One popular Christmas song says that Christmas is “the most wonderful time of the year,” and how true that is, especially since it’s the celebration of the birth of our Savior, Christ Jesus. In light of the wonderousness of the holiday season, here are five reasons why Christmas is the best time for doing evangelism and what you and I can do about it.
1. People are more receptive during Christmas.
Most churches report their highest attendance numbers during their Christmas and Easter services. It is not uncommon for churches to add extra seats or even conduct additional services to accommodate the influx during these special days. In fact, there is even a term to describe those who only go to church during Christmas and Easter – “Chreasters.” Many people who are normally not inclined towards Christianity somehow become more open to it during Christmas and Easter. Why not take advantage of the opportunity to engage them in spiritual conversations during these times?
2. The long period of festivities means more opportunities for outreach during Christmas.
For many people, the Christmas season begins the day after Thanksgiving, or even starting on the evening of Thanksgiving! One possible reason for this early start is that Advent, the period of anticipation and preparation for Christmas, begins on the fourth Sunday before Christmas and ends on Christmas Eve. But more likely, and sadly so, it is the result of the commercialization of Christmas. Retailers take advantage of shoppers’ quest for bigger and better Christmas presents by putting up beautifully adorned Christmas trees and attractive window displays. They also play soothing and lively Christmas carols, some as early as the day after Halloween, to lure them in. And shoppers take advantage of the massive discounts offered by retailers on Black Friday to stock up on Christmas presents. Whatever the reason, many are in a relaxed and festive mood during this time of the year. This extended “feel-good” period an excellent time for us to invite friends and family to a caroling party, gift exchange, simple gathering or even to church.
3. People may need a friend during the Christmas season.
There will inevitably be some people who have perhaps just lost a loved one, or who are going through a difficult time, or who have yet to settle down in a new environment, or who are seeking a special, meaningful relationship… The decorations, parties, and carols may accentuate their sadness or loneliness, or may also make them to shrink further into their cocoons. If we are sensitive to the people around us, the Christmas season offers us a window to reach out, be a good friend, and to share the love of Christ.
4. Even the best Christmas party comes to an end.
Regardless of how much we enjoy the shopping, gift-giving, gift-receiving, meeting friends, and partying, we must eventually return from cloud nine back to the Earth. What happens after the music fades and the lights go out? The teacher in Ecclesiastes puts it this way:
“Meaningless! Meaningless!” says the teacher.
“Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless.”
It is a sentiment that most of us have felt at one point or another. Christmas may be great fun, but all parties must come to an end. And no amount of money can buy us the present that satisfies us through all of eternity. Christmas is the best time of the year to tell our family and friends about God’s perfect and everlasting gift for all of us.
5. Without Christ, there wouldn’t be Christmas.
Santa Claus and the Christmas tree may have overtaken the nativity scene as symbols of Christmas, and “happy holidays” may be more commonly heard than “merry Christmas.” But the fact remains – Christmas is named after Christ, and that the reason we celebrate Christmas is to remember the birth of Jesus.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
Jesus is God’s gift to the world. What better time to share this good news than during Christmas?
What can we do?
As Christ-followers, we have the commission and privilege to share the good news about salvation through Christ with the rest of the world. Consider going beyond inviting our loved ones to our church’s Christmas service. Since Christmas is a wonderful time for parties and get-togethers, we can host one for our family and friends. There is no need to go out of your way to plan an elaborate party. If you can cook, well and good! If not, you can always order take-out or delivery.
Besides preparing your favorite dishes, you can also plan some Christmas-themed games. Charades is a great party game that requires minimal preparation. Download these free printable Christmas Charades cards, and if appropriate, use the accompanying discussion guide to engage your guests about the true meaning of Christmas. You may want to check out these other Christmas Games from Bible Games Central.
If you are expecting kids at your party, you may want to give each of them a copy of The True Story of Christmas Animated Tract. This unique Gospel tract has captivating, moving images and makes a great stocking stuffer or door gift. Kids will be intrigued by how the images move without any batteries! If you would like to learn more about sharing the gospel with kids, you can find more child evangelism tips and resources here.
Sharing Christ with our family and friends during Christmas may not come naturally to all of us, but it is certainly something that we all can and should do. But we must be careful to do it out of genuine love for them and to be sensitive to their response. While we hope that they put their faith in Christ, the decision is theirs and we must never be too pushy about it. Pray for their salvation and for opportunities to share your personal testimony with them.