Why The Red Cross Needs You

The Red Cross needs you – and me.

They need our blood. It doesn’t matter what type you have, your blood is needed. I know this because I have been getting phone calls all summer and fall, asking me for a donation because of the severe shortage. Honestly, I am getting tired of those phone calls.

There are three people living in my house who donate blood. In addition, we’ve donated in another town when we were on vacation. Not only am I getting calls for donating at my local drive, I’m getting calls telling me about the drive in that other town. The calls aren’t combined into one call. Oh no! Each of us gets a call, asking us to give because of the blood shortage. You know how many calls that makes in a week?

I’m not blaming the Red Cross, mind you. I blame the folks out there who aren’t giving blood when they could. The shortage is real. And, in case you’re wondering, I’m not doing this for the Red Cross. They don’t even know I’m writing about this shortage. I’m writing about this because the need is real. I’m not only getting phone calls. I’m getting emails. That’s why I am sharing these links with you. 

Can you help me?!

I was thinking about this the other day.

If everyone who is able to give would give blood, there wouldn’t be a shortage –

and I wouldn’t be getting these phone calls.  So help me, would you?  Help me quit getting these calls and these emails.

Do you have any idea how blood has saved the lives of kids and adults alike?

Do you know that in the US, every two seconds a person needs a blood transfusion?

Has someone you love ever been spared death because of a blood transfusion?  If your answer is yes, then there’s a good chance that you’re a donor if you qualify.

When I was a kid, there was a boy in my church with hemophilia. Blood saved his life many, many times. Small wonder that his mother became the coordinator for the Red Cross when it came to our area. Ken’s mom didn’t mind calling folks to remind them that their blood was needed. They came because they knew her boy and knew he needed blood. (He died the day after Christmas, just a month shy of 23 years after another hemorrhagic bleed.)  I am grateful Ken didn’t die because someone didn’t give blood because they were scared of needles.

I’ll bet – you non-blood donors – if you had a family member who needed blood to live, you’d be willing to give.

I recognize that some folks would be stepping out of their comfort zone to give blood. I rather like my comfort zone, and I understand why folks don’t want to step out of this one, for sure.

blood-heartbleed

Then I remember that Jesus did that. He stepped out of His comfort zone.

He stepped out of Heaven and came to earth to become man so He could save us. I can’t imagine that He looked forward to being crowned with thorns or having nails put through His hands.

For certain, there was pain and blood – and the nails hurt worse than any needle. I’m so grateful Jesus didn’t say, “I don’t do crowns of thorns; crucifixions are out of my comfort zone, and I’m really scared of nails being pounded into my hands.”

You know some of the reasons people don’t give blood?  For you non-donors, which excuses do you use?.

  1. “I’m scared of needles.”
  2. “I don’t have time.”
  3. “They don’t use the blood they get anyhow, or if they do, they sell it to make money.”
  4. “Blood makes me squeamish. I’ll pass out if I see my blood.”
  5. “I don’t want the pain from a needle.”
  6. “I don’t think it’s that important.”
  7. “It takes too long to give.”
  8. “I had a bad experience the first time I gave, and I’m never going back.”

As hard as I try, I can’t find any merit in those reasons when I compare them to what Jesus did for us.

There’s the story of a physician who stopped at the scene of an accident to help. He did CPR for a long time with no response. He told the folks standing by that it was time to stop. Just then, a car drove by; the headlights shone on the face of the young man lying by the side of the road. With renewed vigor, the physician continued CPR until at last they got a pulse. The young man was taken to the hospital where he survived. What the bystanders didn’t understand was that when the lights of that car reflected on the face of the victim, the physician saw that he was working on his own son. Suddenly, he had a reason to try harder. Suddenly, he had more strength to continue. He was trying to save the life of his son. The victim wasn’t a stranger anymore. The victim was his son.

I pray that if you’re a donor, you’ll keep giving as long as you can. If you’re not a donor and could be, I pray that the life of your loved one needing blood won’t have to be the reason you decide to give.

If you’re unable to give because of medical reasons, you can still help. Volunteer at a blood drive. Offer to bring food for snacks for those working the drive or those donating blood. Babysit someone else’s children so they can go give if you can’t. There is always a way to help.

Who knows: one day you might need that pint of blood.

You never know: The life you save may be your own.

 

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