According to President Roosevelt, Dec. 7, 1941 was “A day that shall live in infamy.”

As you recall, that was the day the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor plunging us into World War II. That was certainly a tragic day. But I think you need to hear the rest of the story.

That very day President Roosevelt called Admiral Nimitz and informed him that he would be the commander of the Pacific Fleet. On Christmas Eve Admiral Nimitz landed in Pearl Harbor to assume command. He was given a tour of the wreckage and carnage. All over the island was a spirit of defeat and despair.

When asked what he thought, Admiral Nimitz’s response surprised everyone. “The Japanese made three of the biggest mistakes an attack force could ever make, or God was taking care of America. Which do you think it was?”

Mistake number one: They attacked on Sunday when nine out of every 10 crewmen were on shore leave, so only 3,800 men were killed instead of 38,000.

Mistake number two: They bombed battleships, but never once bombed the dry docks close by. So instead of having to tow every ship back to America, the repair could begin then and there. They could be repaired in the time it would have taken just to tow them to America.

Mistake number three: Every gallon of fuel for the Pacific theater of war was just over the hill, five miles away in above ground storage tanks. One plane could have strafed those tanks and destroyed the entire fuel supply.

Yes, even in the midst of tragedy we need to be thankful and look around to see God’s hand at work. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus. (I Timothy 5:8 NLT)