The Water Bottle


The Water Bottle

 One night I had worked hard to help a mother in the labour ward; but in spite of all we could do, she died leaving us with a tiny premature baby and 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 the West, 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 you safely can, and sleep between the baby and the door to keep it free from drafts.

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 water bottle. 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 and most thought it was very humid!

 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  veranda, was a large twenty-two 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 coloured, knitted jerseys.

Eyes sparkled as I gave them out.

Then there were the knitted bandages for the leprosy patients, but 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?’

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)

    For the Christian… Prayer is not an option, but an opportunity to share in the Heart of God.

  Music- Praise God from who all blessings flow 

This is a True Story told by Helen Roseveare a Missionary Doctor  in Zaire Africa for her confirmation Click on Truth or Fiction link

About Freedomborn

My name is Anne although some call me Grannie Annie especially Children whom I share with in my Funday School . I live in Queensland Australia. I’m very much a People person believing we are all People of worth and unique, so I have much Joy in sharing with people personally and over the Internet. My main focus in life is my wonderful Friendship with Jesus Christ, without Him everything else would be meaningless, I have deep heartfelt thanks and appreciation that I'm a Spiritual Child of The King of Kings and I seek to share with others how truly wonderful that is with the hope they too will realize the same and be set free now.
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13 Responses to The Water Bottle

  1. Hi Anne, what a inspirational and heart felt story of God working the impossible on our behalf. That is unconditional love pouring out. What an awesome God who does not go void on His promises to us. GLORY TO GOD! Yes, He even hears the prayers of the litle ones too.

    A Woman After God’s Own Heart ♥


    • Freedomborn says:

      Hi Shenine thank you for the Reblog and your uplifting words which have so much Truth, we do indeed have an Awesome God, who hears all those who Love Him with all their heart and seek after Him and the heart of a Child understands this better then some Adults, perhaps that is why God tells us to become like Children, they Love and don’t question or do they confuse their Love with variables and their grateful to be dependent.

      Shenine, I’m going on Holidays soon and will have more time to create, I noticed you like Butterflies, would you like me to create a Power Point for you showcasing them, you can pick the theme , let me know if you would, I would be happy to do this for you as my way of saying thank you and expressing my Love for you in The Lord.

      Christian Love Anne.


      • Wow, Anne! I’m smiling this would be awesome. God is awesome…Theme? thinking uhm, I like Spiritual Transformation Butterfly (if nothing ever changed there would be no butterflies) referring to us- we are the butterflies.

        Second theme option would be Seek & Find ( not all who wander are lost, some are seeking our Heavenly Father). All the butterflies that wander are not lost but have direction from God. We are the butterflies again.

        You can choose out of these two. I am so excited Anne. Thank you for sharing God’s love which pours from your heart so effortlessly. To God be the Glory. Showing love to one another despite our differences because we share the same Father. Amen! Sending ♥

        A Woman After God’s Own Heart♥


        • Freedomborn says:

          Hi Shenine I rejoice in your excitement for the Power Point and thank you once again for your Loving , kind words, I will include both themes, after all unless we seek and find there can be no Transformation, thank you for thinking of both.

          I hope to finish the Power points I promised on holidays but if not I will continue creating them when I get home.

          Take Care in Jesus – Christian Love Anne


  2. ansuyo says:

    The only limits to what God will do is our lack of faith. I have many such God stories, and God always meets needs. What a great God we serve 🙂 Angie


    • Freedomborn says:

      Very True Angie and yes some do put Him in a box of their own understanding but He is indeed The God of the impossiable and as you shared is very Faithful and Loving in all of His ways.

      Christian Love Anne.


  3. Ron says:

    Yes we have a big and wonderful God for whom nothing is impossible, great story ,good to go round again.



  4. isaiah43123 says:

    God is good, All the time. All the time, God is good.


    • Freedomborn says:

      Yes so True isaiah43123 and lets never forget it or that He is Love and can do no evil or does He even allow it, regardless of what others claim.

      Thank you for sharing your words of Truth from your heart.

      Christian Love Anne.


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