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Tragedy In America
The Old Coach

Many questions remain unanswered concerning this most tragic day in US History. The day that more Americans were killed on American soil since the Civil War will inevitably will bring on the age-old question of-Why. This attack by terrorists makes no sense. Why would God allow this to happen? Why were the lives of thousands of innocent people taken so abruptly when there are some many evil people in this world?

An event of this magnitude draws the attention of the world. But did you realize there are further examples of these dreadful accidents in the news regularly. Almost every person could give an example of someone they know and love that has been tragically taken in a senseless act. What answer can you expect from God concerning the why about each one?

First of all we must remember that God is sovereign and answers to nobody. God is incapable of sin. Humans are. Nothing that happens is a mad, meaningless, unknown accident to God. The Old Coach believes He has a plan in allowing tragic events to occur. We may not understand what His plans are, but we can take comfort in the fact that they exist. God specializes in taking tragedy and bringing good out of it.

Romans 8:28
And we know in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.

God usually does not rush to explain the why part of these fatal stories. Solomon wrote in Proverbs ….It is the glory of God to conceal a matter. In Dueteronomy we find the scripture that says…The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things revealed belong to us and our children forever. There are some secrets that God will choose not show us. There are some things we will understand as we mature and grow in His grace.

We find other examples in the scriptures that explain God's motivations and plans are beyond our reach of understanding. That will not stop us from asking why, even if that question remains unanswered. We may not completely understand how this can be when we face painful tragedies, but our lack of understanding does not diminish God. Instead, such tragic events reinforce how fragile and fleeting our lives can be. We do not know how long we will be on earth, but God does. Before we were born, God knew exactly how long we would live and how we would die.

Psalm 139:16
All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.

When Christians struggle with tragedies that do not make sense our response should not be one of frustration or anger with God. We will not always understand how this will fit into God's plan for us to go through emotional and spiritual storms. There are times in every Christian's life, young and old, when the battles come. The Old Coach clings to the verses in Jeremiah.

Jeremiah 29: 11-13
For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord; plans to prosper you and not harm you; plans to give you a hope and a future. Then you will call upon me, come and pray to me and I will listen. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.

It is more critical than ever for Christians and our nation to abide in the peace of God. We are not dependent on the circumstances that surround us but on the power of God. We overcome tragedies with the peace of God. We should trust God and know that there is refuge and comfort in His word. He gives us the peace that surpasses all understanding and trouble.

John 16:33
I have told you these things, so that you may come in peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.

Philippians 4: 6-7
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts minds in Christ Jesus.

As Christians, we are citizens of a kingdom that cannot be shaken. In the midst of everything like this that happens, we must first focus on the Lord and His unshakable throne in the heavenly places.

Psalm 99
The Lord reigns, let the nations tremble; he sits enthroned between the cherubim, let the earth shake. Great is the Lord in Zion; he is exalted over all the nations. Let them praise your great and awesome name-He is holy.

Use these times of suffering and hardships knowing that God will use them for His purpose. He has promised that He is near and your load will not be greater than you can bear.

Psalms 34: 17-19
The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; He delivers them from all their troubles. The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. A righteous man may have troubles, but the Lord delivers him from all of them.

The Old Coach remembers the encouraging words that Paul gave to the Corinthians to help them through their difficulties.

II Corinthians 12: 9-10
But he said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

The Old Coach is in no way trying to minimize these tragic occurrences. To those who are hurting and feel the anguish, think of the future when this time will be but a distant memory. Think of the day of celebration that we are promised as His children. Think of the promise that we will be reunited with those loved ones we have lost. The loss is extreme, even inconceivable, but our separation is only temporary.

We should be praying for the families of all that have been affected by this unprecedented tragedy. The outpouring of people praying, volunteering their time, giving blood, and all other forms of opening their heart because of this tragedy indicates a nation returning to their heritage. This must be pleasing to God. If true revival is to come to America it starts with each person individually.

II Chronicles 7: 14
If my people, who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.

Joel 2:12
Even now, declares the Lord, return to me with all your heart, with fasting and weeping and mourning. Rend your hearts and not your garments, return to the Lord your God for he is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in Love and he relents from sending calamity.”

We must pray for President Bush, his advisors, and our nation's leaders. Pray for supernatural discernment and wisdom from God. Pray for protection over the Government and nation of The United States. There are many instances in the Scriptures that encourage us to pray that God will move behind the scenes of a nation's history. True patriotism comes by upholding the leaders of government and uniting as a nation in times of tragedy even if we disagree politically. We should pray for all government leaders around the world. Pray for the Lord to intervene in such a way that satan does not capitalize from this tragic day. Pray that millions of people throughout the world are born-again for every life that was lost on September 11, 2001.

God has promised to walk with us through any disaster that might overwhelm us. He gives us this promise that most of us know by heart. When you read these words today, think of the families and lives affected by this act of terrorism, reflect upon your life, your family, and your relationship with Jesus.

Psalm 23
The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, He restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for His names sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for you art with me; your rod and staff they comfort me in the presence of mine enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

The Old Coach would not want to imagine what it would be like to endure a tragedy without the hope that Jesus Christ offers. Hope is readily available to all of us, even during times of tragedy. The promise of eternal life and the hope of being reunited with those we love are available right now. If you do not know that love and have that hope, a simple prayer is all it takes. If you are unsure of what to do or say, please E-mail The Old Coach.

May God comfort the families touched by this tragedy. May God give Christians His power to impact His Kingdom to bring the lost to Christ. May America seek God's will for restoration and revival. God Bless America.

The Old Coach
September 13, 2001