On My Mind
Disbelief, numb, surreal, pain, anger, confusion…, these are a few of the words that describe how I feel after the tragic loss of life in Orlando four days ago. We now have all had to go back to our responsibilities and do our jobs, yet thoughts about this linger in the recess of our minds.
In this moment I’m contemplating Jesus’s words, as he looked over Jerusalem concerned about its future and its salvation and said, “If you, even you, had only recognized on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes” (Luke 19:42). The violence will not end and the hate fueled speech will not stop until we recognize the things that make for peace.
But first we have to want peace. Within hours of the shooting, some were vilifying all Muslims and condemning LGBTQ persons, even daring to say that this was God’s judgment on them—and I can assure it is not!!! This is because some people want to purge society of people who are not like them rather than seek to live in peace with them. At the same time there were those who put conservative ideologies and exclusive theologies aside, and rushed to aid the people who had been harmed. The difference? Some want peace and some do not.
In the midst of this, here’s my prayer:
God, help us to desire peace. Help us to recognize the things that make for peace. And help us, “so far as it depends on us, to live peaceably with all” (Romans 12:18). Amen.