The Lesson of Gratitude

A couple months ago I lost a dear friend to cancer. Nothing stirs up questions about life like the death of a loved one. It left me with questions about suffering and spirituality. It taught me many lessons as well. The lesson that rises to the surface of significance for me is the lesson of gratitude. I realized that safety and a painless existence are not guaranteed. Tragedies happen, even to those we least expect, including ourselves. Amazing moments happen too. This is life. We can resent life for not giving us what we expected.

We also have a profound opportunity to be grateful for every moment.

The happy moments are gifts. The sad moments remind us we’re alive and there’s still a purpose for us on this earth.

Today, may we take the time to be grateful for this moment, whether it is soaked in suffering or meaningful and memorable. May every day be a day of Thanksgiving, so that we can experience the joy that’s possible, being grateful for each breath that reminds us we’re alive.

We at LifeSTAR are grateful for you. Thank you for taking the time to visit our blog. We hope you found some inspiration and hope here.

-Written by Forest Benedict, MA, SATP-C, LifeSTAR of the Central Valley

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About fbenedict

Forest Benedict is the author of Life After Lust: Stories & Strategies for Sex & Pornography Addiction Recovery. He is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and certified Sexual Addiction Treatment Provider (SATP). Forest loves the work he does as the Clinical Director of LifeSTAR of the Central Valley and the Program Manager/Teacher in the SATP program at Mid-America Nazarene University. He writes numerous articles on the LifeSTAR of the Central Valley blog ( and also on his personal blog ( He created the Life After Lust VLOG on Youtube, sharing insights about recovery from sexual addiction. Forest also writes and speaks publicly about protecting children from pornography.
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