I Was Just Thinking About – DISMISSIVENESS.
Dismissiveness occurs and the pain of rejection is real. Should this ever occur within the Biblical Church and community of God’s redeemed people? No! Does it happen among the clergy and other religious professionals? Yes! What focus and Biblical point of view is lacking as and when this occurs? We are reminded in Romans 15:7, “Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring glory to God.” Do we always do this? No!
There are certain words on our vocabulary that are thought or used in reference to other people and what we think of them. The words include – egotist, blowhard, blunderbuss, exaggerator, or one who bloviates most of the time. Sometimes this occurs because a person is seeking attention or acceptance. At other times, it is caused by envy of another person who is being recognized even though he may not be as capable or proficient as the one who is regularly dismissed. Do we live in an unfair and unjust culture? Yes! Are people within the Church also unfair and unjust in their assessment and/or acceptance of certain people? Yes! An adage stated: “If you don’t toot your own horn, no one else will toot it for you.” Is that often the case within the Church and among professing Christians? Yes!
People deal with dismissiveness situations differently. If one senses that he is in a group of those who are dismissive of him, he may drop out and become detached from the group. He will isolate and insulate himself away from the dismissive group as he tries to avoid the pain of rejection.
An alternative behavior would find one being filled with envy. The Word of God addresses envy in James 3:13-16 (NIV), “Who is wise and understanding among you? Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast about it or deny the truth. Such wisdom does not come down from heaven but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice.”
It is conceivable that the prophet Jeremiah was subjected to and encountered dismissiveness often. This can be gleaned from excerpts in Jeremiah 9:4-6, 23-24 where the Lord is speaking and summarizes (ESV), “Let everyone beware of his neighbor, and put no trust in any brother, for every brother is a deceiver, and every neighbor goes about as a slanderer. Everyone deceives his neighbor, and no one speaks the truth; they have taught their tongue to speak lies; they weary themselves committing iniquity. Heaping oppression upon oppression, and deceit upon deceit, they refuse to know me, declares the Lord…Thus says the Lord: Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches, but let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the Lord who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth. For in these things I delight, declares the Lord.”
Prayerfully – consider these things with me!