It is still with a sense of disbelief that I look back on the events of September 11th 2001 (September 12th here in NZ). Waking up to the radio tuned to sportstalk and hearing the announcer saying, " It seems a bit trivial to talk about sports when someone just crashed a plane into the World Trade Center. I wondered if it was just some sort of sick joke. Then turing on the new and seeing the other plane hit. Such a tragedy, such an act of horror and terror.
I was at Otago university as an adult student at the time, preparing for the ministry. I had one class mate a radical animal rights activist seeking me out to ask if there was something in the bible about this. He had a sense of Apocalypse about it. Another student from New York was just dazed and stunned. He couldn't get through to his parents, he was worried sick. Shattered.
I joined an online community that night based in a church in Seattle Washington and had a chance to pass on my concern and support and condolences to a people shocked by such an event.Saddened more by the fact that these followers of Jesus should he talking revenge and war. I guess it was to raw a moment to reflect on Jesus words to love one enemies and to seek justice not vengeance.
I guess the world did change that day. we became more afraid, more security conscious, more suspicious of people. Even here in New Zealand. I don't like travelling through airports here in New Zealand anymore and you feel like a criminal as you pass through metal detectors. I found myself up against a wall with people very intent on keeping me still. I had used an old day pack as carry on luggage and forgotten it had a pocket knife in one of the pockets.
Well, my prayers are with those for whom today 9/11 is still an open wound. Who don't just gaze at a skyline where there is a missing building. But whose days are lived with a gaping hole that the loss of a family member or loved one leaves.
My prayers are for the decision makers of this world that they would seek peace and justice not vengeance. that they would see that mercy and kindness and justice are what the world needs, not acts of error or feats of arms. They would pause and reflect on the cause, and work to alleviate the ravages of poverty and disease in the world. perhaps a naive prayer I hear you say. I don't know it sure sounds like it but then I have the words of another prayer echoing in my mind"thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.'