It's the same for all of us. September 11, 2001 is burned into our brains in images we will never forget. There are moments I'll never forget: having to tell a roomful of ninth graders that their lives had just changed forever; sitting in total silence in a tight circle around the radio with my junior class homeroom; staring at the sky on my drive home and thinking I'd never in my whole life seen it so clear and blue.
But there's another image. Me. Standing outside of my classroom, trying desperately to get my soldier husband on the phone. There was no way to know if he was on a plane, headed to parts unknown for who knew how long. Yes, he came home that night, but we both knew it was only a matter of time before he'd be on the other side of the world.
Another image about two weeks later. Me. On my face. On the floor. Begging God not to deploy him because it would be the worst thing that could ever happen. God, there's no way I'll survive.
Well, here's the amazing thing about God... His timing is perfect. When my husband did deploy, I was ready. God had ushered me through several trials, a load of deliverance, and a whole new way of thinking. When I watched my soldier form up to leave for Iraq the first time, I knew it would be okay. It's another story for another time, but that deployment led us to one of the most amazing seasons of our lives, as individuals and as a couple. It is unreal what God can do when you surrender.
And that's what it boiled down to: surrender. Someone said to me, "Jodie, you have to let him go. If you wrap a fist around him and hold on tight, God can't get to him." When it came down to it, I had to leave my husband in God's hands. I had to trust it would all be okay. Did I have days when I worried? For sure. Did I have days when I tried to "have it out" with God? Sadly, yes. Did we survive--even thrive--in our time apart? Incredibly and amazingly, we did.
Deployment is what you make of it, and that's something I'll talk about as we go. Just know this... When you're on your face and you're begging God to get you through, He hears. He knows. And He never leaves.