Sunday, September 11, 2011

Ten Years Later - Reflections on 9/11

My first recollections of that morning were the frantic voices of Mark & Brian, the morning drive-time DJs on Los Angeles' KLOS radio station. You see, I always have slept with on. Their frantic talk of a horrible "accident" in which a jumbo jet had slammed into one of the World Trade Center towers work me at just before 6 AM that dreadful Tuesday morning. Immediately, I donned my bathrobe and ran to the front room to turn on the TV. There in front of my eyes was the burning North Tower of the World Trade Center. I sat on the arm of the sofa and was shocked. I called for my room mate, who was still asleep in his room, to come out and look at what happened. No sooner had I called him, I witnessed the second plane slam into the South Tower of the World Trade Center. I knew then that America had just changed. She would never be the same again. I got physically sick.

Soon the reports of a plane slamming into the Pentagon filtered out. I had to get ready for work. How anyone could demand people to work on that day was, and still is beyond me, but I guess when the dollar is more important than your employees you'll do it (Integra Marketing was my employer at the time). I dragged myself away from the TV to shower for work. It was the fastest shower I have ever taken in my life. I did not want to miss anything.

It was after the shower and as I was dressing for work, that the reports of the Pentagon attack began to air. Again, a wave of nausea passed over me. Then the towers began to fall. I watched in utter horror and morbid curiosity as the South Tower began to fall onto itself. My thoughts were for the people that were in the floors above the impact zone. There was no way they could have escaped. There were reports of people who, rather than wait for a slow death, took their lives by leaping off the Towers and into eternity.

By the time I got on the freeway to head to work, the reports of United 93 were airing. This plane crashed in Shanksville, PA. What was not known at the time, was how the passengers fought to stop the Muslim terrorists that had hijacked the plane. They fought, and as fighters truly exemplified the American spirit of fighting against injustice. It was also around this time (7:30 AM Pacific Daylight Time) that the North Tower fell. Oh how I wanted to just turn around and go home.

When I got to work, everyone was in shock. Instead of the usual music on the office radio, one of Los Angeles' all-news station was on chronicling the days events in New York City, Washington, D.C., and Shanksville, PA. People were in no mood to work. Everyone's emotions were raw and on their sleeves. It was sad. That Tuesday was one of the slowest days I have ever had to endure in a work environment. I hope to never have another day like that.

For the next week, the TV was on either Fox or CNN. I don't think I watched as much news during that week than in any time prior or since.

It's been ten years since those attacks. Attacks that were not only motivated by hate, but by religious hate. Particularly, the hate of Muslims performing Jihad on "the great Satan". Now, there are those that claim conspiracy and "inside job". These people need help. Sadly, most of the 9/11 "truthers" are just as fanatical as the Muslims that piloted those aircraft on that fateful day. I won't go into their conspiracy theories, sufficed to say that anyone who has actually dealt with conspiracy theories knows that the effectiveness of a conspiracy is severely limited by the number of conspirators, time from the event, and the ability of the conspirators to remain in contact with each other. A conspiracy the size of 9/11 requires a number of people "in the know" of a massive proportion. I won't go into it in detail, but there is no way, in my mind, that a conspiracy required to pull of 9/11 is just too massive. Someone should have talked, but no one is talking, not out of fear, but because there is nothing to say in that regard.

There are others that claim that the hens of U.S. foreign policy finally came home to roost on 9/11. Perhaps the people that espouse this view are right. However, the best and most simplest explanation is that 19 whack-jobs actually hijacked these airplanes and used them as flying bombs specifically against strategic symbols (financial, military & possibly political in the U.S.). Ultimately, God was in control, and both allowed and decreed the events of September 11, 2001 to happen. I struggled for many years to understand why those events, and subsequent tragedies happened. The answer came a few years later as I read Luke 13: 1-5 (ESV). I understood why these things were allowed to happen.

There were some present at that very time who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. 2And he answered them, "Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans, because they suffered in this way? 3No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. 4Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them: do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others who lived in Jerusalem? 5No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish."
 It was verse five that struck me. Jesus said, "...unless you repent, you will all likewise perish." Jesus states this twice, and if Jesus said something twice then it behooves us to pay attention to what He said. You and I are no better nor no worse than the 2, 977 victims and the 19 terrorists that died that day. Unless we repent, however, we too will perish as they did.

So reader, let me ask you are you ready to repent?

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