Saturday, September 12, 2009
Zhenya came to our door wanting to spend the night. Our policy has been she needs to call in advance, we are trying to teach her responsibility in the process. She lives about 9 km from Kaharlyk in a small village and said she walked accompanied with her dog. She was dirty, tired and hungry. We fed her, she took a shower and stayed the night in the guest room. She said she came because people in her village don't like her and she was being hit. I'm not sure I totally believe that as we are still having trust issues with her. She is no longer going to cooking school but has decided that working will be much better. She has recently gotten a job in Kaharlyk's cookie factory. I pray she will hold on to the job and not quit for lack of interest or unrealistic reasons. She is an orphan, and she is at risk as an adult. She is learning what it means to live on her own and be self sufficient. We pray the Lord would change her heart to seek Him and then open her eyes to follow and trust Him. It's going to be a difficult road for her.
After lunch and a trip to the playground with the family, Jaden and I took her back to her village. She lives with a very old babooska in a very old house. They have no running water and no gas, just electricity. There is a well located 50 meters from the house where Zhenya says she carries buckets back to her home. Zhenya took me on a tour of her house. (I think this house used to be one of her relatives that died and was passed on to her.) Her room is 8' x 5', just big enough for some cushions she uses for a bed on the floor. Posters and artwork are hanging all over the wall. Many of them are black and white paper printouts of friends. She showed me her kitchen and living room and the bed where the babooska sleeps. It was humbling for me to see such unsanitary conditions and to think someone could live that way. It was a good eye opener for Jaden as well to see what village life looks like.
We have been blessed so much and often can be blinded by the desire for more. This was a good reminder to be thankful in ministry and continue to love to lost and the poor.
Friday, September 4, 2009
Well, we are back in Ukraine and settling in after our 6 week furlough. Our time in the States was great! It was wonderful to see our friends and family and we have come back to Ukraine refreshed and encouraged. Aside from catching up with people, our family spent a lot of our time in the water. Our kiddos became quite the little swimmers. Another highlight of our time home was a road trip to California where we visited Sea World, Lego Land and the beach. Here are some our favorite pics of our time at the beach...