September 11th, 2001, will always be remembered as a tragic day in history. The cold-heartedness that could bring such atrocity to mankind makes one’s heart tremble. We pause in remembrance of the tragedy that has occurred. We look forward, gaining strength from those who have been an example of heroism in the past.
However, on September 10th—and every day that follows—the evil of hunger claims the lives of 40,000 children who did not need to die. They are little ones to whom belongs the kingdom. Their death is not due to the overt hatred and action of ones they would call their enemies. These children die because of the passive complacency of people they might even call friends. There is no monument built at which to lay flowers or say prayers on behalf of these victims. Their names are not remembered, for we do not know them personally.
Try as we may, we cannot point the finger and say with conviction, "Let justice be served." If there is injustice, it is our own doing. If we seek to point the finger, we can only look to our own apathy and lack of concern for addressing this tragedy. This tragedy that we face is real, and it is happening every day. This is an issue that requires, even demands, our action. History will repeat itself. History IS repeating itself.
We do not mourn this tragedy without hope—we have hope. We have an example and a hope to look to because there are heroes who came before us. Jesus was that example, and He is that hope. He told us to give to the least of these, to love our neighbors; He fed, healed, shared. Like the parable of Lazarus, we stand as the rich man with the resources God has given to us, and we are not sharing with the poor beggar who is within our reach.
Let me be clear—the events remembered on September 11th are tragic, and we are right to remember and mourn. For those who experienced the loss of friends or family, I and this community grieve with you. I cannot imagine what it must have been like to witness firsthand the loss of a loved one and collectively with so many in our nation. September 10th should not be any less remembered. The loss of life that occurrs this day is tragic and is within our means to stop. And each day the same tragedy occurs, and we either don’t care or have become so desensitized that our hearts are numb.
“Love your neighbor as yourself.” These dying children are our neighbors; many of them are brothers and sisters in Christ. In past centuries we could say we lacked the means and resources to address these issues. Today we do not have that option. If we continue to live in the gross abundance that we have as our brothers and sisters daily die of starvation and disease that we can combat, we are without excuse.
Grieve September 11th and pray the Lord keep your heart tender and open to His love. Grieve September 10th and each day, and pray the Lord would turn your heart to a fervent life-changing love for those in need. Pray He teaches you His truth: "Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me" (Matthew 25:40, TNIV).