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The Blood

The day is over, you are driving
home. You tune
your radio. You hear a
little blurb about a little village
in India where
some villagers have died
suddenly, strangely, of a flu that
has never been
seen before.

It's not influenza, but three or
four fellows are
dead, and it's kind of
interesting, and they're sending some
doctors over
there to investigate it.

You don't think much about it, but
on Sunday,
coming home from church, you
hear another radio spot. Only they
say it's not
three villagers, it's 30,000
villagers in the back hills of this
particular area
of India,
and it's on TV that night. CNN runs
a little
blurb; people are heading
there from the disease center in
Atlanta because
this disease strain has
never been seen before.

By Monday morning when you get up,
it's the lead
story. For it's not just
India; it's Pakistan, Afghanistan,
Iran, and before
you know it, you're
hearing this story everywhere and
they have
it now as "the mystery

The President has made some comment
that he and
everyone are praying and
hoping that all will go well over
there. But
everyone is wondering, How
are we going to contain it? That's
when the
President of France makes an
announcement that shocks Europe He
is closing
their borders. No flights
from India, Pakistan, or any of the
where this thing has been
seen. And that's why that night you
are watching
little bit of CNN before
going to bed. Your jaw hits your
chest when a
weeping woman is translated
from a French news program into
English: There's
man lying in a hospital
in Paris dying of the mystery flu.
It has come to
Europe. Panic strikes.

As best they can tell, once you get
it, you have
it for a week and you don't
know it. Then you have four days of
symptoms. And then you

Britain closes it's borders, but
it's too late.
South Hampton, Liverpool,
North Hampton, and it's Tuesday
morning when the
President of the United
States makes the following
announcement: "Due to
national security risk,
all flights to and from Europe and
Asia have been
canceled. If your loved
ones are overseas, I'm sorry. They
cannot come
back until we find a cure
for this thing." Within four days
our nation has
been plunged into an
unbelievable fear. People are
selling little
for your face. People
are talking about "What if it comes
to this
country," and preachers on
Tuesday are saying, "It's the
scourge of God."

It's Wednesday night and you are at
a church
prayer meeting when somebody
runs in from the parking lot and
says, "Turn on a
radio, turn on a radio."
And while the church listens to a
transistor radio with a microphone
stuck up to it, the announcement is
made. Two
women are lying in a Long
Island hospital dying from the
mystery flu.
hours it seems, this
thing just sweeps across the
country. People are
working around the clock
trying to find an antidote. Nothing
is working.
California. Oregon.
Florida. Massachusetts. It's as
though it's just
sweeping in from the

And then, all of a sudden the news
comes out. The
code has been broken.

A cure can be found. A vaccine can
be made. It's
going to take the blood of
somebody who hasn't been infected,
and so, sure
enough, all through the
Midwest, through all those channels
of emergency
broadcasting, everyone is
asked to do one simple thing: Go to
your downtown
hospital and have your
blood type taken. That's all we ask
of you. And
when you hear the sirens go
off in your neighborhood, please
make your way
quickly, quietly, and safely
to the hospitals.

Sure enough, when you and your
family get down
there late on that Friday
night, there is a long line, and
they've got
nurses and doctors coming out
and pricking fingers and taking
blood and putting
labels on it. Your wife
and your kids are out there, and
they take your
blood type and they say,
"Wait here in the parking lot and
if we call your
name, you can be
dismissed and go home." You stand
around, scared,
with your neighbors,
wondering what in the world is
going on and that
this is the end of the

Suddenly a young man comes running
out of the
hospital screaming.
He's yelling a name and waving a
clipboard. What?
He yells it again!
And your son tugs on your jacket
and says,
that's me." Before you
know it, they have grabbed your
boy. Wait a
minute. Hold on! And they say,
"It's okay, his blood is clean. His
blood is
We want to make sure he
doesn't have the disease. We think
he has got the
right type."

Five tense minutes later, out come
the doctors
nurses, crying and
hugging one another -- some are
even laughing.
It's the first time you have
seen anybody laugh in a week, and
an old doctor
walks up to you and says,
"Thank you, sir. Your son's blood
type is
It's clean, it is pure,
and we can make the vaccine."

As the word begins to spread all
across that
parking lot full of folks,
people are screaming and praying
and laughing and

But then the gray-haired doctor
pulls you and you
wife aside and says,
"May we see you for a moment? We
didn't realize
that the donor would be
a minor and we need...we need you
to sign a
consent form."

You begin to sign and then you see
that the
of pints of blood
to be taken is empty.

"H-h-h-how many pints?"

And that is when the old doctor's
smile fades and
he says, "We had no idea
it would be a little child. We
weren't prepared.
We need it all!
But-but...You don't understand. We
are talking
about the world here.
Please sign. We- we need it all --
we need it

"But can't you give him a

"If we had clean blood we would.
Can you
sign?Would you sign?"

In numb silence, you do.

Then they say, "Would you like to
have a moment
with him before we begin?"

Can you walk back? Can you walk
back to that room
where he sits on a table
saying, "Daddy? Mommy? What's going
on?" Can you
take his hands and say,
"Son, your mommy and I love you,
and we would
never ever let anything
happen to you that didn't just have
to be. Do you
understand that?"

And when that old doctor comes back
in and says,
"I'm sorry, we've-we've
to get started. People all over the
world are

Can you leave?

Can you walk out while he is
saying, "Dad? Mom?
Dad? Why-why have you
forsaken me?"

And then next week, when they have
the ceremony
honor your son, and some
folks sleep through it, and some
folks don't even
come because they go to
the lake, and some folks come with
a pretentious
smile and just pretend to
care. Would you want to jump up and


Is that what GOD wants to say?


"Father, seeing it from your eyes
breaks our
hearts. Maybe now we can
begin to comprehend the great Love
you have for


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Copyright 2006 Joke A Whenever

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