Lyonya was a part of the group of older orphan boys who were not required to attend our meetings—their attendance was elective. If they were willing, they came, if not, they did not attend. Lyonya was the only boy from that group who came on a regular basis—he did not miss a single lesson. He also stood out during the lessons because he was not only an attentive listener himself but also helped supervise the other children, so they would not talk during the lesson, and to make sure all of them participated in the games. Generally speaking, he made a very positive impression on us. At the end of June when our lessons were over, Lyonya did not have to move to an orphanage like many “social orphans,” but instead was able to go home, which was a good development!
Later in the fall when we went back to the social center, Lyonya was there to meet us in the foyer! He smiled and we could see that he was genuinely glad to see us again. I asked him what he was doing here, and he replied, “I just came in to get some papers. And did you come with a Bible lesson?” His desire was really something, because Lyonya lives some distance away.
We were able to have a good time of fellowship with Lyonya. He said, “You must know your lessons had really a great impact upon me. For example, earlier I liked to have a drink, but as the result of your lessons, I totally quit drinking. Because nobody but you told me the truth about it. And now, when my friends call me for a drink or just drinks next to me, I tell them that this is not a right thing.”
He said this so easily and casually that I believed him. This was very unexpected. Of course, in our meetings we raise such issues as alcohol, but we also speak a lot about the love of God towards us. For Lyonya, I have hope that since our lessons and discussion of alcohol influenced his life, the subject of God’s healing love will not pass by his heart either. Please pray for him, because he is a very sound-minded young man, and I believe that he is not far from the truth.
Orphans Reborn Continues to Bring God’s Love to Hurting Children Throughout the Former Soviet Lands