It is the day before Christmas and I am
sitting in a shopping mall.  Like a
strong current people are flowing into this centre searching; they are looking
for that perfect gift.  Walking in
the corridors of the mall is like white water rafting.  If you miscalculate a move, a crash is

Christmas, in Johannesburg, has become a
torrent.  A rush towards
consumerism, an attempt to fill our relational emptiness with stuff.  Martin Buber once described the
different relationships we stand in. 
He identified the I-I relationship, the I-You relationship, the I-Thou
relationship and lastly the I-It relationship. 

Christmas is a time where we straighten
these relationships out.  A time
wherein we allow ourselves to feel the rhythmic pulse of God’s love cascading
into our lives.  We remember that
we can give only that which we have received, we remember that one cannot pour
good wine from an empty vessel. In this time we remember that it is not the
I-IT relationship that ultimately defines our lives.  We remember that one day a year cannot fill a relational
void with a ‘perfect gift’.

This Christmas I desperately want to
reconnect with our God who once described Himself as the Vine.  I pray that this year will be a
Christmas wherein I can jump into a different current than the one I’m experiencing
in the mall.  I pray that God will
wash me clean and reconnect me with Himself.  I pray that I won’t just give gifts (I am not against it)
but that I will be a gift.