This one is close to home – literally.
Orlando to you may be the home of Disney, Harry Potter, and maxed out credit cards. For me, it is the town where my sisters live, where friends from home and high school now live, and where I have cousins tucked in on quiet streets far from the hustle of Mickey Mouse.
I was visiting the ranch when the news broke on Sunday morning. Headed home that day, we passed within a couple of blocks of the shooting site. I found out a friend taught one of the young men killed in Middle School. This was the not an act of terrorism that killed strangers; this was act reached out and impacted people I care about.
Predictably, Facebook erupted into irrelevant political debates. Candidates quickly took positions to attempt to bolster their cause. Gun rights were defended and gun laws were proposed. People called out for Muslims to be banned.
What is Jesus doing?
He is not exploiting the moment. He is with families that are grieving. He is working healing on the injured. He is speaking right now to those who have horror etched into their memories forever. His words are “When you walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I am with you; I will comfort you.” He is speaking to all of us on the outside looking in, “This is why I came. This is why I died. To wipe evil such as this. It can only be overcome with purity and love – my purity and my love.”
Jesus is at work. In a moment like this, as His follower, my choice is to join Him and follow Him.
So pray for Orlando. For families of the dead, for healing of the injured, for traumatized witnesses, for first responders only now experiencing the feelings – pray. Give hate and Satan no opportunity to enter this moment.
James, Jesus’ brother told us, “Do not be overcome with evil; but overcome evil with good (James 4:8).”
Pray and overcome.