As I look at this image and reflect on that day 8 years ago, I am reminded that many lives were not only lost but radically changed that day. For some, the change was one that impacted eternity.
As a result of this terrorist attacks, I have a greater view of what evil really looks like. It destroys. It deceives. It opposes all that is good. It is deadly. It is real. And people are still capable of such evil acts, words and thoughts today.
At the same time, I see the grace and mercy of God in the countless acts of courage, compassion and kindness portrayed by Americans great and small.
Many lives are stronger today as a result of a healthy response to the attacks. The future of many adults, children and grandchildren has been eternally changed. There was a high price to pay to get our attention. Too high a price? It probably depends on who you ask.
God the Father paid a great price too. He sent his Son Jesus to die a death he didn't deserve. He did it to make it possible for us to be forgiven and freed from sin and death. Jesus suffered torture for most of the day before--and then on--the cross. He went obediently and willingly out of love--for God his Father first, and then, for us.
Too high a price? Depends on who you ask. But as for me--definitely too high a price to pay. I wasn't worth it--at least in my eyes.
But I'm so grateful that God sees things differently. That while I was a traitor and enemy of God (terrorist?), God paid the ultimate price to demonstrate his great love for me and that "While we were still sinners, Christ died for us." (Rom 5:8)
I am grateful that Jesus died on the cross in my place for my sins so that I could live in his place. You are great, Lord!
Today I lift up those who still hurt for the lives lost during the attacks on 9/11/01 and the rescue and recovery efforts that followed. I pray for those families that will forever have to deal with the void left because the loss of a loved one.
Today I pray for the nation--for the Way, the Truth and the Life to become clear to us. For the love of God to be fleshed out in our nation through God's people.
Today I pray for our leaders. That they would be humble, honest and wise. That they would truly love and serve their nation.
"Jesus said, 'The kingdom of God is near. Repent and believe the Good News." (Mark 1:16)