God takes care of us
Viktor Migo took me to the orphanage #4 to celebrate a birthday. He played Uno with the kids.
There is a week’s worth to update everyone on, but there hasn’t been a whole lot going on, so maybe I can keep this short. Wow...I heard every single one of you say, out loud, “yeah right”. OK, well, here it goes.
My friend did meet me at church Sunday and didn’t even play with his phone. I rode the bus with Holly and couldn’t pick up my soon-to-be-son. I forgot to give him money for the bus, so he didn’t make it to church. Two of the girls who we took the mall two weeks before (from the orphanage) were in church as well. They are the one’s who will be adopted to Maryland. It was a great surprise getting to see them there. After church, my friend and I walked about 20 minutes to go to the restaurant we were going to meet Igor at. He wasn’t going to be able to meet us for several hours so we just hung out. Another one of his friends meet us as well. She grew up in the orphanage with him and I remember seeing her at Camp Viktoria when we went there in the summers. She is in medical school and hopes to be a surgeon.
Right before Igor came, our 16 year old friend, Andrey, joined us. Igor, Andrey, and I left to go pick up Luke and hung out for the rest of the day. Twice, Luke took me to a store by ourselves. I found out later that he kept asking Igor who this other boy was. Both times Andrey has been with us, Luke has acted extra silly and crazy. Igor said he (Luke) was jealous....so cute but I guess he’ll have to share me when we get home. I think that will be different since his brothers will be super happy to have him home and will be giving him lots of attention.
Oh no, this might long because I just remembered a story. You already knew that didn’t you. When we were taking Luke home, we stopped by a little store near his school. Luke and I went inside to buy a few things for him to take with him to his dorm. When we got out of the car, we could hear this yelling and crying and screaming. There was a crowd gathered around the sound. I couldn’t understand anything of course, but I could see in the darkness that there was an old woman laying on the icy snow. People were gathered around her and she was crying and yelling with her arms up as she laid on her side. We went inside to the store and a few minutes later, those people also came inside the store. As we exited and headed to the car, the lady still laid there, yelling and talking loudly. I stood at the car door and watched her, not knowing what to do. Igor opened his door and asked what was going on and I told him I don’t know, she’s just laying there; she’ll die. He said she’s drunk on vodka, but as he said those words, he and Andrey jumped out of the car and went to help her. By then, more people gathered again and said they would call an ambulance and she would spend the night at the hospital. Relieved, we dropped Luke off and went home. The next afternoon we found out that Luke didn’t go back to his dorm. He went back and stayed with the woman and helped to keep her standing up until the ambulance arrived. Precious.
Dana joined us on Tuesday!!!! YEA!!!!! So, as awesome as it was living with Tolik’s wonderful, wonderful family, we moved into an apartment of our own. Tolik’s family was so gracious allowing us to live with them for so long. They were our home away from home. They treated us better than other family members that came through their way. There were times that others stayed there as well but they stayed on the floors in the other rooms. We felt terrible about that but they wouldn’t let us do anything about it. They treated us like kings and queens.
Igor and his friend, Jenya, went to work to find us a place to live. So, now we are in a 2 bedroom apartment with a huge living room and huge kitchen. Thankfully, instead of hanging out in restaurants and malls all day long, we can hang out here. We can start making meals at home and start relaxing with out having to have our back packs and money and passports everywhere. Luke rides the bus after school to come over and Igor takes him home. It’s awesome! Thank you, Lord! Once again, He has sent friends to take care of us. I seriously don’t know what we would do without our friends. Viktor Migo picked Dana up from the airport, moved us into our apartment, made sure everything worked, fixed things that needed attention, got the internet working, and made sure we were comfortable. God is just going way above just meeting our needs.
Tuesday night, we went to the church that we take the kids to in the summer. (Living Hope) Igor had been wanting to go to their Tuesday night Bible study and we were finally able to go. We took Luke with us and he participated in answering questions during the service. I talked to a girl named Julia. I remembered her because last summer during church they announced that it was her first time playing the drums during worship. As we were talking, I told her that we were going to be going to Kiev on the train on Thursday night and coming back Friday night. She said she was going for the weekend. I told her to ride in the 4-bed car with us and she wouldn’t have to buy a ticket-she could just ride with us. I remember hearing (reading) Julia’s name in a few of my friend’s blogs because she was with them when they adopted their children and they just loved her. The great thing about Julia being with us (and I didn’t even think of this when I invited her) was that she knew all about how to get around on the train and when to get off and everything. I know we could have figured it out, but it was nice having someone there with us who knew everything already. Julia’s plans for the day fell through so she hung out with us. Dima met us at McDonald’s and we filled out our I600 (before your child turns 16-form) and headed for the underground train/subway/what ever you want to call it. We walked quite a ways to the Embassy and took care of the paperwork there. Bill and I waited forEVER at the Embassy and we were, literally, the only one’s sitting there with our number in hand. Once they called us, it didn’t take any time at all. We then headed back to the subway and met our friend, Andriy again. He joined Dima and us on our walk to the SDA office where Dima had some paper work to do so that I could return it all back to Alyona in Odessa.
Now it’s only 11:00 or so and we don’t catch the train until 11:00 at night. What to do? It was rainy so we went to the mall to have lunch and hang out. Andriy made some phone called and found a place that we could veg in for the day. We went there and just relaxed. God was so good to send us Andriy, who took a 4 hour train to visit with us, and to find us a place to just relax. The downstairs had picnic tables and WiFi. They brought us snacks and tea. Ahhhh, relaxation. The lady who worked there told us that they minister to orphans. Something that we all love to talk about of course, so we talked a lot about ministry. Dana shared with her the vision that God is giving to her and her friend about helping teenage orphan girls in Ukraine and was able to ask her a lot of questions. While we were there, we were able to help her out by cutting out a lot of little things for some kids she was going to be with the next day. And, because Julia’s plans fell through, she didn’t have a place to stay, but this young lady now offered her her home to stay at while she was in Kiev for the weekend. God just blows us away!
After Andriy left for his train, we stayed at the mall for the rest of the evening. Julia got us back to McDonalds by the train station, where we met our friend, Artem. After visiting for a while, Artem got us to the correct train, where we collapsed and crashed for the night. Igor picked us up this morning and brought us to the apartment. I’m doing laundry and Bill and Dana went back to sleep. They didn’t sleep at all on the way there so they are exhausted. Luke will probably come over on the bus today and we’ll all go to Julia’s church tomorrow.
OH....and our court date has been changed to March 5th at 4:00. It’s only a one day change but I’ll take it. And somehow it helps with the rest of the appointments that come after the court date and saves us 3 days.
Oh, and my friend who we’ve been sharing Jesus with and bringing to church? He is running, and running hard. He threw his sin in my face as if to say “I’m choosing this over your God and even over our friendship-what are you going to do about it?” It hurt and angered me. But what am I going to do about it? I’m going to love him and I’m going to continue to pray for him. It’s a spiritual battle and the enemy has his big, ugly foot on his back, holding him down and my friend can’t even get up to fight. He doesn’t even want to get up and fight because he feels like he lost the battle already. He told me to forgive him and let him go. I told him that all his life, people who were supposed to love him did let him go and I’m not going to. It has been an exhausting week with him emotionally and spiritually and even physically because it has caused very late nights, but God is stronger. He gave us Armor to wear and He gave us His Word. He loves my friend and He died for Him, despite everything. If not for God’s grace, where would I be now?
I miss my kids. :(
Bill, Jenya, & Igor fixing things On the train Andriy, Pam, Dana at the mall (Julia will NOT get her picture taken) Soccer 2012 in the mallthis hill was a huge hike. Some of these cars got dents in them that night when snow dropped of the building from above them. Soccer 2012!