I had just dropped off my daughter, Ann Marie, age 12, at Tejeda Middle School. I came home and sat down to watch the Today show. Matt Lauer & Katie Couric were reporting that a plane had hit the North tower and were pondering ‘live’ as so many did that it was probably a small plane and an accident. I, like so many, was riveted to the screen. As we watched the smoke and flames in horror and shock we saw the 2nd plane fly into the South tower! I couldn’t believe what I was seeing as the events unfolded and became more and more horrifying. The only time I left the living room watching all that was happening was to attend my water aerobics class at Healthlink. Usually we had music on as the physical therapist guided us through the class but that day she had the television on at the head of the pool as we went through our exercises in the pool silently except for her brief instructions. We were stunned. I remember how glad I was to pick up Ann Marie from school that afternoon and how relieved I was when John and Chris arrived home from school. Everyone held their families tightly that day and were grateful to God to have them safe at home.
Prayer was the mainstay of the day. I remember how the newscasters, like the whole world, held on to the hope that more survivors would be found. There was hope that some had been able to escape into underground tunnels to the subway. Every moment we listened was tied to this hope. There was no facebook, but, emails carried a chain of prayers across the information superhighway.
Many moving Stories began coming out. I remember a story about a father who worked in the Pentagon, but, he had taken the day off that day so he escaped the tragedy of the plane crash that destroyed his very office. However, the tragic detail was that his son was among a group of school children who were traveling to Los Angeles for a special field trip and were in the hijacked plane that crashed into the Pentagon.
Another story i heard was about a retired policeman. His wife and children were so glad he was no longer in the daily danger of his profession that had caused his family stress for many years. After retirement he had felt compelled to become an airline attendant. He told his wife he felt he would be able to reach out and tell others about Jesus Christ and Salvation in that capacity. Ironically, he ended up being on one of the hijacked planes and had called his wife to tell her he had been praying with scared passengers that day. Amazing stories seemed to come out about the faithful in Christ every day.
There were many who expressed anger at God in the tragedy. However, I know the God of the Universe grieved for the pain and sorrow of all those affected by this, by His Very Nature! This email that has been circulated over and over during the last decade truly reflects this.:
“WHERE WAS GOD?
How many of us have heard that question, “Where was your God when the World Trade Center and the Pentagon were attacked?” Well, I know where my God was the morning of September 11, 2001, and He was very busy.
He was trying to discourage anyone from taking these flights. Those four flights held over 1000 passengers and there were only 266 aboard. On one of the flights he was giving strength to passengers to try to overtake the hijackers.
He was on four commercial flights giving terrified passengers the ability to stay calm. Not one of the family members who were called by a loved one on one of the hijacked planes said that passengers were screaming in the background.
On one of the flights he was giving strength to passengers to try to overtake the hijackers.
He was busy trying to create obstacles for employees at the World Trade Center. After all, only around 20,000 were at the towers when the first jet hit. Since the buildings held over 50,000 workers, this was a miracle in itself. How many of the people who were employed at the World Trade Center told the media that they were late for work or they had traffic delays.
He was holding up two 110 story buildings so that two-thirds of the workers could get out. I was so amazed that the top of the towers didn’t topple when the jets impacted. And when they did fall, they fell inward. God didn’t allow them to topple over, as many more lives would have been lost.
And when the buildings went down, my God picked up almost 6,000 of his children and carried them home with him. Reassuring his frightened children that the worst was over and the best was yet to come.
He sat down and cried that 19 of his children could have so much hate in their hearts. That they didn’t choose him, and now they are lost forever.
He sent his children that are best trained for this disaster and had them save the few that were still alive, but unable to help themselves. And then sent many others to help in any way they were needed.
He still isn’t finished though, He held the loved ones that were left behind in His arms. He comforts them daily. His other children are given the strength to reach out to them and help them in any way they can.
And I believe He will continue to help us in what is to come. He will give the people in charge of this great nation the strength and the wisdom to do the right thing. He would never leave us in our time of need.
So, when anyone asks, “Where was your God on September 11th?”, you can say “Everywhere!” And yes, although this is without a doubt the worst thing I have seen in my life, I see God’s miracles in every bit of it.”
Another Touching email still circulating that reflects God’s Character in 9/11…
‘MEET ME IN THE STAIRWELL’
You say you will never forget where you were when
you heard the news On September 11, 2001.
Neither will I.
I was on the 110th floor in a smoke filled room
with a man who called his wife to say ‘Good-Bye.’
I held his fingers steady as he dialed. I gave him the
peace to say, ‘Honey, I am not going to make it, but it
is OK… I am ready to go.’
I was with his wife when he called as she fed
breakfast to their children. I held her up as she
tried to understand his words and as she realized
he wasn’t coming home that night.
I was in the stairwell of the 23rd floor when a
woman cried out to Me for help.
‘I have been knocking on the door of your heart for 50 years!’ I said.
‘Of course I will show you the way home – only believe in Me now.’
I was at the base of the building with the Priest
ministering to the injured and devastated souls.
I took him home to tend to his Flock in Heaven.
He heard my voice and answered.
I was on all four of those planes, in every seat,
with every prayer. I was with the crew as they
were overtaken. I was in the very hearts of the
believers there, comforting and assuring them that their
faith has saved them.
I was in Texas , Virginia , California , Michigan , Afghanistan .
I was standing next to you when you heard the terrible news.
Did you sense Me?
I want you to know that I saw every face. I knew
every name – though not all knew Me.
Some met Me for the first time on the 86th floor.
Some sought Me with their last breath.
Some couldn’t hear Me calling to them through the
smoke and flames; ‘Come to Me… this way… take
my hand.’ Some chose, for the final time, to ignore Me.
But, I was there.
I did not place you in the Tower that day.
You may not know why, but I do. However, if you were
there in that explosive moment in time,
would you have reached for Me?
Sept.. 11, 2001, was not the end of the journey
for you. But someday your journey will end.
And I will be there for you as well.
Seek Me now while I may be found.
Then, at any moment, you know you are ‘ready to go.’
I will be in the stairwell of your final moments.
“Some More Thoughts I read online…
As you might know, the head of one company survived 9/11 because he took his son to kindergarten.
Another fellow is alive because it was his turn to bring donuts.
Another lady was late because her alarm clock didn’t go off on time.
One was late as a result of being stuck on the NJ Turnpike because of an auto accident.
One more survivor missed his bus.
One spilled food on her clothes and had to take time to change.
One’s car wouldn’t start.
One went back to answer the telephone.
One had a child that dawdled and didn’t get ready as soon as he should have.
One couldn’t get a taxi.
The one that, struck me was the man who put on a new pair of shoes that morning,
went to work by his usual way but before he got there, he developed a blister on his foot.
So he stopped at a drugstore to buy a Band-Aid. That is why he is alive today.
Now when I am stuck in traffic, miss an elevator, turn back to answer a ringing telephone…
all the little things that annoy me….
I think to myself, this is exactly where God wants me to be at this very moment.
Next time your morning seems to be going wrong, the children are slow getting dressed, you can’t seem to find the car keys, you hit every traffic light, don’t get mad or frustrated; God is at work watching over you.
May God continue to bless you with all those annoying little things and may you remember their possible purpose.”