Seven Years Later
Seven years ago, four hijacked jetliners crashed and our world was changed. The Twin Towers were destroyed, the Pentagon was attacked, and a third attack was thwarted and a fourth plane lost. At the end of the day, more than 3000 innocent people were dead, and with them died the unstated but widely held view that terrorism was something that happened in the Middle East and we read about in Time or watched on CNN.
The last war fought on American soil was the Civil War. (Regardless of what my kids think of my rapidly advancing age, I don’t remember a lot about that war.). Every war since then has been fought, to use the words of a Word War I era song-- “Over There”
Over there, over there, send the word, send the word over there
That the Yanks are coming, the Yanks are coming,
The drums rum-tumming ev'rywhere.
So prepare, say a pray'r, send the word, send the word to beware.
We'll be over, we're coming over, and we won't come back till it's over, over there
After September 11, war didn't seem to be just "over there." This new kind of war fought by fundamentalist Islam against us over here. It was a new war against a new enemy that didn’t fight fair. This was an enemy without an army, uniform or country that turned our planes into bombs and used our own freedoms toagainst us to bring their terror to our shores. This was an enemy that seemed to be everywhere, and seemed to be nowhere. Ironically, our response to 9-11 was to launch a "War on Terror" that has once against sent brave men and women to fight “over there.”
God still reigns over the nations. Psalm 47:8 is just as true today as it was when the sons of Korah wrote it, “God reigns over the nations; God is seated on his holy throne.” We live in a fallen world where the evil choices of evil people hurt the innocent. That is not exactly a new development in the history of the world. Jesus said to those who came to arrest him, “But this is your moment, the time when the power of darkness reigns” (Luke 22:53, NLT). But just as Jesus looked to God in that time of darkness, so we look to God and his power today. We pray for His peace. We pray His justice. We pray for His will. We pray for His mercy. And we pray for His coming. Peace on earth will always be the impossible dream until the Prince of Peace returns.