never again allow anyone of us to be taken captive again to any form of bondage. We are your people Lord whom you have called and chosen. May your grace keep us in your perfect will for our lives. And I bless your name for it. You have given us the victory through Christ Jesus, now I pray you Lord, please do not let us take your grace in vain. I humbly ask Father God that you keep each and every one of us. Let none of our hearts wax cold. Help us father to walk by faith and to trust in you whole heartdly without wavering. In Jesus mighty name I pray. Amen and Amen.

  28. Belinda permalink
    January 1, 2011 4:07 pm

    I often feel lonely and sad,and sometimes wonder why. I end up blaming people in my life for not giving me enough love when i feel this way. Its new year,i am alone in bed i can hear the sound of music outside and happy people which reminds me of my loneliness,so i google about spirit of rejection which someone told me i suffer from and this comes up….i have learnt so much from the post n will save the page. My parents broke up when i was young and i lost my dad few years later. I understand why i feel this way. I have prayed the prayer may God answer it…..

  29. Catherine permalink
    February 3, 2011 10:33 am

    The Internet is quite the tool. Again, I find myself up, restless, dealing with yet another incident occupying my mind, stirring up feelings of rejection. On New Year’s Day this year, God showed me that “all those people” in my life were people I viewed as the “enemy”. Then, I realized I could hardly love them if I considered them the enemy. Ephesians Chapter 6 explains who the real enemy is. It’s not the people; it’s the enemy – Satan. Spirits work in tandem, tempting the other person to act cruelly and their responding. Then that spirit cooperates with the spirit of rejection that we’ve given way to by not cooperating with God and believing what He says. But we can’t get out from under it by ourselves. I’m on this trek, being delivered from these things through progressive revelation. I know I can’t remove the root of years of rejection. God has to do it. I can only cooperate with Him as He reveals things to me. The next thing He revealed to me one morning was that I reject myself before anyone else ever does. That was a brilliant flash of insight by the Spirit. God loved me enough to send His Son to die for me, and then to send a woman who is walking with me, who has experienced all this stuff too, and is a few steps ahead of me in my development. Keep walking forward, serving God, and striving to love others, realizing that you will have to fight the old lies for the rest of your life. The enemy wants to destroy you. Eating is another outlet for me, the gluttony of eating provides comfort for me like some might head for the bottle! Now, I have diabetes partly as a result of that sin over the years. But, the good news is that God can heal that too! He has physically healed me 4 times, He can it again….realize that God will heal you for you and for those He sends you to while you are in the process of healing and later when He has healed you more fully…..Rejection is like an immunity shot against more and to prime us to walk with others who feel rejected too. Find someone with that empty vacant expression in their eyes that comes as a result of self-rejection; vow to walk with them even if you are still in the process; point them toward Jesus even as you walk toward Him. I’m going to take my own advice. Lately, these issues have gotten worse in my life, causing me to focus on myself even while serving God in prayer and otherwise. Feel one way, but still obey God even as you are feeling these devastating feelings. The feelings come and go.

  30. Kim permalink
    February 16, 2011 9:31 am

    Awesome post. I have been praying for God to reveal to me what this feeling of darkness hovering over me has been. Within the past week…I have heard him gently whispering rejection in my ear. This morning, I decided to see if there was any guidance or direction online and I found this article. Thank you so much for posting this and I am going out today to see if I can find the book mentioned. Thank you and God bless you for being so transparent…

  31. Kevin permalink
    April 26, 2011 3:33 pm

    Thank you for these words of comfort grounded in the LordJesus’s words I’ve been struggling all my life with this issue of rejection and the subsequent problems of depression,codependency &fear.I’ve just recently through lots of prayer and study(for quite awhile) in the Lord found out that the spirit of negativity rejection and later self-rejection had become a deeply rooted stronghold inside me due to a chaotic/abusive childhoodonward ’til adulthoodand I am doing my best now -through Christ !-in prayer .supplication and asking for healing.Thank you everyone and God bless &heal.

  32. Nina permalink
    April 28, 2011 6:01 am

    Thank you for sharing. I was rejected in my mother’s womb, I found this out when I went for inner healing. She was a young mum, and alt everyone,though we love each other dearly, I always knew that something was wrong with me. I never felt loved, I was always sad, and grew up feeling rejected by just about everyone, including myself. Now that I have experienced the healing power of God’s love, I am getting to a place of love and acceptance that only He can give.

  33. devon leesley permalink
    May 15, 2011 9:12 am

    What has and still happens to me is that I’ll do all of the above to get free from this spirit then the next relationship ends up the same. The person runs from me as fast as a scalded dog. 36 years of this. Especially ‘pastors’. They feel threatenned and are envious. I do not bulldoze. In fact I try to play down the anointing and joy that is in me so they won’t have a problem. When I was preaching revivals I asked God not to anoint to much lest the ‘pastor’ feel real uncomfortable. That lasted 27 years. My wife and I threw the towel in 9 years ago and just stay home. The pain is to great. The church isn’t ready to quit enabling these men. Think Nicolaitan: control over laity.

    • Anon permalink
      September 25, 2011 3:21 pm

      Wow. That’s intense. Praying not to have the annointing so not to threaten others
      You are right. When we give it all up for Christ, our weaknesses will be used against us even more.
      It’s hard to understand why it happens to us, when we are just trying to Express God through ourselves. Bit those spirits are going to do all they can to oppress.
      I need to learn more about how this is working…and learn where it’s coming from so I can curse it at the roots.

  34. devon leesley permalink
    May 16, 2011 3:24 pm

    Another valid point. Rejection is part of the gospel. Christ is continually rejected. Paul was rejected by ‘all the churches in Asia’. If you totally sell out to Christ, killing all arrogance and worldly pursuit in the church, you will be rejected soundly by 99% of all christians. But it is imperative that we deal a death blow to the ‘spirits’ of rejection. Those are what will kill you. There is your battle, not flesh and blood, but spirits/demons. The word of God and continual vigilance in prayer and finding the heart of God are our only recourses for victory. Alone and rejected is painful for a season.. It’s not God’s will for His body but it still is the scenario for one who dares surrender all none the less. A continually crushed ‘spirit’ by it all is not.

  35. Verona permalink
    June 19, 2011 2:17 am

    As I lay between sleep,and just getting up ready for a new day at church it hit me, the issue lies behind the spirit of rejection. I constantly worried when I text people why aren’t they texting back, the don’t like me all negative things. Until it dropped in Spirit that it was actually a spirit of rejection. I’ve understood that not everyone can respond to messages when I THINK they should. Anyone battling with this should seek the Father through it and ask Him to highlight where the root is and for it to be uprooted and cut off in the name of Jesus! After too many years of carrying this thing i’m now free. Glory to God! Every area that had been affected I will now call for God to fill those ‘hollow places’ with scriptures and words of truth seeds of truth so that they grow into the Vine.

  36. July 30, 2011 12:13 am

    if you wanna learn more about rejection, check this teaching on youtube

    be bless !

  37. Provi permalink
    August 15, 2011 2:17 am

    This article really added voice to what I was trying to understand about rejection. I have suffered from rejection since I was born I believe and I have been with the Lord for 3 years now almost and He is breaking this off of me. I curse the root of it now every chance I get and God has been opening my heart to how much He loves me. Personally, I think the spirit of rejection is one of the most evil spirits to have and it took a hard experience with the Lord to know I even had it. I still don’t know where it came from. But it is a spirit people must overcome, and Jesus loves us so much. For the longest time it seems God’s been opening my heart and showing me how loved I am…and He does it over and over and over. Sometimes even after He does, the enemy is waiting right around the corner to shut the door again (or drop the phantom proverbial shoe) and I always cry, and ask God to hold the door open. Sometimes something will happen and immediately rejection wants to say “Since that happened, it’s all your fault, and God must not like you either, or He must be so mad at you too.” And that can hard or seem hard when all you truly want is to hear God speak to you, and tell people about Jesus, and walk and talk with God. It’s where I get fought the most. May God bless and heal every one who has such a spirit; it is written “They who sow in tears shall reap in joy.”

  38. June 7, 2012 3:59 am

    I salute u al in name of the lord Jesus christ after reading this article about’Dealing with rejection’i was so encouraged my mum was rejected by my father after beeing married 4 yrs.they separate n she went ahead and get married 2 another husband,my worry is that i was 2 get married with ma boyfrnd of 8yrs in relationship bt he rejectd me wen i askd a hand in marriage plz hlp me in prayerz koz i think the spirit of rejection is goining 2 brk ma lyfe and the generation 2 come

  39. January 17, 2013 4:20 am

    I know this if off topic but I’m looking into starting my own weblog and was curious what all is required to get setup? I’m assuming
    having a blog like yours would cost a pretty penny?
    I’m not very web smart so I’m not 100% sure. Any tips or advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

  40. flarewithflaircom permalink
    July 13, 2016 11:39 am

    Powerful words Mary. Even though I’m in a safe and loving family now, I still face hardships feeling wanted. I’m working through that with my therapist because i’m doing some work with chakras and I am trying to heal my root
    Chakra, which grounds me to the earth and makes me feel secure and safe and stable. And even if my life is stable and safe now, the rejection from my childhood, or back to my birth, remains with me until I heal those feelings.

  41. March 13, 2018 11:13 am

    Reblogged this on Loving God with Excellence and commented:
    Awesome Word by Chris Hayward.

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