9/11: Bouncing Back From a Tragedy
I know that I mentioned another "surprise" that All Things New would announce in our most recent blog, but we are not quite ready to announce it yet. Instead, something else has stuck in my mind recently.
Every country has and does go through unimaginable crises at some point. Some of the most memorable for me are 9/11 in the US, the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans, hunger in Ethiopia and Somalia, and the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami.
The way a country bounces back from tragedy is one of the things that defines it.
As I sat and thought about where I was on 9/11 and was asked numerous questions by my kids about the attack, I was struck by a lot of different emotions. Admittedly, our kids do not give you a lot of time to sit with your thoughts, but I came back to it later.
I was sitting and watching the news in my apartment during my final semester at Georgia Tech. I had a 9:00 class so I was watching the news and the screen switched over to the first tower being hit. I got up and started heading to class assuming it was an accident. On the way to class, however, I found out it was not.
I remember the horror, the helplessness, and the feeling of almost pure hatred toward men who took it upon themselves to kill Americans for no reason. My mind went straight to, "should I join the military and do something?" In reality, it was just emotional and I did not know what to do. So I drove to my house in LaGrange.
Then, what seems like just hours later, something amazing, almost magical happened. That feeling of helplessness and anger turned into a sense of unity and love that was so different than anything I had experienced or have experienced since that it was almost confusing. Men and women across the entire country put aside their differences and became unified.
The way a country bounces back from a tragedy defines it.
There is a tragedy going on in Haiti right now that is not even remotely similar to anything America has ever faced. At some point, someone will step in and Haiti will begin to heal from the atrocities that are going on right now. How Haiti bounces back from this tragedy will define it...Again.
As Americans, here are two things we can pray:
1. Thank GOD that you were born into the privilege, development, and relative wealth of the United States. It truly is a wonderful country. The simple geographic location of where we were born could change almost everything about our life, and we (at least most people who are reading this) were born here. Ask GOD to help all of us stop fighting over silly, political things and to have civil discourse and unity. Even when we disagree, help us to fight for what we believe in with love, understanding, and a true desire to listen to others.
2. Ask GOD to help Haiti. Not just help in getting through what is maybe the nation's darkest hour, but also to put the country back together in the aftermath. People should not have to live the way that the vast majority of Haitians are currently living. Also thank GOD that we are still able to take care of our kids! It is such an incredible testimony to all of you that we can do that.