God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear though the earth should change, though the mountains shake in the heart of the sea; though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble with its tumult. There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy habitation of the Most High. God is in the midst of her, she shall not be moved; God will help her right early. The nations rage, the kingdoms totter; he utters his voice, the earth melts. The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge.
Thought for the Day: God has been, is, and will always be with us
Waking late on the fifteenth anniversary of 9/11 because of a twelve-hour bout in two emergency facilities with my child who broke his arm was not how in intended on spending the anniversary of that event that changed the make-up of our country and really the world. My plan was to sit in the choir listening to the sermon and singing the special anthem of the day. But that didn’t happen. When driving in from the ER at 6:15 this morning, we knew the boys and I would not be attending church. My husband awoke after a couple of hours of sleep to go as he was to direct a very special piece and lead worship during the late service. Things are different. Fifteen years ago, my husband and I had just moved to our new home in Collierville, Tennessee, so we were still walking around boxes. Where we lived in Collierville was in the direct line where Federal Express planes flew into Memphis each night, so we had a constant roar of the planes overhead. On 9/11, that peace of hearing the planes overhead throughout the night disappeared. Things were different. Today, sitting outside to write as the boys awoke to watch television and talk, the first thing I heard was a plane going over and when I looked up, all I saw was a clear blue sky. That is what we saw that day fifteen years ago. Never had I experienced the deep blue I saw in the sky that day. There was not a cloud in the sky and there was not a single jet stream anywhere. Things were different. Reflecting on that day when so much life was lost and so much pain was felt, I think about so many who felt grief during those days and weeks following that terror. I think about all of those who are still going through that grieving today as they have witnessed deaths associated with 9/11 through all of these years. Things are different.
In this moment, sitting outside, I hear the planes flying overhead, I hear the birds singing their songs, I hear the insects making their many sounds, and I hear cars driving down the road. I feel the breeze blowing through the trees and the coolness of the morning air. I see the beautiful sky with beautiful sunshine. Things seem normal, but are they? Through these fifteen years, God has shown through so many millions of people as they have reached out to help people who were affected by 9/11. There have been so many giving of themselves financially, physically, and spiritually. There have been so many who have been “Jesus” to someone in need. Through these fifteen years, I believe there has been more light shown by God’s children to those in need than I have ever seen before. This “Light of Jesus” has not stopped with 9/11 as we have seen more compassion and more love shared by strangers in all situations of need. God was with us before that September 11 date fifteen years ago, God was with those who suffered through hurricanes, flooding, fire, and other tragedies in these years since. And God is indeed with those in need today through His children who show His love and compassion by helping people in need. So, are things normal? Yes, because God has always been, is now, and will always be with his children.
Prayer: Father, you are a compassionate and loving God and we stand amazed in Your love. Thank you for giving so many sisters and brothers love to show compassion to those in need. Be with us as we continue offering our love to those who have different needs today. You are an awesome God. Amen.
Prayer Focus: Those who have gone through tragedy