My Dear American Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
You say, the second amendment gives you a right to your guns, and that they are a necessity, that without them your freedom might be endangered.
You say you need them to defend your home from potential burglars. You ask what I will do when someone breaks into my house. How will I defend myself without your guns. You question if the police will get to my home in time to save me and my family. You claim your house is more secure than mine because you have your guns.
You say that gun laws are ineffective because criminals don’t follow laws. You say that placing regulations around guns will take weapons from law-abiding citizens, like you, and leave guns in the hands of those who intend you harm.
You say the solution to the problem of violence in our nation is arming more people like you, and then you hint that if you had been present at any of the recent mass shootings, because of your conceal to carry licence, the death count would have been less. You make vague references to attacks overseas, and question what the outcome of those would be if there were more gun owners in those countries.
You say that it isn’t guns that kill people. It’s people that kill people, and that you shouldn’t be restricted because a few crazy people are full of hate, that your freedom must be respected, and that your rights protected.
You spend so many words defending your things.
Have you forgotten that when you surrendered your life to the crucified God, that your life stopped being about you?
You gave yourself to a God who sacrificed himself for the sake of a world that did not love him, because he loved it. This is the God who calls his followers to follow his example by taking up his cross, dying to themselves, so that they might live new and different lives.
You have committed to living a life of love, a life consumed by loving them…
…loving those who dance the night away in specialized clubs because, after we rejected them and pushed them to the outskirts of society, they sought community and acceptance among one another, making them easy targets for hatred.
…loving their families, who struggle with the absence of loved ones, who will sit up nights for years to come wondering what their brother’s, sister’s, son’s, daughter’s last moment was like, regretting conversations had, longing for conversations that will never occur.
…loving the young men and women in this country being fed a regular diet of self-righteous discrimination and hate. Those who are told that they are more holy, not because of their faith, but because of the choices that they have made about their sexuality or morality, unintentionally shunning the freedom of the gospel they claim to follow.
Those are the ones who need your words, who need your time, who need your love.
Your guns will not help you on your mission to bring new life to the world, because your guns do not give life. Your guns are in the way, because those who live by the sword will die by the sword, and leave only destruction and tears in their wake.
There are other tools in your arsenal you can use to protect and change the world. They are love, joy, peace, patience, goodness, gentleness, and self-control. These are the weapons we need because they do not kill, rather, they bring new life.
So please, speak out. Continue to write your Facebook posts, tweets, and blogs. Continue to rant. Continue to defend.
But do not defend your guns, your rights, your freedoms, you.
Rather, take up the weapons of Christ and find the most defenseless, rejected, outcast people in your community, and defend them.
Defend them loudly. Defend them passionately.
And yes, it will cost you.
But remember, greater love has no man than he who lays down his rights, his freedoms, his guns, even his very life for another.