Yesterday I spent several hours at Bonfils Blood Center giving platelets. This is quite the procedure. For those of you unfamiliar with the term apheresis it is the process that involves removal of whole blood from a patient or donor. Within an instrument that is essentially designed as a centrifuge, the components of whole blood are separated. One of the separated portions is then withdrawn and the remaining components are retransfused into the patient or donor. (library.med.utah.edu/WebPath/…/BBAPHER.html)
In short, the procedure takes whole blood from me, removes the precious platelets that other people for some reason are unable to produce on their own, and returns the rest of the blood to me. It is a give and take procedure. While it does take a while – anywhere from 2 to 3 hours depending upon counts and flows – it is one that I am willing to endure often in order to help other people.
A little give and take. When you hear that expression you might think of making a compromise or entering into a deal. As I have walked through hard times in my life, I know I have been tempted to bargain with God and beg for things to be different. Such as: “God, if you’ll do …….., then I’ll do…… Just please don’t let this happen.
What we need to realize is that God is already in our corner. He already wants the best for us. Our choices and attitudes will not always allow that to be possible. However, He never gives up on us or leaves us hanging out there in life alone. I believe that each painful bump along the way can be used to teach us and mold us into who we are meant to be.
My Bible study today addressed those times when we encounter great difficulties in life. When we despair and fight the darkness that invades our paths. As I read, I was reminded that God fights for us. We are shaped by the hard times in our lives. They can and will serve a purpose to make us stronger if we allow God to be our strength in those rough times.
I want to share what Beth Moore placed in this study that really struck me.
God is strong, and he wants you strong. So take everything the Master has set out for you, well-made weapons of the best materials. And put them to use so you will be able to stand up to everything the Devil throws your way. This is no afternoon athletic contest that we’ll walk away from and forget about in a couple of hours. This is for keeps, a life-or-death fight to the finish against the Devil and all his angels. Be prepared. You’re up against far more than you can handle on your own. Take all the help you can get, every weapon God has issued, so that when it’s all over but the shouting you’ll still be on your feet. Ephesians 6:10-13 The Message
God fights for me and He wants to fight for you! It is the give and take of battle in this world.
Let me share one more funny give and take story from yesterday. I went into a store to make a small purchase, giving the cashier a twenty-dollar bill and two quarters, remarking that I wanted to get rid of some change. He opened the drawer, found that he had no one-dollar bills and proceeded to give me twelve quarters back in change along with a ten-dollar bill. I looked at him and said, “Really?” He lamely shrugged his shoulders, indicating the situation was out of his control. I shook my head, took the money and laughed as I walked out the door. The give and take lesson struck me there. I gave a little and took a lot in that case!
May you find relief for your sadness and heartaches today realizing that God wants you to take peace and strength as you give him your sorrow.
Until next time –
Find more encouragement in my new book, Grief Letters. Share it with a friend who you knows needs a little giving up of hardship and taking of comfort today.
Available at http://bookstore.westbowpress.com/Author/Default.aspx?BookworksSId=SKU-000980156
Also available on Amazon.