We still shutter at the magnitude of lives lost and the unthinkable destruction that reduced the pride and joy of the New York skyline into a pile of ash and rubble. The majestic towers of The World Trade Center forever gone. Precious human beings suddenly ripped from this earth, leaving gaping bleeding holes in their affected families and communities.The landscape of their lives forever changed.
Americans now closely guard their safety and security. As mothers, we wonder what kind of world our children and their children will inherit. We can’t fully wrap our hearts around the depth of depravity that motivated this heinous act. And, in recent days, we have seen more hate-driven acts of violence. When mankind partners with hate, it never breeds goodness.
Tragedies can never be fully understood on this side of Heaven. There is a clash between good and evil on this broken planet, and we are often wounded in the crossfire. We live in a world marred by war. When tragedy invades, we must decide if we are willing to muster the courage to battle for our hearts, for our hope, and for allowing God to do His transforming redemptive work in the midst of the bloody mess. Maybe that’s why the National September 11 Memorial and Museum is important to the world:It’s a tangible reminder of our need for remembrance, hope, and resilience.
John Eldredge, author and Christian counselor, penned these words in reference to the devastating fires in Colorado that occurred several years ago (they can be applied to 9/11 and all the painful situations we may face). He says,
In the midst of crisis, heartbreak, or tragedy, you can seek God or you can seek understanding but you rarely get both. In time, usually after some time, God can help you sort things out. But, not in the midst of the storm. In the maelstrom, seek God. Interpretation comes later. Trust the larger story.
Trust the larger story…Because, there really is one...
Our earthly lives are part of a bigger redemptive story. One that we can only partially see and understand. That doesn’t necessarily assuage our heartache, but it does allow us to assign greater meaning to our pain— eternal meaning. When we embrace the larger story, we shift our focus. The eternal eyes of our hearts are opened allowing us to believe and to see, even in part, that God in His mysteriously redemptive ways is bringing beauty from the ashes of loss, brokenness, and blown up lives. This thread of inexplicable redemption is a woven theme throughout the pages of scripture.
Presently, we are American citizens, but our true citizenship is in Heaven. Friends, someday we will reach our true homeland, and then we will fully see justice prevail. All wrongs righted, and every tear wiped away. That is our hope.
Scripture of the Day:
So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. (2 Corinthians 3:18)
Prayer: Father God, thank You for the gift of Your comfort. May we always run to You when life hurts. Open the eyes of our hearts to perceive the unseen things. You are always fighting on our behalf. Your goodness will always trump evil. Father, as we remember 9/11, please comfort our nation and those touched by this heartbreaking tragedy.
Author: Maryanne Abbate