Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Risk (05/17/12)
TITLE: Two Husbands
By Denene Humphrey
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Richard had become an apathetic stranger to her, and lately he had also become her enemy. Sarah recalled how it was in the beginning of their relationship when he had been so loving and kind toward her. He’d told her that she was so beautiful to him that he would only call her that from now on. But now, instead of being addressed as Beautiful, she had been reduced to being called, “Hey.” Before, if she was gone longer than she should have been he would call to find out if she was alright. Now, however, she could be gone for hours without even being missed or asked where she had been. In the past, not a morning went by without him kissing Sarah goodbye before he left for work and telling her that he loved her. These days she was fortunate if he even told her that he’d left the house. Dearly departed was the man who would always affectionately touch her. Lately, he kept his distance as if she had the plague.
As she continued to dwell on the warm shadows of the past with the Richard who used to love her, Sarah cried out to the Lord in agony. What had happened to them? What had she done to invite this stranger into what was a loving home? Where was the man she’d pledged her life to who, at first, had loved her as Christ loved the Church? This was not Richard. Some way, somehow, the husband she once knew had vanished like the morning mist and had been replaced by a callous, hostile stranger who didn’t seem to want her in his presence. Now with each passing day, Sarah was becoming increasingly frustrated, confused and angry. Plus, she had a multitude of questions and very few answers, and the silence grew louder with each anguished prayer.
She didn’t know what to do and a choice had to be made. Should she run toward Goliath like David did and take a chance and stay with this alien Richard? Unlike the man she’d married, this alternate was a callous, often cruel and indifferent man who was posing as her husband while only appearing to be him on the surface. Staying with this man would mean taking on a battle of epic proportion. On the other hand, though, she could keep the appointment with the attorney she’d contacted while in the throes of a fit of rage and desperation. Sarah didn’t relish the latter because it had the possibility of leaving her single and alone for the rest of her days with only a cat to come home to. Teetering on the edge of despair she decided, for the moment, to choose a prong from the middle of the fork of this winding and uncertain road. She closed her eyes and whispered, “Dear God, help me.”
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