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Saturday, September 3, 2011

Remembering 9/11...Reunited with Each Other...With God

 

September 11. 2001...more commonly known these days as 9/11...seemed like a simply quiet and normal Tuesday morning in New York City.

I remember I was at an evening bible study meeting half way across the globe.

Down in New York City, nothing seemed unusual...nothing lookked extraordinary...faceless people sending their kids to school...grabbing their quick breakfast...reading the papers...packing breakfast...catching the bus...the tube...hugging their loved ones...kissing their good byes...for some...whereas for others...getting into an argument...not talking...no home to go to...unwanted...marginalized...living out their last days...on board their very last suicidal flight...American Airlines Flight 11, United Airlines Flight 175, American Airlines Flight 77 and United Airlines Flight 93...worst still, those who fell or jumped off the tragic floors of the World Trade Center’s North and South Twin Towers....the Pentagon...


Do you remember what you were doing on that fateful day?...when...just about everyone, suddenly remembered God...reaching out to Him...coming home to Him...talking to Him...praying - pleading...crying...begging...reconciling...


On that day...the world stood still and witnessed the powerful United States cruelly brought down to their knees...humbled, at the expense of many, many innocent Americans...2,977 victims per official reports...someone else’s mother, father, daughter, son, brother, sister, friend, neighbor, colleague...a created human being whose life was suddenly and cruelly taken away...the words of Job rings aloud...

“...Naked came I out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return thither: the Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away: as it hath pleased the Lord so is it done: blessed be the name of the Lord.” (Job 1:21, Douay Rheims)

One often wonders how does God ever fit into the everyday lives of the people in a big, cosmopolitan, noisy and seductive city like New York?  The city that never sleeps...try telling this to the brave emergency workers, firemen, paramedics, medical units, armed forces, chaplains, volunteers...at Ground Zero...where humanity was once again reunited with each other and most importantly with God.  Suddenly, the noise and seduction of big New York City does not seem to be so distracting after all...it really does not matter about the outside...as much as what was felt deep inside...the emptiness...the loss...the void...

Only when you empty yourself completely...can God fill your heart...and your soul...


Americans have always known wars in foreign soil...Vietnam, Afghanistan, Kosovo...but never in their own back yard...the center of a great city... not far from the New York Harbor with the torch of the Statue of Liberty and Freedom held high...9/11 struck!

Soon after, there was so much anger...so much unforgiveness...so much vengeance...so much hatred...even today, continues to reverberate in many hearts and minds...terror for terror...is this, the only answer...as the US continue its spending on defense (against what?) and its relentless attacks on oil fields in the Middle East.

As Pilate said to Jesus, “What is truth?”   ...Terrorism?...Political Conspiracy?  ...Does it matter anymore?  ...when innocent lives are lost??  ...Such is the price humanity must pay...


Where was God?  Why did God let this happen?  Was this, rather, the work of mankind in their selfish quest for power and personal glory?  The consequence of the sins of humanity against humanity?  ...against God?

So much for our human finite understanding of God...why do we need events or tragedies such as these to help humanity remember?  Who is God really, for you, in your life?  A punishing God?  A loving God? An absent God?  A non-existent God?  An unknowing God?  A God amongst many other worldly gods...wealth, materialism, success, etc?


For such a long time, the world have witnessed the US slavery era in the 1600s, World War I in 1914, World War II in 1939, the Holocaust and bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941, South Africa under apartheid from 1948, the Korean War in 1950, the Vietnam War in 1955, great Chinese Famine in 1959, the assassination of President JFK in 1963, AIDS Pandemic beginning in 1981, Chernobyl Nuclear disaster in 1986, Rwanda genocide in 1994, Indian Ocean Tsunami in 2004...sins of abortion and many, many more suffering and deaths around the globe which are even much worst off than 9/11...but, on that fateful day, the world was in solidarity with the USA...the world offered their prayers and comfort...as good and caring neighbors sharing the same planet...


Nevertheless, we want to still remember and respect those whom we lost on that fateful day of 9/11 and throughout history amongst the many other tragedies around the world...may their souls find eternal rest and the world find healing and peace.  May the price that they paid be worthwhile for the spiritual growth of the world...where each and every country can have great influence over the future of the world we live in...

Tragedies, pain and suffering are something we humans simply cannot control...but what we can do in response is to simply allow these events, become turning points, to help us reconnect with one another and with God...bringing much spiritual meaning and maturity to supposedly, meaningless innocent suffering and sacrifices.


We must draw strength from Jesus who journeyed the Via Dolorosa and learn to view such world tragedies and human suffering through the lenses of His wounds on the Cross.  Forgiveness and change will then become possible because, as obedient Christian disciples, others will then see and know the love of Christ through us – our spoken words, our actions, our silence and also our non-action...our generous love...a love which the world knows so little of these days.

4 comments:

  1. My prayers go out to the families and lives that were effected and lost on that fateful day. It will be a day remembered.

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  2. Great Post Brother! Reflection of God's Love is what to be required today around the world.

    Putting Jesus back in America is the answer. AMEN!

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  3. Putting JESUS back into all our lives is the answer that the world seems to have conveniently forgotten in her obsession and quest for everything temporary...

    My humble thanks for your comments and I am touched that the Lord continue to use this blog to reach out to everyone everywhere.

    May His name continue to be glorified!

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