On the outside looking in

By Dave Henning / April 14, 2014

“And for her (Sarai’s) sake he(Pharaoh) dealt well with Abram, and he had sheep, oxen, male donkeys, male servants, female servants (Hagar), female donkeys, and camels.”-Genesis 12:16

Anne Graham Lotz begins Chapter 1 (“Loved by God on the Periphery”) of Wounded by God’s People by recalling a very painful church memory that occurred many years ago.  The memory recently resurfaced when she stopped for a red light located in front of her former church!

On that long ago painful Sunday, her husband Danny had been voted out of a strategic leadership position during a Sunday morning “worship service” by a 3 to 1 margin.  The congregation applauded as the vote was announced.  Suddenly, Danny and Anne felt as if they were on the outside of God’s inner circle.  Anne emphasizes that one’s response to such rejection is critical:

“Rejection, disapproval, or abuse by God’s people can be devastating because if you and I are not careful, we may confuse God’s people with God. And God’s people don’t always act like God’s people should.  The way you and I handle being rejected and wounded is critical.  Our response can lead to healing . . . or to even more hurt.”

Hagar found herself living life on the periphery with little status (note her placement on the list of Abram’s gifts from Pharaoh).  In her pain, she became a wounder, thereby deepening her own wounds.  Just like Hagar, we may feel that we can’t take it anymore following our ministry downsizing or vocation loss.  But God loved Hara- and He loves us!

Today’s question: How have you been intentional in affirming God’s love following your vocation loss?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: the new Short Meditation, Ultimate threat/Ultimate hope”

About the author

Dave Henning

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