Atrocities like this should bring passion. If the nation couldn't come together for this, nothing would bring folks together. But what kind of passion should they bring? Do humans really need a common enemy to unite them or a common friend?
What SHOULD our response be? I don't know. I'm not there yet, but I want to remember what happened.
I want to apologize for not modeling, eight years ago, an appropriate Christian response.
Its time to remember. I need to remember that eight years ago, America was attacked by terrorists. Since then, I'd say the United States has been trying its darndest to keep it from happening again - and for that I do say thanks.
But for me, I can't help but think that if I took seriously what Jesus told his Disciples in Matthew 5, it would have changed (and will change) the way I view all humans (victims, victimizers, and everyone in between). Most of the chapter is relevant, but I want to lift the tough part.
I know... what a down-right poor choice of a day (Patriot Day) to bring up that passage. But isn't every day a good day for such a Gospel message? That even your enemies are loved by our God?
Love for Enemies(Matthew 5:43-48)43"You have heard that it was said, 'Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' 44But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 47And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? 48Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
Remembering 9/11 is best done not through a massive show of force, but through a show of love because that is the greatest force this world has ever known. God's power is different than the world's. Some might say I'm dishonoring the Americans who died that day. Nope, I'm trying to honor them in the best way I know.
If you truly want to make sure that those who died on 9/11 did not die in vain, prove that love by loving those who would do America harm. You cannot win them over by violence. Violence begets violence. And besides, Jesus will just jump in your way. Lets remember the victims of 9/11 by remembering the Son of God and his life/death/resurrection.