After our care point visits today, we get to go on another home visit. Our two groups pile into one van and leave Ruby’s Care Point. There are 19 of us in this van – eight adults and 11 children. We are tired but joyful and excited. I personally can hardly wait to see who the Lord has for us to meet today.
We arrive in the vicinity of the two homes and the driver drops us all off. Each group carries the same items to the home visit: a bag of rice, beans, maize, and a bucket of other miscellaneous food for the family. My heart races as we walk up the dusty path that leads to the home we are to visit. I don’t know if it races because I am nervous or because I am excited? Perhaps it is a combination of both!
I’m surprised when we arrive. This particular visit is suddenly quite unique because there is actually a complete family unit present. There is a mother and a father living in this home along with six children. Please understand that it is very rare to see a father figure in a home and even more rare is the opportunity to engage in conversation with a dad. This home visit is going to be truly special!
Our guide for the home visit, Xolani, is the Shepherd at Ruby’s Care Point. Walking up, Xolani tells us to place the food on the ground and sit on the cinder blocks outside of the home. The mother and father, along with all of the children sit outside by the door of their home. Xolani begins talking to the parents, telling them who we are and why we are here. They share with him a bit of their story and he then translates back to us.
He tells us that they have been praying for God to provide for them. They have both recently lost their jobs and though they have been trying to survive, things are grim. They tried to plant a small garden, but it had been destroyed. They had searched for jobs but were unsuccessful. They were completely without food and in their words, “they have very little hope.”
The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and his ears are open to their cry. – Psalm 34:15
The mother begins to share with us in English how very grateful she is that we have come to bless them. Suddenly, a really amazing thing happens. The father begins to talk to us, not in English, but in SiSwati. He, too, expresses his gratitude and thanks to God for providing for his family.
We explain to them that it’s not us, but God who heard their prayer and answered it.
After this we present them with the food and exchange handshakes and hugs. They continue telling us how overwhelmed they are with the provision of God!
We ask if we can pray with them and they respond with a joyful, “YES!”
Praying here in Swaziland means that everyone prays his or her own prayer to God, out loud, at the same time. It’s really an incredible sound! We all begin talking to God at once, and it’s beautiful! A sacrifice of praise to the Lord!
We ask if we can have a picture together and they agree. We embrace again and say our goodbyes.
I am overwhelmed!
As we walk back to the van, Xolani says something profound. He begins talking about how amazed and overwhelmed he is at God’s provision to answer his prayer. He explains how very difficult it is to do what he does. He shepherds the children at the care point, but he is also the one responsible for deciding who gets a home visit. He explains that he prays and prays to have discernment so he can know what families need a home visit. Then he raises his hands to the heavens and expresses his gratitude to God for leading him to choose the family we saw today!
As we continue our walk back to the van, Xolani says something else …
He says, “God wants us to be obedient to Him and if we will just be still, stop all of our busyness, and sit at His feet, we can hear His voice and know what to do.”
I am undone! I so needed to hear that and God brought me all the way to Swaziland to say it to me!
Let me begin by saying that is not a new truth to me. I have heard this truth, read this truth in God’s Word, and taught this truth many times. BUT, if I’m being totally honest, I don’t always live that truth. Busyness takes precedent over stillness. I fail to stop and see the miracles God provides for me with daily.
This is what my heart has known but has needed to hear and experience. I’ve been so tired, so worn out and weary, so in need of revival! Xolani is right! I need to stop, put down my busyness, my ministry work, my serving, my doing, and sit at Jesus’ feet.
I’m in tears as I climb onto the bus. I’ve witnessed a miracle and I’ve heard truth from the Lord in a big way!
Today a family discovered God in a way they had never seen before. God (El Roi) pinpointed this little family, in this little house, in the tiniest country in the entire world. He didn’t need a GPS or Google Maps either. The very hand of God reached down and scooped up this little family. He heard them, and He granted what they asked. He showed Himself to be Jehovah-jireh, their provider.
Do you see the multiple miracles in this story? HE saw. HE provided. HE used this team of ordinary people to be His ambassadors of love. And God didn’t just hear this family’s prayer. He heard Xolani’s prayers, as well, and He blessed Xolani for His obedience.
In Matthew 6:25-31, Jesus said these words,
Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life.
I’ve also witnessed God calling out to me with some TRUTH I needed to hear. He says, “Rest, my weary warrior. Slow down and sit with me. I can restore to you the joy of your salvation (Psalm 51:12) and renew you so you can begin again!
Yes, God still does miracles. I know; I witnessed one today. God also uses prayer and His Word to speak Truth into your heart. But He will also go out of His way to take you further than you’ve ever been so you can get a bigger glimpse of Him.
My time in Swaziland changed the way I view life, the way I approach prayer, and the way I serve others. So thankful I will never be the same again!
Joyce Whitney says
Thanks for sharing again Jacqueline. Sometimes we just need a reminder of the simple things. “Be still and know that I am God” Psalm 46:10. God speaks to us sometimes in a “still small voice” 1 Kings 19:12. God speaks to us through his Word, but we have to be still ourselves to be able to hear what the Word is telling us. We need to tune out the world’s noise to be able to tune in to God’s voice spoken to us through scripture.