Thursday, September 15, 2016

Rejection is NO Match For God

Rejection is NO Match For God                   

Our son, Shannon, was twelve years old when he decided he wanted to attend the U.S. Naval Academy after high school graduation. We told him that if that were to happen, he’d need to maintain outstanding grades all through school.   
Bill the Goat - USNA Mascot

Time sped by and as graduation approached, Shannon had exceeded the criteria for acceptance in most any college or university—even earning the title of valedictorian of his graduating class. Also he was a well-rounded candidate with accolades in sports, choir, and leadership—among which student body president.

It appeared he was well on his way to fulfilling his dream of receiving an appointment to the USNA. 

Our son had worked hard, spending much time during his junior year of high school, filling out numerous forms, writing essays, and sending his credentials to our congressman, senator and the vice president of the United States.
Time moved on and the long anticipated letter from The Academy arrived in the mail. I carried the letter up to Shannon’s room and handed it over as he sat on his bed. 

I held my breath as he opened it, anticipating what we hoped would be would be sensational news. I watched while he read silently. He lowered the letter, stared straight ahead and said, “I’ve been rejected.”

I was stunned. Of course we all knew this was a possibility. But knowing he’d worked so hard and that he’d met all the qualifications with flying colors, this was a hard pill to swallow. And we’d prayed. We’d prayed for God’s will. So—maybe, for our son, being a midshipman was not God’s will. 

I asked Shannon to let me see the letter. I read every word. He’d been rejected because of three medical issues—vision correction, a functional heart murmur, and blood in his urine. (The latter two had been diagnosed during medical exams specifically for his USNA application. In all his years of medical exams, sports injuries, etc. these issues had never been detected.) 

I flipped the letter over and read small print at the bottom. Here I discovered an obscure statement that brought a ray of light through the dark cloud which hovered over my son’s head and heart.

I looked at Shannon and said, “It says here that if you want, you may request a medical waiver for any condition. If a waiver is granted, admission is possible. Do you want to do this?”

“Yes, ma’am.” 

Slowly nodding, I said, “Okay,” and prayed silently.

I looked into my son’s eyes and boldly declared, “Shannon, we’ll request three medical wavers, and if God wants you to go to the Naval Academy, all the devils in Hell will not stop you!”

He agreed and got onto the task of requesting three wavers.

Again, we waited—confidently knowing that if God wanted Shannon to be a midshipman, all the devils in hell would not get in the way. We prepared ourselves for the answer to be yea or nay. 

The year and a half long arduous application process finally bore a final answer when Shannon received a congratulations letter, welcoming him into the United States Naval Academy Class of 92. 

I-Day for Plebes (Internet photo)
His dream came true and in July 1988, he became a lowly plebe, setting sail to begin a twenty-four year exciting and honorable military career—even including being an aviator in fighter jets—fulfilling his greatest military aspiration.

Here again, God slew a giant for His child and all the devils in Hell couldn’t stop Him.

Shannon's retirement "Fini Flight"*

You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world (1 John 4:4).

Are you holding a letter of rejection? Or are you up against a wall of rejection? 

Go about the business of perusing your dream if you believe God put it in your heart. Trust God, knowing that if it’s His will and you’re doing your part, all the devils in Hell won’t stop you.  

Your comments are welcome. 

Be encouraged by this song: “God Will Make A Way”

©Connie Wohlford 2016

*Some of you observant folks may notice that, in the photo, Shannon is wearing an Air Force uniform--not a Navy uniform. That's because ten years into his career he transitioned from Navy to Air Force, switching from the Tomcat F-14 to the Strike Eagle F-15.  


  1. What an encouraging story! We can't give up easily, can we? Keep working toward that dream God's planted in your heart. I will do that!!

    Heather Bock

    1. No, we can't, Heather. God puts dreams in our hearts to serve His own purposes.
      Thanks for stopping by.

  2. ng! This was incredibly encouraging and timely.


    1. Thank you, Joe. I believe part of your comment is missing but I'm so glad you found this post encouraging. God really does want to give us the desires of our hearts.

  3. What an awesome story of God's love and power. And way to go Shannon

    1. Thanks, Lisa. I'm so glad Shannon decided to push through and not give up. We're proud of his many accomplishments.

  4. I had forgotten about all of this until now. This was a wonderful story and example of how, with God's help, we are able to overcome rejection and disappointments in life. Thank you so much for sharing.

    1. Amen, Barbara. Thanks so much for stopping in and for your comment.

  5. Replies
    1. You're welcome, Paige, and thank you for stopping in and commenting.

  6. What a wonderful story, Connie! What a wonderful Mom you are, to search out the fine print and to encourage Shannon to pursue his dream. God answered your prayer to give Shannon His best, whether that be at USNA or another place of service.

    1. Thank you, Sherry. We moms will go the extra mile for our youngens, especially when we get the nudge from the Holy Spirit. I do believe I even had a special anointing at the moment of our conversation. God knows.