Sergey’s Transformation in Zaporozhye, Ukraine


Mission Eurasia trains and equips young Next Generation Christian leaders in the countries of Eurasia to transform their nations for Christ. Our School Without Walls (SWW) program is a flexible leadership training school that operates in 14 countries and equips young leaders with biblical training, leadership skills, and practical ministry experience.

Our SWW students in Zaporozhye, Ukraine have developed a thriving ministry to the homeless people in their community, and we can only marvel at how God is transforming the lives of the men and women He is calling to Himself. Sometimes, lives are transformed in just a few weeks! This is exactly what happened with Sergey.

When our students first met Sergey, he was always very quiet and patient while waiting in line to receive his food. “I immediately felt God calling me to talk with Sergey, but it took me a while to work up the courage to actually do it,” shares Anastasia, one of our SWW students. “When I finally did talk with him, I realized that he had a pleasant voice, beautiful blue eyes, and a kind smile. At first I couldn’t understand how he had become homeless—but after he shared his story with me, I realized that it was very similar to many others I had heard.

“He had been living in an apartment illegally, and after he was kicked out, he started drinking, because he believed that life had lost its meaning. He was once a very successful musician. He had traveled all over Ukraine, teaching many young musicians how to play guitar and sing, but now he was waiting in line for food. Every time we visited he would listen to the sermons very attentively, but he always sat by himself.

“Sergey told me he used to go to church and read the Bible regularly, but he eventually left the church after developing an alcohol addiction. At the end of our conversation, he asked me for Scripture, so I gave him the Gospel of Luke and said that I would pray for him. A week later, he decided to repent of his sins! At first it was hard to believe—but when he prayed with us, he wholeheartedly asked God to forgive him with tears in his eyes. He also promised to keep reading Scripture, and even agreed to start attending a Bible study group.

“The very next week, we made another visit to the park to feed the homeless men and women, and a man came up to us and started talking as if he knew us. He looked familiar, but I couldn’t figure out how I knew him. ‘I am Sergey, and I confessed my sins last week,’ he said. I realized that it really was him. After only a week, I didn’t even recognize him! He had cut his hair, cleaned himself, put on new clothes, and found the meaning of life again! He asked us for a Bible and told us how his life had changed after his relationship with God was restored. He was miraculously freed from his addiction to alcohol, and he was looking for a job!

“We couldn’t hold back our tears as Sergey talked with us, because we could see God’s goodness and mercy in his life. Today he attends church and a Bible study group! We believe that God will continue to grow his faith, and soon he will be able to serve other people who are struggling with alcoholism. Praise God!”

Mission Eurasia, a Mission Nexus member, provided this article. Member organizations can provide content to the Missio Nexus website. See how by clicking here.

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