• Today's Daily Devotion
Ground Hero and the Cross
THE TERM Ground Zero suggests many different things: terrorism, attacks on our freedom, lost loved ones, destruction, and the strength and solidarity of the American people ...

Tommy Neiman, Author of Sirens for the Cross; EMS Training Officer – St. Lucie County, FL; Fellowship of Christian Firefighters International Regional Director / International Board Member


The cross will always be standing

THE TERM Ground Zero suggests many different things: terrorism, attacks on our freedom, lost loved ones, destruction, and the strength and solidarity of the American people and way of life. To many, it is not Ground Zero, but … Ground Hero, for on those New York City grounds, where the stately 110-story World Trade Center towers once stood, many of America’s true heroes gave their lives. It is to those heroes who “laid down” their lives the tragic morning of September 11, 2001, to the ones they were unable to save, and to all who serve as first responders this tribute is dedicated.

When God allowed me to enter Ground Hero to visit and pray for, and with, recovery teams, my eyes focused on the still-smoking debris piles and massive amounts of twisted steel and concrete. No computer image or magazine can portray the immensity of the destruction that surrounded me. Jolted to the core by the destruction, I sensed the evil that caused this. I felt Satan was taunting me and trying to crush my spirit by implying, “See the evil and death I can do.”

“And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross” (Colossians 2:15).

Our Fellowship of Christian Firefighters’ chaplains’ group’s earnest prayers were to be able to provide spiritual comfort, encourage, thank, and present small tokens of appreciation (in the form of Bibles and books) to the firefighters and emergency workers who relentlessly and selflessly searched for their brothers’ bodies, victims’ bodies, and restoration. We were overwhelmed by the warm reception and privileged to have people share their experiences with us. With God’s direction, we were allowed to share Jesus’ love.

Upon leaving, my focus changed from evil and loss to promise when I noticed something I’d missed when entering. It was the now-famous steel-beam cross cut out during the collapse. Seeing this perfectly cutout cross instantly took away the jolt of death and destruction Satan was using to try to suppress my spirit.

How did I miss this steel-beam cross? Probably because, just as in life, when the world comes crumbling down, my attention was drawn to the destruction and not the cross. My physical eyes simply did what my spiritual eyes often do. But regardless of the surrounding damage, destruction, and death, the cross will always be standing! Ground Zero? Maybe for the media, but to me it is Ground Hero.


Jesus, the bearer of that cross, thank you that you will never leave me nor forsake me! May the heroics and selfless demonstration of what America is really about never be forgotten. May I always keep my focus on you, and may you, God, bless our country.

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