world will look back on this date for generations to
come. It is a watershed in history, and things will
never be the same. The question is: Will they be worse,
or will they be better?
the most commonly asked question since the attack is:
How could a good God allow something like this to happen?
It is a question asked after every catastrophic event.
The answer is always the same, but that answer is not
simple, and it is not easy to understand.
veil between the physical and the spiritual worlds has
been likened to a tapestry. From our side we see only
the back of the tapestry, a confusing jumble of threads
with no apparent design or meaning. But from God's side
the whole finished plan is visible in infinite and beautiful
do not have the final answer to these agonizing questions.
But we do have an idea of where those answers lie. If
we begin from this side of the tapestry and try to draw
conclusions about God, we will project upon God all
the anger and fear that we as humans feel. And we will
come up with a distorted view of God and of God's purpose
faith begins from God's side of the tapestry and works
its way around to this. In so doing, it is able to view
these events through God's loving eyes, and that transforms
everything. It also transforms us, and allows us eventually
to transform the world.
the attackers viewed the world from the human side of
the tapestry, from the point of view of fear, they tried
to solve their problems by creating fear in others.
History has shown that this approach merely creates
a whirlpool of destruction which eventually sucks us
all down to death. The redeeming power of an event like
this is that is reminds us, painfully, that we must
find another way. And that way, of course, is found
on the opposite side of the tapestry. It is the way
of God, the way of love.
issue is not between terrorism and freedom. The issue
is between fear and love. If the terrorists succeed
in filling us with fear, turning us against each other,
transforming us into angry militants who are desperate
for violent revenge regardless of the cost, they will
have won even if we kill them all. Each of us has a
choice. The attackers chose fear. We must choose love.
do we do that in a world such as ours has become? We
begin not with the World Trade Center/Pentagon disasters,
but in our convictions about God. Is God alive? Is God
a loving God? Is God still in control? If we say no
to these fundamental questions, then there is no answer
to this tragedy. But if we say yes, then we must conclude
that these tragedies occurred within God. And that transforms
question then becomes not: Why did God allow this to
happen? It becomes: Since God has given us the freedom
to do anything we choose, why have we created a world
in which there is such injustice and desperation that
people choose to do these things? Why does the richest
nation on earth squander its riches on itself when half
the world is starving? Why has it taken us so long to
oppose the terrorism that has plagued other nations
for decades? Could it be that it has never before touched
us in such a dramatic and personal way? Why don't we
see that the pervasive selfishness and secularism in
the world is a total denial of our true spiritual nature?
Unity Church service on the Sunday following the attack
left us with this thought: The hijackers and we are
one with God. That certainty must be kept in mind if
we are to convert this evil into blessing. If we recognize
the need to be governed by love, it means that even
the pursuit of the guilty parties must be conducted
in love, not in the hatred that comes from fear.
we believe that the victims chose their fate before
they came to earth as a means of changing the course
of the future, or whether we honor their loss by ensuring
that it never happens again, we know that this event
is intended to raise our consciousness. In the coming
days, we must choose between being influenced by fear
or by love. Join us in allowing God's love to turn this
human crucifixion into a spiritual resurrection.
John W. Sloat 2003