I would like to share the only real joy that I have in my life—the way I met Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior!
I grew up without parental love as an orphan, like so many children in our country. I wasn’t even a month old when my mother lost her parental rights, and I was given over to the state to be raised. For the next eight years, I was in the orphanage at Shuya. Only brief memories remain from that time, such as when I got my tongue stuck to a metal door during the winter. I was very afraid that someone would open the door!
When I turned eight, I was sent to a boarding school in the city of Kokhma. The older boys sometimes picked on us and would take away any gifts we received. Sometimes they forced us to fight with one another and made us pick up after them in their rooms. Our caregivers did not really care, or else they pretended that they didn’t see it or simply didn’t believe us. But there were pleasant days also.
Pavel and Ludmila
came to our boarding school with their children. They told us about God,
Jesus, the Bible, and friendship. We sang songs with them and played games.
They would always bring us treats, gifts, and prizes. Their children played
with us like we were all one family. They truly showed us genuine love. The
school gave us permission to go with Pavel and Ludmila sometimes, or we would
find any excuse we could to go visit them.
They were always happy to see us and would generously feed us. We always thanked God before meals. I never wanted to leave!
When I got older, Ludmila wrote to the director of the orphanage for every holiday, and I was allowed to go spend it at their home.
Eventually, I graduated from the boarding school and went to college. But I didn’t want to live by myself, so Ludmila and Pavel took me into their family. From time to time, I would visit other non-believing families and they would offer me alcohol. Ludmila always said, “Misha, would they give alcohol to their own son to drink?” The Lord showed me how people act in this world and how they treat one another.
One day, I confessed that I was a sinner and asked Jesus Christ for His forgiveness in my lack of faith and for my behavior. In 2013, I was baptized. Today, I am helping out in the children’s ministry, including summer camps and children’s outings. I want these children to know about God’s love in the way I came to know Him. If I had not been at the orphanage and had not met Christians, and they had not told me about God and salvation, I don’t know where I would be. I thank God that He revealed Himself to me, and I want to praise Him!
Editor’s Note: Misha is a very active member of our Orphans Reborn team in Ivanovo.