Oh lovelies, today I come to you with such an open heart as I am prepared to dive into talking about a topic that is SO relevant and crazy near to my heart right now… that is the topic of rejection, and specifically rejection in heartbreak. This is a subject I have been praying about sharing for some time, but only recently have felt peace to share it with you all. Oh goodness do I ever KNOW that this is a topic filled with SO many amazing learnings, but also simultaneously so many painful feelings and emotions. In saying that I am ready to talk about this topic, I also want to make it known that I plan to start small and work my way up to sharing more with you all as I continue to navigate these waters finding myself in a season of actual, true heartbreak.
THE HEART OF THE MATTER
So let’s dive right in and talk about the “heart” of the matter when it comes to heartbreak [ha, get it?!]. The reality is that the majority of us have all found ourselves in a season of heartbreak at some point or another. It is no exaggeration to say that when heartbreak hits, a waterfall of emotions, feelings, and thoughts come pouring over us… usually in the form of rejection. For a moment heartbreak becomes Niagra Falls and our hearts feel like they are drowning, trying to stay afloat amidst all the painful thoughts and realities that come along with rejection. To that point, I want to ask you a few questions about any heartbreak you have experienced in the past. I urge you to be painfully honest with yourself as you reflect on past thoughts and reflexes you may have had during a season of heartbreak.
When you were last dealing with heartbreak, how often did you find yourself thinking the following?
I must not be lovable.
I am never going to find someone else.
I must be too much for that person to handle or accept.
If only I had done x, y, z differently, it wouldn’t have ended this way.
Maybe I am not capable of being in relationship.
Is must be because I am not attractive enough, interesting enough, smart enough, funny enough, ____ enough.
OOOOOF. These potential thoughts haunt me, because I know for a fact I have experienced and fought against these exact statements in my mind, and I am almost certain that many of you reading this who have gone through heartbreak can relate to at least one of those potential dooming thoughts. So, what do all of these thoughts have in common? They feed into the deep dark place of rejection: a dark space that corrupts our hope and replaces truths with hopeless lies saying that God doesn’t really have a good plan for us. Rejection is such an easy default as a result of heartbreak, because it allows OLD lies of ourselves to resurface and take hold. Instead of having peace, we start to have panic. Instead of speaking truth and love to ourselves, we fill our mind with negative self talk and lies of insufficiency.
But alas my friends, I come here today to let you know that there is hope even in the rough , suffocating waters of rejection and heartbreak!
Now I must transition into a brief story time so you can understand why I have any authority at all to talk about rejection as redirection.
You may remember some past posts of mine I did earlier this year talking about the lovely subject of dating. They were titled “Dating the Struggle is Real” and were meant to showcase how dating can be CRAZY HARD, but also beautiful if done with correct intent. You can go back to read part one, two and three if you’d like a refresher on my insightful thoughts on dating. 😉 After putting these posts about the struggles and challenges of dating into the universe, it was far too ironic to me that I actually entered into a relationship with a man soon after! Oh God has such a funny sense of timing, doesn’t he?! Soon after entering into relationship, I then wrote another blog post on “Dating the Struggle is NO Longer Real“…HA! I also followed it up with a post month or so later about “Love: More than a Feeling ” because clearly I was over the moon in love with this man. Last, but certainly not least, this past spring I spoke at my Church conference on the topic of “How to Date Well in Los Angeles” alongside my friend, Ted Chen. You can listen to the podcast from Vintage Church LA HERE.
Alas, if you did not get the memo, I am extremely passionate about dating. But not just dating… dating correctly, and lovingly with an open mind and a protected heart.
All of that to say, this past summer I dated a phenomenal human being whom I also thought I was absolutely, undoubtedly going to marry. The relationship truly was kind, caring, thoughtful, soooo loving, ridiculously fun and filled with immense amounts of beautiful communication and a desire to encourage one another wholly in Christ. It really and truly was such a gorgeous picture of Jesus’s love for us exemplified through relationship. Gosh, even just writing that still makes my heart flutter a bit. I would LOVE to talk more about this relationship at a later date when my heart has processed even more, but today I want to get REAL and talk about the hardest part of these last 2 months or so: heartbreak.
When this immensely great relationship ended, I found myself fighting against the thoughts of rejection with ALL of my might. After all, I was planning on marrying this man so to have it end so suddenly felt like my entire world was crashing down. Sound familiar to anyone? Alas, the first step to seeking right-minded thinking occurred right before our breakup where we actually took a week long fast from one another to seek clarity and truth from the Lord. I am SUCH a believer that fasting in a time of confusion is so incredibly beneficial for seeking true clarity, truth, and wisdom. Fasting can absolutely be with food, but it can also be with things, situations, and people. With just about any situation, when you are sooooo close to it, sometimes it can actually become harder to truly and clearly see the realities right in front of you. Stepping away to seek true clarity can be SO incredibly beautiful, wise, heart-changing and eye-opening. Jesus taught me so much in that week long separation, including many ways to build myself up in defense if in fact I did find the winds of rejection blowing towards me at the end of the fast. It was in this time that I truly prepared my heart for a truth that I so longed to accept with my whole being.
Instead of seeing heartbreak as rejection, I needed to see it as PROTECTION. Or, even better, REDIRECTION.
It is so hard to exactly emphasize allllll of the beautiful realizations I learned during that week of fasting, but to give you as clear of a picture as possible I have decided to share with you some clips from my journal that week. In these notes, it was my sole goal to promote positive self talk and TRUTH in a season of confusion. Because let’s face it, sometimes we have to pep talk ourselves into truth so that our minds and hearts can be aligned!
Kait’s Journal entry:
“How to Respond in Truth IF Rejection Hits”
“It is not that you are not good enough. You are perfectly crafted, a daughter of the most High. God’s love and plans for you supersede this rejection.”
“If this is what you thought God’s best was, then that means his TRUE best is going to BLOW YOUR FLIPPING MIND!!!”
“God is setting you a PART for something Greater. Believe that.”
“This rejection does not mean this man does not love you. He does. DO NOT allow those thoughts to come crawling in.. you know his heart and his heart is good.”
“You know that in the end you are so deserving of love.”
As you read these words right now, do you truly believe these truths about yourself and the plans for your future? I want you to understand that just because a relationship in your life did not turn out the way you expected, it does NOT mean that there is no hope for the future. It does NOT mean that you are unlovable or unlikeable or any less lovely. It does NOT mean that this was the only person that would ever be “it” for you, and since they are gone the hope of future marriage is now gone too. It does NOT mean that you are less than and need to settle for something that is less than amazing because that is all you deserve. It does NOT mean that you are a complete failure. It does NOT mean that you and your past are too much for someone. It does NOT mean that you you will never be worthy of love. Again I ask, do you believe me right now as I write these words?
My favorite part about my journal entries from that week of fasting other than documenting these truths to myself, was also writing down a prayer that was guided by the amazing book, Uninvited, by Lysa Terkeurst. I meditated, prayed on, and held TRUE to this prayer throughout this week of fasting to really work to transform my heart’s ability to turn rejection into a comfort of redirection.
“Lord, I may not understand this situation. But I DO understand Your goodness for me. I hold fast to the promises You have for my life. Though it is hard, I thank you for the protection that is in this rejection even when I am blind to it. With my whole heart I trust in Your plan over my own.”
Though the break up was beyond confusing to me, and some days still is, I can confidently say that every single day I hold fast and strong to the TRUTH that God’s promise for my life, and for ALL of our lives, is so infinitely better than anything we could ever craft on our own accord. And that my dear friends allows me to power walk with my head held high through each day with an air of confidence holding onto a renewed hope that exists in Christ alone.
Friends, the truth of the matter is that rejection is so incredibly difficult when it hits you in the face like a ton of bricks. It can sometimes catch us completely off guard, “Oh hello giant cement wall that I just ran into, I didn’t see you there!”. However, the point of this blog post today is to really encourage you that if you are going through a season of heartbreak and rejection either right now, if you are healing from a past hurt, or if you desire insight on how to better prepare for future heartbreaks… there is a way to re-train your default settings out of rejection and into the TRUTH and the hopeful realization of redirection that can be found in the promises of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Instead of seeing your rejection in heartbreak as a means to showcase your insufficiency and promote negative self talk, I want to encourage you with some truths about the beauty of being redirected through rejection. Believe it or not, being rejected can actually bring about a beautiful new season in your life that is filled with so much hope and comfort! Take it from me, I have NEVER learned so much as I have in these last two months, and this same opportunity for growth, and comfort, and overfilling love is available to you too!
THE REALITIES ABOUT REJECTION AS REDIRECTION
-It may be protection from something you would have never ended if it was your decision to make. Whether or not you want to admit it, you have blind spots that sometimes will never be addressed when your heart is entangled in love.
-God is near to the brokenhearted, let Him comfort you. This is a time to draw nearer to Him and experience the fullness of God’s love.
-You are being set a PART for something greater. Instead of defaulting to feeling left out and being set aside, you must rock your view and believe that instead you are being set a PART for a journey that is far more amazing than you could ever hope, dream, or imagine!
-There is no point to focus on the WHY it happened. You will spiral into a downward abyss trying to understand something that God wants you to surrender. Instead, focus on the WHAT you are going to do to move forward!
-It is time to live in expectation knowing that God is making room for something even MORE beautiful to be invited into your life! Believe in this truth. His plans are beautiful, and altogether perfect.
-The painful wound you are feeling now will one day heal and be used as a proud scar. This redemption from this pain will be used to heal many around you. YOU can be the example!
-The extra time you now have after this rejection can be used to learn even more about YOURSELF and the intricacies of your own heart.
-This heartbreak is not long term, it is merely a season… meaning “this too really SHALL pass!”.
-If you embrace it fully, this season can actually help you to appreciate so much more around you thus allowing you to step into a new level of JOY you have yet to experience before!
YOU CAN DO IT!
At the end of the day my loves, YOU are in charge of your healing. Yes, YOU! The more you spend your time focusing on the lies that come with heartbreak, the more you will continue to drown under the Niagara Falls of these emotions, prisoner to the overwhelming feelings of rejection. That is why I encourage you to face this season head on. Embrace it fully with open arms expectant for heart change, hope and healing to come! Do not try to rush the process of healing, just know that you are in charge of it and can every day consciously make steps forward. Take your time, but embrace TRUTH and a renewed hope for the future in the process.
Why should you believe me at all? Well, though I have not been perfect along this journey of recovery, I can promise you that in the last 2+ months of healing from this heart break I have never seen so much tangible change happen in my life. While it certainly has been anything short of easy or uneventful, it has also been simultaneously so growing, so life-giving, so sweet and loving, so challenging [in the best ways possible], so eye opening, so heart changing, and so fruitful. These past few months I have grown to love myself on a whole new level as I continuously say a big fat “HECK NO!” to all the thoughts of “not enough”. Not only that, but I have also grown to experience God’s perfect love for me in deeper, more intimate ways unlike ever before. It is crazy how sometimes the seasons of the most pain and hardship can often produce the biggest, most beautiful fruits, isn’t it?
Though I wouldn’t voluntarily choose to go through the heartbreak again, I can honestly say that the output has been beautiful and in many ways so incredibly necessary for my story. One thing is for certain, heartbreak is painful, but the output of what happens after heartbreak is in your hands. I hope and pray this blog post has encouraged you in some way, shape, or form to empower you to reclaim your self worth, self love, and positive headspace with your eyes fixed toward a hopeful future…. God’s perfect plan for you! Though it is in no way an easy process, I want you to know that I BELIEVE IN YOU and am right here beside you…. tissue box, chocolate, hugs, and prayers galore my dearest friend. You can do this!
“Heal my heart and make it clean, open my eyes to the things unseen” -Hillsong United
“You are altogether beautiful, my darling; there is NO flaw in you.” Song of Solomon 4:7
*a huge thank you to the book Uninvited, by Lysa Terkeurst that played a pivotal role in inspiring this post, and encouraging me in my process of healing from heartbreak.
Photos by Stefanie Marie