What Do You Give Someone who has Everything?

What Do You Give Someone who has Everything?


Have you ever tried to buy a gift for someone who has everything? It’s not very easy is it? These people in our lives, who have everything, are relegated to receiving impersonal gift cards and generic things like tea and chocolates. Don’t get me wrong, two of my very love languages are tea and chocolates, but these gifts aren’t going to go down in history nor are they going to change my life. What do you buy someone who has everything?

Recently, a man gave a talk on the topic of technology and at one point said, “We need to allow ourselves to be bored.”

I was struck by that. I pondered and have been pondering that. We need to allow ourselves to be bored. I was taught to fill up every square inch of time with activity from a young age. My naturally type A tendencies love efficient meetings, efficient strategies, efficient gadgets. We are surrounded by things that will save us time. We need to allow ourselves to be bored?? The very thought seems wrong.  We are surrounded by ways to occupy every empty minute. Facebook, Instagram, snapchat. It’s not right to be idle right? But what the speaker was getting at, is really that we need to allow ourselves to be emptied and to ache and long for that is where we will find God.

I journalled that one night. Let myself long. Why am I so afraid of that? I’m afraid to go hungry, to go thirsty, to go without Starbucks, to go without. What is so unbearable in that? I think that God is out there BEYOND. He is out there beyond my hunger, beyond my fear, but I am afraid to ache.

Ken Yasinski, a great Canadian speaker, once said, “The only difference between a saint and us, is that a saint brings a bigger vessel to God.” He likened God’s infinite mercy to Niagra Falls. He used the comparison of a thimble and an Olympic sized swimming pool to be filled up by the falls. The saint would bring the latter.

If this is true, I am constantly bringing a thimble to God. I fill myself up with great food, amazing conversations, and my chai lattes and then after I’m done filling myself with these gifts, I bring myself to God and ask Him to fill me—or at least, fill what’s left of me. He looks at me. “What can I give you who has everything?”

One of my favourite artists, Audrey Assad, sings, “Mercy bend and breathe me back to life. But not before you show me how to die.” Yes, Lord, show me how to first die to my petty aches for food and water. For I know, that it is only in this dying, that I can truly enter into a deep ache for you. And in that aching, I know I will find your infinite mercy—waters that will truly satisfy.

For to the person who has everything, a gift is nothing. But if we have nothing, a gift is everything. I long for Christ to be this everything. Let us ache to go without and see if God will truly meet us in our aching.

“As the deer longs for streams of water,

So my soul longs for you, O God.

My being thirsts for God, the living God.

When can I go and see the face of God?”

                                                                                                                                                 Psalm 42:1-2

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