Although I don't want to rush to some quick judgement about peoples' motives, I am having difficult time understanding the motives of people who protest funerals, prayer vigils, military gatherings and funerals. If you think long and hard enough, you will know exactly who and what I'm speaking of.
In 1996, my son and I visited D.C. for the last showing of the entire AIDS quilt. My husband had died a few years prior from an AIDS-related illness and we made him a quilt square. There were so many squares that when sewn together they covered the entire mall and spilled over into the Smithsonian areas. And while we are grieving guess who showed up?That's right. A group of people from Kansas with signs full of such hate language I was embarrassed for them. My son, 15 at the time, learned a hard lesson as people yelled hate speech at us, telling us we were all going to drown in the Lake of Fire and that God hated us, that AIDS was some great vengeance of our bad choices and behavior. Really? We did nothing wrong. We lost a loved one to a horrible disease, which by the way, doesn't fit the criteria of a plague.
Then this same group began randomly showing up at the ministry where I worked to protest, because in their opinion, we didn't take a hard enough stance against certain political issues of the day. It was weird. On one side of the road (this was at Focus on the Family) were gay rights advocates who had their own brand of hate speech for us because of the obvious stance of that ministry, on the other side was the Kansas faction of protesters yelling and waving signs and throwing slurs at us because our stance wasn't strong enough. Really?!?!?!
Then...they showed up at funerals of military men and women who were killed in action. I guess I really don't get that one. Families grieving the loss of a loved one they'll never see this side of heaven only to hear words and see signs that tell them their loved one is burning in hell. Could someone please enlighten me how this is less than heartless on their part?
And now? Now they wanted to show up and protest the prayer vigil in Aurora this past weekend but were blocked.
I find it troubling and sad that the son of the minister of this particular church group has left, denounced his fathers' ways and is now "recovering from religion". How sad his view of the Gospel of Jesus Christ has been so distorted.
Again, I am painfully aware that I am walking a fine line here, but this hurts my heart. How can we, as believers of Jesus Christ, carry out the Great Commission, spread the Gospel of Peace, while those people are out there dragging their gigantic crosses around, waving their Christian flags and hate signs and expect people to think we are anything but a bunch of lunatics?
There is a bumper sticker that breaks my heart. It reads: "God please protect me from your followers." How sad....