I am a street evangelist currently based in Virginia. Early on the morning of September 11th, 2001, I felt led of the Lord to go up to the city of Springfield. The first two people I prayed with were teenaged boys in a park near a high school. Then after browsing around a Barnes & Noble Bookstore, I stopped by Circuit City intending on just checking my e-mail. There I saw people crowded around a big screen TV and found out about the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon (which is only 10 miles from Springfield!). I altered my witnessing approach for the rest of the day. First I asked people if they had heard what happened in NY and DC. Then I asked them that if they had perished in one of those attacks would they know for sure they would be in heaven. Five more people prayed with me to receive Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. They included folks originally from France, India, and Romania.
The next morning, the Lord woke me up at 4:00 and told me to go into Springfield again to do more witnessing. That day I prayed with eleven people to receive salvation. One in particular was by far the most memorable. While I was browsing around again in the Barnes & Noble bookstore, the instrumental music playing in the background caught my attention. I asked an employee named Jaime about it and we got into a lengthy conversation about the terrorist attacks. I found out on the morning of 9/11 Jaime saw the plane crash into the Pentagon on his way to work! He then asked me why God would allow bad things like that happen to good people. I politely explained that it’s the devil that influences people to do bad things (see John 10:10). Jaime later prayed the prayer of salvation with me right in the store. Definite divine appointment!
Although I don’t know of anyone personally that perished in the 9/11 attacks, I do know people involved in some “close calls”…
· At the time I was attending a small church in Manassas, Virginia. The pastor’s wife worked at the Pentagon. Her office was in the very same section that was hit by the hijacked jet which stopped ONE WALL SHORT of where she was sitting! Fortunately she didn’t experience serious injuries.
· The father of a friend of mine here in Virginia also works at the Pentagon. He had planned on getting cash at an ATM machine where the aircraft later hit. But he changed his mind at the last minute. That decision saved his life.
· Two ladies I know who live and work at the Calvary Pentecostal Campground in Ashland, Virginia took a trip to New York City and had planned on touring the World Trade Center on the evening of September 11th. It was a good thing they didn’t go up there earlier in the day.
· On the day of “prayer and remembrance” (September 14th), I felt led to call a friend of mine who lives in the Philadelphia area. She told me that a couple we both know was visiting her. Thos couple had ministered at a New York church the Sunday before and originally planned on staying in New York two more days to do some sightseeing. But the wife felt a strong prompting to get out of New York ASAP.
“Whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.”
– James 4:14