Hope for Healing

I pray for inspiration each week as I consider writing a story of hope. Today’s post is about hope for healing. Terry’s son, Keith, needs a kidney. He is in the prime of his life and has a daughter in college.

I was shopping at Walmart, lost in thought, considering what it might be like if someone I loved needed an organ transplant, because selfishly, I was considering adding this as a plot twist to my current manuscript in progress. I greeted the cashier and asked, “How are you today?” She blurted, “I’m blessed. I had a kidney transplant.”

I stood with my mouth open and wondered if I had been mumbling aloud.  The cashier went on to explain that it was her second kidney transplant.  Her first organ had been from a cadaver and had lasted eighteen years, when it normally only lasts eight or nine years.  She shared that her daughter had given her the second kidney and what a miracle it was that she was a match because there are six major criteria they look for.  I just nodded my head as she kept talking.

I don’t know if I can write the story involving the need for an organ transplant, because I know that it involves suffering. Consider the waiting, the worry, the stress, but also there’s also hope in abundance thanks to people who mark the little box on their driver’s license to be an organ donor. Maybe God put me in that cashier’s line to write this blog post to bring an awareness of the need for organ donors.

In August, 2015, there were 122,706 people in America waiting for an organ transplant. Of these 101,250 needed a kidney and 15,090 needed a liver, according to the Organ Procurement and Transplant Network (OPTN). http://optn.transplant.hrsa.gov/converge/data.

I’m grateful the cashier offered her story because it gives me hope for Keith. God in his wisdom gave us two kidneys when we only need one. Also, I believe the day and time of our death has already been determined. My body may be worn out and useless when I stop breathing, or it could happen tomorrow. If so, then perhaps my kidney, liver, pancreas, and intestines might be someone’s hope for a healthy normal life.

In August 2015, 20,705 patients received a kidney. Of those organs donated, 16,760 were from a deceased person and 3,945 were from a living donor according to the OPTN statistics. Notice that 3,945 were living donors. I hope that you will  decide to be an organ donor. The next time you renew your driver’s license, mark the little box indicating that you will be an organ donor and inform your family. If an accident happens, you can be someone’s hope for a return to a healthy life.

Please lift up prayers for Keith and for those who love him. My prayer for Keith and his family comes from Romans 15:13. “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace, as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”

Be joyful in Hope, Patient in affliction, Faithful in prayer. Romans 12:12

But as for me, I will always have hope. Psalm 71:14

#Banorgandonor, #donateLife, #giftoflife, #organdonation, #transplant, #kidney, #havethechat

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About shelia@sheliastovall.com

Shelia Stovall is a Southern, small-town librarian, and has an understanding of what women like to read. She is a member of ACFW and is currently the Treasurer of the Middle Tennessee ACFW Chapter. Shelia is a member of the Ky. Public Library Association and the American Library Association. Her short story, The Barber’s Sanctuary, won the fiction division of Kentucky Monthly’s sixth annual Writer’s Showcase in the November 2013 issue. Shelia is a weekly columnist for the Citizen-Times, based in Scottsville, Ky. Shelia’s Southern, small-town roots have given her an understanding of community and women's friendships. Her writing deals with difficult contemporary issues, but there’s always a thread of hope amid the calamity. Shelia is passionate about African missions and has traveled to Africa annually for the past four years. Community service is also important to Shelia, and she has volunteered as a crew chief for five years at Camp Habitat, (a Christian youth service camp that partners with Habitat for Humanity).

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