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Thursday, September 11, 2014

That Day, September 11, 2001.

Lessons Learned


It was a Tuesday morning and, at our Lutheran Elementary School, we were in chapel preparing our hearts for a precious time of worship. I was at the piano filling the sanctuary with familiar music, drawing us together. There was a calmness. A stillness. A blessed peace. The moment was unexpectedly punctuated by a teacher hurriedly striding up the center aisle toward the piano. His face reflected grave concern and his words to me just then scalded my heart and evoked deep, incredulous, and pained shock. The Twin Towers had been attacked. Attacked! His announcement at chapel was a call to prayer for our country, for families and children, and all involved and affected by this horrific tragedy.  We prayed and prayed and prayed and wept together and alone. The air in chapel was thick with fear, anxiety, disbelief, uncertainty, anger, sadness, and questions.  It was a very vulnerable and raw time with emotions fully exposed. Pilot parents. Flight attendant parents. NY family members. Traveling family members. Friends. Neighbors…. No one was untouched. No one was unscathed by the fires of this senseless, merciless, cowardly act of terrorism. We prayed some more, much more. Together we sought refuge and comfort and peace and hope under the mighty wings of the Almighty. Our Rock. Our Redeemer.  Our shelter in the storm. When life doesn’t make sense, He makes sense. When life’s promises are broken, His promises remain.  He is faithful. Our chapel that day was unlike any other chapel, for we truly, honestly needed to lay our very real, very gripping fears at the foot of the cross of the One who understands pain and will walk with us, carry us through life’s deepest darkest valleys. The chapel became even more that ever a haven of peace and comfort during the next several weeks as whole classes and individuals would come to be still and pray. 911 changed us all.  The why’s of it we will never understand. The heroism demonstrated we will never ever forget. The images of the moment will be indelibly etched into our hearts and souls. It was the day our nation wept as one.