I know this blog is usually a place where I discuss books and the like, but today my heart is heavy and my mind is struggling to wrap itself around the senseless violence that took so many lives in Orlando. This is not a political post, because I don’t believe this is a time for politics, although that’s what it’s being turned into.

I believe this is a time that as a people we need to come together to show each other just how much love we are capable of showing one another. It doesn’t matter what race, gender, class, or religion you are, the only thing that matters is that we use this time to reflect on why this keeps happening in our country. Time to reflect on why so many people are filled with so much hate and evil that they take the lives of innocent people for terrible reasons.

We need to step up as parents, to use this opportunity to teach our children that discrimination of any kind is wrong. I am a Christian, and I’m ashamed of the way many Christians are hateful to the LGBT community are when our only job as Christians is to show the love of Jesus and not judge others. Jesus did not die for our sins so that we can hurl homophobic slurs and spew Islamaphobic rhetoric. No matter what another person’s sexual orientation or religion is, we should embrace them and show them the love that Jesus has shown us.

There are no simple answers as to why this keeps happening. There is no easy fix.

My words are failing me right now because it’s difficult to describe just how heartbroken I feel for the victims of this tragedy, their families, and for the injured. I urge everyone who reads this to stop judging and start loving. Show kindness instead of showing hatred. Pray for those who were killed or injured, pray for our country so that we can find a way to keep this from happening, pray for the first responders who are dealing with this horrible mess,  and pray for the shooter because God has instructed us to love and forgive our enemies and those who wish to bring us harm.

Orlando, my thoughts and prayers are with you. May God bring you comfort and peace.

With love,