Pastor Viktor in Russia’s Caucasus Region
In the day of prosperity be happy, but in the day of adversity consider—God has made the one as well as the other so that man will not discover anything that will be after him. I have seen everything during my lifetime of futility; there is a righteous man who perishes in his righteousness and there is a wicked man who prolongs his life in his wickedness (Ecclesiastes 7:14-15).
I have been writing my reports for many years, but this time it was hard to write. How can I express the suffering of people?
Today, Russia and Ukraine are going through difficult times, when people are dying and hostility grows. We are called to consider, and to think about the temporary nature of life and the insecurity of earthly treasures, which are destroyed. The main thing is the state of our faith, which is tried by fire. If it survives the fire, it becomes more precious than gold.
I think of the refugees and parents whose children are having to fight in the war. Some have perished while others have come back disabled. I am a pastor and am called to sympathize with the suffering, and to bandage their physical and spiritual wounds. One young family of Christians with twin boys came, and we accommodated them.
We have good contacts with believers in other countries, and have been able to help buy tickets for refugees to travel. We raise funds to buy food, and we have been taking it to Mariupol, Ukraine, by trucks. The churches there cook the food and minister to the hungry. One small church in the region is preparing meals for 500 people each day.
We here in the Caucasus are familiar with tragedy. Two wars in Chechnya, and a terrible terror attack in Beslan that killed hundreds of school children. That is why we feel this current tragedy keenly. Compassion takes much moral strength—sharing in peoples’ needs brings joy, but it also exhausts. Please pray for our situation and our faithfulness to the Lord. Pray for our son, who has to serve in the army, and wants to remain faithful to Christ. There is much more that I could write, but want to express my thanks to all of you who support my ministry.
Pray for us!