When we think of Christmas, we think of acts of kindness and goodwill.
However, I don't think the spirit of Christmas only happens during the month of December because if one really thinks about it, community members in the Lower Valley exhibit acts of kindness and goodwill throughout the year.
I know I am more cognizant of these behaviors during the weeks that precede Christmas. Maybe we are predisposed to see it and make note of it during these weeks.
But, I have met very few Lower Valley residents in my ventures who haven't been kind and good-hearted.
Most exhibit understanding when I am feeling under the weather, offering words of encouragement and sharing words meant to boost my spirits.
I am bolstered by the community and its year-round Christmas spirit, even if they aren't aware of how much it warms my heart.
I remember walking through the parking lot of a local store, my cart loaded to the hilt. On the bottom was a bag of cat food that fell off, but I couldn't see what happened because of the mound of groceries in front of me. A couple walking ahead of me turned around and helped me even though they didn't need to do so.
There was a wintery day when my children were much younger than they are now during which I was run off the freeway and into the snow-covered median. I didn't have a four-wheel drive vehicle at the time and the four of us were practically stranded. A motorist stopped on the side of the road to provide me the use of his cellular phone...something I did not own at the time.
There have been other acts like this that make me proud to live in this community, so when I think of Christmas day, I remember the spirit of the people around me.
I think of how blessed I am to live here and I like to pray that those who have been so kind to me over the years are blessed, as well.
Oh! Don't get me wrong, there is the wonder of seeing my children unwrap the gifts that have been carefully selected for them. There is the joy of celebrating Christ's birth and enjoying a fabulous meal cooked by my husband.
But, it truly is a time to appreciate all the many blessings life and the people in our lives have to offer. That's the gift of Christ's love.
Merry Christmas readers of the Daily Sun News. May you all be blessed this Sunday and every day after.