A Life Giving Gift

About a couple of years ago a friend of mine who works at our local hospital in the lab department began to share some stories with me about some life and death situations where a person needed blood and would have died had it not been for blood donors.

I had never donated before and I guess I must admit I really didn't want to. I was scared of giving up that much blood and the unpleasant experience of being poked with a needle. But after hearing those stories I concluded that these fears were so trivial comparatively speaking.

I decided to hit the next blood drive in the area. When I arrived they handed me a notebook with quite a bit of information in it that had to be read before you could donate. A fact that surprised me was that only 38% of the population is eligible to give blood and only 8% actually donate. Consider that 60% of the population will need blood at some time in their lives.

Some reasons people are not eligible to donate are:

  • If any illness is present including cough, cold, flu, sore throat
  • And of course much more serious illnesses such as AIDs, Hepatitis, Sickle Cell Anemia or any other infectious blood related disease or disorder.
  • If you are taking certain medications that affect the blood such as aspirin, and blood thinners also if you are on antibiotics you cannot donate.
  • if you are pregnant.
  • if you are under 110 pounds
  • If you have had cancer you must wait 5 years from last surgery or treatment. You cannot donate if you have had any type of blood cancer such as leukemia.
  • Recent visits to or residence in certain foreign countries may prevent being qualified to donate

I almost ran into a problem with this on the first donate because I had been to Guatemala where malaria is quite prevalent. It was concluded that I was at a high enough elevation that it was determined it would be ok.

  • If you have had a tattoo or piercing in the last year
  • if you have been in a correctional facility for more than 72 hours in the last year.

I was surprised to learn that you can donate if you have diabetes while on insulin. Your cholesterol levels are not an issue and many other medications are acceptable. My friend who told me about this has MS and is on different types of meds at different times none of which interferes with her ability to donate.

I was pleased to learn in this process of how careful they are now about blood donations in the event that I would ever need one.

Some surprising benefits of donating blood

  • The blood you donate can save up to 3 lives. Many necessary life saving blood products are manufactured from your donation.
  • It is a mini physical. Your blood pressure gets checked along with pulse, temperature and Hemoglobin not to mention that your blood is further tested for infectious diseases and basic counts after it is taken and they will notify you if there is a problem.
  • It lowers the iron levels in your blood. Too much iron in the blood is damaging to the heart and other organs.
  • There are also claims that consistent blood donation lowers your risk of cancer. (1)
  • It also causes your body to make fresh new red blood cells

I write this article to bring awareness to the current blood shortage the red cross is currently experiencing. The supply has not been this low in 12 years.

I also couldn't help but think of the spiritual application of remembering the one who gave His blood for us only He gave it all.

According to Paul Brand Author of "In His Image" - "Every cell in everybody lives at the mercy of blood"

In Christ we have been transfused from our spiritual anemia with His pure and precious life-giving blood.

I couldn't help but think as well that His blood was the only blood that qualified as the ransom that needed to be paid.

I Peter 1:18-19 ...you were not redeemed with corruptible things...but with the precious blood of Christ

"The greatest of all transfusions is performed when a poor sinner dead in trespasses and sins is transfused by the blood of Christ the moment he believes...There was one man who gave all His sinless blood on the Cross of Calvary...The blood of the Lord Jesus suits every type, avails for everyone, and is free to all who will submit to its transfusion by the Holy Spirit. All you need to do is apply for it by faith" ~ M.R. DeHaan "The Tabernacle" (a highly recommended read!)

The word picture for the Hebrew word for blood speaks of its spiritual and physical function and the source of life. Another element exhibiting the story of salvation.

The Word for blood is dahm consisting of two letters a dalet and a mem.

  • The Dalet is a picture of a door. In John 10 verse 7 Jesus declares Himself to be the "door". I can't help but think of the blood that was applied to the doorposts of the Israelite children's home that spared them from death. There is no other exit from death nor entrance to life except through His blood poured out for us.

Hebrews 9:12 ...with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption.

Ephesians 2:13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.

  • The second letter is a mem is a picture of water. In John Chapter 4 in Jesus' discourse with the woman at the well He makes invitation to her to come and partake of the living waters which is faith and fellowship with Him. He is the source of living waters.

water not only gives life but it cleanses.

I John 1:7 ...the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.

Revelation 1:5 ...To Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood

"Modern science has shown that the symbol of cleansing conforms closely to the function of the actual substance...blood carries and releases the fresh cargo of oxygen and absorbs and carries away hazardous waste chemicals." ~ "In His Image" by Dr. Paul Brand and Phillip Yancey

Romans 5:9 ...justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him.

Colossians 1:20 ...He made peace through the blood of His cross.

Leviticus 17:11 tells us that the life of the flesh is in the blood. When we give blood we literally share our God-given life with others

© 2011 Tamarajo

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Comments 26 comments

lifegate profile image

lifegate 5 years ago from Pleasant Gap, PA

TJ,

Thanks for the information--and the challenge. I have no excuse.


VOICE CIW 5 years ago

What can I say Sister Tamarajo? Just beautiful, and very informative. From what you wrote in this hub more people need to donate blood. I know I tried a few times but the fact that I was in Vietnam, they refused me. I have not tried recently, but after reading your hub, maybe I will try again. You know Sister Tamarajo, when I started reading your hub, I said to myself when is she going to tie this in with the Blood of Jesus, and how is she going to do it. I knew it was coming, then when I read further, a smile came to my lips, because you tied it in with the Blood of Jesus, and how you did it is really so special. You are truly gifted of God. God bless you, I love you in the Lord.


dahoglund profile image

dahoglund 5 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

n you gtou gave about who can donate.


Tamarajo profile image

Tamarajo 5 years ago from Southern Minnesota Author

Hello lifegate I do hope the article will inspire or encourage those who can to donate to do so. I never realized how important it was until I heard about so many people needing it for life and death situations. Bless you in your consideration to do so.

And thank you for reading and commenting.


Tamarajo profile image

Tamarajo 5 years ago from Southern Minnesota Author

Hello Voice. Glad you read to the end to get the spiritual application to it all because that really is the most important part. Our blood can help save a natural life but the blood of Christ saved our eternal life.

Thanks so much for stopping by and your always encouraging comments


Dave Mathews profile image

Dave Mathews 5 years ago from NORTH YORK,ONTARIO,CANADA

Being a blood donor is a beautiful gift of life for another, as is being an organ donor.


Tamarajo profile image

Tamarajo 5 years ago from Southern Minnesota Author

Hi Dave yes I really hadn't thought about it for most of my life. But it really is important and I would be ever so grateful would I ever need one to someone who gave.

Thank you for your visit and comment.


RevLady profile image

RevLady 5 years ago from Lantana, Florida

An excellent hub and call to donate blood. Due to being anemic, I was rejected, but I still encourage others. It is so needed and have helped to save many lives.

Voted up and shared!

Thanks you for sharing this timely and necessary message.

Forever His


Tamarajo profile image

Tamarajo 5 years ago from Southern Minnesota Author

Thank you RevLady. That is exactly why it is important to donate if one can because so few people are eligible to do so because of things like being anemic yet so many need it.

My Cousin was temporarily anemic because of some health issues that later got resolved but she ended up needing a transfusion before they were able to fix the problem. Thank God for the donors that got her through that. None of us really knows if or when we would need such a thing.

Thank you for visiting commenting and bless you for sharing the article.


vocalcoach profile image

vocalcoach 5 years ago from Nashville Tn.

An excellent hub on donating blood. If this doesn't motivate others to go out and give some blood - nothing will! The video was lovely. Thank you and blessings to you.


Tamarajo profile image

Tamarajo 5 years ago from Southern Minnesota Author

Hello Vocalcoach, glad to hear the article was motivating. It seems like when we give we always get back more I was surprised when I discovered that there were actually health benefits for the donor as is the principle with all giving.

Thank you so much for stopping by I appreciate your complimentary comment.


drpastorcarlotta profile image

drpastorcarlotta 5 years ago from BREAKOUT MINISTRIES, INC. KC

I appreciate blood donors! I had 2 blood transfusions that saved my life!!! Praise God for this Hub!!! Voted-UP!! God Bless You!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Tamarajo profile image

Tamarajo 5 years ago from Southern Minnesota Author

Praise God drpastorcarlotta. If your testimony isn't inspiration enough I don't know what is. Glad your life was saved!

Bless you for stopping by and adding your encouragement.


Tamarajo profile image

Tamarajo 5 years ago from Southern Minnesota Author

dahoglund. I'm not sure what the comment means. If you were wanting more info on who can donate it pretty much entails anyone without the problems listed above the only additional information on who can donate is one has to be 18 and over 115 pounds.

Thank you for stopping by and will add this info to the article later.


skye 5 years ago

Sister Thank you for sharing a beautiful testimony and giving your readers valuable info. I learned a great deal. I have thought about giving blood myself and looks like I may be able to do so. There is no mistake I landed here. You are so precious in Christ. I just love ya. You keep on soaring and U will Phil 4:13 Hugs sister.


Tamarajo profile image

Tamarajo 5 years ago from Southern Minnesota Author

Hi skye I'm glad my article was informative and glad you were inspired to give.

Thank you so much for visiting and your always beautiful and uplifting comments. Your such a blessing skye!


tlpoague profile image

tlpoague 5 years ago from USA

I did once, and had a bad experience, but encouraged my children to. They have been donating blood since they were allowed. They are the Red Cross favorite here. My son was bummed to find out that last week he couldn't because he has recently got a tattoo. Some day I may be able to again. It is a blessing to be able to help others. Thank you for sharing this informative hub and a reminder of what Christ has done for us.


Tamarajo profile image

Tamarajo 5 years ago from Southern Minnesota Author

Hello Tlpoague, understood with the bad experience My husbands first experience wasn't a good one either. He fainted half way through it. He hasn't had any trouble since then, however. Glad to hear your kids are regular donors. I think the wait is one year for a tattoo so your son will be back in business after that. It is good to know how cautious the Red Cross is with this because it wasn't always that way. Sometimes it seems overboard but probably better that way.

Bless you for stopping by and commenting.


jesusmyjoy profile image

jesusmyjoy 5 years ago from Bucyrus Ohio

Some do faint at the site of blood..i give blood some just faint at the site..wonderful hub..


Tamarajo profile image

Tamarajo 5 years ago from Southern Minnesota Author

Jesusmyjoy, My husband is one of those fainters. He was trying to beat the elderly lady next to him by filling his bag faster by rolling the little ball more vigorously (guy thing I guess) and out he went. He was brave however and went back but we joke about it quite a bit.

Thanks for stopping by and commenting.


Rolly A Chabot profile image

Rolly A Chabot 4 years ago from Alberta Canada

Hi Tamarajo... Thanks for the reminder of the gift we can give. I do need to start again as I have a rare blood type that is always in demand. I recall the last time I was in it was a long procedure... mainly the paperwork. Now that I have retired I have little or no escuse.

Well written and I love the research you have done to present this...

Hugs from Canada


Tamarajo profile image

Tamarajo 4 years ago from Southern Minnesota Author

Hi Rolly, Glad to have inspired you to donate again. I have been unable to donate a couple of times recently because my hemoglobin falls just barely below their required number. I guess I will have to eat more spinach. Good to know that they have such good guidelines so everyone is safe.

Thank you for stopping by and commenting.


Angela Brummer profile image

Angela Brummer 4 years ago from Lincoln, Nebraska

What I truely amazing article I have never been presented with sharing blood in corolation with impotant bible teachings! Bless you for this well writen article. I will share this on pin it tweet and google+.


Rolly A Chabot profile image

Rolly A Chabot 4 years ago from Alberta Canada

H Tamara ... wonderful article and I must admit I have been slippin some in this department for the past while. I have a fairly rare factor and I need to start again as I understand the need. Thanks for the reminder...

Hugs and Blessings


Tamarajo profile image

Tamarajo 4 years ago from Southern Minnesota Author

Hi Rolly, Good idea to start up again and glad to hear it. Especially considering you have a rare factor.

It seems this time of year the Red Cross runs into shortages. Im not sure if its because everyone is so busy and or vacationing in the summer months.

I have had trouble most recently getting my iron high enough and was turned down twice but third time I made it.

Bless you for visiting and considering donating again.


Tamarajo profile image

Tamarajo 4 years ago from Southern Minnesota Author

Hh Angela sorry I missed your comment. I am glad that you gleaned from the parallels of blood donation and Christs blood shed for us. There are a couple of really good books titled. "In His Image" and "Fearfully and Wonderfully Made" by Dr. Paul Brand and Philip Yancey and they expound on the components of blood and what it all does and how our body processes parallel spiritual living.

Thank you so much for your visit and encouraging comment and once again apologies for taking so long to notice your post.

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