I was definitely intrigued when I heard about Lysa TerKeurst’s latest book Uninvited: Living Loved When You Feel Less Than, Left Out, and Lonely. As someone who’s experienced rejection more times than I can count, I felt drawn to this book like a bee to honey. After reading through the book, I have to say that as a whole, there are a great many blessings that can be gained from reading it.
I related to most of the stories shared here. There’s an overall sense of reassurance throughout the book that would definitely comfort the reader like chocolate after a breakup. The fist chapter invites the reader to be honest with themselves, which is always a great first step when dealing with rejection. I loved the chapters that ended with prayers. The prayers are sincere petition prayers that anyone can relate to and pray when they are dealing with the burdens of rejection and heartbreak.
Lysa also delves into what makes rejection hurt so much: So many people have trust issues, emotional insecurity, and rejection shakes us out of the safety net that we make for ourselves. The overall theme of this book is to root our trust in God and find that emotional security with him. I really need to introduce her to Saint Faustina because Faustina is one of the best examples of trusting in Jesus in spite of everything else.
The best thing about this book is that it teaches the reader that we can all learn from rejection. Each experience we have from rejection can teach us something for the future for whenever we deal with rejection again or point us towards something that leads us to acceptance. The book embraces the virtue of humility really well. Not only does this book help give the reader assurance when it comes to dealing with rejection, but it also provides an opportunity for the reader to improve on themselves with sections on self-assessment.
One major con was something I found in the 2nd chapter. There’s a section that quotes a few verses and brings attention to the promises within those verses, tying them around a common theme:
When we abide, delight, and dwell in Him, he then places within us desires that line up with His best desire for us.
Yes, that I can agree with. When we spend time with God, our hearts are made more like His. However, I did not agree with the sentence that followed afterwards:
Therefore, He can give us whatever we ask, because we will only want what’s consistent with His best.
Um. No. That’s not how it works. God can’t just give us whatever we ask because we think it will be consistent with His best. His best is not always what we want. With every Our Father, we pray “Thy will be done.”
I also didn’t relate to the story about the lady in the gym that Lysa was convinced hated her. Granted, I’m usually someone who always thinks the best of most people. I loved the testimonies shared in the book, but I seriously wanted this book to go deeper than just the everyday rejections we deal with.
It’s so sad that Protestants often forego to look into the lives of the saints because I can list five saints right off the bat who suffered through rejection and still found their true purpose in Christ:
- Saint Gemma Galgani: rejected from the Passionists because of her spinal health issues, yet received stigmata and fought many battles against Satan.
- Saint Joseph of Cupertino: seen as stupid and dumb because he was in constant awe at anything relating to Jesus and the church. Later was given the gift of flight and is the patron saint of test-takers.
- Saint Thomas Aquinas: Chose a religious order that wasn’t trendy and his family didn’t support him going into religious life. He’s now regarded as a Doctor of the Church and his writings are worth their weight in gold.
- Saint Faustina: Social outcast, even amongst her fellow sisters, and yet her devotion to Divine Mercy is now one of the most popular and wonderful devotions in the Catholic Church.
- St. Jane Frances de Chantal: Had to deal with a marriage that she didn’t exactly want and made the most of it. Later went on to be the foundress of the Visitation Sisters
Of course, we can’t forget saints who also tended to the outcasts of society such as Saint Francis, St. Damian of Molokai and St. Marianne Cope, St. Mother Teresa, etc. I understand that the target audience for this book is the everywoman who feels like she’s never doing enough or never feels like she is enough, but I would’ve loved to have seen some things about actual social outcasts: people who deal with all sorts of identity issues.
Overall, I recommend this book to women who are seeking emotional reassurance in their lives. Again, this book doesn’t go deep, but it provides a sense of comfort to those who are seeking it.