- Do you ever feel unappreciated or insignificant?
- Do you ever feel excluded or like you or an outsider?
- Do you ever wish that others would value what you have to say based on your experience, field of study, background or simply because of your relationship?
- Do you ever feel dissapointed by a family or friend’s response?
- Do you ever feel alone even amongst friends?
Maybe it’s just me. But I highly doubt it. Don’t we all want to feel loved, appreciated and/or respected? Afterall, these are normal God-given human desires. Yet, so easily these desire turn into idols when we don’t receive the love we crave and in the manner we want it.
How then do we handle lonliness, disappointment, exclusion and feeling unappreciated without it ruling us? Without demanding or maniputing to get it? Without spiraling down into depression and self-pity?
The short answer: Jesus.
I know that sounds like a simple Sunday school answer that does nothing to assuage our aching hearts. But this is where the rubber meets the road as far as applying the gospel to everyday life and situations.
When I focus on how my needs and desires aren’t being met, I will be disappointed every time. When I see who Jesus is for me and how he meets my every need, my mind will begin to be transformed. I will begin to be okay even when others fail me or don’t love me the way I desire.
And here is why: Jesus knows what I am going through. Jesus felt the same way. He knows what it’s like to be rejected, ignored, dismissed, disappointed – even by friends and family. He knows what it is like to be alone – even forsaken by His Father.
We are told in Hebrews that “He had to be make like his brothers in every respect, so that He might become a merciful and faithful high priest…to make propitiation for the sins of the people.”
Jesus had to be made man so that He could identify with us in every way. Though He was always fully God, He was just as fully man and felt deeply all the human pain that we experience.
Not only that – He willingly endured being misunderstood, mocked and mangled, experiencing the ultimate rejection for the “joy set before Him.” The joy of reconciling His children to God!
Because He took our sin to the cross, we were made friends of God. Now we don’t ever have to be separated from His love. And only His love is perfect. Only He will never disappoint or fail us.
This may sound crazy, but just in setting my mind here, on this – the gospel, His love and knowing He knows my every need and desire and meets me in it – brings me out of the pit. These truths saturate my mind and lifts it up to Him in His grace and mercy and off of my own self.
I praise you, Jesus, that because you suffered for me, my salvation was made perfect. That you fulfilled my greatest need and therefore I can rest in your love and be okay even when my other desires are left unmet.
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