As Christmas approaches, and I am caught up in the rush and hurry of selecting the perfect gifts for those I love, I like to reflect upon the gifts God has given me.

His gifts have transformed my life.

They inspire me to be a better giver.

Take, for example, His gift of mercy.

God’s gift of mercy, which the Bible says is “new every morning,” continually gives me hope to live greater than the child of darkness I’ve been in the past.

The Bible says, “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness” (Lamentations‬ ‭3:22-23‬).

Related: ‘It’s a Lie That We Have to Live Independently from God’

God, in His continual mercy, offers us forgiveness — even though He knows we will violate His love again.

His mercy does not discriminate based upon our poor track record.

The Samaritan woman at the well was shocked when Jesus asked her for a drink because she was a woman of ill repute — and a nationality despised by the Jews.

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But God’s mercy looked beyond her past and offered her water that would be “a spring of water welling up to eternal life” (John‬ 4‬: 7-9; 13-14).

She received mercy and was so excited about it that she began telling everyone about Jesus.

She recognized that if God would have mercy on her — then everyone was a candidate.

Related: Every Minute of Our Time Is a Gift from God

The gift of mercy reveals how far God has taken us from what we used to be and the magnificence of His forgiveness, and thus, allows us to freely give this gift to others so they too, may know His mercy.

Our past does not have to chain us to the darkness.

God’s mercy allows us to see beyond our past, and the past of others — and live in the bright and beautiful future He planned before we were born.

When we allow God’s mercy to live though us, our life becomes an extraordinary gift to others.

There are few greater gifts we can give than to show the mercy God gives us — to others.