This past Sunday morning, after the horrific Orlando mass shooting, my heart was heavy, my heart was confused, my heart was angry, and my heart was broken. Sitting together with others in our church I found that we all had hearts that were heavy, hearts that were confused, hearts that were angry and hearts that were broken. Seventeen years ago, this same church voted to become an "Open and Affirming church" which meant throwing the doors wide open and offering an extravagant welcome to all. Not just to those who look like us, sound like us, think like us, believe like us, vote like us, worship like us, or, love like us. It was and is our attempt to take Jesus seriously when he calls us to love our neighbor.
Today as I sit, trying to write something worthy of posting, I keep returning to the words of the prayer that we prayed as a congregation, raising our voices together against the pain and darkness and fear and hate that seem to surround us. Perhaps for now, these words are enough. They must be, because for the moment, I can find none to add.
'Oh Holy One, our world can feel so broken, and so divided. The horrors of our world, and the polarizing that they lead to, drives us into separate camps. Let us love our shared humanity more than our sense of being right. Let us cling to your call to grace, rather than our own judgements. And let us draw our identity not from our own in-groups, but rather know ourselves as formed in your love; for your love in the world. Amen."
Words alone won't make a difference.
Actions taken to bring these words to life will.