Saturday, September 12, 2009

Beauty and Blessings? Even As We Remember 9/11?

Yesterday (I'm writing this at 11:00 p.m. on Sept. 12) was the 8 year anniversary of 9/11. I can't believe it has been 8 years - it's still so real and vivid in our minds. Do you remember where you were when the attack happened? It seems to be one of those unique events that brand into our memory and most remember exactly where they were and what they were doing. For me, the other events in my life were President Kennedy's assassination and the Challenger explosion. Isn't it amazing that television can bring us all together this way so that we all participate and have the same memories and truly experience the event. Just as I truly felt like I had attended Princess Diana's and Mother Theresa's funeral. So, yes, I remember where I was - I was living with my sister and she called me from her office and quickly told me to turn on the TV, that terrorists might be attacking in New York City. I did just that - just like so many of the rest of you - and I cried and prayed all the rest of the day. I had gotten to the TV just in time to see the second tower fall - such horror and fear and suffering of the people in the streets and those desperately searching all day for their loved ones. Pain, anger, uncertainty, death and destruction. But, yes, even then, there was beauty and blessings. We heard the stories of so many miraculous escapes and rescues by our valiant and brave men and women. We saw anew the love and strength and power of good people doing the right and honorable tasks that no one wants to ever have to face doing. We felt the bond of shared human experience and our light shown to the entire world. We were brought closer as Americans - we found our patriotism again. And most importantly, we found that we really needed our faith again - faith in the God whom this country was founded upon. Faith in our God who has so obviously blessed and prospered this nation from the beginning. Why? Because our forefathers recognized Him as the Creator Who endowed us with certain inalienable rights. Because this nation gives and helps and feeds other nations. He can trust America to be a channel to others to share the blessings He gives us. Let us never forget where our strength and power comes from. Beauty? Oh, my, when the rescuers raised Old Glory at center of the destruction. When we saw the huge metal beams form a cross in the rubble. And beauty when we saw the leaders of this country stand together (free of politics) on the steps of the capitol and sing in unison "God Bless America". Beauty when we began to see our flag on so many citizen's vehicles and shop windows. Blessings? Yes, when our President and the Mayor of New York City led us with such dignity and grace. And blessings when airplane passengers prevented the other planned crash in Washington D.C. Beauty and blessings do always come in the midst of and after pain and heartache and sorrow and horror. Thank you Lord. Grace (His undeserved, unmerited favor). Remember it is Amazing Grace. And it is such a sweet, sweet sound and an even sweeter truth. Mercy. The Bible says His mercies are new every morning. So, let us never forget September 11, 2001. Because we know even there and then, God gives us beauty and blessings - now that helps me, through my pain and loss, to be able to face tomorrow. He gives us beauty for ashes as His Word says.

Beauty and Blessings. And those two words are my short prayer for you right now....

Cynthia K.