Many of the families coming to the shelter in Krakow are believers from our churches throughout Ukraine. However, others are seeking refuge who are their friends and relatives who are on the threshold of faith and seeking something to hold onto during this crisis. One family that came to the shelter in Krakow was a grandmother named Lxxx, her daughter and her 4 year old son. The grandmother told her story to Masha Shepherd, MTW missionary and the primary case worker caring for displaced Ukrainians.
In tears she spoke saying that there must be a God doing these things. The grandmother described her town, Chernihiv, which was northeast of Kyiv, closer to the border of Belarus, as a very pro-Russian town where Russian was the only language spoken. She reflected on an occasion ten years earlier at her work place, talking to someone about a uniquely difficult time in her life, when nothing seemed to be working right and she received a brochure. The brochure, she thought, was probably from a local church. She read it then and it described how God was in control of our lives. She read the words then, but when things got better she didn’t really take the time to think about their meaning.
With the beginning of the current crisis, she said, she remembered what she had read ten years before. Seeing all the terrible things happening in Ukraine, and seeing how she and her family have been cared for through the help provided in L’viv and now in Krakow and next to Austria with a host family that was secured for them, that she sees now that God is real and truly leading her family. Masha’s interaction with the grandmother touched her and led to further opportunities to talk about the meaning of trust in God and resting in the truth that evil will be punished and when we have peace with Him in Christ, it is then we know that He has control of our lives.
Pray for Lxxx, her family, as they leave Friday to join their host family in Villach, Austria. Pray for those on the threshold of faith in Christ, that they would see the love of Christ through all we say and do.