If you’ve read the bible, you will find that God loves stories. You will find that He often speaks in parables. Jesus, who was representing the heavenly father, often spoke in parables. The reason God speaks in parables is to hide things FOR you, not FROM you.
In each parable, a – gem, a ruby, a diamond – is hidden. God hides it in parables because He knows you know there is precious stuff in the parable and you will find a way to mine the gold out of it. As the bible says,
“It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honor of kings is to search out a matter – Prov 25:2 KJV”
Well, you are a child of God? You are royalty. Search it out.
If that gem is hidden in plain sight, any “fool” will – harvest it, trash it, kick it, waste it, misuse it, abuse it – because they don’t know the true value. They won’t appreciate it. That’s why, we don’t throw a pearl at a swine (pigs) because they will trample on it (Mt 7:6 KJV).
Rejection is one such Parables.
Apart from either giving you a thick skin or killing your desire to “follow” your dream, rejection is a parable that hides something FOR you. Consider these stories. You may have walked in their shoes at some point:
Walt Disney worked for a Newspaper company. He got fired for not being creative enough. Not creative enough? Yes! His editor said, “He lacks imagination and good ideas.” Good ridance! Disney then decided to be a bit creative. He created the Mickey Mouse character which was rejected by several companies for being too scary for women. For being too scary for women? Surprisingly, yes. Are we talking about the same Mickey Mouse?
Yes, we are. Not only that, his story, “The Three Little Pigs” got rejected for having just four characters. Yes, that famous story which grandma Hilda read to us every night before bed. Even though bad luck or rather, bad times, seemed to have it in for Mr. Disney, we all know what he turned out to be—a creative genius and the Founder of the Disney Company.
What about Albert Einstein, the genius? Heck, by now, who doesn’t know his story? He did not have a great start in life. Life gave him the hand. He uttered his first words as a child at the age of 4. If you know anything about infancy, then you can see why uttering his first word at the age of 4 was problem. Just a few years after that, while in Elementary school, his teacher said he was lazy and asked abstract questions that made no sense. So, his abstract questions were a problem? Really? Well, I wonder what those “abstract” questions were about.
Oprah Winfrey worked as a News Reporter before becoming the Oprah Winfrey we know and see on TV. She too got the hand! She got fired as a News reporter because she could not separate her emotions from her stories. Really? She could not separate her “emotions from stories?” She was also fired from the producer of Baltimore’s WJZ-TV. Now, that she is a big deal, I wonder just WHAT drew hundreds of millions of people to the stories on the Oprah Winfrey Show and her network—OWN.
We have been blessed with classic movies like ET-the extra-terrestrial, The Blues Brothers, Indiana Jones, Jurassic Park, Men in Black…all directed by Steven Spielberg. But, did you know he was rejected from the University of Southern California School of Theater, Film, and Television, 3 times? Yep! He did subsequently enroll and drop out from another college to begin directing. He first heard, “Cut” when he read that rejection letter before he started saying “Cut” as a director of iconic movies. Ironic isn’t it? He entered great success and completed his BA in 2002 in his later years, after creating several hits.
Are you detecting a pattern already?
Jerry Seinfeld, a young actor was fired after a poor performance on a minor role on the sitcom – Benson. J.K Rowling, the author of Harry Porter, was rejected by 12 different publishers. One of them even advised her not to quit her day job as if to say, she was probably not going to make it.
The fab four, a local band from Liverpool, arrived in London on New Year’s Eve 1961, to audition for a record label the following day. They showcased their work, playing about fifteen songs. But the man, who invited them to audition was unimpressed and his statement about them has been quoted for decades. He said, “We don’t like their sound. Groups of guitars were on their way out.” Not long after that meeting, the Beatles became world famous. Seems what Mother Mary said to them worked. They “Let it Be” and it became.
Before I land this star fleet, let me share brief stories.
The biblical character Joseph was rejected by his brothers for his silly dreams and his interpretations about them. turns out that skill of interpreting silly dreams got him elected as Viceroy, second to Pharaoh.
Moses, the biblical character, was a stutterer. In fact, at the burning bush, he told God he stuttered. Funny thing – God was made he said it even though it was true. Long story short, with his mouth he spoke to Pharaoh, led Israel out of Egypt. At the end of his life, he was an orator.
We could go on and on, naming great icons who were rejected like Madonna, Stephen King, Marilyn Monroe, Thomas Edison, Vincent Van Gogh, Michael Bloomberg, Lady Gaga…and yes, last but not least, the One and Only J.C – Jesus Christ.
Finally, and curiously, me. I flunked English three times on a national exam for three straight years. Writing was a cheesecake dream. Well, I have a long way to go but its interesting that other people felt I write well and should think of publishing a book.
What Rejection Hides FOR You
Did you catch the pattern?
After examining closely what was said in each case above, I find that
The above mentioned visionaries were rejected for the very thing, that as it turns out, separated them from the group and the thing for which they became successful.
So, if after examining the words, phrases, and statements that were given you to sooth the rejection, you find it was no fault of your own, then the only other explanation left is this:
The dignity and beauty of the subtleties in your style, manner, craft for which you were rejected, points to the undiscerned and untapped potential that is bound to slightly set YOU and your talent aside from the crowd.
This is what rejection hides FOR you.
Rejection hides the gem, the unique subtlety, subtle thing, or subtle expression that sets you and your talent apart from everyone else and gives you edge.
So, the more you fail to make the cut, the closer you are to understanding that subtlety in you. Become aware of it. Refine it. Celebrate it.
Who knows? You just may be the breath of fresh air that brings innovation into a certain organization or takes our generation or the next into another phase of fresh tastes and ingenuity. You just might be the one we are waiting for.
Walt Disney was indeed incredibly creative, but not in the standardized or systematized version the editor was used to or expecting.
Oprah was a great news reporter. Too much emotion was foreign to her editor. But, as it turns out, it is that unique expression in connecting so deeply with individual stories that gained Oprah a large audience.
Lastly, Albert Einstein was considered dumb for not speaking till he was four and considered lazy because he reflected too much and asked “abstract questions.” But tell me, what is normal about the formula E=MC2 and quantum physics? The last time I checked, these are still “abstract ideas” with great scientific applications which require severe reflection and abstract questioning. It is precisely these abstract questions that created room for Einstein, through his exploration and experiments, to become a sage in the world of Science.
So, each time you are rejected, absorb the emotional upper cut and cry! Then, relax and think. Examine what was said carefully. Find the subtlety: it is the gem. Though it may be difficult to find, remember that in life, we must dig for gold and diamonds. So, infiltrate the parable and secure the treasure of wisdom.
If you are afraid of rejection or trying to avoid rejection, you just might be missing out on discovering the extra spice God put in you to set you apart from everyone else and boost your circle of competence so that you can live or take your dream to another level. After all, its our unique gifts, talents, and skills that makes space for you, isn’t it?
Rejection is just one price we have to pay for – going after our dreams or following our passion. So, on behalf of visionaries everywhere who are grinding and hustling:
Welcome to the club, trooper!
Congratulations Rejected One! You have been selected to continue on the diplomatic path to greatness. We ask that you remember just this one rule:
Life is not full of surprises: YOU ARE!
One Love, One Spirit
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