Like a lot of young men, my wedding day was a day to be endured. I – quite clearly – remember thinking that it would not be the first day I would endure to maintain a strong bond with the woman with whom I truly wanted to share the rest of my life. It is all a bit of a haze of early morning, nervous eating, awkward clothing, stiff ceremony, and, all to lengthy reception.
But God is good and gave me a second chance to have a great first day of marriage. Since the Shona culture requires a wedding in first the home of the bride and then in the home of the groom, Judi and I were required to fly to Zimbabwe to go through the whole process again. Judi was thrilled to be able to wear her wedding dress and I, on the night before that second service, had a chance to thank God for this most important of days that would never be repeated but would always be remembered with growing joy and deeper commitment.
Of these kinds of days, Jill Carattini managing editor of A Slice of Infinity RZIM, says, “There are moments in our lives when we realize that we are beholding the carving of a day into the great tree of history.” 9/11/2001 was certainly one of those days. Just as we recall more than the wedding day each anniversary so we recall more than the tragedy this tenth year after the World Trade Center was attacked and so many died.
We remember the unity of what was a divided nation. We remember the common front of a divided national leadership. We remember the bravery of the first responders and countless volunteers who streamed across the country to do “whatever is needed.” We remember how generous our fellow Americans showed themselves to be – again. We remember how everyone looked to God for strength, courage, and, of course, answers. Each year we continue to look for answers.
God’s answer continues to be for us what it was for the people of His day. The sign of Jonah.