1. I am thankful for my friends. From my AIMSers to my best friends in Lubbock to my GC to my fight club, and everyone in between -- I am so thankful for you. You are so encouraging to me and fill me up with life and joy. You keep me real and never let me forget the person that I am. You inspire me and challenge me. You make me laugh and you cry with me. Plus, you all give amazing hugs. I am so blessed to have people like you, you who speak life into my heart, pray for me, make me laugh, and fill my days with joy. I could write for days about each and every one of you. Thank you for all that you are to and for me; I thank God for you every single day of my life. I don't deserve people like you, but I sure am grateful. 2. I am thankful for busy days. They keep me from overanalyzing, and they make my rest all the sweeter. Plus, when I'm productive, I feel like I'm going somewhere: gaining on the dream.

3. I am thankful for the sky. If you know me at all I've probably waxed poetic to you multiple times about the sky. I can't get over it. I think my obsession with it first began when I was driving down Highway 380 at home. Along our stretch, what was once prairie goes completely flat, and the sky is like a giant bowl set over a sheet of printer paper. It reminds me of Jesus and how sovereign He is. It really puts my problems in perspective. The sky is a canvas for me. No place in the world has a sky like Texas. When it's blue, it's a true blue, deeper than the sea -- you can't pierce it with your eyes. It draws me in and extends forever. I think my favorite skies are volatile, though -- rainclouds, yes, but especially sunrises and sunsets. The beauty is unfathomable, inexpressible; if you've never been to Texas, you truly don't get it. But I love the sky everywhere else, too: I'll never forget the sunset over the Graz mountains as viewed from the Kasematten on top of the Schloßberg. The sky is too beautiful to be real for me, and it's a love letter from Jesus to my longing heart. He uses the sky to train me to look up -- not just to the sky, but to the heavens, to Him. I hope I always spend my life looking up: focusing on Christ, never ceasing in my idealism and trust.