Thursday, September 11, 2014 lay down one's life for friends

Awakening Greatness... 9/11/2014

I am sure that I am just one of a million people reflecting on today. That one day 13 years ago, that changed the America we knew. The day that drew a line and separated a generation - for there would quickly be an entire generation of people where this event was just history.  

As a post 9/11 mom to still fairly young kids, it will be my responsibility to share with them the meaning of this day. My prayer is that love wins out. On the night of 9/10 a thief came and robbed every American from everything they have ever known. Safety - Security - Trust. To live in the post 9/11 world, much less raise kids is something I need to pray about every day. For a while, before the blame, before the labeling, before the wars we came together as a nation. When we were sucker punched, I am not saying we didn't want answers or rise up and take a prominent global stance. We did!

My husband was deployed immediately off the coast of San Diego that day to secure the borders of the pacific. His 6 month deployment that was supposed to start in January, was moved up to November. Until then he was gone most of the time as the ship prepared to leave to the middle east. It went straight there - no real port stops like the last time, but a hurried destination. He remained there until the last week of May. A six month cruise became an 8 month cruise.  He was happy to do it, and it was just one of the MANY times I was proud to call him my husband.  

While I was glued the the TV that morning - Jeff sprung out of Bed and said you need to get me to the base. He got a call that it was taking hours to get through the gate, and he and other men and women had a job to do. Our Military - Our Firefighters - Our Paramedics - Our Police. They went to work that day. They started a shift and they didn't know when it would end. As a nation, we were changed forever. 

As I raise my precious kids, I hope they will hear the stories of love, courage, and hope. The bible says:
The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. John 10:10

I think most, if not all of us that lived through that day, can agree something was stolen. Something so important. Something too big to even put a name on. It is the day where people became Republican or Democrat, and defended their choice vehemently. It is the day that a renewed intolerance of people's religious differences divided a country and people. This didn't happen immediately but it happened just the same. Because it is also the day that God Bless America was an anthem that everyone sang. In my opinion, after the dust settled both in our hearts and on the ground love gave way to hate, instead of the opposite. America had a choice - Christians had a choice. A choice to obsess on what had been stolen, or a choice to love. A choice to support and pray for our elected officials despite personal beliefs.  It is not our duty to create division in the name of Christ, but to foster love. To give this world love not hate. This is what I want to pass on to my children. A love and hope of this great nation. Prayer for this great nation. Unity for this great nation. Just as the above verse says, I want them to have abundant life. 

I want them to be truly great. Author and Speaker - Tim Kimmel says it best...,
But in the midst of this crisis, there were magnificent people who responded to the urgency of the moment and gave everything they had for the sake of others. As the successful rushed down the stairs of the World Trade Center, the truly great ran up. As the well-heeled and comfortable ran for their lives, the truly great slipped inside the nightmare to see what they could do to help those who were left behind.
And after the smoke cleared, thousands of truly great people stepped out from their quiet positions within the ranks of successful Americans and opened their hearts and their wallets to those whose lives had been shattered by this cataclysmic event.
I do not know what my children will decide to do with their lives - it actually doesn't matter. They can do anything they want. But whatever it is, I hope they are full of love, full of service, full of sacrifice, and full of greatness. No matter their profession they can choose to be great. That they walk around this world asking what they can do for others rather than what others can do for them.  I didn't mean to go all JFK....But as we vow to "Never Forget" may we never forget the sacrifice shown during that time, may we never forget the love that Americans showed to each other, may we never forget the lost lives of every single person, may we never forget how proudly we flew the American flag, may we never forget how we prayed together as a nation, may we never forget the 1000s of lives lost because of hate, and may we never forget how we came together because of such a tragic event. May hate permeating in our society give way to love. For the bible says:
There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. John 15:13

To this day, my awesome husband always puts others first. He did it prior to 9/11, he did it on 9/11, and he does it sill today. I am humbled that I get to do life next to this man. 

Thank-you to those both in and out of uniform who live your life by this verse.