Ongoing Rejection and Self-Worth

Your self-image has been greatly shaped predominantly by the messages you received and internalised from others, from your experiences, and from your own self-talk. When you were a child, you did not have control of those in authority over you, but since you are an adult, that is no longer the case. 

The deepest form of rejection normally comes from experiences during childhood. A young newly married woman’s childhood rejection was a seemingly impossible obstacle to overcome, at least as most people would view her life. Even though she had overcome much of her childhood pain, when her father died, some of the painful feelings of rejection and worthlessness resurfaced.

Upon hearing of her father’s death, she and her husband drove 500 kilometers for his funeral. She signed the registry as his daughter and was stunned when the funeral director informed her that he had no children! The director insisted that her presence would upset the family, and she was turned away from the funeral home. Later, her aunt called to ask that she not attend the funeral since the obituary had read “no children” and there would be discomfort for other family members if she appeared. Her father, even in death, had stung her with yet another rejection – but this one delivered an even greater blow. She said, “My father’s death ended all earthly ties with my relatives.”

However, she did not lose her new sense of worth because of her father’s rejection. She previously went to a Christian counsellor, who helped her to work through the trauma of all the rejection and self-image hurt. She learned how to handle it when some kind of rejection coming her way in future. She also learned the truth and knew the Lord would always love her … the Lord had compassion toward her … the Lord would always be faithful to her. That was His promise of hope.

“I remember my affliction and my wandering, the bitterness and the gall. I well remember them, and my soul is downcast within me. Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope. Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.” (Lamentations 3:19–22)