Today, 18 years ago, 19 men committed one of the most infamous crimes in American history. They murdered 2,977 innocent American and foreign people, who were simply going about their daily lives. They all went out into eternity…some to heaven, some to hell, having never received God’s gift of Salvation. But…have we forgotten?
Those who don’t learn from History are apt to repeat it.
I used to work on a bus route at my church before we went on the road full time for FBN. All of my riders were born after 9/11…and none of them had ever heard of it. They were old enough. There is no reason for their ignorance. It’s not their fault. Their parents and their teachers have let them down.
The Twin Towers of the World Trade Center was the death place of 2,605 people, not including the victims onboard the planes. 411 of those were first responders. Have we forgotten them?
The Pentagon was the death place of 125 people, 55 of those being military personnel. Have we forgotten them?
Flight 93 and the other three planes involved were the death places of 246 passengers, flown to their deaths because of 19 wicked men bent on destruction and death, for a god that doesn’t even exist. Have we forgotten those victims and their murderers?
At least 4,424 of our troops gave their lives in Iraq to protect our nation and put down terrorist organizations. Have we forgotten their sacrifice?
As of 2018, 2,372 of our brave servicemen have died in Afghanistan to the same end. There have been 20,32o wounded in the war. Have we forgotten their valor, their blood shed for our freedom, their families mourning loss of life, limb and mental stability?
I would dare to say that we have. I have spoken with people who thought Afghanistan was just a military base, not a war zone. I have spoken with many who have no idea when we went to war or why. I myself can name only two places where fighting has taken place over there. I am ashamed of my lack of knowledge on this subject. After all, this is the war of my generation. I was five when 9/11 happened. I watched the towers fall live on my Grandmother’s television. I have never forgotten that. It is seared into my memory forever.
Did you know that the 18-year-old recruit in Basic Training today was only a baby when 9/11 happened? Did you know that the 17-year-old recruit wasn’t even born? Three of my siblings have only known a country at war. A couple of them remember when Osama bin Laden died, taken out by conscientious Navy SEALs. None of the three remember Saddam Hussein. I do. I lived in fear, as a child, that they would come to America and murder my family, even though I prayed they would come to know the Lord. It was a result of this fear of dying that God softened my heart and I accepted Him as my personal Savior.
I believe though, that as a nation, We Have Forgotten.
But that’s not all…
Jesus Christ came to earth, born of a virgin, suffering the scoffing and criticism by His own people. Have we forgotten the reason He came?
He selected 12 men to be his disciples. One betrayed Him to His enemies for money. One denied that he even knew Jesus. And 11 of them ran when Jesus was arrested. Have we forgotten His agony in the garden, for us? His prayers while His disciples slept?
He was falsely accused, beaten, spit on and mocked before the people. Have we forgotten His humility and acceptance of what should have been our punishment? He Who knew no sin? Have we forgotten?
Jesus died, gave His Life for us on the cross, so that we could go to Heaven when we die. He accepted the rejection of God, His Father, so we could be accepted. He willingly allowed Himself to die and be buried in a borrowed tomb, for you! For me! For the victims of 9/11. For the hijackers who took over the planes. For Osama bin Laden, Saddam Hussein. For every “good” person that has ever lived or ever will live. For every bad person who ever has lived or ever will live. For everyone. He loves us that much. He doesn’t owe us anything, but Jesus did it anyway. Have we forgotten the Love of Jesus?
And the most important part…
He rose again from the grave! Three days after giving His life for us, Jesus Christ, the Only Begotten Son of God, rose of His own power, victorious over death, hell and the grave.
How could we have forgotten? Do we as a nation even care? If not, it will be to the eternal doom of every individual who has rejected His free gift of Salvation. All Jesus asks is that we repent of our sins. That is all! Small thing to ask, right?
I haven’t forgotten. What about you?
I have accepted His gift. What about you?
Have you forgotten?
Today, I want to share a devotion with you that I wrote last year. Too often we forget those who gave it all to save others. After the devotion, I will have a review of the book Let’s Roll, by Lisa Beamer, a widow of Flight 93.
Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.
John 15: 13
King James Bible
It was supposed to be a normal flight, Flight number 93 at 8:42 a.m. Todd Beamer had just gotten home the night before from a five-day trip to Italy with his wife, Lisa. He had a trip to make for work, which he could have left for the day he returned to the states, but Todd decided to spend time with his little family. As it turns out, spending time with his sons David and Andrew (Drew) and his pregnant wife was a wise move. It was the last day they would spend together.
Everything changed for this 6-year Sunday School Teacher at 9:28 am September 11th, 2001. Everyone was screaming as the middle-eastern voice came over the speakers saying, “Keep remaining sitting. We have a bomb on board.” It was shortly after this that Todd got a look at the pilot and co-pilot, lying dead on the floor. Within minutes it became clear that their plane was heading for a vital target…Washington D.C.
Beamer made a call, explaining that the plane had been hijacked and that the pilots and one passenger had been murdered by knife-wielding terrorist. One had a bomb strapped to his waist, he informed them. Shortly after, while still on the phone, Todd, Mark Bingham, Tom Burnett and Jeremy Glick formed a plan to gain control of the plane. Beamer led his fellow passengers in reciting the Lord’s Prayer and the 23rd Psalm. To the official on the phone, Todd requested that if they didn’t survive the planned plane crash, would she please call his family and tell them how much he loved them. The last thing Beamer said that was heard over the phone was “Are you ready? Okay. Let’s roll!”
And with that, his final words joined the words of many Americans who dedicated their lives to freedom. And “Let’s roll!” to this day personifies the American mission. This is no time to stand idle and let things happen. It’s time to make things happen. It’s time to roll!
At 580 mph, the plane crashed at Shanksville, Pennsylvania, killing everyone on board. They sacrificed their lives so that others could live and lead our country in the coming wars, Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom. Let us pray their sacrifice 18 years ago was not in vain.
Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.
John 15: 13
King James Bible
By Lisa Beamer
From the Back Cover:
United Flight 93.
You read all about it.
You heard Hero Todd Beamer’s last words.
But what about the end of the story?
In Let’s Roll! Todd’s wife, Lisa, reveals what really happened on that ill-fated flight, as well as poignant glimpses of a genuine American Hero. She talks candidly about Todd’s growing-up years, their marriage and last week together, and then family moments without him—the devastating day her children learned their daddy had died, how they celebrated his first birthday without him, the mix of grief and joy when she gave birth to their third child, and how she’s found the confidence to go on in the face of such tragedy and loss. It’s no wonder that, through this unpretentious homemaker and mother, an entire nation can…
My Review: Another book that all Americans should read! Oh, my heart was so deeply touched by the Beamers’ Story! Seeing her struggle through losing her husband, reading their backstory and watching their children adjust to life without daddy was both heart-wrenching and heartwarming. They are normal people, thrust into a situation they certainly didn’t ask for and their response was inspiring and encouraging.
One thing I didn’t expect to feel in this story was pity for the terrorists who hijacked Flight 93.
Please hear me out.
These guys were horrible people and by all standards deserved to die. But what killed me was their ages: 26, 24, 21 and 20. So young, so bent on evil…and reading the instructions that were given to them by Mohammad-Atta, the leader of the attack, is heart breaking. Did they really think they were doing the right thing? Did they really believe their god would bless them? Did they really think they had to kill themselves and so many others in order to gain heaven? That’s what made me fill pity. They were so dedicated to their religion…a false doctrine and a god that doesn’t even exist. They did everything “right” according to how they had been raised…and still ended up in hell, because they had been deceived by their elders.
What a tragedy! What a waste! So young and oh, so wrong.
There were a few things that I didn’t care for in the book; the Beamers were not raised as conservative as I have been, so there are probably several things we wouldn’t agree on. Namely, dating and kissing prior to marriage. And their love of sports was a little annoying to me as well. But my main dislike was the fact that they used the NIV for the scriptures. I am King James only, so this was the most frustrating part of the book. Lisa quotes scriptures I am familiar with and it’s so irritating to see it changed and watered down. If it were my book, I would have looked up the references and corrected them in the text.
Even so, the message of the book was powerful and so needed in this day and age. Were the Beamers perfect? No. Were they extraordinary people? Oh, yes. Because they have an Extraordinary Father in Heaven, Who controlled every detail of their lives, shaping them and preparing them for the day that rocked America to it’s core.
I would recommend this to Biblically mature readers 18 and up for understanding/interest.
One of the most solemn holidays in our country is Patriots Day, a day set aside to remember those who died on September 11th, 2001. I was 5 when 19 Islamic Terrorists hijacked our planes and murdered over 2,000 innocent people.
A few weeks ago, I decided to read and review some books on the subject, so you would have time to order them or borrow them through your local library before 9/11 gets here. Today’s post is the first of those books.
Heroes of 9/11
By Allan Zullo
From the Back Cover: The first responders on September 11, 2001 — firefighters, police officers, emergency medical technicians, paramedics, military officers and even many civilians — risked their lives to save people they didn't know. Every one of them is a hero. This book features ten gripping stories that reflect the countless breathtaking acts of heroism that occurred inside the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and a hijacked plane. Among other amazing true accounts, you will read about the miraculous survival of the fire captain and his men who were buried alive when the north tower collapsed... the cop who dodged death twice to help save others... and the two navy officers who ran into a burning, crumbling section of the Pentagon to rescue a trapped worker.
My Review: Wow. I felt as though at any minute I could burst into tears (And a few times, I did). This book highlights heroes who rescued people on 9/11. Six stories cover the World Trade Center, two Police, two Firemen, and two EMTs. Three stories take place in the Pentagon (yes, the Pentagon was attacked. For some odd reason, many people forget that…), 2 Army, 1 Navy. And then the final story is a tribute to the heroes of Flight 93, the plane that went down in Shanksville, Pennsylvania when the passengers fought back against the terrorists and saved our nation’s congress.
This book is written on a middle grade level, but honestly, I think everyone should read it. Such selflessness is uncommon in our day and age. Such unity of action and purpose…a love and willingness to sacrifice everything for a stranger.
The only reason this book did not receive 5 stars is because I had to mark out over a dozen uses of God’s Name taken in vain. I understand that the people were in shock over what had happened, but that doesn’t justify abusing God’s Name. Now, there are several mentions of prayer and crying out to God for help and I loved that aspect of the story! But I would recommend an older person reading it before young readers.
Our School year has officially started and it’s going well thus far! Yay, Homeschooling! Hard to believe I’ll have a sister graduating this coming Spring and my little brother is in high school! The baby of the family just started middle. Hard to believe they are all so grown up! And Fall is right around the corner!
Bible Study: I am currently reading through the book of Exodus, and the story of the Israelites fighting with Amalek was part of my study. I’m reading a commentary on Moses and I am enjoying the study greatly. It showed how the raising of Moses hands was symbolic of lifting our hands to God in Prayer and also how it represents the power of God. And it shows that God keeps His promises. He promised to destroy Amalek, to wipe their nation off the face of the earth for their sin against God and for their hatred of the Jews. There are no descendants of Amalek today. It’s time for America to wake up to the seriousness of antisemitism (racism toward Jews). God doesn’t take it lightly and we shouldn’t either. The retributions could be fatal! “And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.” Genesis 12:3 (King James Bible)
Did you know that you can help others by praying for the peace of Jerusalem? “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee. Peace be within thy walls, and prosperity within thy palaces. For my brethren and companions' sakes, I will now say, Peace be within thee.” Psalms 122:6-8 (King James Bible) Don’t allow mainstream prejudice to mar your view of Israel and her people. God’s hand is upon them and it is our duty to pray for them, that they will hear and accept the Gospel of Jesus Christ, in Whom they can have true Peace.
Song: Every Good And Perfect Gift by Adam Morgan. It’s a Thanksgiving Song, but I think it’s appropriate for everyday life! We need to remember where our daily supplied needs come from.
🎼 “Every Good and Perfect Gift comes down from the Father of lights, Who remains unchanged, forever reigns, Who makes His face to shine upon His Child!” 🎼
Event: My Grandparents’ 60th Wedding Anniversary! Both of my married sisters and their families came in for it so we had all six of the little ones in the house! The time spent with friends and family was amazing. Also amazing that we are still sane after having so many people in the house at one time! 😉
Book of the Month: It’s a tie between Let’s Roll by Lisa Beamer (Review coming soon!) and Protecting the Poor by Amanda Tero! (Click here for my full review!)
Ministry: My dad has had many opportunities to preach and share about FBN this month! We had a missions conference for one, but even our drop-ins have been a blessing, especially one specific Wednesday Night prayer meeting we attended a couple weeks ago. Now that was a Real prayer meeting!
Writing Update: We are back into the grove of editing! Mom has been hitting the chapters hard, and I’m just ahead of her, fixing a few things that have changed due to prior edits! God is good and we are moving forward towards the finish line 😊 And Y'all! The Land of Cotton is currently having it's 5th printing printed and bound!!! Thanks to all of you who made this possible!
A Book I am Anticipating for September: I did not finish Auschwitz Escape, but I did make progress! But I am looking forward to reading a series of books I am proofing for my brother, Soldier Dogs. There are four books I think (more coming) and I have all but #3. I know, reading out of order…I’m still looking for it. The books are set during WWII and spotlight the different uses of dogs in the service! So, yes, I’m looking forward to that!
And Now, Some Writing Prompts…
Have a Blessed September!
Hello and welcome back! Today, I have another fun book review for you and oh! This book *eyes tearing up already* will hit you right in the heart. I just recently met this sweet author through the blog and I am so excited to share with you about her novel, O To Be Like Thee!
O To Be Like Thee
How Deep Love Runs
By Kassie Angle (Published 2018)
Wartime friendships are almost legendary. There’s nothing quite like the bond between soldiers who know their lives depend on each other.
That’s the thing, though. Your best friend’s life depends on you. That’s not always an easy responsibility.
And to make things worse, there’s that little blue-eyed boy in Texas who recognizes your uniform and not your face, and somehow his broken heart learns to love you…
Okay, so I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this before or not, but I love the army and I love military medical units, regardless of branch. I love a novel about medics (I mean, Seth is one of my favorite characters from my books and he’s a doctor’s aide 😉). This book combines these passions and oh! I love it so much!
We follow the story of LT Corban “Corey” Schreiber, a medic stationed in Afghanistan and his relationship with a new friend, Mayson McKinley (Already, I love this guy! Mayson…kinda partial to that name even if the spelling is different…). I used to live near a military base and I have army in my family, so this story really hit home for me.
Kassie handled topics such as blaming one’s self for someone’s death, mild PTSD, grieving a loved one and how things change after deployment for a service member. And she did it very well! Having been raised on army bases across the globe, Kassie knows what she is talking about. And her writing style is to the point and heart wrenching. Few books actually make me cry. I can think of…five that made me cry and one of them was mine, so it doesn’t count, lol! This book made me cry several times. It’s so…real. Even though the story is from Corey’s Point of View (POV), I felt I could connect with him. She did something few books I’ve read about the military have done. She made Corey human, not some larger than life superhero who can handle anything. He had struggles. He had feelings. He wasn’t a robot, but a person.
While there is some blood mentioned in the story, and injuries discussed, nothing was exceedingly graphic. I would read it to my younger siblings, no problem.
I will not forget this story. It hit home for me on a deep level and brought me to an even stronger appreciation for our servicemen. I encourage you, click this link and order you a copy of O To Be Like Thee. It’s a 400+ page novel, so it may take a while to finish, but it is worth it. READ THIS!
…Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.
(King James Bible)
Until Next Time,
Christian. American. Southern. Author.
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