Seek God For Strength

Seeking God For Strength | September 11, 2023

Twenty-two years ago today, 19 militants associated with the Islamic extremist group al Qaeda attacked the United States of America. On this fateful day, they deliberately flew two planes into the 16-acre commercial complex in New York that was home to the Twin Towers and five other buildings. Tragically, the North and South Towers suffered direct hits, leading to their implosion. A third plane crashed into the western side of the Pentagon. Finally, a fourth plane, intended to impact the Capital or the White House, was taken down in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.

Sadly, 2,977 people lost their lives, and countless family members still feel the discomforting connection to that day. The suffering and loss of life due to the horrific events of 9/11 haven't stopped. Mount Sinai's World Trade Center Health Program Clinical Center of Excellence reports that over 10,000 first responders and others have 9/11-related cancer. Unfortunately, the same report also says that well over two thousand deaths have resulted from 9/11 illnesses.

In listening to numerous testimonies of family members, friends, and work colleagues connected with 9/11, a common theme is their faith. In their own way, they have sought strength from the Lord to move forward, yet not forget their loved ones. The perspective of seeking God was the primary focus in the hours and days following the attacks. You may recall that people were flooding churches, prayer services were happening spontaneously, and even the elected officials sang God Bless America on the steps of the Capital. The deadly event united people. Monetary contributions poured in; here in New York, we saw neighbors from around the country come to volunteer at Ground Zero. Oh, how far we have fallen since that time! Presently, we are characterized by division rather than unity. Every political action is agenda-driven, with America suffering the consequences.

We desperately need to seek God now more than ever, and perhaps remembering the events of 9/11 can bring some sobriety to our selfishness and carry us again to a place of sincere vigilance while rediscovering the substance and source of our strength. Psalm 105:4 says, "Seek the Lord and his strength; seek his presence continually!"

May God give increased grace to the families of 9/11, and may He continue to be patient with America.

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