The following is a reply I posted on Facebook to a suggestion that people take action by calling legislators about reform of gun laws in a post publicizing my very brief blog for LEVN (Lutheran Episcopal Volunteer Network). LEVN will soon be adding it to the original blog post with my permission.

Another way to act: take the time to sit and listen and be with people. Listen to opinions you wouldn’t think you’d agree with, learn from experiences that are different than yours, don’t assume everyone agrees with you or that to disagree demonstrates lack of sufficient morals. Pray in a service led by a pastor if you feel called to do so or pray through direct service to others, and don’t feel superior or let anyone make you feel inferior for either manner of prayer. If I am suffering, don’t expect me to join the yelling match, or assume I would want you to join it for me. Be with me. Ask me what I need. Even if you’re not a pastor or religious, offer that pastoral, Christ-like, servant-leader care and compassion. Just be there.

If you want to engage in the political process, remember that the weapon used for the slaughter did cause loss of life and a lot of suffering, but so does legislation, bullying, justifying hatred with religion, and numerous other things the LGBT community is bombarded with daily. The mindset that hatred is ok murders people every day, and the murders are not only carried out with guns. In the method that best suits your level of aversion to risk of physical harm, defend your brothers and sisters in Christ, come to the aid of your neighbors. It might be that if someone makes a racist joke, you call them out. It might be that you call your legislators about reforming specific laws. It might be that you check in with someone who has expressed their grief at the state of the world. Who knows what it will be? But on a daily basis, I implore you, take action. It will be a while before the day comes when there’s no opportunity to help.

PS Thank you for reading my blog post

 (Note: image is my creation, posted with the blog at my request by LEVN; it is a meditative reflection piece I did while thinking of a musical rendition of “Be still and know that I am God”)