The Rise 2018


Pictured: Ryan Beddingfield, Leslie Bennett, Carter Boone, Cailey Brown, Sierra Byrd, Alex Cervantes, Gage Chism, Mackenzie Chowdhury, Cason Cox, Laramie Cox, Abby Eckert, Kristin Elms, Braden Gillis, Canon Gorman, Jayce Hankins, Saidie Hamblen, Ben Hatfield, Kaylon Jackson, Cheyanne Jones, Colton Jones, Dahjah Lewis, Rylie Mann, Trent McDaniel, Angel Ortiz, Carlos Ortiz, Xavier Ortiz, Victoria Shipman, Christian Stephenson, Dylan Venable, Carmen Vermillion, Luke Weather, McCabe Wheeler, Aniya Williams, Elijah Williams, Isabell Witt, Lindsey Bennett, Kristi Boone, Kathy Brown, Niki Chowdhury, Sherry Ellis, Chet Garner, and Misty Shipman. Courtesy photo.

Carlie Massey, Staff Writer

The Rise is an event where teens from churches from around East Texas gather to worship and learn about God over the course of three days. This year, The Rise occurred from Jan. 26 to Jan. 28.

“The Rise helped me realize that I’m not the only one looking for answers,” junior Vanessa Zarazua said. “It was where I realized that I had to start making some changes to myself to become a better person. I learned that how we act on the outside does not always define who we are in reality. Our actions may be meaningless.”

The Rise is a way for teens to connect to God and one another in a safe environment.

“It inspired me to look deep inside myself and change myself for the better,” senior Kegan Haynes said. “I learned that I had been going in the total wrong direction with my life, but with true repentance, God will forgive me no matter the sins I have or will commit.”

There were several guest speakers at The Rise, inspiring the teens with their words.

“The Rise is a time where I get to experience the love of Christ with fellow Christians from all over,” junior Payton Fyffe said. “When Joseph Solomon rallied about blind faith it was pretty awesome. Commitment to God isn’t a season in our lives, but it’s a lifestyle.”

A few impactful quotes that the students took home with them included: ‘The first link between you and God is not your goodness, but your badness,’ ‘Jesus shows mercy to even the bad ones,’ and ‘There is no such thing as sin if it isn’t towards God.’

“While sitting in my chair listening to the speaker’s stories and what God did for them knowing God did something amazing in their lives and hoping that might happen to me one day,” freshman Jackie Estrella said. “The Rise gives me a chance to connect to God and be told he loves me when I bring myself down. [The rise] is a time to release yourself to the lord and know you are forgiven.”

The Rise was an inspirational time full of energy and welcoming.

“When the band played ‘Come to the Altar’ I just stopped worrying about what people will think of me and I threw my hands up and I just gave myself to God,” sophomore Billy Bell said. “I learned that I need God more present in my life than what I have already.”

The Rise is open to anyone who wishes to find God and themselves.

“On the weekend of the Rise, we had 12 students give their life to Jesus which rarely happens and is amazing,” sophomore Mackenna Watkins said. “It inspired me to become a missionary and helped people in other countries learn about God. I learned that to be a Christian you can’t just use the title when it’s convenient for you, you actually have to live it out.”