With today being the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, many are remembering where they were and how they felt that tragic day. I can't help but reflect on that day also.
I was working diligently at my desk when one coworker said he just heard on the radio that one of the World Trade Center buildings had been hit by an airplane. I didn't reply but just sat there in disbelief thinking, "no way ... that could never happen." When minutes later he said a second plane had hit a second building. That's when the work day pretty much ended.
Another coworker, who lived only a mile away, drove home to get a small television. We didn't have great reception, but we were able to tune in to a local news station to get some details. The rest of the morning is a bit of a blur. We heard about the plane hitting the Pentagon. And another that went down in Shanksville, PA. Not all that far from here.
I can remember praying A LOT. Thinking about my husband who was also working and about my daughter who was in daycare just down the road. Crying for those who lost their lives - even though we had no idea how many there were yet. Fearing that there may be more lives lost.
I can also remember talking to some friends who pointed out that we were just there - on top of the World Trade Center - exactly one month earlier. August 11 we went on a one-day bus trip to New York City. There were six of us who went and had a wonderful day. We chose to go to the top of the World Trade Center instead of the Empire State Building. I think because it cost less.
When we got to the top floor, we were disappointed to find out that the roof was temporarily closed. I don't remember why. So we walked around and saw the city from each side of the building. A short time later we were informed that we could now go to the roof. We were so excited. What a view! I didn't take a camera with me that day so I have no photos of our trip. But it is chilling to think we had just been there.
When Keira and I got home that afternoon, I turned on the news and watched once again, horrified, at the scenes that played out that morning. I can remember crying - sobbing - hugging Keira so tight she could probably barely breathe.
Then, like so many others, we checked in with extended family to see how they were doing. We didn't know anyone personally that lost their life that day, but we were all still affected. You couldn't help but be affected.
The terrorists intended to send our country into a spirit of fear, which happened, at least for a while. Security was heightened everywhere. Some odd measures were taken. Our Pastor reminded us of the cease of fishing at a local lake. A security guard - one security guard - was placed there to prevent anyone from fishing and/or possibly contaminating the water supply. This particular lake is the source of the city's drinking water. It seems silly now to think that one man could prevent anything from happening to this huge body of water. But I guess that is what fear does - causes people to do unreasonable things.
Our country did live in fear for a while. Some people might still be living in fear. However our God tells us that we are not to live in a spirit of fear.
The LORD is my light and my salvation - whom shall I fear?
The LORD is the stronghold of my life - of whom shall I be afraid?
When the wicked advance against me to devour me,
it is my enemies and my foes who will stumble and fall.
Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear;
though war break out against me, even though will I be confident.
One thing I ask from the LORD, this only do I seek;
that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life,
to gaze on the beauty of the LORD and to seek him in his temple.
~ Psalm 27: 1-4 (NIV)
So today we reflect. Today we remember. Today we mourn the loss of so many lives. But we will not live in fear. For our God is greater than he who is in the world.