Having both nothing and everything
I recall the morning of April 28th like I do no other. I remember opening my eyes only to see an unfamiliar ceiling. I tried to look around but I was unable to move my head side to side. I attempted to support myself with my right arm, but I couldn’t move it either. I felt pain throughout my entire body and yet I was feeling empty. I somehow managed to sit up. The room was completely unfamiliar to me. I looked down to see myself covered in many lacerations, abrasions, bruises, and even a full arm cast. I was wearing clothes many sizes too big for me. I finally recalled why I was there. I remembered the tornado, the deaths, the ambulance, the hospital, and a family friend bringing me to their house at 5:30 am (If you haven’t read my family’s story, you can read that here). I couldn’t believe it. I had nothing. I lost my Dad and two older sisters. I lost everything I owned. I didn’t even own the clothes on my body. All I had was the remaining family and memories… and a whole lot of injuries.
I guided myself, leaning heavily on the wall, to slowly limp to the living room because I couldn’t walk on my own. Our family friend and my sister told me that no one was still at the hospital and that they were at another family friend’s house, safe and sound. I had a trillion questions. How badly are the rest of my family members injured? Where are my deceased family members? What was salvageable? Did anyone else I knew die in the same storm? Am I going to be able to walk by myself again? I couldn’t even think of what to do, who to contact, how to explain the situation… I didn’t even know how to feel, or what to feel, or what to think. I wondered and wondered but I felt the suffocating disability to come to a single conclusion for my myriad of mental and emotional inquiries.
Today, as you would expect, we have a house like any normal family, and I can independently maneuver myself without complications. But the feelings of inability to function and the having “nothingness” wore on for a long time, and is a frequent enemy attacking me still. I felt like I somehow died in the same storm. I felt unable to move on. I felt, regardless of the fact I owned physical belongings, I had nothing. I had no-thing. I made shameful decisions and risked all my relationships over various words and acts because I felt like had nothing to lose. I practically threw my life over the edge without caring what happened to it because it wasn’t worth anything anyways.
These feelings of having nothing, being worth nothing, being alive for nothing, even being nothing are now everywhere. These feelings creep in subtly and take the helm while the victim isn’t looking. They control relationships. They encourage people to thoughts and actions of suicide. They lead people into trying anything to feel better; drugs, cutting, alcoholism, pornography, abuse… the list goes on. However these seemingly promising remedies are actually just part of the enemy’s well-planned, vicious cycle: feel the “nothing”, apply a remedy, feel better, feel worse, repeat. The cycle starts and ends will the same feeling of “nothingness”. However, there isn’t just a temporary remedy for this… there is a complete salvation from it. And that is the truth: if you have Christ, you have everything.
The enemy’s vicious cycle I mentioned earlier is his masterplan to blind us from the truth that never fails to bring deliverance from any situation. The last thing he wants is for you to experience freedom from his schemes for bondage, and he will stop at nothing to keep his plan intact.
Christ bought me with a price, and that price is the payment for how I dealt with my nothingness, and that was SIN. All I need is CHRIST and all I have is CHRIST. The same goes for everyone who is or is not dealing with the overpowering “nothingness”. Child of God, your valley may be dark and lonely. You may have lost everything that mattered to you. You may feel like you’re not worth anything. You may even feel like a nothing. But if Christ sees you as His Child whom He loves to the point of death then that says you are not anywhere close to a nothing. If you aren’t in Christ, surrender your life to Him because HE is everything you need and more. If you are in Christ, call what you have for what it is… everything.
Isabella is the 5th of nine children in the Tittle family. In 2014, her family suffered a great tragedy but Bella hopes to help others with the things that she has learned.
All I Have is Christ
Yet thought I knew the way
The sin that promised joy and life
Had led me to the grave
I had no hope that You would own
A rebel to Your will
And if You had not loved me first
I would refuse You still
But as I ran my hell-bound race
Indifferent to the cost
You looked upon my helpless state
And led me to the cross
And I beheld God’s love displayed
You suffered in my place
You bore the wrath reserved for me
Now all I know is grace
Hallelujah! All I have is Christ
Hallelujah! Jesus is my life.”