A Giving Community
As we roll full steam ahead into December following on the heels of the one week a year that as a nation, we seem to come together with hearts of thankfulness.
We have so much for which to be thankful. From the freedoms we enjoy in our great Country, to our family and friends, to the blessings of this beautiful community called Toccoa!
As I so often say, what makes our town a community is the people! Regardless of the task at hand, our town comes together time and time again and rallies to the call. Whether it be every time we hosted the six movies filmed in our town in the last 3 years, our local government, law enforcement, local business owners, and the people of Toccoa go out of the way to help make it happen. All while sporting a good ole southern smile! Or when the need arises in our State, Region or Nation to come to the aid of others who suffer loss from natural disasters. The people of Toccoa step up and give. Or with the recent opening of The Hope Center of Toccoa on Whitman Street, which includes a soup kitchen, emergency food pantry, shower and laundry facilities and clothes closet. Almost every day someone will donate food, towels, hygiene and laundry supplies, clothes, and ask how they can volunteer. It blesses me to live where folks are so willing to help others in need. As a community, we will reap the benefits and see hard work and sacrifice brings progress, humility brings favor and unity brings prosperity.
As we find ourselves with Christmas just around the corner, we all have our own perspective of the holiday season. I have always enjoyed decorating the tree, wrapping presents, giving gifts and seeing the smile on the faces of those receiving. I love the wonderful smell of cooking in the kitchen while hearing the laughter of friends and family all around. It makes me happy to see the sparkle in the eyes of my children as we celebrate the season. It’s the wonder of Christmas in our home!
At the same time, I also understand the sadness that comes with losing someone you love dearly and missing them even more during the holidays. You see, it was nineteen years ago when my precious mama went home to be with Jesus, on a cold and rainy Christmas Eve. It was so unexpected, I wasn’t ready for her to go. Left behind with pictures and so many sweet memories of a mama who loved Jesus, loved my daddy and me and served others so well her whole life. Though she is greatly missed, her legacy lives on in the lives of everyone she knew. I miss my mama every day. But I know she is singing with the angels to the Prince of Peace, the One whose birth we celebrate! The One in Whom we find True Hope.
As we enjoy all the holiday festivities in our small town and beyond, and gather with friends and family, decorate the tree, bake cookies, and buy gifts for those we love, may we discover the real reason for the season and look for opportunities to serve and speak hope into the lives of those around us.
Let us be careful not to move too quickly from a time of Thanksgiving to the hustle and bustle of the Christmas season. Let’s continue to be grateful for the blessing of living in a community where people care about one another and come together to accomplish the task at hand! Let’s celebrate the true meaning of the season, the birth of Jesus! Merry Christmas to all!