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The parking lot paradox

| December 24, 2010 8:00 PM

On these pages in the past week or so, we've heard from four people about four experiences in Kootenai County parking lots.

Two were joyful.

Two were painful.

The joyful: Women left purses in carts in two parking lots. One was quickly aware the purse was missing and, sure enough, it had almost instantly been turned in to the store, with cash, credit cards and personal effects untouched. The other woman had gotten home by the time she realized her purse was missing, but again, a Good Samaritan had anonymously turned in the purse with all goodies intact.

The painful: Two cars being hit by anonymous drivers, one of whom left only the dent; the other taped up the battered bumper but left no identification or insurance information. In both cases, the damage done to faith in fellow man far exceeded what any insurance appraiser would have come up with.

On this eve of the most exceptional day of the year, we offer you these examples to ponder.

Christmas is synonymous with charity, with love, with believing in something greater than oneself. In our own time, each of us will find a purse in a parking lot or bump into some stranger's vehicle. What we choose to do in these instances and many others like them may seem insignificant in a cosmic sense, but we submit these decisions matter. When it comes to making the right decisions, there is no great or small. Every good decision fulfills us. Every bad decision diminishes us.

Make bad decisions and you hurt yourself the most. Good ones? They are all steps on the path to peace on Earth, goodwill toward men.

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