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The Joy of Nothing

My son, beware of anything beyond these things. Of making many books there is no end, and much study is a weariness of the flesh.

Ecclesiastes 12:12 ESV

An author once stated that writing wasn’t difficult, you just stare at a blank screen until blood drops form on your foreheads and run down your face. A loose paraphrase, I’m sure, but that was essentially his thought. Well, here I sit with a blank screen and although blood has not yet formed, I’m close. I suppose, the first thing to ask oneself is, ‘What do I want to write about?’ That is the greatest hurdle to jump and once crossed over, the rest of the article flows freely. Still, nothing. Maybe that’s alright. I mean, we just went through the threat of a hurricane and perhaps it’s okay to proceed for a while with empty gray matter floating about between my ears. I may be justified to have nothing to write about today. Why must we always bust loose with mind-boggling creativity every waking moment of our lives?

Still, nothing. Well, let’s proceed with nothing. Nothing would be what Pip received for all his ‘great expectations’ in a Charles Dickens novel which bares that same name. Poor Pip. Raised by a cruel sister in a blacksmith’s shop until fortune smiled on him and then sent him down a dark trail of continual disappointments. Denied his heart’s desire, Estella, Pip inherited a lot of ‘something’ that turned out to be a lot of ‘nothing.’

Still, nothing. Nothing, unless you consider what Pip gained in the end, after losing the ‘something’ of his great expectations. Pip gained a life-long friend in a man named Herbert, along with a new appreciation for his former ‘nothing’ life. After losing his ‘great expectations,’ Pip returned home to rediscover a new appreciation for the ‘nothingness’ of his former life. The ‘something’ he had gained had stripped him of the ‘nothing’ that he now found precious upon his return.

Still, nothing. Maybe ‘nothing’ is underrated, and ‘something’ is overrated. Writing about nothing is exhausting so I will soon end this article. Before I do, though, allow me to say a word in defense of nothing. Nothing is really everything when you consider the place God holds in every moment of our lives. In our daily race to achieve something we lose the purpose for our day, which is the waste it on our God in the pursuit of nothing but Him. Nothing is everything because God created us for nothing but Him. The ‘something’ sometimes causes us to forget that truth.

Still, nothing. Maybe the next time I sit down to write, I will have something more to say. I have Great Expectations that that will be true.

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