I can’t believe that it has already been twelve years. It was my first full week of classes at Azusa Pacific University. I was only 18.
Rather than write something new today, I thought I’d share two posts that I wrote on this day in 2004 and 2005:
September 11, 2004: NEVER FORGET…
I’m sure that most people are posting about what today represents…
So I don’t want to repeat all that has been said.
The thing that I remember the most about that day was probably my devotional reading.
I read “My Utmost for His Highest” by Oswald Chambers, and was blown away by the relevancy of the devotional. It is always so amazing to me how God puts things exactly where they are needed…it happens SO often with what I read, as I’m sure it does with you all as well.
The last line of this devotional is so incredibly true and relevant…and I wanted to share it with you all.
May we never forget what happened on that September day…
September 11: Missionary Weapons
If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet—John 13:14
Ministering in Everyday Opportunities.
Ministering in everyday opportunities that surround us does not mean that we select our own surroundings—it means being God’s very special choice to be available for use in any of the seemingly random surroundings which He has engineered for us. The very character we exhibit in our present surroundings is an indication of what we will be like in other surroundings.
The things Jesus did were the most menial of everyday tasks, and this is an indication that it takes all of God’s power in me to accomplish even the most common tasks in His way. Can I use a towel as He did? Towels, dishes, sandals, and all the other ordinary things in our lives reveal what we are made of more quickly than anything else. It takes God Almighty Incarnate in us to do the most menial duty as it ought to be done.
Jesus said, “I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you” (13:15). Notice the kind of people that God brings around you, and you will be humiliated once you realize that this is actually His way of revealing to you the kind of person you have been to Him. Now He says we should exhibit to those around us exactly what He has exhibited to us.
Do you find yourself responding by saying, “Oh, I will do all that once I’m out on the mission field”? Talking in this way is like trying to produce the weapons of war while in the trenches of the battlefield–you will be killed while trying to do it. We have to go the “second mile” with God (see Matthew 5:41 ). Yet some of us become worn out in the first ten steps. Then we say, “Well, I’ll just wait until I get closer to the next big crisis in my life.”
But if we do not steadily minister in everyday opportunities, we will do nothing when the crisis comes.
September 11, 2005:
As I taught Sunday School this morning, I couldn’t help but bring up the events of September 11, 2001. I asked my junior high and high schoolers what they remember, and surprisingly they remembered a lot. Most of them were in 3rd or 4th grade…I was in my first full week as a college student.
I was getting ready for work, and when I walked out into the hallway of my dorm, three or four girls were on their phones. That was strange because it was 7:30am. One of them told me that the Pentagon had been bombed, and I walked away in disbelief, because “no one just bombs the Pentagon.” I got to work (in the library’s media center), and all the tvs were on. The rest is history. It was so sobering!
In the summer of 2002 I visited Ground Zero, and was struck by the enormity of the hole…I had never been to NYC to see the towers, and I will never forget that visit. It was silent, though there were probably 500 people around.
As we discussed the events this morning, I also talked about Philippians 4:11, which is the verse that has been my biggest continual lesson over the past six weeks or so. It is often SO hard to be content whatever the circumstances…especially in the light of a horrific tragedy. However, we must remember that God is sovereign, and He alone knows the greater purposes that will come from these events. We must rest and be content knowing that the awesome Creator of the universe is in COMPLETE control.
It’s so humbling to reflect upon all that I have been given, and all the ways in which the Lord has blessed me. I praise Him for all the situations through which He has brought me, and I am eager to continue learning these lessons as I grow in Him.
“I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength…” (Phil. 4:13)