When the night
Seems to say
All hope is lost
But I know
I'm not alone
By the light
There she waves
Show the way
To the place
Just when you think it might be over
Just when you think the fight is gone
Someone will risk his life to raise her
There she stands
There she flies
Clear blue skies
Reminds us with red
Of those that died
Washed in white
By the brave
In their strength
When evil calls itself a martyr
When all your hopes come crashing down
Someone will pull her from the rubble
There she stands
We've seen her flying torn and tattered
We've seen her stand the test of time
And through it all the fools have fallen
There she stands
By the dawn's
And through the fight
~Michael W. Smith
This song is the result of a request that President Bush made of Michael W. Smith at a meeting between them six weeks after 9-11-2001. Wish that I had heard it many years ago. I don't believe that many people are familiar with the song and that's a shame. You can listen to it for yourself by clicking on the title. (Yes, there are some of the iconic images and video of that day.) The stanza that says Just when you think it might be over, Just when you think the fight is gone perfectly reflects the way I felt on that day.
Below I am reposting a piece I wrote in 2007 describing where I was that Tuesday. We all will forever remember where we were. More importantly, let us remember where we are this day and know that God was and is and forever will be in control. Ours is not the first generation to face devastation. It will not be the last.
This morning, first thing, I lowered the flag to the half-mast position. September 11 will never come and go unremembered for as long as I live. This is true for most Americans, I am certain. There are those who still remember Pearl Harbor with the same devotion.
Six years ago, I was a preschool teacher on an excursion to the library with my students and other staff. The hour 8:45 came and went without any particular notice as the class listened to the librarian read a story. This was followed by a craft time.
At 9:00, we were collected by our dear bus driver Gil who looked at each of us adults with pure terror in her eyes. I will never forget how pale and upset she looked. Gil had the radio on and the news was terrible. A plane had crashed into the north tower and all hell had broken loose.
One of the teacher's husbands was a construction worker in NYC at the time, and she began to weep softly. Just as news of the first jumpers came across the airwaves, I asked Gil to please turn off the radio. The little ones had become frightened, too, and were now asking questions. "Why are you crying, Mrs. M? What's wrong? Why are you all sad?"
By the time we had arrived back at school, the entire parking lot was filled with parents' cars and in less than 5 minutes, all the children had been scooped up and taken home. I was grateful for those concerned parents. I was grateful that the children would be home in the bosom of their families because, in my own fear, I had no idea how the day would end or if any of us would live to see the end of that day. It seems almost laughable today, but then it was my reality.
Today, another Tuesday, I think of all those who live in New York City who must rise again to the day despite their fears. May God bless them and all of us.
P.S. If you have time (26 min.), I highly recommend this video: Ten Years Later: A Nation Remembers 9/11