I write this article in the wake of the devastating carnage perpetrated in Las Vegas earlier this week.

My heart breaks for those who lost their lives while enjoying a time of recreation and fun. I am deeply grieved for those who must now move forward in a life in which hopes and dreams were shattered.

When will the madness end? When will the senseless taking of human life stop being a game of one-upsmanship to see who can wreak the worst carnage? When will individuals start treating one another with compassion instead of contempt?

I will not debate the topic of gun control. I have my own personal position on that. But I believe no matter what laws may be passed, people will always be able to purchase guns and weapons to do heinous acts.

The issue is not one of gun laws. It comes down to a matter of God's laws.

The madness will end when people realize and accept completely that every person is a creation of God; that each person is worthy of love and respect; that every person deserves to be treated kindly.

The madness will end when people stop thinking it is okay to do anything they desire in order to grab attention and feel important.

The madness will end when selfishness and a sense of entitlement are understood to be a devastating mindset in our society.

Our Lord says, "Love your neighbor as yourself." If each person did that, there would no longer be any senseless killing. There would be plenty of food and resources to go around. There would be a true sense of well-being among people.

Let us all strive to do better at bringing an end to the madness. It may seem like an insurmountable task. But if we each start to bring about change in ourselves first, a major first step will have been made.

The Rev. Mark Broadhead is pastor at Laurel Hill Presbyterian Church and First Presbyterian Church of Crestview.