Remembering 9/11, My Story
The events of 9/11 will be forever etched into my memory because if not for the grace of God and His divine intervention, I possibly would not be here today.
If the plans I had laid out would have come to fruition, I would have been at the World Trade Center the morning of 9/11. Instead, the night before as I was driving to New York, I got tired and decided to stop and get a couple of hours rest. I overslept and did not get back on the road as soon as I had hoped, therefore causing me to run behind.
I had no idea what was going on when I reached the New Jersey Turnpike on the outskirts of Newark, New Jersey. All I knew was that the traffic was slowing, and then….dead stopped. Then I saw it. People getting out of their cars. Shouting, tears, fear. We were looking directly at downtown Manhattan and in plain view were the smoking massive Twin Towers of the World Trade Center.
I could not believe what I was seeing. Not just the upper portions of the towers engulfed in smoke, but the absolute panic in peoples eyes standing there in astonishment on the highway viewing something of such a tragic magnitude that we had yet to comprehend.
My plans had been changed drastically. I never made it to New York, instead remained in Newark, New Jersey for the next few days.
Possibly the eeriest sound I have ever heard was the deafening silence in downtown Newark that first night, broken only every so often by the thunderous sounds of the F18’s flying overhead, bringing a small measure of comfort. It was without a doubt the most restless night I have ever experienced.
Just a few days later, while walking through a quaint little section of shops in Newark, you could see people trying to get on with their lives, just the same as I.
This is where the story really gets good.
As I’m standing on a corner just looking around, while waiting on a friend, I heard someone ask, “What are you doing here?”. I turned to see who in the world was there that I could possibly know so far from home. Nobody was there. “What are you doing here?” I heard it again…and again turned to find no one there. It was then that I realized just “Who” was asking the question.
I responded, “I don’t really know”, and I heard the Voice say, “I have something much better for you at home!”
So I immediately began trying to find my way home.
48 hours later, I was back home in my beautiful Texas. I almost kissed the ground when I arrived.
The next night, I talked to the one who would become the love of my life. We sat together at church that weekend. Had our first official date on September 24th and were married February the following year.
As you can imaging, the anniversary of 9/11 is met with mixed emotions for me. First of sadness for those who lost their lives on that tragic day. Second of thankfulness for God’s divine hand of protection over me. And third of extreme joy, because it was at this point in time when God chose to speak to me like I had never heard Him before, and make and fulfill a promise He made to me.
Even at this moment, some nine years later, as I type this I am overwhelmed with emotion to the point of tears.
Thank you my Father for your faithfulness.
(this article is a re-post from my personal blog of 9/11/2010)