Today's Scripture Reading: Isaiah 49:1-7
Key Verse from today's reading: Isaiah 49:7, "The LORD, redeemer of Israel and its holy one, says to one despised, rejected by nations, to the slave of rulers: Kings will see and stand up; commanders will bow down on account of the LORD, who is faithful, the holy one of Israel, who has chosen you."
Rejection is one human emotion that will make just about everyone cringe.
You can always put yourself in the person's place.
This is embarrassing for many reasons - I would hate to be that guy but on the other hand, I wouldn't like to be his girlfriend either. The announcers seem at a loss for words as well. How would you like to be consoled by the Rockets' mascot on national television?
When we are rejected and have misread a situation (blind-sided), it seems worse somehow. I was blind-sided twice in long-term relationships before I met Sheryl and these experiences can affect your ability to trust.
Isaiah writes about a role-reversal for the suffering servant. The rejected becomes the acclaimed. This could be seen as Israel who may have felt rejected by God during the period of exile in Babylon. Later, Christian interpretation sees how it also describes what Jesus went through from the priestly and Roman authorities. He is crucified but then exalted.
As we consider the rejection of Jesus and how he even felt rejected by God, any attempt at comparison (see video above) will really be found lacking. And yet when we experience pain - especially by those we love, it is extremely real to us at the time.
As we remember our doctrine of the Trinity, we understand that God also experienced this rejection. Our faith reminds us that God remains with us even when we don't sense God's presence.
One thing that is also true for humanity: shared pain is easier to endure.
When you are hurting, it is good to remind yourself that God hurts with you.
Holy Spirit, stay with me.
Holy Spirit, heal through me.