Sunday, September 11, 2011

Remembering 9/11

I was a Freshmen in High School. I walked into French class to see my teacher, who would usually be up joking around, sitting in the room with the lights off, a look of shock and fear etched across her face. We sat there for the next 40 minutes in the dim room listening to the radio as we heard phrases like "plane exploded," "towers collapsed," and "act of terrorism." My 13 year old mind didn't know how to process it. None of it seemed like it could be real. Yet, when I went home that afternoon I saw it replay over and over with my own eyes.

Even today, after 10 years has past, seeing the footage brings all the emotions back, and my 23 year old mind still isn't sure how to process it.

Fear. Shock. Grief. Helplessness. Hopelessness. Outrage.

For those old enough to remember September 11, 2001, it will be a day that is never forgotten. Thousands of people died, but every person on this earth was impacted in some way. Even today, we live our lives differently. We can't walk through an airport or even go to a sporting event without some kind of security check. At times it's difficult to even remember what life was like on September 10, 2001, when you could see a loved one off up to the gate at the airport before anyone stopped you, or you could take a full bottle of shampoo in your carry-on.

But 9/11 wasn't just a day marked by tragedy. It was a day when, despite the acts of hatred poured out on our country, acts of love prevailed. It was a day when people gave their own lives just to try to save another. It was a day that, despite the tragedy that caused it, God saw the way His people reacted, how they pulled together, served and loved one another no matter the consequence. It was a day when the picture of what the Gospel should look like was painted in the present tense.

On this day 10 years ago our lives changed forever. May we always see past the tragedy to the picture of love shown through ordinary people. And let us carry on and honor the fallen through our service to God and to others.

- Aly

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