This is the time of year when seniors everywhere have one foot in high school and one foot in the future. Some of you may even know what it’s like to get a rejection letter from a college that you’ve applied to. Nobody likes disappointment, yet it’s a part of life—particularly as you get older and parents aren’t able to shield you from pain or rejection.
One senior who was rejected from the freshman class of Duke University decided to take action and funnel her disappointment into a response. Let’s take a look at what she wrote:
Share this article with your students:
“17-year-old rejects Duke’s rejection letter”
When you finish reading her letter, discuss the following questions:
- Obviously, this was a satirical response to her rejection. But why do you think it resonated with so many people? (Answers may vary: Often we feel like we’re at the mercy of an admissions committee or someone else—people we don’t even know are making decisions about our future. We sometimes imagine a fantasy world where we have the upper hand, able to choose our own outcomes.)
- Describe a situation where you felt deep disappointment. What happened? (Let students share openly.)
- How does our perspective change once some time passes? (Often our initial disappointments are replaced by acceptance—and then time reveals things we couldn’t see at first.)
There is no question that we will feel disappointment in life. But with our sadness comes the realization that our heavenly Father cannot and does not leave us in distress or trouble. He is eternally trustworthy. One particular young man had every reason to be disappointed in some horrible events that happened to him and his family. But as we’ll find out, God knew what He was doing all along.