Welcome

We are so excited to be serving in Malawi. We invite you to take this journey with us. Keep the beautiful people of Malawi in your prayers, and us too.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Why Are We Here?


On one of our evening walks
acting goofy with cousin Ella
Prior to our return to Malawi, Lyzee was having a hard time.  She kept asking the question: “Why do we have to go?  I love it here in the USA. I love Malawi, but I love it here too.”   Since we’ve arrived, she’s had a tough time of adjusting back to life and school in Malawi. She frequently has asked Becca and me, “Why are we here?”  School is very difficult and she’s not sleeping well. But more than that, Lyzee misses her cousin Ella.  Her best buddy in all the world.   Also, she often talks of how much she misses her Grammy and many others who love her so well in the USA.  She has expressed this many times to us since arriving back in Malawi and it’s been really hard for Becca and me to shepherd her little heart through these deep waters.  Despite the clear explanations from Becca and me, it’s like something was blocking her mind from understanding that question in her little mind of “Why?”  But last Sunday, Lyzee got some answers.
 
The power was out on an exceptionally warm afternoon.  As we melted in the house on our day of rest, Becca said, “Hey, I think there’s a buy one get one pizza deal at a nearby restaurant.”  Since we had no way of cooking our thawed meat, Lyzee and I hopped into the minibus and drove into town to grab the pizza.

After getting the pizzas and a few samosas (fried triangles filled with meat and veggies), Lyzee and I started our journey back home.   As we drove, Lyzee spotted a crippled man on the side of the road begging.  She said, “Why don’t we give him a samosa, dad?”   In my flesh, I thought, “How inconvenient. But I guess I will stop and give the guy a samosa and then we can be on our way.”  Totally horrible, huh?  If I’m transparent, that’s exactly what went through my head as my little Blondie had compassion on this man.  But we have been praying that the Lord would give us new opportunities and open our eyes to those in need of help and those in need of Him.  And at that moment of my flesh arising in me, the Spirit of God took over and the Lord answered my prayers.  So, I pulled off the road and Lyzee and I brought the guy a samosa.  We had no clue what was about to happen.

With the girls netball team that Becca leads in our backyard
As I handed the man a samosa, the Lord completely melted my heart for this man and opened my mind to speak Chichewa like I’ve never spoken before.  I’ve been struggling with the language since returning, and this was clear that the words coming from my mouth were not my own.  Lyzee knows that usually I can get by pretty well with Chichewa, but this was something different.  Fluent Chichewa came as I talked with this man named James.  He explained to me that his 3-wheeler bike that he pedals with his hands doesn’t have breaks anymore and he almost crashed coming down a steep hill that very morning.  I understood him perfectly as he spoke quickly about his situation of extreme poverty.  The man depended on people giving him food and money.  He was hungry, dirty, and in need of some bike breaks.  He begged that I could just get him some cheap used breaks.  I never even learned some of the words that he was saying to me, but God opened my mind.  It was incredible.  This was God.  And my daughter got to see it happen!  God is so good! 

After about 20 minutes, the conversation came to a close and I made a plan to meet James the next morning outside a bike shop to get some new breaks. He was ecstatic.  Lyzee was very excited too.  I was nearly in tears from God’s goodness in my life.  Then, the three of us prayed together.  Again, the Lord opened my mind and enabled me to pray in Chichewa with James.  Praying is especially difficult for me in the past, but not this time! 

As we concluded our prayer time, I said, “Dzina la Yesu Khristu tipemphere, Amen.”  In the name of Jesus we pray, Amen.  But when I stopped praying, I realized that there was another man on his knees right behind us.  He was weeping.    I turned to him and asked him his name and this is what he said, “My name is Evance and I just have been watching this and listening to all this from over there and I want to know this Jesus you pray to.  I am a Muslim, but recently someone gave me a copy of the New Testament.  I’ve been reading it a lot. It is very interesting and now I see you doing these things and praying in Jesus’ name and I want to know Him.  Can you pray for me?  I want to know him.   Where should I read in this Bible to know him well?” 

Meet James
I stood amazed and shared with him about the greatest news in the world and how it is not me who helps James, but it is God in me, the hope of glory. I shared my testimony with Evance and shared how we all need to know Jesus personally.  He then said, “Ok, now I will go and read. But I want to be talking each week with you about what I read.   Where should I start reading?   Where did you start reading before you believed and were changed?”   I told him that I started in the book of John and we paged through his New Testament and found John.  I said, “This is where I began with an open heart saying, ‘God, if you are real, please show me who you are.’  And He did!  He showed me who He is through Jesus in this book of John.  It changed my life forever and I believe this is not coincidence that we are here today sharing this with you.  Read it my friend.  Read it. Believe and trust in Jesus Christ and you will be saved!”   We prayed and then Lyzee and I got back into the minibus to head home.  As I buckled her in, she said something that absolutely gave me more joy than anything has in quite some time.  With more excitement and happiness than I have ever seen from my girl, she looked over at me in the front seat of that minibus and said, “That’s why we are here, Daddy.  That’s why we are here.” 

Those words sunk deep to me, especially because she has been having such a hard time settling here. We have a good Father who cares for His children.  He cares for my little girl and He cares for James and Evance. 

Since this time, Lyzee has told many people about what God did on Sunday.  We continue to stop to see James and Evance.  Please pray for Lyzee, James, and Evance.  All three of them have very different problems that only the Savior of the world can address.  Our God is mighty to save!  Thank you for praying for us.  Thank you for supporting us! Thank you for being part of this!

Lyzee with Fostance's daughter Ruth
Oh yea! I met James the next day at the bike shop.  He had been waiting there since it opened at 8 AM, even though I told him 11:30 AM.  Because of your giving, I was able to get him brand spanking new tires and breaks.  I SO wish you could have seen his face as we brought out his new parts!  It was awesome.  The bike shop owner who is a Muslim man from the Middle East said, “Why are you doing this?”  Then God enabled me to share the Gospel with him and everyone in the bike shop.  He was not as open as Evance was, but who knows what God is doing?  My cup overflowed as I looked in my rear view mirror to see James’ smiling face.   Glory be to Christ!  He is worthy of your trust today.   Trust his Word and obey Him!  Maybe God has an Evance and a James who are waiting for you to come to them today.

It is sometimes in our smallest, most feeble acts of obedience to the leading of God’s Spirit that He does the greatest things.


Love you guys,

Luke, Becca, Lyzee & Zeke

6 comments:

  1. Thank you Luke for sharing so transparently. I commonly pray that God would increase my faith proportionately to meet the path He has set before me. I love Paul's benediction in Ephesians: "Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory..." (3:20). Praying for you guys! I know you have prayed for us similarly. Appreciate you.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Wow! I am so grateful for your transparency bro! God is certainly at work, and not only that, but He's using your faithfulness to challenge and encourage us across the ocean! Thank you so much. Praying for you. So encouraged to see the power of the Holy Spirit work in a way we don't see here enough because we don't depend on Him. We want to stay in the loop. Let me know if there's an email list besides this blog. - Jordan

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. hey Jordan, Great to hear from you. My email address is luke.voight@sim.org Email me your email address and i'll put you on our email update list

      Delete
  3. Wow! What a wonderful and amazing story! I hope to share this with others....adding it to my Blog. Bless Lyzee and your ministry!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Luke, thanks so much for sharing of your lives lived for Jesus there in Malawi!
    Though the laguage barrier, or so we 'think', ahhh, our God is awesome! And an absolute reminder that no matter how inadequate I may feel, a simple trusting in our Papa, and a choice of stepping out of my comfort zone, that He may 'take-over' is so doable ..... Among the 'language barrier ' not-so-much culturally, but more so, lifestyle, lived here in the U.S., I CAN do ALL things, through Christ who strengthens me! If I just step out and out of the way!
    So grateful for your oedience, and love for our Jesus!
    Him, in and through you all, contunued, into eternity! AMEN~

    ReplyDelete
  5. We never know why God asks us to stretch outside of our comfortable human shell, but He does, often. Thank you so much for sharing this testimony, it brought tears of happiness for God's provision (He gave you the knowledge and understanding you needed the exact moment you needed it)!! in your exact moment your heart cried out! I'm not sure why I'm still amazed by His provisions, especially in times such as you experienced, but the human side of me or the flesh, I guess, has struggled in recent months. Your sweet daughter really 'gets it'. She knows now, in her 'knower', why God sent you there. I will pray for her heart to settle in. Such a blessing to have such a heart for Jesus. God bless you! You and your family have my prayers. God is good. All. The. Time.

    ReplyDelete