Where were you four years ago today? I can still remember like it was yesterday.
After a long night of morning sickness, I was still in bed that morning. Chip had gotten up with the kids and I heard him come FLYING up the stairs. I sat straight up in bed because I knew something must be terribly wrong for him to be moving that fast. How little did I know?
“A plane just flew into the World Trade Center. You need to get up. I think the country is under attack.”
I remember that I was shocked awake like no cup of coffee could do. We made it to the sofa in front of the television and just as we sat down, we saw the reports that a second plane had just flown into the other tower of the WTC. We sat with our mouths hanging open, our hearts heavy for the people inside. As the tears rolled down my face, the only question that could come to mind was, “WHY?”
Soon reports rolled in about the Pentagon and the word “terrorist” was used. Our country had indeed been attacked. It was personal. And while I didn’t know anyone in the WTC or the Pentegon, my thoughts immediately went to those peole I knew who DID know someone in those buildings. I don’t think any life was left untouched that day.
Then we sat and watched in absolutely horror as the towers fell. The buildings that were supposed to be unbreakable crumbled to the ground. I think I held my breath for as long as humanly possible in that moment. For it seemed as if the entire world had stopped turning.
Like much of the country, the next week, month, was spent in front of the television. We learned of the heroes of September 11th. We learned the courage of the passengers of a crashed flight in a field in Pennsylvania who had been able to reach loved ones on the phone and how they decided amongst themselves that enough was enough and sacrificed their own lives so that others might live. We learned of the firefighters and police officers that were running INTO the World Trade Centers as others ran out, who with no regard for their own safety, fought first to rescue as many as they could from the blazing inferno.
Churches across the nation held vigils and answered the ultimate question, “WHY did God let this happen?” And pastors around the world just hung their heads and said, “I don’t know!”
But what we do know is that God is a loving God and He’s an unchanging God. His is I AM. When the planes were hijacked, He was there. When the towers fell, He was there. While the country mourned, He was there. And He was there to bring peace and comfort to those who needed it most. He gave his children the strength and mercy they needed to “stand up under” the devastation that they faced that day. He held the hand of the dying and held the hand of the wounded. He told them that they were loved in a world that seemed to only hate and seek to destroy. He gave those that needed it the peace that surpasses all understanding.
Do I have questions for God about why it happened? You bet I do! But it doesn’t change the fact that God loves each and every one and desires to spend eternity with them.