Six months after the terrorist attacks, Joel and our son Matt went to NYC to participate in a national gathering of Lutheran pastors who wanted to show their support. Our synod asked Joel to be a representative for our synod, speaking with and preaching at a congregation in the New York area. Hundreds of clergy joined together in worship with the people of NYC and then were sent out to churches. Not only were they able to show support and listen to congregational members tell their stories, but they were able to give overburdened pastors some time off. Needless to say, this was an experience that Joel and our son will never forget. They both felt blessed to be able to participate.
As time passed a couple of the people Joel met would email him and share what was going on in their lives ~ how they were finding joy once again as they walked through tough, tough times. We have also watched others share their stories of finding joy once again this past week. It reminded me so much of the verse in Isaiah 61:3~
"To all who mourn in Zion
he will give a crown of beauty for ashes
a joyous blessing instead of mourning
festive praise instead of despair."
Watching the news coverage once again of the towers falling, the Pentagon burning, and the scorched field in PA, I cannot help but lift this verse up as a prayer for all those who were personally touched by this horrific event. God keeps his promises, and I pray this day for all those who mourn...May they all have beauty now for those ashes ten years ago...may they be blessed with joy instead of mourning...
Amen and Amen..
Stop over and visit Charlotte and Ginger at Spiritual Sundays to read encouraging posts or link up your own.