I remember. I remember where I was and what I was doing and I remember the emotions that came in the wake of the realization. I remember and am thankful. I am thankful that I noticed and it mattered. The worst thing that could happen after things happen is that we wouldn’t notice.
I was working in an office with about three hundred employees in Virginia. The office was a branch of a New Jersey based company so quite a few employees were from New York/New Jersey. They were friends and family to people who either were in the towers or might be. It was personal for them.
There is a significant military presence in the area we were working and as the Pentagon was hit and planes were unaccounted for, legitimate thoughts of our own safety bubbled up. It was personal for all of us.
We watched on a small television and we prayed. For me, the prayer part was still a bit clumsy. The current political correctness regarding prayer was unfolding culturally but immature so prayer was allowable. Today? Not sure.
I was coming off of seven months of courting. Jesus had been calling me and I had only recently said “yes” to His invitation. I said yes from my living room with my boxer, Tank. It wasn’t a church and I wasn’t all cleaned up, yet, nor am I today. I was sincere, however, and I realized His presence, grace and salvation. Then 9/11 happened a couple of months later.
I remember a different hope and thanksgiving and comfort than I could have imagined the year previous. Jesus had changed me, even though I didn’t have a clue how to articulate that reality. I was very young in the Lord but I was different. Now this tragedy shook everything in our nation and the coming ramifications were unknown.
I remember talking to my mother and she was crying. She was afraid we wouldn’t be able to fly and see each other as her children were living in a different state than she and my dad. I remember wondering how things were going to change but also knowing that the change in my equipped me for the change in the world.
I remember how this day fourteen years ago impacted Julie and how it played a role in our marriage. I remember and I know that the faith, hope and love that were recently born in me had a place and an acute need to be manifest more than ever before.
I remember and I’m thankful. The world is not OK any more today than it was on this day in 2001, in fact, the evidence would show we are worse off than before. I remember the gift of the salvation of Jesus I received earlier that year that prepared me for that day, this day and every day into eternity.