The Gift You Can Give All Year Long

This Christmas, ask God to help your hope in Jesus shine brightly throughout the year

. . . your light must shine before people, so that they will see the good things you do and praise your Father in heaven.

Matthew 5:16 GNT

There’s something about Christmas lights that makes even the darkest winter nights feel brighter.

Each year, I cover every available surface with shining golden strands. I turn off all the overhead lights in my house and bask in the glow of my work. And while I still find myself feeling sad when the sun begins to set around 4 p.m., I quickly find a sense of peace while sitting amid twinkling Christmas lights.

As we prepare our hearts for Christmas and remember Jesus’s birth, it’s easy to imagine the wonder and warmth of the gospel message shining like millions of Christmas lights.

We sing songs about Jesus being born to save his people from their sins. We read Scripture that pointed people who lived centuries before Jesus to the promise of his coming. And we give gifts in a season that reminds us of the greatest gift of all: Jesus Christ.

In this rich season, we can thank God for gospel of hope. But the gospel is not just for the Christmas season. And the Bible’s words of hope—shining brighter than Christmas lights in a dark world—are not just for us. Instead, they’re meant to be shared with others.


God’s Word tells us, “Be ready at all times to answer anyone who asks you to explain the hope you have in you” (1 Peter 3:15b GNT).

Have you ever been asked to explain your hope in Jesus Christ?

Maybe this question comes from a family member: How can you act so happy when you just lost your house?

Or from a colleague: I don’t understand how you’re able to act kindly toward that coworker when they treat you so poorly.

Or maybe your friend asks you: How is it possible that you can face something like the death of your husband with so much peace?

You might hear these questions at a holiday party, but you’ll hear them even more frequently throughout the rest of the year.

For your friends, family members, and neighbors who have not yet experienced God’s love for them through the Bible, the message of Christmas—and the gospel—is a big question mark. But through God’s grace, you can be a light shining in the darkness and pointing them toward Jesus Christ.

This Christmas, ask God to give you opportunities to share your hope with your loved ones who do not know Jesus. Look for opportunities to show God’s love and care to others. Explain the meaning of well-known Christmas hymns to those who may not understand what Jesus came to do. Reach out to people who may be feeling lonely, afraid, and discouraged this Christmas season. Consider giving a Bible to someone who has asked you to explain your hope in Jesus Christ and offer to read it with them. Pray for those you encounter this holiday season to experience the wonder of the gospel message in their own hearts through God’s Word.

And, as you look forward to the new year, pray that God would help you continue to give the gift of the gospel message all year long, so that you can joyfully echo the words of the psalmist:

In the assembly of all your people, LORD,
I told the good news that you save us.
You know that I will never stop telling it.
I have not kept the news of salvation to myself;
I have always spoken of your faithfulness and help.
In the assembly of all your people I have not been silent
about your loyalty and constant love.

Psalm 40:9-10 GNT


Your friends at American Bible Society wish you and yours a safe and blessed Christmas season! To share Bibles with people still waiting for the good news of Jesus Christ this Christmas, you can make a gift to provide God’s Word to unreached people here.

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Elisabeth Trefsgar
Elisabeth Trefsgar

Elisabeth Trefsgar is a content specialist for American Bible Society. She has made a home in New Jersey and Sofia, Bulgaria, and is always on the lookout for the next adventure. She is passionate about seeing communities around the world flourish through the power of God's Word and the efforts of the local church. When she isn't writing, you can find her reading good stories, photographing local sights, and spending time with friends.

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