Seventeen years ago today, evil came calling. On a bright September day, our sense of safety and security right here in our own homeland was obliterated. Blown up at the hands of evil men.
As bodies fell from the sky and national landmarks crumbled, crushing lives and futures and precious dreams, we knew. Life in America would be different forever. And where, we wondered, was God?
Where was He? How could He, if He was so loving, allow such horror to happen? Such loss? Such fear? Where, and how? And why?
I’m no theologian. I have no seminary degree. I’m just one small, American mom, raising boys, doing her work, living in peace. But what I’m thinking today is this…
That the God who “allowed” 9/11 to happen is the God Who allows us to choose. In recent years, I have come to highly value and prize this particular freedom that He’s given me, this wonderful freedom to choose.
God, I see, never wanted robots. He wanted kids. Children, sons and daughters, who’d want Him. Who’d choose Him back. Hence, that wild, dangerous gift.
We can choose.
If I am free to choose Him, then I must also be free to reject Him. That’s what I’m thinking today. It’s no real choice if there’s only one option, for then we are back to being robots, not kids. Force, not choice or free will.
Here’s the bottom line for me. I learned as a child that God had chosen me. That He’d gone to unfathomable lengths to adopt me. That it was my choice.
I said yes.
As such, my worldview is full of hope, for I believe God when He said that “all things work together for good to those who love Him and are called according to His purpose.”
This means that even the greatest evils that have happened in my life because of others’ choices will work to accomplish great good not only on my behalf, but on behalf of the people I love. Hence, my wellspring of hope.
In a time of national calamity, something beautiful sprang up. Democrats and Republicans stood together, unified for a moment, and sang our beloved anthem. Ordinary men and women showed extraordinary courage for the sake of their fellow Americans. People worked together, traveled miles, and showed up. Lifting beams, lifting burdens, lifting spirits.
Yes, evil was powerful that day in September, but it wasn’t powerful enough to kill Love. To squelch Good. To quench the Light. In the presence of evil, God was still there.
In my heart, I hold that Light. Hold hope, whisper prayers for this country of mine that I love.
That’s my choice. And the hope is an anchor for my soul. Maranatha!
9/11, evil, freedom of choice, hope, New York, terrorism