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Watch 2022-2023 online sermons » Steven Furtick » Steven Furtick - God, Why Did They Reject Me?

Steven Furtick - God, Why Did They Reject Me?

Steven Furtick - God, Why Did They Reject Me?
TOPICS: Rejection

This is an excerpt from: Trapped In Nazareth

As a matter of fact, I want to help set somebody free who has been disappointed because someone rejected you. A lot of times they're not rejecting you. A lot of times what they are rejecting is something that had nothing to do with you. Sometimes they push you away because there's something pushing on the inside of them. A lot of what we experience as rejection is really just projection. It's people who have been disappointed, who have been hurt. You're thinking, "What's wrong with me? Why doesn't she appreciate me"? It's not you she doesn't appreciate. It's that she can't appreciate herself because she has not yet healed from something. Sometimes when people are pushing you away it's not even about you.

Stop being so self-centered. Stop thinking people are responding to you. People have real hurts. People have real issues. Sometimes they can't get over what happened to them to celebrate you. Will you love them anyway? Are you strong enough in God…? Is your relationship with him strong enough to know "What they say about me doesn't change who I am"? Man's denial cannot block my destiny. Jesus was still a prophet whether they knew it or not, whether they celebrated him or not, whether they rolled out a red carpet or ran him out of town. He knew who he was. Do you know who you are or do you need people to tell you who you are? If you let people tell you who you are, they'll say you're just a carpenter. They'll say you're just a single mom. They'll say you're just a teenager. They'll say you're just a divorcee. But if you know who God is you realize your life is not defined by an event.

Oh, as a matter of fact, it actually is. That event happened on a hill called Calvary when he shed his blood for me, when the precious Lamb of God looked at me through time and said, "I'll die for him". So now I know I am accepted by him. I love Jesus' tenacity. For a lot of us, if we would have been rejected in our hometown, that would have been enough to kill our mission, but what I want to show you for everybody who has been rejected or has been rejecting the grace God has been trying to give you… Sometimes you're rejecting yourself. Something good can come from Nazareth. I said something good can come from Nazareth.

I want to tell you another thing while I have you here. You don't have to stay where you started. How many praise God for that? I don't have to stay where I started. I don't have to be who I was. I don't have to be trapped in Nazareth. Now don't go home and tell your husband you're leaving like he's Nazareth. People will abuse my little sermon sometimes, take it out of context. Don't be quitting your job like it's Nazareth. You have a mortgage to pay, bro, and I need you to tithe, so keep that job. Maybe Nazareth isn't a place; maybe it's a perspective. That's where we get trapped. Not where we are but what we think about where we are. Jesus could have done it in Nazareth. They just weren't willing to receive it. Watch what he did. This is what somebody under the sound of my voice needs to do today.

I don't know why, but I feel like when I show you this it's going to help you understand how to get unstuck. Something that has been playing like it's on repeat on your playlist over and over in your mind that you can't get out of… It could be a failure. It could be a friend who left you. It could be somebody you keep trying to prove yourself to, but you're never going to prove yourself to them because they've never proved themselves to themselves. How are you going to get their approval if they don't even approve of themselves? This is what's going to help you. I never saw it before. I've preached this passage. One day I'm going to do a whole series called "I Apologize," and it's going to be all of the passages I preached and screwed up. I'm going to go back and apologize to those passages of Scripture in a whole series. This is installment one.

I apologize for stopping in verse 6, because often I would stop right here and say, "He was amazed at their lack of faith". Right there in the same verse that says he was amazed at their lack of faith, right there in that same verse where it says he was rejected by the people who should have respected him the most… Have you ever felt that way? It could be a parent. It could be a child you've done the most for. The only people who can really hurt you are the ones you really love. There's nothing like being rejected by people you expected more from and even had the right to expect more from. He should have been able to do 10 times the miracles in Nazareth. He should have been able to do much more for the people who already knew him, and that could have been enough to stop him. Soft Jesus would have stopped in Nazareth.

"Oh, I'm sorry. Y'all think I'm taking it too far? I'll tone it down. I apologize. I'm so sorry. I won't say these things anymore. I'm sorry. I won't heal anybody if y'all don't like it. I'll go back to the carpenter shop. It's cool. Just please don't make fun of me". We get so worried about rejection we miss God's next direction for our lives. The moment you understand that many of the rejections we experience are really redirections, you will no longer be trapped in Nazareth. Some of us have gotten bitter, offended. We're trapped (skandalon: to set a trap). Trapped in Nazareth. What is Nazareth? The place where people said you couldn't, the place where who was supposed to be there wasn't there, the place where you failed and you had great expectations and you disappointed them. Here's what happens next. "He was amazed at their lack of faith. Then Jesus…"

So rejection is not the end, because the next thing he did after they rejected him in Nazareth… Watch this. "…went around teaching from village to village. Calling the Twelve to him…" He has already called them to be his disciples. Now he can release them into their ministry. "Calling the Twelve to him…" God, I love your Word. Thank you for showing me this. I thought rejection meant it was over, but when I read this I realized some of our greatest blessings can only come on the other side of rejection. "…he began to send them out two by two and gave them authority over impure spirits. These were his instructions: 'Take nothing for the journey except a staff…'" Touch somebody and say, "You don't need it". Whatever you don't have, you don't need it. Whatever they didn't give you, you don't need it. Whatever they didn't say, you don't need it. Whatever wasn't put in your path, you don't need it. Don't take it with you. "Wear sandals but not an extra shirt. Whenever you enter a house, stay there until you leave that town. And if any place will not welcome you or listen to you, leave that place…"

Don't you stay trapped in Nazareth. Don't you spend the rest of your life trying to prove yourself to people. Don't you spend the rest of your life apologizing for a weak season. If they won't welcome you, if it doesn't work out there, if you can't get it right this time, leave that place. It's not an address. It's not a zip code. It's a perspective. "…and shake the dust off your feet as a testimony against them". This must be why he brought the disciples to Nazareth: he wanted to show them what to do with rejection. He knew they were not ready to be released in ministry until they had first been rejected. The road to resurrection is paved with rejection. The stone the builders rejected that the people tripped on became the chief cornerstone. Jesus had shown them how to cast out devils. Jesus had shown them how to heal the sick. Jesus had shown them how to touch lepers, but now he's showing them how to do one more thing they're going to need, and then they can be released. He had to show them how to shake it off.

Oh, I feel the spirit of Taylor Swift. He had to show them one more thing. It's not always going to go like you want it to go, and not everybody is going to see what you want them to see, and you're not always going to make the right moves, and there are going to be some mistakes, but if you will shake it off and move forward in faith… You're ready now. You failed some and you're ready now. You've hurt a lot and you're ready now. You're humbled by it. You're stronger because of it. You now know that only God can approve of you. You now know not to look to people for their validation. You're coming out of Nazareth.

Stop tripping over what people think. Stop tripping trying to get somebody to clap for you who's not even paying attention. They have their own car payment. Stop needing people to validate what you know God made you already. Those disciples went out from there and started casting out demons, taking authority, but first they had to go through rejection. First they had to go through disappointment. First they had to go to Nazareth. A 25-mile trip Jesus took the boys on, just to show them what to do when it doesn't work, just to show them that even Jesus had to be rejected. He was despised and rejected. Do you know why? So you would never have to be. You might be rejected by people, but you will never be rejected by him.
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