15 years ago yesterday, 9/11 became more than a date. It became a defining moment in history. Like many, I remember well that morning as I watched the planes fly into the World Trade Center. In stunned grief, we gathered with family and friends and coworkers and our eyes were glued to the news as it unfolded throughout the day and the weeks to follow. The deaths included 2,606 in the World Trade Center, 265 from the four planes that crashed, and 125 from the Pentagon. A total of 2,977 people and an estimated 6,000 injured.
Yesterday, there were memorial services to remember. Children spoke whose parents were killed, the names of many who died were read, and the events of that day were relived. Why? Because it is essential that we don’t forget.
My daughter tried to explain September 11 to my five-year-old grandson, Josiah. Here is an excerpt from her post.
Explaining 9/11 to My Five-Year Old
It seems especially poignant that the 15 year anniversary fell on a Sunday. Today I gathered with other believers in complete freedom to worship Jesus and hear the Bible preached. My children and I walked past the flags flying half-mast outside our church (middle school), and I am reminded to be thankful for my freedom.
It is hard to explain the horror of 9/11 to a five year old. He wanted to know who won the war, the good guys or bad guys and he also wanted to know if the planes crashed into the buildings on purpose or by accident. But I also got to tell him of the police officers, firefighters, medical workers, soldiers, airplane passengers, and other heroes that were brave on that day.
The only real answer to evil is Jesus. The only remedy is the cross. He is our Great Hero. In the middle of remembering this dark day, I praise my Savior for true freedom found in Christ alone.Remembering 9/11: The only real answer to evil is Jesus. The only remedy is the cross. He is our Great Hero. Click To Tweet
Here are five reasons why we need to remember:
- The gift of life.
Life is precious and should be celebrated, mourned, and remembered. Always. Those that died on 9/11/2001 should be remembered. They were mothers, fathers, children, sisters, brothers, friends, and people just like you and me. The loss of their lives is so very tragic.
- Heroes are real.
Even in a horrific time, there are men and women who are true heroes. We had many on 9/11. The first responders, many who gave their lives, gave us all strength and hope and courage on this day and still do today. Make it a regular habit to thank our police officers, firefighters, medical teams, and all who risk their lives to protect us.
- The gift of freedom.
Freedom was tested on 9/11 and it is easy to forget the beauty of freedom and the price of freedom. The terrorists wanted to take away our freedom and they did not. Yesterday, on 9/11, we worshiped in freedom. We gathered with family and friends in freedom. We work and live in freedom. Let us never forget the gift of freedom.
- Security matters.
15 years ago on 9/11, our security was forever changed. For these fifteen years, our country as well as countries around the world have been fighting the fight to bring security to its citizens. The problem is, the more we learn, the more actions we take, the greater the challenge becomes. To feel secure is something we all want for ourselves, for our families, and for our community. Security is something to never take for granted.
- Death is certain.
Death is a reality for all of us. It is a part of life. 9/11 reminds us of that reality. But there is also the certainty of life after death. Eternal life. “For God loved the world in this way: He gave His One and Only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16.
“Death, where is your victory?
Death, where is your sting?
Now the sting of death is sin,
and the power of sin is the law.
But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory
through our Lord Jesus Christ!”
1 Corinthians 15:55-57
What do you think we need to remember about September 11, 2011?