I imagine that most of us can recall where we were 20 years ago today. A colleague and I had been in Washington D.C. for a conference. She had flown home on an early flight back to California which was an absolute blessing as I look back. I was in a meeting room with several hundred attendees when we were interrupted with the news of the Twin Towers attack in New York City. The meeting was immediately stopped and a mass exodus made out of the conference room. Due to the location of our hotel, one of the attendees in our group witnessed the attack on the Pentagon from the window in his hotel room.
I remember hearing all the sirens going off around the city and all the limos departing from the area trying to evacuate important people. My first thought was to get out of D.C., I simply wanted to be home with my family, if our country was under more attacks. It was impossible to make a mobile call. I didn't have the ability to text as I didn't think is was a necessity to have on my phone. That was a huge mistake. It took forever to get a call out and I knew that my father would be frantic knowing that I was in D.C.. I decide to stand in the long line at the Hertz counter in the hotel...The line was so long that when the one person finished renting a car, the phone was passed to the next person in line. I was able to get a rental, but unable to get a taxi to get to the lot which was about 12 blocks away so I decided to walk. (Was I nuts!?) It was sheer chaos in the city. Cars, taxis were flying everywhere! I was stopped seven blocks into my walk by the mounted police who told me I had to return to the hotel as there was another bomb threat where I was going. My dad had left half a dozen messages to give him a call...I was trying... along with thousands of other people! I finally reached one of my children to let them know that I was ok and returning to the hotel. All flights had been cancelled and the highways were at a standstill. I knew of people that bought large SUVs to drive with their colleagues back to California. Those of us unable to leave sat in the bar all day and into the late evening watching the news.
How great it is when a parent comes to the recuse! My father wouldn't rest until he found a way to get me home. I spent the night in the hotel...now down to the bare-bones staff which we could all understand. My daddy...Big D as I named him years earlier came to my rescue. He knew many working in D.C. and one of his friends was there on business. He and another colleague picked me up the next morning to return to home. It was indeed a long drive due to the large exodus from D.C.. I learned something special on this trip home... God can take the worst situations and bring a blessing into the mix. These men were on the board of a local ministry in Nashville. As a result of this long ride home...I was blessed to learn of this ministry Family Affair Ministry in east Nashville, which I continue to be involved with today. Today is a day to remember and pray for all the families that lost a loved one in New York and D.C.
I learned much from that frightening experience. What I know is that God is always with me and if I can rest in his presence when chaos abounds I have all that I need. I had my father and my Heavenly Father looking after me.
God is always with me. - Isaiah 41:10
Do not fear, for I am with you. Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strenghten you and I will help you.
God bless America and keep us safe.