I wrote this last year. It pretty much sums things up again this year. The biggest difference is that my boys are older. We’re spending today being thankful for the heroes. We are wearing American flag shirts and fireman shirts. Rather than feeling lost and grief-stricken like last year. My heart is still heavy.
I want life to look differently on this day – even if just in a small way. Something needs to set this day apart. So, we wear special shirts. We go outside and hang a special 9/11 remembrance flag. We talk about heroes. We remember.
It’s the tenth anniversary of 9/11.
We all know this.
Our local news station has been calling today a CELEBRATION of 9/11.
I’m not ok with this.
It all still feels so raw. So recent. Not like it’s been ten years.
Maybe it’s just my pregnancy hormones. I mean, I wept today at the Budweiser horse tribute commercial. You know, the one where the horses kneel in front of the NY skyline to honor the fallen. Heck, I’m getting choked up right now thinking about it.
Should today be a day of celebration or of mourning/remembrance?
We should certainly celebrate the lives of those who perished. Celebrate the tenacity of the human spirit. Celebrate the heroes. But celebrate the anniversary of a day filled with terror, pain, and death?
Is it different for those in New York, DC, and PA? For those who have lived daily seeing the destruction? Have I been so sheltered, able to close off that part of me, that I haven’t dealt with the grief and emotions involved?
My first summer home from college, I lived just ten minutes from where the plane went down in PA. I was working at my church camp. I’ve driven through the area since 9/11 but have avoided stopping at the memorial. Even driving through the area is tough.
Would it be easier to spend the time remembering and grieving? I don’t know.
I didn’t know anyone who lost their lives that day. I didn’t know anyone who was connected to someone who lost their lives. I have had friends and former students overseas fighting for our freedoms since then. I have seen the sacrifices they have made for our freedoms. I’ve watched children cry while asking when daddy was coming home.
As I looked out across the congregation this morning, I was struck with the realization that there were many members there who can still remember exactly where they were when they heard about the attack on Pearl Harbor. When JFK was shot. The list could go on and on.
The reality is this.
We live in a fallen world. A world full of strife. In our lifetimes, we will be faced with many terrible events. With pain. With heartache.
The reality us that this world is not our home.
It is a temporary residence. Jesus is preparing many rooms for us in His Father’s house.
In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you.
This does not mean that we can sit back and just wait. There is work to be done here on Earth. He has a plan for our lives.
1 Corinthians 1:25
This foolish plan of God is wiser than the wisest of human plans, and God’s weakness is stronger than the greatest of human strength.
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
We have a hope for the future. While death and destruction will happen on Earth, there will be an end.
As we mourn the events of 9/11/2001 and every other tragedy we experience, we can take comfort in His promise found in Revelation.
He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”
I am watching the Mets baseball game as I write this post. It’s hard to watch. So many players and coaches remembering that day. Remembering the rebuilding. Images of New York. It’s hard.
So, will I ever celebrate this day? Not this side of heaven. One day we shall see in full the pla God had for that terrible day. How He has triumphed over evil. How He worked ALL things together for good.
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.
Has good already come from this tragedy? Most certainly.
Local news – let’s be respectful of the pain that is still very fresh. It’s a day of remembrance. A day of mourning. A day of sadness. Not a celebration. This isn’t Mardi Gras. 10 years ago today changed all of our lives forever. Let’s never forget.
Where were you on that tragic day? Do you spend the day remembering, mourning, or celebrating?