Ten years later, many continue to mourn the loss of loved ones on September 11, 2001. Lives were changed, war spread, the world’s economy suffered, and many remain afraid about what tomorrow might bring.
As Christians, we grieve with them, but we need not grieve without hope (1 Thes. 4:13). Our God may seem hidden at such times, but God promises us and our world a future full of hope, not woe (Jer. 29:11-13). All things, we are told, will work for the good of those who love God (Romans 8:28). You see, even in the darkest of times – even though life is never easy – God loves us, and the Son and Spirit will not leave us orphaned. Our Triune God is at work for us, in us, and through us to make all things new.
Trusting in this truth empowers us: to love and forgive others when all seems lost, to accept our own crosses as they come, even to become Christ’s presence in a very troubled world. In the aftermath of 9/11, many of us witnessed God’s power at work in both heroic ways and small acts of kindness. Today, it is that same power which draws us together for worship, only to send us out again to fearlessly love in Christ’s name. Despite any threats, no matter what happens – even death – we will remain Christ’s own.
Yes, we should remember September 11th. Yet as we grieve our losses, let us also never forget the love that was made manifest through such a terrible time. For the God who is love was not only present on that day but at work – through us and people like us, as well as in seen and unseen ways. God still remembers us. Christ remains with us. The Spirit always guides us. Despite any darkness we might face (or might find even within ourselves), the Kingdom of Heaven will most certainly come. We need never be afraid to love.
The Chickahominy Volunteer Fire Department invites all members of our community to attend a 9/11 Memorial Dedication on September 11, 2011 at 2:00 pm in front of their fire station at 10414 Leadbetter Rd, Ashland, VA. The monument includes an artifact of the World Trade Center and is being dedicated to all those that died, as well as all those who sacrificed their lives in the conflicts which followed.
This letter was originally written for the worship bulletin of Messiah Lutheran Church (Mechanicsville, VA), September 11, 2o11.
© 2011 The Rev. Louis Florio. All content not held under another’s copyright may not be used without permission of the author.