Image by ELTMAN, via Flickr

Why is it so easy to see or hear one detail and leap to the worst possible conclusion about a person’s motivations?

Why is it so easy to give our past hurts permission to control our present reactions, and block out reason when it urges moderation?

Why is it so easy to skip over grief for lives cut short and families in pain, and spend all our energy pointing fingers and hurling accusations?

Why is it so hard to listen to reason when it’s trying to keep us from demonizing others?

Why is it so hard to empathize with people who are different from us?

Why is it so easy to paint them as inherently evil in our minds and hearts?

Why is it so hard for people of faith to recognize when we are doing exactly what we accuse others of doing?

Yes, I am reacting to Orlando. And I’m sending out these questions in every direction—toward shooters and those who are arguing about gun control vs. gun rights and those who are anti-gay and those who are steadfastly, even stubbornly, refusing believe that a Texas politician’s tweet wasn’t a response to this tragedy at all, despite the fact that we’ve all experienced the agony of having said the wrong thing in the wrong moment and not even known it until it was way too late to take it back.

Which is not to say I support the man. I have a feeling he and I don’t see eye to eye on a whole bunch of issues. And I do think tweets like that are kind of self-righteous, and probably do more to drive people away from Christ than invite them in.

But I don’t believe he posted it as a “nanny nanny boo boo” in the face of the LGBTQ community, either. Speaking rationally, it doesn’t even make sense to read it that way. It’s saying you sow what you reap…so the only way it could be a jab at LGBTQ community is if he’s suggesting that the LGBTQ community has been going around shooting people. ???? I’m just not seeing the connection. Although as always, I’m open to being corrected.

All day yesterday, I watched Facebook explode with anger and bitterness and nastiness. It went every possible direction. Terrorists, Republicans, Democrats, Trump, Obama, liberals, conservatives, gun-control advocates, gun-rights advocates, gays…everybody got bashed. It made me want to cry. You have this calling to blog, and you know your reach is small, but you keep hitting the same message over and over: listen to reason, listen to each other, think about how you talk to and about people, think about human dignity…and a situation like this comes up, and emotions erupt, and you think, “Is there any point in me writing at all, if it’s going to make no difference at all when it’s really needed?”

Why is it so easy to think the worst of people who are different than us?

Why is it so hard to see them with the eyes of Christ, who loved and accepted and challenged all at once?

Why is it so easy to give ourselves permission to become a mirror image of what we most despise?

No Easy Answers