Starting on Dec. 1, members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are encouraged to participate in the #lightTheworld campaign. For 25 days, the Church will suggest different service activities for everyone involved.

The purpose of this campaign this Christmas season is to help people focus more on Jesus Christ rather than just Santa Claus and presents.

There is nothing wrong with giving and receiving presents. Christ gave the most important gift anyone could give, his own life and his atoning sacrifice.

Of course, most BYU-Idaho students know about Christ’s life and sacrifices, but how many of us actually think of him during this time?

How many of us focus on his life of service?

How many of us try to follow his example and be charitable towards others?

Christ was no respecter of persons. He served everyone, the people who were against him, the ones who ignored him and the ones who ended up killing him.

He is a perfect being and sometimes we use this fact as an excuse not to try. As mentioned in the Doctrine and Covenants 93:12, Christ “received not of the fulness at first, but received grace for grace.”

Just like the Savior, we can receive grace for grace if we choose to do so. We have the potential of becoming so much more than we are now, and we start by focusing on his life.

Because of him, we get to repent. Because of him, we get to count on his help in our everyday challenges. Because of him, we can return to God’s presence.

During this Christmas season, let us think of how we want to show love, gratitude and appreciation for all that Christ did for us.

In the beginning of this semester, I caught myself thinking too much about how challenging my life was and how stressful my work and classes were.

It got to a point where I was always frustrated and unhappy. While I was feeling that way, hurricanes hit several areas of the world and thousands of members of the Church donated resources and time to help people in need.

After weeks of feeling bad for myself, I heard someone talking about praying for opportunities to serve others.

I decided to accept that challenge and realized that every time I prayed asking for those opportunities, I would be more aware of the people around me.

Every time I decided to do something for someone, I felt the warmth of the Spirit in my heart. I noticed myself smiling more and the burdens that felt so heavy before became lighter.

I realized life is too short to waste time being miserable.

Every day there are people surrounding us who need our help or who need a smile. We just need to open our eyes.

If we decide to try a little harder, go the second mile and be aware of the people around us, we will find that those attitudes will make us happier.

Life won’t be perfect. Challenges won’t magically disappear. Classes won’t instantaneously get easier, but we will feel the joy that only comes from service.

Christ will be at the center of our lives and we will become an instrument in His hands to bring peace and happiness to those in need.

During this Christmas season, let’s do more. Let’s open our eyes to opportunities to serve and let’s demonstrate our love and appreciation for Christ’s sacrifice through service.