Today marks the 10th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, and I've spent time reflecting on past events... not only of what happened ten years ago, but other times throughout history too. I recall when my daughter was in high school, she came home one day and asked me what it was like to live in the sixties, with the Hippie movement, the protests, the campus riots, the Vietnam war. She wondered what it was like to live during that time, and wondered how we kept from being fearful and discouraged. I pointed out that each generation seems to have, at some point, a horrendous event to deal with. The bombing of Pearl Harbor. The assassination of President Kennedy. Wars. Rumors of wars. I assured her that we can find inner peace. Each generation survives and moves forward, just like her generation will always remember where they were when they heard about the 9/11 attack, but they will also remember how they rallied and moved forward.
This world is full of turmoil and distress, and "world peace" seems impossible at times. It can bring out the best, or the worst, in us. So where do we find peace? I think the following hymn sums it up appropriately:
WHEN FAITH ENDURES
I will not doubt, I will not fear;
God's love and strength are always near.
His promised gift helps me to find
An inner strength and peace of mind.
I give the Father willingly
My trust, my prayers, humility.
His Spirit guides; his love assures
That fear departs when faith endures.
(Text: Naomi W. Randall)