The thundering explosion reverberated through the city blocks. Thousands of shards of glass, metal, and paper were dispersed in the air, all emanating from the burning building. Chaos reigned as hundreds of frightened observers on the ground raced away from the tragedy. What happened? Was it a bomb? An electrical malfunction? Someone said a plane crashed into the building! Less than twenty minutes later, there was a second explosion. This time many saw the second jet airliner slam into the adjacent tower. Was this just a coincidence? What was happening? As one frightened bystander remarked, overheard on an anonymous eyewitness video, “This seems to be on purpose!”
It was September 11, 2001.
Twenty years ago, the worst terrorist attack on American soil occurred. It forever changed our country and the world and the results of the attack still reverberate today. We will always honor the thousands who lost their lives on that horrific day. For some, life ended the instant the buildings were struck. For others, like many first responders who rushed into the burning buildings in a desperate attempt to save anyone they could, they perished a short time later. Yet, even in the midst of this turmoil, very few understood or were aware that they were in a deliberate attack. We may conjure reasons to explain our circumstances. It was an accident. It was an unusual coincidence. As everyone soon found out, it was purposeful and deliberate.
We will never know when evil strikes again but we know it will happen. However, like the heinous attack on 9/11, we may not realize it is happening until it is too late. What can we do to prepare? God gives us the answer.
Dear friends, don’t be surprised when the fiery ordeal comes among you to test you, as if something unusual were happening to you. Instead, rejoice as you share in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may also rejoice with great joy when his glory is revealed.
1 Peter 4:12-13 (CSB)
Our preparation comes from obeying and trusting God. He faced the same evil when He lived on this earth. He was continually attacked by His many enemies, all orchestrated by Satan. Even during times of peace and celebration, He faced evil. Unlike us, Jesus is always aware when evil is present.
But if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed but let him glorify God in having that name.
1 Peter 4:16 (CSB)
We may not know when the next attack upon us will occur but we can be confident that through faith in Jesus Christ, He will protect and guide us when it happens. We are victorious because He is victorious.
Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.