How is it possible that twenty years have passed since the 9/11 tragedy took place? Every year this day rolls around, and I’m left feeling heartbroken for the lives lost and for the families left behind. My heart also aches for our brave first responders and men and women in the military who have fought in a war brought on by this act of grave evil and never returned. But I also find hope remembering back on that day because our country united. People came together because we are all AMERICANS.
It seems strange that it feels like so long ago that 9/11 happened, but also so long ago that our country came together putting differences aside because we love our America, and saw each other as human beings worthy of comforting, consoling, and loving.
To me, it echoes the selfless outpouring of love and compassion that Christ wants in us, His sons and daughters to show each other… not just during times of great tragedy, but also in our day-to-day interactions.
If you find yourself wanting to share the importance of 9/11 with your children, but unsure of how to start (because it’s a tough topic to talk to kids about!), you want to check out this book: 30,000 Stitches: The Inspiring Story of the National 9/11 Flag by Amanda Davis.
This BEAUTIFUL story explains how the National 9/11 Flag came to be. In short, an American flag was hung near Ground Zero shortly after the attack. It became incredibly worn and ripped and faded, so it had to be taken down. Instead of retiring it and putting it up, Americans from ALL over our magnificent country, from California to Maine, stitched and restored this flag.
“Fifty states, thousands of hands, and 30,000 stitches later, the flag returned home to New York City. Thirty feet wide. Twenty feet tall. Full of HOPE. Full of STRENGTH.”
That image of thousands of hands of Americans from all across our great nation warms my heart, and I think to myself how pleasing it must of been to Christ to see us unite and help one another create a symbol of hope.
And these illustrations! My girls were engaged the whole time with this book.
The other part about the book that I found particularly important was the reminder of what our flag represents. If you want to raise your children to treat our flag with respect and to show them that it is a true symbol of strength and hope, then this book definitely is for you.
Check out our quick and easy flag art project that followed!
Here is what we used:
- 12″ x 18″ red paper
- 6″ x 6″ blue paper (plain blue or painted paper or glitter paper, etc.)
- White liquid tempera paint
- Star-shaped sponge brush (or q-tips for dots instead of stars!)
- Small cardboard square
Here is how it came together:
- Dip the piece of cardboard into the white paint and place it on one edge of the paper. Scrape the paint across the whole paper in a horizontal line to create a stripe. Repeat to fill the space with stripes. This will create a textured scraped look that was completely inspired by the gorgeous illustrations from the book.
2. Dip the cardboard piece into the white paint again and stamp repeated short lines along the stripes to mimic stitches from the book. This is a great opportunity to remind the child of the thousands of hands that worked together with actual stitches to bring the flag back. Such a wonderful image!
3. Glue the 6″ x 6″ blue paper to the top righthand corner of the flag. Dip star sponge brush into white paint and stamp stars onto the blue paper.
That’s it! It only took about 10 minutes.. and it was worth every second.
It is my prayer that as we encounter this 20th anniversary of 9/11, that the love of Christ permeates our hearts and it is reflected in how we treat our fellow Americans.
May God bless our troops
May God bless our first responders
May God bless the families of the victims of 9/11
May God bless the future of the UNITED States of America