The Ring Finger
I returned home from Dallas tonight, and it was another full news day. On the national front, Arnold Schwarzenegger, former Governor of California and action screen star, admitted having an affair with a member of his household staff more than 10 years ago. The extramarital affair resulted in the birth of a child, and Maria Shriver, his wife of more than 25 years, has decided that she is going to end the marriage. In her prepared statement today, she asked for privacy for her children and herself; giving them space to deal with the hurt and start the process of healing.
And while I am a staunch supporter of marriage, and do not believe in divorce, the Bible indicates that adultery is an acceptable reason in God’s eyes for the dissolution of a marriage. As much as I hate to see this happen, it may just be too much for Maria to bear in standing by Arnold for all these years; after him being involved in more than a dozen instances of groping or being sexually involved with a variety of women.
And then, of course, the front page headlines about Mr. Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the head of the IMF (International Monetary Fund) who was in New York over the week-end, in a $3000 per night hotel suite, alone, when a member of the housekeeping staff came in. Allegedly, he chased her, sexually assaulted her, and then left the hotel to catch a flight to Paris on Air France. He was arrested in the first class section as the plane was preparing to leave the gate at JFK Airport. He has now been charged with 5 felonies and I found it interesting that, like Arnold, this is not his first brush with infidelity.
But the part of the story that really surprised me was his attorney’s plea that Mr. Strauss-Kahn’s wife had raised more than $1 million in cash to pay the bond for his release. Convinced that the accused was a flight risk, bail was denied, and tonight, we have every reason to believe that he will be in jail until at least Friday, when we will learn if the grand jury files charges against him. I wonder how his wife feels about all the public indiscretions he has had throughout the years. It must be very difficult for her; and then being asked to raise the money for his release as well. While it is true that the French tend to be more tolerant, this just seems too much for anyone to bear.
I can’t help but be reminded of all the marriages I have performed, and all the times I have seen a groom slip a ring on the left ring finger of the bride; with the expectations of a great life ahead.
All this weighs on my mind for a reason that is different and distinct from the stories above. Because, yesterday Janet broke her finger – and, you guessed it, it was her left ring finger. And my mind went back to the day back in 1973 – August 24th to be exact, that I slipped a a size 4-1/4 ring on Janet’s finger. All the expectations of a great life – a white sheet of paper ahead of us; making life, and our marriage, whatever our wildest thoughts could dream up. And it has been a great run – and it’s not nearly over yet. But neither of us could have anticipated all the twists and turns our lives have taken during the last 38 years. Some things have changed – such the discomfort she has suffered as arthritis has set in and how I have to be careful to not hold her hand too tight – because it hurts Janet too much.
So tonight I am asking for your prayers for her quick recovery. Because it was a serious break – in fact, shattered in part, and surgery is scheduled for Thursday at 12:30 pm. Words like pins, and plates, were used to describe the likely solutions. And, although it is not a big deal in the scheme of things, it seems that our planned trip in three weeks may be in jeopardy – and that’s okay with both of us. Because Janet’s health and recovery are the most important thing on my mind tonight. I wouldn’t want anything bad to happen to that ring finger – too many fond memories, and how many times I have held her hand in mine.
We are told in the Scripture that the apostles were given the gift of healing. Jesus Himself performed many miracles of healing as well. And there is a really great story about a paralyzed man whose friends lowered him through the roof of a house to be healed by Jesus. In other words, Jesus healed the man because of the faith of his friends. So that is what I am asking tonight. The verse this evening is Matt 9:35, “Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness.”
We can never underestimate the power of prayer. So please join us as we ask for God’s gift of complete healing for Janet’s injury and upcoming surgery. We know that it is serious, but nothing is beyond the healing touch of the Savior of the world. My encouragement this evening is to affirm that nothing is impossible for God, and that includes physical healing, as well as the emotional and mental issues that these other two families are also suffering this evening. My prayer is that Christ will answer our petition and that all these situations, as well as many other unspoken prayers for healing, may be addressed by the greatest healer who ever lived. And quite selfishly, I know that injuries like this can further complicate the pain that Janet already lives with. So, please, pray hard. And, as always, I will keep you posted.