That word has some negative connotations as well as some positive ones. Here’s a few negative examples:
After a failed relationship, an “emotionally needy” person who immediately jumps into another relationship without much, if any, careful consideration is said to be “on the rebound.” Also, after dropping some pounds, many dieters “rebound” and put all the weight back on, plus more!
A couple of months ago, I completed a 16-week-long diet campaign in which I lost 30 lbs. I was pretty happy about that and tooted my horn a bit with three posts about the experience as a potential motivator for others. But, from past diet experiences, I also knew exactly what was coming down the road. It’s a given. The body, a wondrous, God-designed and God-created “biomachine” is always seeking equilibrium. Lose thirty pounds and the body will fight “tooth and nail” to get those highly desirable, fuel-source fat cells right back on.
Losing all that weight took some discipline and effort. During my diet, I avoided many of my favorite high-calorie snacks and meals. But once I reached my goal, I rationalized that I could relax the discipline, treat myself “here and there,” and still maintain my new weight. Well, you know the story. A little ice cream and a few chips “here and there” was slowly morphing back again into a regular habit. Thankfully, I continued to weigh myself daily after I had achieved my goal and a trend showing the consequences of my relaxed eating habits began to emerge on my iPhone’s health app’s weight graph (see photo above). Fluctuating a few pounds up and down around a target/maintenance weight is fine, but I was on a steep trajectory to Yo-Yo Diet Land. OK. No need to panic. I caught it early. I ramped up my exercise regimen and ramped down my increasingly careless and undisciplined eating habits.
Christians are spiritually reborn in Jesus Christ and we have the Holy Spirit indwelling us, BUT we also still have our old sin natures and still live in a fallen world. There’s a spiritual battle going on around us every day and we can easily become neutralized and sidelined by the enemy. We’re always being tempted to “rebound” back to sin.
Just as a dieter (and former dieter) needs to hop on the scale each morning to gauge the stark truth about their physical weight, we need to get into God’s Word daily, which the Holy Spirit will use as a mirror to show us our true spiritual condition. Then there’s communing with the Lord throughout the day in prayer. There’s also worship with fellow believers at church on Sunday and admonition and exhortation from God’s Word from the pastor. I’m also grateful for my fellow believers here at WordPress for their exhortations and encouragement. In addition, my wife and I have a daily devotion time and we also provide “loving” (well, most of the time) feedback to each other about the reality of our spiritual condition.
Argh! Just like the unflattering data from the scale, that’s not always information that I enjoy, but I do need honesty regarding my walk with the Lord. Is there a fellow Christian in your life who encourages you and provides honest feedback? I could not stay on track with my health regimen without the honest feedback of our bathroom scale and I could not follow the Lord faithfully without daily Bible reading and communing with the Lord in prayer, and fellowshipping with other believers.
Postscript: Having discipline in our Christian walk is a good and necessary thing, but always keep in mind that our walk with the Lord is a relationship rather than a check-list.
“Let us therefore strive to enter that rest, so that no one may fall by the same sort of disobedience. For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. And no creature is hidden from his sight, but all are naked and exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must give account.” – Hebrews 4:11-13