I read a book this weekend that I would never have given a second glance at if had not been for the need to fulfill a book club membership. I had to order one more book so I looked for the cheapest book possible (that would be remotely interesting) and I found that in Between Heaven and Ground Zero by Leslie Haskin. The book turned out to be an excellent choice. The author is a woman who was born into a large Baptist family and as she got older, strayed from God. She left her family and her faith behind and focused on money and success. She was working in the World Trade Center on September 11th when the terrorist attacks happened. In the book she recounts her story of survival and her setbacks with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder since, but more importantly she tells her story of how that day brought her back to her faith in God. Here are a few exerpts:
I believe that God allowed me to choose my life and then He molded the consequences of those choicesto bring me closer to Him. I chose a path that led me to the World Trade Center. He chose the road that led me out. God knew all that it would take to bring me to my knees before Him...in repentance AND in love. He knew exactly what would send me running into His open arms, and it did. I suggest to you that sometimes a quiet voice wakes us, and sometimes it takes suffering. Sometimes tragedy of unparalled proportions will turn our faces toward God and sometimes a simple song will do it. Sometimes only the enormity of falling giants can shrink our ever-growing egos enough to wake us that we might shake the world... for Him.
Our war is not with an enemy who lays wait in the mountains of Afghanistan or the deserts of Iraq. It is with an eternal enemy that knows our motivations sometimes better than we do. It is a relentless and merciless spirit, that when allowed to, controls how we make decisions, what we believe, how we live, and ultimately, how we die. It is destructive, and it comes to enslave the soul and inspire it with the love of the world, to inflame its lusts, to incite anger, to obscure the path of righteousness, and to keep us in the darkness of chaos and confusion... without hope.
But take heart, my friends-there is good news! There is Christ, our redeemer, who gives us hope. Hope that brings with it a break from old habits and a new life in Christ. Hope that delivers faith beyond stumbling and joy beyond sleepless nights and tearstained pillows. Hope that sets its sights on heavenly places, removing the sting of death, giving peace beyond terror and peace beyond fear!
It's a great story about faith and forgiveness.