Sen. Mark Hatfield recounts the following history: James Garfield was a lay preacher
and principal of his denominational college. They say he was ambidextrous and could
simultaneously write Greek, with one hand and Latin with the other.
In l880, he was elected president of the United States, but after only six months in
office, he was shot in the back with a revolver. He never lost consciousness. At the
hospital, the doctor probed the wound with his little finger to seek the bullet. He
couldn't find it, so he tried a silver-tipped probe. Still he couldn't locate the bullet.
They took Garfield back to Washington, D.C. Despite the summer heat, they tried to keep
him comfortable. He was growing very weak. Teams of doctors tried to locate the bullet,
probing the wound over and over. In desperation they asked Alexander Graham Bell, who was
working on a little device called the telephone, to see if he could locate the metal
inside the president's body. He came, he sought, and he too failed. The president hung on
through July, through August, but in September he finally died-not from the wound, but
from infection. The repeated probing, which the physicians thought would help the man,
eventually, killed him. So it is with people who dwell too long on their sin and refuse to
release it to God.