I know, I have been terribly lacking in the writing department. Life has been busy, my new job of editing keeps me busier with words than I have ever been before. But, I have some ideas and thoughts brewing. So, while I can't promise anything, I am hoping to post more in the near future. -VA

Yesterday, I had this conversation with my friend Jen and she reminded me that gratefulness is the key to happiness. I know that may sound like a “duh” moment for some of you, but I was struck by how quickly I forget this truth.

Lately, I have been struggling with a lot of discontent. Of not trusting God that he has a plan. Not believing that what God is doing is good. Believing lies about myself and others. Feeling frustrated at where I am in life. And in part, I think it’s good to work through those feelings and to talk to God about them. I think like any good relationship, pretending everything is ok all the time leads to trouble. You need to talk about the hurts, the fears, the problems to build a stronger bond.

But, I think at a certain point it has turned unhealthy in me where I can’t stop focusing on all the things I am missing, all the things I wish I had, all the things I think I need to have a happy life. I fall into comparison and envy. Looking at others around me and wishing I had what they had, more money, more prestige, was thinner, more in shape, healthier, smarter, a boyfriend or a husband, a different house or a different life. And I lose perspective of ALL the things I should be grateful for, I lose sight of the fact that God made me to me. I need to let go of comparison, to repent of envy, and chose to life faithfully in the life I have been given and rest in the gifts he has given me.

So, I am challenging myself and asking God for help in being grateful. To look at and list the many gifts I have been given in this life. I have a life to start with. I can breathe and walk and talk and think. While my body doesn’t always work like I wish and there are some problems with it, I am going to chose gratefulness that I have a body. I have two legs that work and carry me where I need to go. I have two arms that are strong and whisk ingredients to make delicious baked goods. I have a mind that processes information and hands to write with. While I may not have a boyfriend or husband like I have wished, hoped and prayed for, the Lord has given me a beautiful community of people who love me, care for me, cheer me on, encourage me, dream with and for me, push me, and remind me of God’s goodness in the world. He has surrounded me with people who make me better and stronger. And those are all things I can be grateful for in this life.

So, today, what do you need to let go of and what do you need to be grateful for?