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"Trials, Temptations, Disappointments - all these are helps instead of hindrances, if one uses them rightly. They not only test the fiber of a character, but strengthen it. Every conquered temptation represents a new fund of moral energy. Every trial endured and weathered in the right spirit makes a soul nobler and stronger than it was before." - James Buckham

“Dad just collapsed!”

Those words struck such a blow to my heart I nearly forgot the five month baby nursing at my breast. One year ago, my dad collapsed and the world held it’s breath. For a split second my world stood still, the deafening pounding of my heart  the only sound to be heard.

The next few days were a blur of hospitals, doctors, tests, results. Words I could hardly speak, let alone spell, swirled about me in a cyclone of vocabulary. The answers to the questions  begat only more questions. Through it all there were kids, and groceries, and jobs, and…

I found myself standing in front of open doors searching. Searching. I need it… I must… The comfort I so desperately needed would surely be found in the next quick fix from the pantry shelf. But nothing. The more I filled, the emptier I became.

On the worst day, with the worst news, and the worst outlook I was paralyzed. Frozen. Unable to choose; to think; to quell the burning of sorrow and anger and fear and worry. It was then I heard His voice,

You won’t find it on that shelf. Come to Me, put your head on My chest and I will bring you rest.

The temptation to find that rest – that peace – in the tangible; the here and now; the taste, smell and touch, was so great I feared it might suffocate me. But I closed the door; went back to the puzzle on the floor; hands shaking, heart aching I sat beside dimpled hands and matched corners with sides and middles while inside I cried out, called out.

And He answered.

That worst day, turns  out wouldn’t end up the worst. He would heal. He would mend.

Thus my journey with Him began a turn down a different path. A path toward character. And strength. And true peace.

The struggle? It’s still there. The temptation of the tangible is ever before me. But He is ever before and behind, within and without, hemmed around me on every side.

I’m super excited to be part of a really neat event today called the Gathered Thoughts Link Party. Amanda over at Life.Edited. is my lovely hostess and provided me with the quote I posted above. The challenge was to write something inspired by that quote, and I’m linking it up today over at LoveFeast Table. I’d love to have you come join me over there and check out the loads of other amazing posts!! (there might even be a giveaway. wink, wink)

I’m also linking up with The Miss Elaine-ous Life, The Better Mom, Write It, Girl, Time Warp Wife, Growing Home, Raising Homemakers, Women Living Well, Some Girl’s Website