Another Christmas has passed. Did you take the time to enjoy your family and friends?

Jim, my husband, and I made the time to attend church on Christmas Eve and go to a Candlelight Service. These services reinforced the peace and love of the Christmas season.

Did you step away from the hustle and bustle for a few hours to experience the hope and joy that Christmas brings? I truly enjoyed this year's Christmas season despite having a challenging year.

Jim and I have always taken the time to read the Christmas story from Luke 2 on Christmas Day before we open any gifts. We then spend some time reflecting upon the true meaning of Christmas, the birth of Jesus Christ, who came to earth to be the Savior of the world in order to redeem sinful humanity. What a wondrous love story, one that only God could write.

Since Jim is on a short vacation, we have been sorting through old papers and items and have come across so many memories of the blessings from our past, some pictures and cards from people we have lost and other memories of our beloved pets. It was a nice remembrance to find these past memories.

Our time here on Earth quickly passes; we need to make the time to spend with those we care about now, so that we don't have regrets later in life. The timing may be inconvenient, but we need to slow down and go have that cup of coffee or lunch with that friend who is now retired.

Don't wait until it is too late and they are gone.

There is a quote by J.M. Barrie, "God gave us memory, so that we might have roses in December." These are good words to heed.

As I read comments on social media, I realize how very blessed we are to live in the United States where we can freely express our thoughts, opinions and our faith. We take this freedom for granted, yet we shouldn't.

Because of this freedom, as Jim has traveled for business this year, he has had the opportunity to share the true meaning of Christmas with others.

Most of them have been receptive to the Gospel story and thanked him for sharing with them.

Janice Lynn Crose, a former accountant, lives in Crestview with her husband, Jim; her two rescue collies, Shane and Jasmine; and two cats, Kathryn and Prince Valiant.