15 years ago today, I was working out in the student gym at the University of Oklahoma when the first plane hit. Students stopped what they were doing to watch as all the news networks began to cover what was unfolding in NYC. Believing at first that a terrible accident had occurred, some resumed what they were doing while others were milling around, talking about what had occurred. Then the second plane hit.
I went back to my apartment and spent the day glued to the tv. I remember the sick feeling in my stomach as we watched those giant towers fall. I vividly remember those scenes of horror that were broadcast around the world. I also remember those scenes of bravery and heroism that emerged in those moments of terror and fear.
Today, as the world remembers those who lost their lives in NYC, at the Pentagon, and on Flight 93, I’m encouraged. I’m encouraged by the resilience of human will, and by the willingness and determination of free people to stand up to evil and to refuse to cower before the enemies of freedom.
I’m even more encouraged, however, by a long-standing principle.
There was one who came before us who faced evil and confronted enemies of freedom. He represented truth, and he came to set the captives of evil and false gods free. It is He who said that in this world we will face trouble. It is He who also said that in Him we will have peace. He said these things, because it is He, Jesus, who overcame the world. He did so by laying down his life.
I’m encouraged by this: that in the end, love prevails.
It has already won on the cross, where Jesus took upon himself the sins of those who would believe in Him so that they may have life. Love will win again when in the end, perfect justice will be executed and we will rejoice.
Today, we remember that the fear of terror was overwhelmed by resilience and bravery.
Let us never forget that perfect love casts out fear.
Executive Pastor, Bridge Church