3/12/09

God will provide




I am sitting in front of my computer - I am extremely busy this week. We all are always busy. Then we also plan and scheme and organise to make sure we are well looked after. And through all this madness we forget the most important thing - GOD. I, for one, as I am sitting here, are guilty.


But today I received an email from a dear friend in Johannesburg - as if he knew he should send me this mail. And it brought me back to earth with a clank.


This beautiful story was written by a doctor who worked in Africa .


One night I had worked hard to help a mother in the labor ward; but inspite of all we could do, she died, leaving us with a tiny, premature babyand a crying two-year-old daughter. We would have difficulty keeping the baby alive, as we had no incubator (we had no electricity to run an incubator) . We also had no special feeding facilities. Although we lived on the equator, nights were often chilly with treacherous drafts. One student midwife went for the box we had for such babies and the cotton wool that the baby would be wrapped in. Another went to stoke up the fire and fill a hot water bottle. She came back shortly in distress to tell me that in filling the bottle, it had burst (rubber perishes easily in tropical climates ). "And it is our last hot water bottle!" she exclaimed. As in theWest, it is no good crying over spilled milk, so in Central Africa it might be considered no good crying over burst water bottles. They do not grow on trees, and there are no drugstores down forest pathways. "All right," I said, "put the baby as near the fire as yousafely can, and sleep between the baby and the door to keep it free from drafts. Your job is to keep the baby warm."


The following noon , as I did most days, I went to have prayers with any of the orphanage children who chose to gather with me. I gave the youngsters various suggestions of things to pray about and told them about the tiny baby. I explained our problem about keeping the baby warm enough, mentioning the hot water bottle, and that the baby could so easily die if it got chills. I also told them of the two-year-old sister, crying because her mother had died.


During prayer time, one ten -year-old girl, Ruth, prayed with the usual blunt conciseness of our African children. "Please, God" she prayed, "Send us a hot water bottle today. It'll be no good tomorrow, God,as the baby will be dead, so please send it this afternoon." While I gasped inwardly at the audacity of the prayer, she added, "And while You are about it, would You please send a dolly for the little girl so she'll know You really love her?"


As often with children's prayers, I was put on the spot. Could I honestly say "Amen"? I just did not believe that God could do this. Oh,yes, I know that He can do everything; the Bible says so. But there are limits, aren't there? The only way God could answer this particular prayer would be by sending me a parcel from the homeland. I had been in Africa for almost four years at that time, and I had never, ever, received a parcel from home. Anyway, if anyone did send me a parcel, who would put in a hot water bottle? I lived on the equator!


Halfway through the afternoon, while I was teaching in the nurses' training school, a message was sent that there was a car at my front door. By the time I reached home, the car had gone, but there on the verandah was a large 22-pound parcel. I felt tears pricking my eyes. I could not open the parcel alone, so I sent for the orphanage children. Together we pulled off the string, carefully undoing each knot. We folded the paper, taking care not to tear it unduly. Excitement was mounting. Some thirty or forty pairs of eyes were focused on the large cardboard box. >From the top, I lifted out brightly-colored, knitted jerseys. Eyes sparkled as I gave them out. Then there were the knitted bandages for the leprosy patients, and the children looked a little bored. Then came a box of mixed raisins and sultanas - that would make a batch of buns for the weekend.


Then, as I put my hand in again, I felt the.....could it really be? I grasped it and pulled it out. Yes, a brand new, rubber hot water bottle. I cried. I had not asked God to send it; I had not truly believed that He could. Ruth was in the front row of the children. She rushed forward, crying out, "If God has sent the bottle, He must have sent the dolly,too!" Rummaging down to the bottom of the box, she pulled out the small, beautifully-dressed dolly. Her eyes shone! She had never doubted! Looking up at me, she asked: "Can I go over with you and give this dolly to that little girl, so she'll know that Jesus really loves her?" Of course, I replied! That parcel had been on the way for five whole months, packed up by my former Sunday school class, whose leader had heard and obeyed God's prompting to send a hot water bottle, even to the equator. And one of the girls had put in a dolly for an African child - five months before, in answer to the believing prayer of a ten-year-old to bring it "that afternoon." "Before they call, I will answer." (Isaiah 65:24) When you receive this, please pray the prayer below. That's all you have to do. No strings attached. Just send it on to whomever you want - but please do send it on. Prayer is one of the best free gifts we receive. There is no cost, but a lot of rewards.


Dear Reader - I hope this story touched your heart and mind as it did mine. Let's continue praying for one another. Have a nice - you are in my prayers.


P.S The picture is of the road to our house, taken standing in front of the house. Look how God paints the image in gold, using liberally from the sun as His paint bottle.

4 comments:

Linda S. Socha said...

BEAUTIFUL.

Although I have heard this story it never fails to touch my heart and remind me that what is essential must be seen with the heart
Linda

The Sunflower and Ladybird Company said...

Hi Linda - Yes - as always - you are right! And thanks for the comment.

Femin Susan said...

Your words still echo in my ears. Keep it coming! Good job !

The Sunflower and Ladybird Company said...

Dear Susan

Thank you for the kind comment! And for reading my blog. I love your picture!