The scale of acceptance and rejection.
by Zoe A. Choo
I was walking home and this thought came, “If I can forgive myself for not knowing what I didn’t know before I learnt it, how audacious of me to not do the same about others. I am where I am now only by the grace of God, who am I to scorn at anyone. Therefore, I am where I am now just so I can help the rest who are at where I was.” (I guess this is why pride is an abomination to God.) – *my thoughts were actually in broken English
So after that thought, I got home and continued to read You The Leader by Phil Pringle (a must-have book) and I coincidentally stopped before the part on “Acceptance”. In this segment Pastor Phil made a very good statement – “Whatever we have, we have so we can give it away. If we have a position, we don’t have it so we can exclude others. We have it so we can give it to others by including them in our world.”
Acceptance is so powerful, it falls on the other side of the scale, opposing rejection, which is equally powerful. A lot of times we overlook the gravity of this scale that occurs so commonly, even subtly – which is deadlier. I grew up facing a lot of rejection, that eventually escalated into issues like depression, low self-esteem, anger issues, extreme insecurities, etc… And with the amount of rejection I faced, I craved about just as much acceptance and I found myself doing terribly stupid things to make up for the rejection. I was very indifferent, arrogant, attention-seeking – secretly crying for approval, for acceptance (I didn’t know it at that point of time)
Here’s a very good article by C. Nathan DeWall on how largely acceptance (inclusion) and rejection (exclusion) wires our life.
REJECTION LEADS TO MISERY, DESTRUCTION AND BONDAGE.
I came to a point where I rejected everything, I rejected food, I rejected people, I rejected all I could reject but worst of all, I rejected God and I rejected myself. I found myself scribbling “NO” and “DIE” all over my books and tables at school. Soon, I was suicidal and heavy on glue sniffing.
“Exclusion (or rejection; emphasis mine) isn’t just a problem for the person who suffers it, either; it can disrupt society at large, DeWall says. People who have been excluded often lash out against others. In experiments, they give people much more hot sauce than they can stand, blast strangers with intense noise, and give destructive evaluations of prospective job candidates. Rejection can even contribute to violence. An analysis of 15 school shooters found that all but two had been socially rejected.”
Back then, I was in a cycle of defeat.
ACCEPTANCE LEADS TO HAPPINESS, SERENITY AND FREEDOM.
Life only got better when I began to accept things. First for me, was accepting Jesus and all of the goodness of life followed after and I gradually gained the courage to accept situations I cannot change, and slowly, I accepted myself as well.
Accepting myself was a major breakthrough. I realised a major factor of my a lot of my problems was because I was unable to accept myself. Unnecessary issues manifested from the impacts of rejection and some issues were instantly fixed with acceptance. We go through cycles of torment solely because we’re unable to accept ourselves, be it the way we look or the hurts we hate to admit.
Of course in life, rejections are inevitable and the difference here is how we manage it afterwards.
The good thing is we’re all given freewill, we’ve the ability to choose – power at hand, we can release acceptance and inclusion to everyone around us, whether we understand where they’re coming from or not and believe me, we aren’t the best judge. We also have the responsibility (because we’ve freewill) to deal with the rejections we face – no one is excluded from the jolts of rejection.
I guess the biggest tip (life hack) I can give with 20 years of life experience is, to accept the things you cannot change. Want to change the world with me? Accept people. We CAN change the world, one step at a time.
P.S, Here’s another thing I realised while writing this post, other than the five love languages, there are two more that speaks for themselves – acceptance and sacrifice.