We all remember 9/11.
We know where we were, when we heard about the first plane
hitting the Twin Towers in New York City.
But do you remember where you were on 11/5/09?
You may be thinking, what happened on 11/5? What is so significant about that day?
I remember where I was as my family lived on post at the most populated military installation in the United States, Fort Hood, Texas. If you don't remember what happened that frightful day, let me remind you. MAJ Nidal Hasan, a military psychiatrist, opened fire on unarmed soldiers who where going through a processing center on post.
Last year, I blogged about the event....let me share that with you on the one year anniversary of that fatal day, what I wrote last year.
Tragedy at Fort Hood
I have been struggling with what to post...whether or not to post. We live on post here at Fort Hood. We were home last Thursday when the events unfolded at the SRP building, just over a mile away. Normally on Thursdays, we are usually off post for a homeschool co-op, but co-op had ended just the week before and we were home. Our plans for last Thursday included an afternoon playdate and dinner out with the girls. At approximately 2:20PM, as we were loading up the mini-van with meals for pregnant friends, returns to the department store and kids and their jackets, the emergency sirens here on post began to go off. I looked at my watch and thought...that's strange, they ususally test the system on Wednesdays at 12:00 Noon. The announcement that followed the sirens was " Seek shelter immediately, stay away from doors and windows". I looked up at the sky and thought, I don't know why they are saying that, it's a bright and sunny day, I don't see any storms let alone a possible tornado. A neighbor across the way yelled out her front door, "get inside and lock your doors." So I attempted to take my kids out of their car seats...as they kicked and screamed, wanting to get in the car and go to their friends house to play. As I reached the front door, my oldest handed me the phone. It was a friend who lived in a nearby town, asking if I had heard the news...there was a shooting on Fort Hood at the Readiness Center, seven people had been killed. We finished the phone call, got everyone into the house and closed and locked all the doors and shut the curtains and blinds. As I turned on the TV, it was all over the news. There was so much speculation going around, I didn't know what was truth and what was rumor. Was there another gunman out there?
As we tried to occupy ourselves in our quiet dark home, I prayed for the safety of my family. Phone calls, emails, text messages and facebook comments kept popping up and coming in. For the next five hours, until lockdown was lifted, I learned to trust in the protection of the Lord. People prayed with me on the phone and prayers were lifted up for us by friends far away. The days prior to and including Thursday, my quiet time with the Lord, included a devotional book titled, "Faith Deployed; Daily Encouragment for Military Wives". I had just read a devotion entitled, Already Written. A quote from that devotional says, "Whether they are home or abroad, God's plan for us is already written; we cannot do anything to change it!" The next day's devotional was on "The Sting of Death". How timely were these devotions in my quiet time last week. I had no idea for what the Lord was preparing me. I did not lose anyone in the attack that took place on Fort Hood on November 5th, but many people did or they knew someone who was there. I need to be ready to respond to those who are lost and hurting, with a meal, a hug, a kind word. We are called to bring hope to the hopeless. I want to always be ready to meet the need that I am confronted with, no matter what that need may be.
My husband's unit lost a soldier in that tragic shooting. She was pregnant and had just returned from Iraq. She was in the SRP building inprocessing back to Fort Hood when the shooting took place. I had never met her but my husband knew her. He described her as "a wonderful and delightful person." Please continue to pray for my husband's unit as they mourn the loss of one of their own here at home.
I need to remember that we live in a fallen and sinful world. Without Christ, people are lost. I pray that in the midst of this tragedy, that those who are hurting find comfort and hope...that they find healing for their hurts. That they find a relationship with the one true God.