A dear friend recently confided in me.
“I’m nothing but an alcoholic.”
I was stunned. Not by the fact that she called herself an alcoholic, though I’ve never considered her one, and it wouldn’t have altered my feelings for her. No, the shock came from the “nothing but” part.
My friend is highly intelligent, kind, generous, and faithfilled. She’s a loving mother and grandmother, an encouraging companion and an excellent wife.
A world of good squished into a teeny-tiny body. And yet not a single one of those qualities could describe her when used by itself. She isn’t “nothing but smart, nothing but sweet, nothing but…anything.” She’s too special to limit with one characteristic, whether good or not-so-good.
I believe we all have a “nothing but” inside, a means for Satan to disable us, separate us from the power we possess through Christ. Are you “nothing but” a glutton? A gossip? Selfish?
I know my “nothing but” well. It waits, shrouded in shame for my weaker moments. Like a bat it takes wing, eclipsing the true Light until all I can see is That. One. Massive. Failing.
There’s a difference between humbleness and shame. Humility is focused on others, shame is self-centered.
Jesus embodied humility, Satan blankets us in humiliation and guilt.
The devil attacks me when I’m down, just as I suspect he chooses your vulnerable times with care. At that point, when my holy armor keeps falling off and I’m tripping over my sin, all I can do is repent. Cry and repent.
When the Lord hears those genuine words of regret, when He sees those tears, I am cleansed. I am forgiven. Whole, and free. I am “nothing but” saved.
It describes me perfectly. Isn’t it wonderful?