This Christian’s Response to the Orlando Shootings…
I’ve waited several days to write this, for several reasons: to avoid the knee-jerk reactions that we’re seeing all around us; to collect my thoughts; to allow for additional information to come from the investigation; to not appear to be jumping on the bandwagon that so many in the media, in politics, and in social media are doing.
Nor do I want this post to be tainted by politics, because it sure could be. Easily. So very easily. Even as I write this, and edit and re-write, it’s difficult.
So I’m going to write out my thoughts, my perspective.
The words of Romans 12: 9-21 echo in my mind and in my heart, particularly the phrase in verse 15, “mourn with those who mourn“. This section of the chapter is often subtitled Love in Action, because of the context…what should our love look like?
And the answer starts with this: love must be sincere. In the aftermath of this tragedy, our love has to be sincere.
The picture I used above is there for a reason. The man in the middle is Pastor Kelvin Cobaris from Impact Church in Orlando. I know nothing of the man beyond that, but I know that his consoling of Orlando City Commissioner Patty Sheehan (right) and Terry DeCarlo, an Orlando gay rights advocate (left), is sincere love demonstrated in action.
Mourn with those who mourn. Pray for those affected, that they would be comforted in their grief. Offer words of love and healing. But most of all, mean it.
Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.
Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.
Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. On the contrary:
“If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.
In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”
Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
I’ve waited several days to write this, for several reasons: to avoid the knee-jerk reactions that we’re seeing all around us; to collect my thoughts; to allow for additional information to come from the investigation; to not appear to be jumping on the bandwagon that so many in the media, in politics, and in social…