Guest post by Connie Ann Michael
We all have our memories of that day, September 11, 2001. Memories stamped onto our hearts because of the enormity of the event. Life events such as 9/11 shape our beliefs, our families’ futures, our nation, and in some cases, the world.
“In God I trust and am not afraid. What can man do to me?”
Every year on 9/11 I send my 5th grade students home with the task of asking their parents what they were doing the day the towers fell. Pick any random day, even your birthday ten years ago, or Christmas, and I bet you couldn’t recount, with as much detail, the events of that day, but every single one of their parents remember the exact spot and activity they were a part of on the morning of 9/11.
For me, I heard that the plane hit the first building while I was driving my son to daycare. By the time I arrived to the school where I worked, the second tower had also been hit, and soon after, we were told both towers had fallen. Televisions were rolled into the staff rooms, and we watched. I was tasked at keeping twenty-five first graders calm as the world crumbled.
Imagine tasking my students with the question, “What were your parents doing the day Jesus was crucified?” Or the day He rose again? These were monumental days in the lives of the people of the New Testament. They watched as the Son of God was marched to the cross and no one did anything. A sense of helplessness, much like how many of us felt on 9/11, likely overwhelmed them.
How can we reconcile our belief in a good and loving Father when we watch evil destroy so much? Where was God? On the 20th anniversary of 9/11, as we witness the security we found in the years afterward now begin to crumble again, the question remains: Where is God?
But the question should be, “Where are you?”
My contemporary military romance, A Thousand Stolen Moments, centers around Emme, a corpsman stationed in Afghanistan. The story follows her as she aids the many men who are injured and mourns those she couldn’t save. She deals with the many emotions soldiers are left with when they return, but is comforted by this verse from 2 Corinthians 4: 8-9: We all can be struck down, but with God beside us we will not be destroyed..
“We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down but not destroyed”
Emme questions the horror of war just like we may question why things happen in our lives or around the world. But just like Emme is reminded–we need to remember we aren’t alone on this journey.
It is to be expected that we will face challenges. The unimaginable will happen. The past few years have shown us that. Just when you think the worst has happened, something more comes along. We have faced new challenges beyond our control, especially in this last year and a half.
God is always beside us, but if we aren’t in His Word, we can’t feel His hand tugging us along the path. We can’t see Him pushing the rocks and trail hazards out of our way as we run along the path.
World changing events should lead us to find answers in the Word. The news isn’t the truth, what your neighbor, family, closest friends say isn’t the truth. The anxiety and fear we gather while listening and watching things unfold will only grow until you remember the truth lies at your fingertips. It lies in the Word of God and the history that has come before us. The stories are lessons of hard lives lived by those who believe.
In order to get through challenging times in history–the aftermath of a war, 9/11, or tough times in your own life–don’t turn to your phone for the answers, don’t google, “Where is God now?”
He is right beside you, waiting for you to seek Him.
On this 20th anniversary of 9/11, may we always remember those who were lost, but may we also remember that God is still with us, even through the most difficult of circumstances. He will never leave us, nor forsake us.
About the Author
Connie Ann Michael writes YA and adult contemporary Christian romance and lives in a very small town with her husband and three dogs. When she’s not writing or teaching, she loves mountain biking, kayaking and anything else she can do out doors. You can follow Connie on Goodreads and Amazon.