We didn't say much on 9-11 this year for many reasons. The primary one, sometimes silence and remembrance are much more appropriate than words. As a proclaimer of the good message centered on Jesus, I am often humbled by the warnings of the Old Testament guide to wisdom:

Guard your steps when you go to the house of God. Go near to listen rather than to offer the sacrifice of fools, who do not know that they do wrong. Do not be quick with your mouth, do not be hasty in your heart to utter anything before God. God is in heaven and you are on earth, so let your words be few. A dream comes when there are many cares, and many words mark the speech of a fool. (Ecclesiastes 5:1-3 TNIV)

I also remember ... vividly ... so much of that day. On that fateful and fatal morning, I was listening live on radio to Diane Sawyer as she was describing the first tower in flames as suddenly the second plane hit. Our little Heartlight.org team was headed to Houston to work on an international outreach project. While traveling, I was on the phone with several folks — one of whom relayed information that was delayed to the news services for about 20 minutes. It was chilling and no one knew what it meant: the Pentagon was hit and the President's plane was taking evasive action. When this did not come out over the news, we were left to wonder and pray. By the end of the day, we had launched a prayer site called, Prayer for the Nation, a little site with resources that for several days was receiving 74 requests per second for downloads of resources.

In the days since, rather than taking political sides, we have tried to call our friends on the web to prayer for our nations and our world — our devotionals, articles, images, and Bible resources reach people in over 175 nations. While our small team has personal preferences, concerns, biases, and disappointments with the political process, we hope our focus is on the Kingdom of God. So we would once again remind you what the apostle Paul told Timothy:

I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone — for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one mediator between God and human beings, Christ Jesus, himself human, who gave himself as a ransom for all people. This has now been witnessed to at the proper time. (1 Timothy 2:1-6)

Prayer is always the foundation.
Prayer is always the foundation to any biblically centered approach to culture, life, and mission. Through prayer, we humbly yield to God and plead for our Father's mercy. Yet we also live in a world of politics. In the post 9-11 world and the huge divide between secularists and people of faith, politics and the language of politics often engulfs the public discussion of faith. Unfortunately, we do not always thoughtfully process the implications of our public language about faith and its ethical implications. So as we remember 9-11 and anticipate the rising rancor of public elections here in the USA, let's remember our call to pray.

In addition, I point you to a thoughtful article on a new website called Culture 11. While the site is still in beta (i.e., under development), one of the posts particularly caught my eye and challenged my thinking. It's called, "Being on God's Side: An Open Letter to the Religious Right." It is written by Joe Carter, who considers himself an insider to the group to whom he writes his letter. I believe you will find it thoughtful, challenging, and stimulating.

And I hope it helps you think through your role as you live in two worlds, with allegiance to only one Lord, the Jesus. And because of Jesus, we pray.