A father, with a soft hand on his son’s shoulder, whispered, “Son, stand up,” as they watched the son’s wife of 40 years being lowered in her casket to her grave.

From personal experience, rock bottom is watching the most important person in your life being lowered in a casket into a grave.

My mom Ellen Kathleen was lowered into her grave after a fierce cancer battle. Tears flooded down my checks. Instead of a father’s hand, I vowed to never cry again.

At this point, rock bottom can become the foundation for new opportunities or it can take you to the black box where depression thrives. It can also take you to anger and bitterness.

At rock bottom, you have two choices. One choice is to survive; fight and the second choice is surrender; give up.

You can choose to stand up and fight. Sometimes the pain is so great all you can do is show up and take one step at a time.

You can choose to surrender. You can choose to run from the pain and not show up. The problem with this approach is you not only lose the one you love but you also lose yourself. 

Dr. Rick Rigsby chose to listen to his father’s advice, “Son, stand up.” The doctor’s graduation speech will inspire you to stand up! Listen to this remarkable message.

The crucial question: Do you believe every person will at some point in their life hit rock bottom?

My life experience tells me every person will, at some point, experience rock bottom. Fame, money, success…nothing on this Earth will save us from rock bottom.

If this is a true statement, and I believe it is, another crucial question is:

What can be done to prepare for a rock-bottom experience?

These are the steps I believe will prepare us to deal with the rock bottom experience:

  1. Be right here right now. Live to win the moment. 
  2. Expect a rock bottom experience to happen to you. Do not be in shock when it happens. Be ready to fight.
  3. Accept the pain, don’t bury or run from it.
  4. Stand up! The strong will put on warrior gear. Fight one step at a time.
  5. Grow your faith daily so it is strong.
  6. Grow a network of very close personal friends. Treat them as you would a garden that needs tender care.

Rock bottom is the place where you discover the reality of who you really are and who God really is and what he can do for you.

Rock bottom is not such a bad place after all. It can become the foundation for a richer life and greater freedom.

This is my reality. Unfortunately for me, it took cancer to take me to rock bottom. No question that it has been a fierce battle. The good news is God has given me the power to stand up!

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and he will give you all that you need to stand up regardless of the circumstances. This is the good news.