“Eventually, September the 11th will be a date on the calendar. It will be like Pearl Harbor Day. For those of us who lived through it, it will be a day we’ll never forget.” – Former President George W. Bush, in an interview with the National Geographic Society, 2011
Time passes. The older I get, the more I realize that time passes, and seems to pass more quickly each year. Today’s events are tomorrow’s memories, and tomorrow’s memories soon become historical events. I was a freshman in high school during the 40th anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. This year marks 150 years since the start of the American Civil War. Next April will mark the 100th anniversary of the Titanic’s sinking.
And then there is today: The 10th anniversary of the September 11th attacks.
The September 11th attacks are still emotion-laden memory for most of us, but it will not be many years before the events of that day become just another item in a newspaper’s “This Day in History” feature – an important item, to be sure, but, still, just another historical event, like Pearl Harbor or the Titanic.
And yet, near or far, minor or momentous, anniversaries are important. They allow us to reexamine things; things that we think, things that we feel, things that we know. And to reexamine these things in the light of what we have learned since.
I would urge you to spend some time today in quiet reflection on the events from 10 years ago. May I suggest the following video, a panel discussion from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, as a “jumpstart” to your reflections?