Lauren Casper »

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In programs like Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, and Rehabilitation Treatment Centers there is a simple guiding principle for those in early recovery: People, Places, Things. The idea is to make the necessary changes in your life to avoid the people, places, and things that trigger the use of alcohol and/or drugs. People, places, and things can have great power in our lives.

It occurs to me that if people, places, and things can trigger pain and lead to unhealthy and devastating choices, they have the power to do the opposite as well. We can cultivate relationships with our people in ways that lead to full hearts and leave us (and them) better off in the world. We can infuse our places – our homes and schools and churches and countries – with love, respect, kindness, beauty, and generosity. We can fill our days with things that sustain, not drain us.

Life will bring pain. We will have seasons of deep sorrow and seasons of deep joy. We can lay the groundwork today for stability and peace, though. So when the storms come and sift our lives, we’re left holding what matters most. The people, places, and things that bring peace, hope and joy.

I’ve chosen to organize my writing into these three categories. Sometimes there is overlap, as is the case with life. Nothing is ever as neatly packaged as I’d prefer it to be. But I’m learning to let things be messy sometimes, and that uncomfortable isn’t always a bad thing.

Thanks for being here – I hope this blog is one of the “things” in your life that sustains rather than drains.

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