Columbine… Newtown… Ft. Hood… Charleston… Chattanooga… San Bernadino.  And as of this week, following the deadliest mass shooting in recent history, Orlando joins the list.  Each name brings to mind a chilling reminder that the world is a dangerous place.

With each new announcement, emotions rush to the forefront.  Grief, fear, anger, and even hate all volunteer to dictate our actions.  And (as the terrorists intended) we catch ourselves thinking often about “where it’s safe.”

There’s nothing good in the tragedies that are happening around us, but there is a reminder.  The peace & saftety we’ve enjoyed for much of America’s history isn’t “normal” for most of the world.  It’s never been normal anywhere for long… when it comes to being a follower of Jesus.  We’re called to love people – those we disagree with, and even those who might want to kill us.  We’re commissioned to be “salt” & “light” where there’s decay & darkness.

The lesson of Orlando… and a growing list of places in America… is that we need to remember why we’re here.  Jesus didn’t create His church to seek out all the places of peace & safety (tempting as that may be.)  He called us to serve in a truly dangerous world.  Security isn’t in our surroundings, but in the proof that He’s stronger than death, and in His promise to be with us.

Christian people have always lived in that confidence.  You can too.