What does it mean to alwaysRISE? The word RISE in an acronym, and stands for the following process:
I-invite God’s forgiveness
S-silence the condemnation
E-emerge stronger and wiser
It really is an elemental roadmap of the Christian life but unfortunately not always practiced in all reality. Needless suffering becomes the mantra of our lives when we don’t do the basic things that will release us into a much more satisfying and peaceful existence. It is becoming consumed with our own wants and needs, self-centered in our life style, replacing the long-term benefits of our faith with short term sinful greed that inevitably will end in our pain and loss. Specifically, to RISE is the steps which I have put into practice that are essential to overcoming my failings and growing and maturing into who God has always intended me to be.
Now, don’t be deceived into thinking that these steps are so basic they are pretty much a no-brainer. Why? Because we all have something or many things in our lives that we refuse to confess to and learn from. The reality of it is this, without a regular diet of repentance, receiving forgiveness, putting a chokehold on condemnation, and learning from our experiences, we are doomed to repeat our mistakes and failures. Period! And I know this because I have been that man, disregarding the importance of the complete process, cutting out one or more steps and thereby crippling my search for freedom. It is on me, no one else is to blame, especially not God, whom I would often indict for my troubles.
The most unfortunate thing I found to be true in my life was how my problems progressed and got gradually worse when I didn’t adhere to these steps. The first thing to drop off was the emerging component, actually learning from my mistakes. Then, once I began to eliminate the value and importance of learning, I allowed the deafening voices of condemnation to convince me there was no hope. What then transpired? I didn’t even seek God’s forgiveness at all and replaced repentance with a lengthy period of self imposed darkness and depression. I have dearly paid for my errors in the form of damaged and lost relationships, Job demotions and forced resignations, financial catastrophes, and ultimately derailing the purposes and calling of God on my life. It is my prayer that from our mutual learning and interaction, something powerful and life altering will occur in us.
No matter where we find ourselves our father in heaven is always near, always listening, and always ready to meet us where we are. We can always RISE!
Note: The 4 points of RISE are from a sermon by Dale O’Shields, Pastor at Church of the Redeemer, Gaithersburg, MD.(Used by permission).