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It has been a rough, soul-searching sort of couple of years has it not? Tragedy struck, and the world watched. Headlines filled our newsfeeds with lightning speed - some distorted, some not. Confusion spread like wildfire and somewhere in the midst of trying to understand, speaking became shouting and shouting became blame. Words became weapons and love gots a little lost. In the midst of it all, God was there. Above the noise, His still small voice spoke.


1 Corinthians 13 NIV says, "If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing."


If you were to recount the moments and ask yourself,

"how were they?" would you be satisfied?


If that is not a reminder we should all keep in our back pockets, I'm not sure what is. If you were to recount the moments you've had and ask yourself, "how were they?" Would you be satisfied? Were you tender? Did pride override humility? Did you leave your encounters knowing the person you left felt cared for? Did you remember to listen? Did you seek to understand? They are hard questions, but questions worth asking, and I can tell you, I have not gotten them all right. But for today, we have breath in our lungs, which means another opportunity to try again, and gosh do we try.



Life's Storms Have a Way

of Beating us Down


Life's storms have a way of beating us down. It's hard to stand in perseverance, while tightly clinging to hope, yet hope exists. Hope is a He, and He is at the heart of everything.



HOPE is a He


John 16:33 - "I have told you these things,

so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world."


Thank you, Jesus, that you have overcome the world. You are bigger than our problems, bigger

than our emotions, and bigger than our mistakes. Your mercies are bigger than we deserve, but they

are new every single morning.

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On 9/12/2001 the world did not spend hours a day absorbing blue light from screen time. We turned on TVs the old fashioned way. We called our churches and each other using landlines, and we prayed… hard I might add. Collectively we shared a silent understanding of the horror which had just unfolded before the world’s eyes. We watched. We listened. We mourned.


We also hoped. We banned together to help our fellow man. We worried about our frontline. We did not become desensitized to tragedy…. I like to think of that as a good thing.


Sacrifice was Visceral and Endeared


Sacrifice was visceral and endeared. It was real.

Men and women stormed the walls of crumbling rubble and vicious men, risking life and limb to stop the destruction, to stop the pain - some successful, others not. We shared the experience in a way neighborhoods do - together. We stopped. We paused. We listened.



But there is something important I’ve come to learn about tragedy. When it hits close to home… the world sort of stops just a bit, and we fall off its spinning axis while others stay in motion.

If we are honest with ourselves, social media has made us a bit of a scroll-by-world. We all see it, maybe even participate. We treat life like a newsfeed catching the highlights for a second, a glimpse for maybe a moment, then scroll on. We busy ourselves bartering time away and we forget.


We Forget...


We forget to pray, to make that phone call, to show the kindness someone so desperately needs - we forget to remember that mourning lasts more than a day, that the frontlines need our love, that the hurting require our care, and that tragedy can strike anyone at any time. So today, I choose again to remember - what the closest impacted cannot forget. There is a lesson in holding on to that day for just a little longer.



I remember buildings falling and people jumping - stories high. I remember Todd’s 911 call from United flight 93, sending a last message of love to his wife, who happened to have the same name as the 911 operator - Lisa. I remember he did so just moments before he and the other passengers took down the operators of the plane that didn’t “make it.” I remember where I was, how I felt, and the fear of uncertainty. I remember the days and months that followed where everyone banned together. They comforted with words and not emojis, with actions and not opinions, with prayer and not scoffing, and together we carried each other’s burdens.


I’m sorry to those who experienced great loss that day. I’m sorry for those who feel that pain linger. I pray for your comfort, your peace, and for joy in your life. I’m sorry your world was taken away.


Jenny Muscatell , author of The Journey of Faith & and Open Heart









#moscatellis

#standinginperseverance

#clingingtohope

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