In the Shadows of 9/11, Prayers for Afghanistan

 

I remember like it was yesterday. Televisions were being brought to landings around the workout facility where I had just finished lifting weights. We all watched in horror as two planes destroyed the twin towers in New York City. I remember the walk to the train station – I was living and working in Chicago at the time – as a city was being emptied of its people. The sound of a sonic boom erupted above me as fighter jets flew over Chicago, another potential, terrorist target. Arriving home all of America was glued to its television sets, wondering what had just happened.

We learned of another plane, Flight 93, downed in the hinterland of Pennsylvania; only later did we learn of the valiant sacrifice of the first patriots to die in what we would call “the war on terror.” A phone call came later that day from my brother-in-law to find out if I was OK; I was scheduled to speak in 25 cities that school year. My first trip was scheduled for later that month of September in 2001, O’Hare was a ghost town in comparison to its title at that time as America’s busiest airport. Being on planes in those days, I would overhear men tell the stewardesses ahead of takeoff, “If there is any trouble let me know.” A cab ride to my home after one of my trips found me in a car of a man who was celebrating the 9-11 attack. My response of righteous anger was not missed by the driver as he responded with wide eyes and silence, looking at me in his rearview mirror.

President George W. Bush joined first responders in New York City days after the attack, uttering those famous words, “The people who knocked down these buildings will be hearing from all of us soon!” Cheers and tears overwhelmed many of us. We were no longer hyphenated-Americans. A new slogan was born, “United We Stand.” Sometime soon thereafter Americans first heard the phrase “Horse Soldiers” as elite troops were ushered into Afghanistan on the only transportation available entering the country where the perpetrators planned the attack. Stories of sixty-year-old veterans wanting to reenlist were heard around the country. Toby Keith’s song “Courtesy of the Red, White & Blue” spoke the words that energized a nation and its military. The world changed on September 11th, 2001. Historians call events such as these, “hinges of history.” And today, twenty years later, the door has swung the other way.

I awoke this morning, sick to my stomach. My first prayers this weekend have been for the Afghan people, many of whom have, for twenty years been the beneficiaries of American military might protecting them from despotism. I have prayed for our veterans whose selflessness in sacrifice has been the deterrent against tyranny. I cannot begin to imagine their thoughts today as they see the results of their work eviscerated. As the stories of evacuation continue in the coming days, my prayers will shift to individual needs. But today, I also pray for America. I pray for the soul of our nation. I pray that we might remember our place in the world in God’s Providence. Proverbs 28 and 29 are peppered with statements that explain what happens to a people, depending upon those who govern. The universal ideals embedded in biblical theology are watchwords for this or any nation: “When the righteous triumph there is great joy, but when the wicked rise, people hide themselves” (28:12).

Continue to pray for the people of Afghanistan.

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  1. Fake John/Jane Galt Coolidge
    Fake John/Jane Galt
    @FakeJohnJaneGalt

    I am not sure why any country would rely on any part of the US government to protect them or support them.  To do so is extremely foolish.  The only way our elite support anybody is if they can figure out how to enrich themselves in the process.

    • #1
  2. Henry Castaigne Member
    Henry Castaigne
    @HenryCastaigne

    Fake John/Jane Galt (View Comment):

    I am not sure why any country would rely on any part of the US government to protect them or support them. To do so is extremely foolish. The only way our elite support anybody is if they can figure out how to enrich themselves in the process.

    The elite were doing that with crony deals in Afghanistan already. It was Wokeism that did us in.

    • #2