I am a very opinionated person, but I tend to keep when it comes to my opinions and my religious views. For me, it's just better that way.

But today, I am over keeping quiet. Today, I am fed up.

Why?

Because I am really really tired of seeing people using religion to spread hate.

I was born and raised Catholic, I attended Catholic for 13 years, and I've researched other religions (I'm curious) and if there is anything I took away, it is that the bases of most religions is love. So why do people use religion and whichever version of God they worship to spread hate, instead?.

The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these. Mark 12:31

The golden rule, treat others how you want to be treated. This verse has been taught to me since kindergarten. Jesus gives us two commandments in the New Testament, to love God with all our heart and soul and to love our neighbour as ourself. Notice how it says "there is no commandment greater than these." All we are asked to do is love God and treat our neighbors (all of God's people) with love and respect, so why does that seem to be so hard for some people?

Between the articles floating around and the religious freedom laws, it's no wonder that there's an aura of hatred associated with Christianity. I grew up in a very accepting household, I was always taught to love people, no matter who they were or who they loved. I thought this was how everyone grew up, but the older I got the more I saw how wrong I was.

I don't expect everyone to be perfect and I know the entire world can't get along, but as someone who knows my God is a loving God, I'd expect His followers to stop using His words to condemn others. People love to cherry pick the Bible to find verses that condemn others, but there are so many more verses telling us to love others.

We all sin, everyday, in our actions, in our words, in our intentions. Not a single one of us is free of sin, so why don't we treat everyone else as harshly as we do those of the LGBTQ+ community? It's simple really, in that it has nothing to do with religious beliefs, but instead it's just pure hatred. If you are religious, you believe we are made in God's image and likeness and what we do to our fellow man, we also do to God.

Every time you tell a transgender person they are a disgrace, you are saying that to God.

Every time you tell a gay or lesbian person they are going to Hell, you are saying that to God.

Every time you turn away these people, you are turning away God.

None of us can cast stones, none of us can judge.

God loves all his children, and I do mean ALL. So next time you go to use God or the Bible or your religious beliefs to turn someone away or to judge them, for the sake of all Christians, don't.

My God, your God, He is a loving and accepting God, maybe we should all give it a try too. It's time we get rid of the stigma of being exclusive and start spreading a message of love once again.