Friday, September 9, 2011

Are You Still Standing?

As we approach the 10-year anniversary of 9-11, it is sad to remember that the twin towers of the World Trade Center are no longer standing. Instead, a painful void in the skyline symbolizes all the lives lost that day, as well as the loss of peace, security, freedoms, and other positive emotions and values that were threatened by these terrorist attacks.

Yet, still standing in the midst of the destruction was a 17-foot-long crossbeam, weighing at least two tons, miraculously planted vertically in the devastated landscape, with the correct proportions to represent a cross. This symbol reminds us that God had not abandoned us on that tragic day (Jer. 29:11-13; Hebrews 13:5; Psalm 91). His presence was clear in the countless stories of people spared from being at the Trade Center that hour because of strange “coincidences,” as if there are ever any coincidences with God (Romans 8:28).

His sheltering angels caught His children who leapt or were thrown from the burning buildings and carried them to Heaven. His Holy Spirit empowered those on Flight 93 to have the courage to crash the plane in a remote area of Shanksville, rather than let it destroy its intended target, which would have resulted in far greater loss of lives and national security. And His power, boldness, and self-sacrificing love filled the hearts of those firemen, police and rescue workers who gave their lives that others might escape death.

Yes, the 9-11 cross is still standing, now in the 9-11 museum despite lawsuits by an atheist association that is attempting to have it removed. But sadly, America seems to be teetering off balance from its foundation on Biblical principles cherished and upheld by those who framed this nation. As we as a nation turn our back on God, as we lose our footing down the slippery slope of political correctness, as we fail to take a stand for what is right, we will surely fall.

As born-again believers, it is our responsibility to humble ourselves and pray for forgiveness, individually and collectively as a church and as a nation:

2 Chronicles 7:14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

And, as Christians, it is our duty to stand fast on the rock of our salvation, to stand up for what we believe, and to not back down in fear of those who speak against the truth or who seek to prevent us from worshipping the God of our salvation. When Paul tells us to put on the whole armor of God as we fight the battles of spiritual warfare (Ephesians 6: 11-18), he tells us to “stand against the wiles of the devil” (v.11), “to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand (v. 13).”

As in any battle, sometimes we stride forward making great advances against the enemy, but at other times we are doing well just to hold our ground. The important thing is not to retreat, not to fall, not to backslide as Satan attacks us. As we remember 9-11, let us stand fast in our profession of faith (1 Corinthians 16:13), in our responsibility to uphold what is right in our nation and globally, in our unity to spread the Gospel (Philippians 1:27-28), in our love for one another, in our Christian liberty through grace (Galatians 5:1) and especially in our position as born-again believers, children and ambassadors of the one true God (Philippians 4:1; 1 Thessalonians 3:8; 1 Corinthians 16:13-15).

Jer. 29:11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. 12 Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you. 13 And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.

Love in Christ,

Laurie Collett


Nadwra┼╝liwiec said...

I was 11, when it happened. I came back from school and my mum said that the biggest buildings in New York are destroyed. I didn't believe in that, because I had thought that it was stupid joke. But when I saw at evening the news in TV, I understood that it isn't joke.
Tomorrow I will publish on my blog the archival material from Polish news program from 11.09.2011. from You Tube.
In Poland there are people, who think that it is fault of Jews or freemasons. But I don't agree with them. Today it is fashionable be in love with Islam and Muslim world, but in fact they don't love Europe and USA.
Yes, we should remember about this tragedy.

Donald Fishgrab said...

Unfortunately too many focus on the prayer part of II Chronicles 7:14 and ignore the other three conditions for healing. Until Christians humble themselves, seek God's face and turn from their sin, God is under no obligation to answer their prayers. As Psalm 66:18 says, "If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me:"

Laurie Collett said...

Thank you, Zim, for sharing with us your memories of that day and your perspective as a young girl in Poland when it happened. Things changed everywhere that day, and as we saw in later years, the intended targets were not just the US but throughout Europe and other parts of the world. I read an article saying that what happened on 9-11 is not even being taught to school children in the U.S. any more, because it is "too controversial" and "not politically correct." But those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat its mistakes.

Laurie Collett said...

Thanks so much, dfish, for the reminder that we must be right with God in our hearts before we bring our petitions to Him. Sometimes we have not because we ask not, but other times we ask in vain because of our pride and lack of repentance. Prayer warriors could beg God to do a mighty work on America's behalf if there is a true spirit of humility, repentance and revival, seeking God's will to be done.

Anonymous said...

Hi Laurie - I'm glad I came over to check out your blog, I am following and looking forward to your next post.
God bless

Laurie Collett said...

Welcome, Tracy! Thanks so much for following. May God bless you and your ministry. Laurie

Anonymous said...

Dear Laurie, Thank you so much for your wonderful comments on my blog and for being a follower!! When I saw the title of your blog I knew I HAD to follow because I have been learning of GRACE and the freedom of what the gospel message is all about. I love your writing and your posts because they are so well thought out, articulate and yet very meaningful to any seeking heart. Thank you for the scripture you provided in today's post. So many have written posts regarding 9/11 but believe it or not, yours is the first using Jeremiah 29:11, which I feel is so poignant and relevant. Thank you so much for sharing....and I greatly look forward to reading your future posts! Much love ~ alice

Laurie Collett said...

Dear Alice, Welcome and thank you so much for following and for your kind words! Jer. 29:11 has had special meaning for me since early in my Christian walk when I first began to appreciate the importance of God's plan for our life. There can be no greater blessing and no safer place to be than in the center of His perfect will. Thank you for being an encourager and for spreading His Word and His love.

enybees-hub said...

Hi Laurie I really appreciate your sweet comments on my blog,I will be off blogging for a while but will follow yours
Thank ‎​you and God bless ‎​you richlyHi Laurie I really appreciate your sweet comments on my blog,I will be off blogging for a while but will follow yours
Thank ‎​you and God bless ‎​you richly

Laurie Collett said...

Hi Enybees, You're very welcome, and thanks for your comment! May you enjoy newly married life! Blessings to you and your husband!

Never Forsaken said...

Hi Laurie,
I will never ever understand why athiests are so insistant on trying to steal away a believer's hope and comfort. They say they don't believe in anything yet if that were true, they would be indifferent to things such as a cross standing at a memorial. These individuals are so empty of hope that they don't want anybody else to have hope either. I feel more sorry for them than I do for the people of God who lost their loved one who are now being comforted by the Lord with a peace that surpasses all understanding. God's heart breaks for the athiest.
~Love & Peace In Jesus~

Laurie Collett said...

Hi Never Forsaken, Thanks for your thoughtful comments and for following this blog! I agree -- if atheists don't believe there is a God, why are they so angry at Him? God created each of us to desire fellowship with Him, so when we are not at peace with Him, there is a tremendous sense of emptiness causing the seeker to go after whatever the world or false religions can offer. But none of that is ever enough to fill the void only God can satisfy. I believe that is why atheists get so angry with God and those who believe in Him. I think there is more hope for the lost person who gets angry when you witness to them, because they are convicted by their sin, than there is for the lost person who politely listens to your witness but is unmoved by it. Love in Christ, Laurie

Renee said...

A wonderful post with a vivid reminder of God in the midst of all the pain and suffering in our country that day.
Thanks for coming by my blog to visit...God bless!

Laurie Collett said...

Hi Renee, Thanks for visiting and for your kind comment. May God richly bless you & your ministry! Laurie