9/11. September 11th. Whatever you call it, it always brings vivid images to our minds of a horrific event that changed our lives and how we live them. I remember having the television on as I was getting ready to leave for work and seeing the smoldering smoke. The tv commentator was discussing whether it had been a small plane veering off course when suddenly from nowhere a second plane glided around and unbelievably hit the second tower. I remember sitting on my bed in disbelief trying to comprehend what had happened. I remember the babies and children who lost parents on that day. I remember the strong and brave testimony of women like Lisa Beymer who lost her strong and brave husband that day. I remember how my place of employment set up televisions throughout the halls and left them on for a week. Unheard of. May we never forget. May we never let down our guard. May we pray for peace with a fervency like never before.
Strangely enough, 10 years earlier, 9/11 had already imprinted itself in my mind as a day of a horrific loss that had changed my life and how I live it. On September 11, 1991 my father died in a plane accident. I spoke to him for the very last time on this earth early that morning. The phone was ringing as I was rushing out the door for work and I picked it up. It was dad. I had almost missed it. We spoke a few minutes and I left. On my way to work I was reviewing the conversation in my mind and a very strange thought occurred to me. A thought that said, "that would be the last time you ever talk to your dad". I quickly brushed it off thinking that I sure did have a morbid and active imagination. Now I believe that God was trying to prepare me for the news I would receive later that day. He crashed within an hour of our conversation.
This morning, I read that dear Amy Wilhoite lost her earthly battle and is finally at peace with the God she loved and served so faithfully. She leaves behind a dear husband and little boy who's lives are changed and will never be lived the same. They will go on and they will be okay because they love and serve the same great God that Amy did. But it will never be the same.
All these tragedies serve to remind me that this life is not all there is. It is only a blip on a very large screen that represents eternity. Yes, we should make the most of the days we are given here. But we need to always keep in mind that there is more. So much more. I pray that on this day you will take a moment to review your relationship with God. He has so much more planned for us than just this earthly life. We can have eternity with Him and our loved ones if we will accept His merciful gift. I pray today that if you are not in relationship with Him that this day will not end before you pray and ask Him to come in to your life. Because when He does you will never be the same. And when events like the ones I have talked about today happen, you will have a different perspective on the precious gift of life. And even though we can't understand why such difficult things happen, you will have a hope for the future that gives us reason to carry on.