Outside my kitchen window, I can see a liquor store. I can see people coming in and out, morning, noon and night, anytime I do the dishes or inspect my children’s dish doing.
Looking at the trash that blows into our yard (our part of town has a serious litter problem; just a few blocks away mysteriously doesn’t), almost all of it comes from addictive things: liquor bottles, candy wrappers, chip bags, condom packaging, cigarettes. Always Newport Cigarettes. Do only Newport Cigarette Smokers throw their boxes on the ground? I don’t know.
What I do know is that we become addicted because we’re escaping pain and disconnect. And all addiction brings us (besides temporary respite) is more pain and disconnect.
It’s one of the baser reasons for loving my faith, but I am so overwhelmingly grateful for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and these standards. I know without a doubt that if it weren’t for this church, I’d be an addict. I don’t know what I’d be addicted to,* but it would probably be more than one thing, and it wouldn’t be pretty.
Whenever we pick up the trash in our yard, whenever I look out my kitchen window, I think of the addicts I know and love. I think how easily I could be them. I don’t feel superior, only sad for the past and hopeful for the future. I love them, I miss them, I hope for them, I pray for them.
And when I mean them, I mean us. Because it’s never really us and them. It’s actually just us.