Meet Steven Anderson — the pastor for the Faithful Word Baptist Church in Arizona.
According to Changing Attitude Ireland, a liberal Church of Ireland group sympathetic to gay people, Mr Anderson “has advocated exterminating LGBT+ people, lauded the massacre in the Florida Gay Night Club of LGBT patrons and said he prayed nightly that US president Barack Obama would die!” He is also a Holocaust denier.
Here’s why I pray for Steven:
If we respond with hate, then we’re no better than him … and he wins. You see, people like Steven love the hate they give because they want to see it affect others. I will not let his horrific views, words + actions have any affect on me. In fact, it gives me strength because I can see in the news that the world is changing. That’s why he’s being banned from other countries. It encourages me to keep being the best person I can be and helping change the world one day at a time.
Steven’s life is a mystery. How are we to know what led him on this dark path? We don’t. We can make assumptions or try to research what has been publicly shared, and we’ll never truly know the answers we are seeking. Though, it doesn’t matter. We can’t change his upbringing, education or experiences, all of which played a role in molding him into who he is today.
He doesn’t know God. He clearly doesn’t understand God and can’t see His light in all of us. His website says, “ He holds no college degree but has well over 140 chapters of the Bible memorized word-for-word, including approximately half of the New Testament.” Memorizing words on a page doesn’t mean you actually retained any information. If Steven had, he’d understand God and know that his actions are not Christianlike. To be honest, people like Steven fascinate me. When hateful people use religion to justify their actions, it really does make me feel sorry for them. They couldn’t be more disconnected with God, and that is sad.
God is kind + merciful, and we should be too.
I will pray for Steven.
But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you. — Matthew 5:44