A military mom remembers a day that changed her family’s life.
Posted in , Sep 7, 2017
It’s now officially called Patriot Day. To me, it will always be 9/11. As I watched the news reports of the World Trade Center’s twin towers falling in New York City in 2001, I felt like the world itself had come crashing down. I’d been a small child when the Vietnam War ended and only experienced a distant dread that was the Cold War.
But that day, I watched a hostile attack on U.S. soil.
I was volunteering at our son’s middle school as we watched the unfolding events and tried to make sense of what was happening. More importantly, we tried to envision what would come next. As devastated as we were, we had no idea of the changes that were in store.
It especially never occurred to me that this event would catapult our family into the status of a military family. But our son, a boy at the time, still credits 9/11 as one of the main reasons he decided to enlist in the armed services six years later.
On that first 9/11, we prayed together, asking God to protect our county, our military and our families. Looking back I realize that was my first military prayer. And God used it to speak peace into my soul. I continued to pray as our country waged a war on terror and sent troops into the Middle East.
But when our son turned 18 and announced his decision to enlist instead of attending college, I refused to discuss it with him. He was equally stubborn and wore me down. His reasoning was sound. He wanted to make a difference. He believed it was his responsibility to spend time in the military ensuring our country’s continued protection. And the one irrefutable argument, “I believe God has called me to this.”
So my husband and I invested in a heavy-duty set of knee pads for our prayer time and sent our oldest son off to boot camp. Less than a year later we said our goodbyes as he left on his first deployment. War had passed by my husband and me, but it had captured our first-born son. We spent hours in prayer for him, and with every prayer God, was always there, giving us peace in a war-torn world.
Yes, our world changed that day, but those events led me deeper into the presence of God. Looking back I’ve learned that no matter how much the world changes, God remains the same. His love is steadfast, and His peace is always there, no matter what battles we face.