What a beautiful day September 11th was. The sunshine was absolutely beautiful blue
skies with big puffy white clouds. Temperatures in the Seventies- the kind of day
that I love so much. On days like today, it is easy to thank God for the beautiful world
that has been given to us to live in. How ironic that on this day 15 years ago, on a
carbon copy weather-type day such as this one, the beauty of that day was completely
shattered by the violence and hatred of humanity against itself. Who can forget the
horror of that day?
Not long ago, I found myself in New York City helping my son and his family move
into their new digs. As I entered his apartment for the first time, I was blown away by the
view that greeted me. Nine foot floor to ceiling glass windows gave way to an
unimpeded view (see below) of the sparkling new Freedom Tower rising above Ground
Zero only three short blocks away! It was almost too overwhelming to behold! I found
myself strangely attracted to the view, yet needing to close my eyes or just look away to
get back to a sense of my own self in the midst of that very BIG place.
In the evening, as I readied my bed which looked out over that view, the very last
thing I saw as I closed my eyes was the Freedom Tower. As I awoke in the morning, the
very first thing I saw was the Freedom Tower. As we spent some free time together, we
walked next to the colossus that is the Freedom Tower on our way to the 9/11 Memorial.
As it turns out, you canʼt go many places in Lower Manhattan without the Freedom
Tower looking back at you.
Michael Arad, the architect who designed the 9/11 Memorial challenged himself to
create a “living moment of silence” in the design and build out of that space. Quite a
challenge when one considers that this memorial was to be built smack dab in the
middle of the hustle - bustle that is New York City. I believe that he was wildly
successful in doing just that. I would go on to say that this place is sacred ground. As I stood
in that place where the water falls into the footprints of the original towers, surrounded
by beautiful trees and people from all races and stations and religions from all around the world,
all respectfully taking it in, I wondered. Can a place where such horrific bloodshed, death, and
destruction took place be the place where a new peace is born as people from around the world come
and visit this “living moment of silence?”
Oh donʼt we long for the day when justice shall roll like the waters, and righteousness like an ever flowing stream (Amos 5:24) When nation shall not lift sword against nation- neither shall they learn war anymore (Isaiah 2:4). Maybe, just maybe . . .
The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they reveal knowledge. They have no speech, they use no words;