I’ll never forget 9/11—the day my naïve assumption about the unbreakable, untouchable safety of this nation got doused with a devastating dose of reality.
Before 9/11, I knew bad things could and did happen. I knew crazy hotheads might kill innocent people in schools, workplaces, and post offices. As an 80s kid, I was sure Russia (or Iran, or zombies, for that matter) might point some nukes in our direction in a moment of rash stupidity and wreck this planet, maybe send us all to live underground for a decade or two.
But after 9/11, I felt vulnerable in a new way. I started to see cracks in the walls of security where before I thought those same walls were impenetrable. Travel hazards took on a whole new meaning. For a time, I found myself on hyper alert in public places, watching and waiting for something, anything to happen. There—that door! Over there—that man! Behind there—did you see it? Where’s the nearest exit? I always felt a deep sense of gratitude for police and other emergency responders, but after 9/11 that gratitude stirred ever deeper. I began to see these selfless men and women as the genuine heroes they truly are.
It’s been 18 years since terrorists attacked America on the tragic morning of Sept. 11, 2001, and yet today, like every year, I find my thoughts circling back. Where I was on that day, a day seemingly like any other. How my community mourned and came together. Ways the world forever changed.
What I’ve come to realize since then is that we are all vulnerable to evil no matter how safe our circumstances seem. Even high towers fall; even castles crumble. Disease, natural disasters, pain, and awful calamities happen even to the most innocent. We walked in darkness 2,000 years ago when the world rejected Jesus, and darkness exists even now. Nothing on earth is a “sure thing.”
But take heart, the Bible tells us, for God is a sure thing. “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it,” we are reminded in John 1:5 (NLT).
And Jesus himself assures us we can have peace in him. “Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).
We can have peace no matter what—for our peace is in Jesus.
Until next week, stay armored-up in God’s word.