Spirit of Giving

By Karissa Uhlig

What do an elf and a bishop have in common? They are the same person! People often call Santa Claus a jolly old elf, and his namesake, Saint Nicholas, was a famous bishop in the early church. Santa Claus shares not only a name (Saint Nick) with St. Nicholas, but also important characteristics. Both men are known for embodying the spirit of giving. 

St. Nicholas was born in Lycia in what is now Turkey. He is known for having given to the poor. One of the most notable stories about him tells how he helped three poor sisters. Their father had no money to give them as a dowry, so they couldn’t find husbands. This meant that their future security was at stake! Their father thought that he was going to have to sell them off as servants. St. Nicholas secretly visited their house at night and left money there to help them out of this predicament. One of the man’s daughters was able to marry due to this generous gift. This is where we get the modern idea that Santa Claus brings gifts on Christmas Eve, at night when he cannot be seen.

Gifts are not meant only for Christmastime, however. God has called us to be generous with the resources he has given us. JAARS allocates its resources and gives to partner organizations throughout the year, giving media resources, four-wheel drive vehicles, and more to further Bible translation around the world. 

One example of how JAARS has used God’s gifts to us is the work we helped Indonesia aviation partner YAJASI with. The problem was that rock guards installed on the main mounts of their Pilatus Porter aircraft were constantly cracking. JAARS machinists worked with YAJASI mechanics to identify the problem. We were eventually able to design a new rock guard that fixed this problem! 

Rock guards installed on the PC-6 at JAARS

Another gift JAARS was a part of giving was the Oral Bible Translation that our partner Faith Comes by Hearing (FCBH) gave to the Cikish community and the neighboring Fatina people in Africa. FCBH hosted a three-week workshop in the summer of 2021 that equipped the advisers, translation consultants, and translators for their project. The team running the workshop used headsets and touchscreen computers provided by people like you who gave to JAARS Technology Solutions. Thank you! You were part of this amazing gift.

Some members of the Cikish team record Scripture

We can thank Santa Claus or Saint Nick for the gifts that we get around Christmastime; this is a fun tradition throughout the world. However, let us not forget the ultimate gift that we have received this season–Christ born as a babe in a manger. That baby grew up and provided salvation for our sins, the greatest gift of all. JAARS wishes to share this gift with all the world with your help, providing tangible gifts to speed Bible translation across the globe.


Pray for the unreached people around the world, that they will soon receive the gift of salvation!