As I think back on the multiple terrorist attacks that took the lives of over 3,000 people, wounded thousands more and sent shock waves of fear throughout our nation on this day 17 years ago, I am struck, like so many others, with deep sadness. And yet, in the midst of it all, there is hope.
I marked my 30th birthday high atop The World Trade Center’s North Tower in the elegant restaurant, Windows on the World, which overlooked New York City’s famous lit-up skyline. It was a thrilling experience! As I think back on that celebration, what I know now that I couldn’t have known then is just how fragile such a fortress would one day be.
The Bible says,
“…what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” 2 Corinthians 4:18.
Although The World Trade Center’s grand and glorious towers would be reduced to rubble in a few short years after that festive evening, there was the unifying faith in God that Americans experienced in the aftermath of 9/11. There is the hope that never again will such savagery reach our shores. And there will always be the love that continues to grow in the hearts of the victims’ families and friends. There is no stopping Faith, Hope and Love. They are eternal.
Why are Americans at their best in troubled times? I believe it’s because it is then that we witness the truth–that we are more alike than different. That is when we love America and the freedom for which it stands! This is the hope we can all share even on this a heartbreaking day of remembrance.