When a devastating act of evil occurs like 9/11, even believers can be shaken in their faith. The toll in human life is hard to wrap one’s mind around and the pain even in the lives of the survivors seems unending. At times like this, our preparation and training needs to be strong so that it can kick in and uphold us in the trials that come our way.

Dawn Parker, our second grade teacher, was on the scene at the Pentagon within hours of the plane’s attack and explosion. She was an Air Force major working in forensics and crime scene investigation. Even before the building itself had been declared safe, she was part of the team that worked outside collecting evidence. One of their number one jobs was finding human remains to identify the victims.
The scene was oppressive, overwhelming, heartbreaking to many. Dawn can tell you first hand that God can strengthen you to do your job even in the extreme circumstances. As a believer, she just kept looking to see how God was at work, even in this. A huge thing — the death toll at the Pentagon could have been much, much higher.

The plane hit directly between two concourses – one that had just been remodeled and the other that was scheduled for remodeling.  So both had the majority of the workers relocated to rented space during the renovation. Very few offices were actually occupied at the time the plane hit the Pentagon. Therefore, thousands of other lives were spared.

Also, due to her openness to see what God was doing, she made many relationships, some that have lasted to this day. In addition, the experience shaped her as an investigator and the Lord used it to train her to be effective in very difficult situations after 9/11.
“God, where are You in this?” is a question we should be training ourselves and our children to constantly ask, especially when things go wrong. Often we get so focused on the problem that we fail to see the hand of God in our lives and the lives of others. With this perspective, we can often see the glory of God that we might otherwise have missed. Years ago, one Christian organization called this going on a God Hunt; always looking for God even in everyday things like shopping, playing league sports, going somewhere as a family.
Having such a mindset can protect your mind and heart and enable you to step up in even extreme situations like a terrorist attack. I am sure when Mrs. Parker was a little girl her parents never suspected she would be on the scene for a tragedy like the attack on the Pentagon. And we never know where our kids will be when they hit their 20s, 30s and 40s. May God grace us to provide the foundation they will need to be sustained through such events. Christopher
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