Howdy, everyone. So, there are a couple things that have been on my mind as of late. I’ll talk about the sad one first, so we don’t close on a sad note. As many of you may know, there was a mass shooting in Orlando over the weekend. I’ll be honest: I’m baffled, both because of the senseless violence and unnecessary killing, and because of the resistance for better gun safety laws. What’s even more curious though is that, before I heard about this terrible event, I was reading a chapter out of a book called Waking the Tiger, which talks about how animals in the wild, although they face death every day, don’t really suffer from trauma, like humans do. The author then talks about why we as humans, the more “evolved” species, have the hardest time dealing with it. It’s a very good book and I highly recommend it to everyone, but I digress. So, in the chapter, the author discusses violence and how it’s fed by trauma. He makes a great point that, with very few exceptions, humans are the only species of animal that kills its own kind, mostly in the hopes of contending with their own traumatic experience with violence/war. So, while I am sad for all those who have been victimized by this horrible event, I feel sad also for the shooter. What he did was atrocious, no doubt, but I wonder how society fed that compulsion he had to do what he did. What happened in his past that traumatized him and brought him to this extreme measure? It isn’t about gun safety anymore, I realize that now. It’s also about looking into better psychological care for the US and its citizens. These two solutions must both be in place if we are to ever see an end to the senseless violence.
On a happier note, I flew home two weekends ago to go before the Committee on Preparation for Ministry in the hopes of being pushed through to the next part of the process. So, after a few days hanging out at the house and going to visit my sweetheart on Sunday afternoon, I went before the committee, defended my Statement of Faith, and gave a sermon. I was very happy to find out that I was pushed through and am now “certified ready to seek a call.” The next phase is finishing the information I’ll be uploading to the website, which consists mostly of getting my Statement of Faith down to 3,000 characters, including spaces and punctuation. At first, it was almost 5,900. Now, it’s about 4,200 or so. So, that’s 1,700 down, but 1,200 more to go. Then again, anyone who knows me knows I don’t give up easily. I’m going to keep pushing forward, and I’ll let you all know when I’m finished. So, until next time, may God bless you in all you do.