Lives are Changing in Poltava: Victor’s Story
Jan 8, 2019 5688
At a rehab centre in Poltava, Ukraine, lives are changing! This is the story of Victor, and it is a testament to the way that Christians together with a GNU pastor are working together to help people with addictions:
Victor was only 13 when he started taking drugs and at the time it was considered a prestigious thing to do. It was post-Soviet times, in the beginning of the nineties. It was a period of increasing criminal activity, and this became a part of Victor’s life. He was 18 when he was first put into prison. And for about 15 years, his life was spent taking drugs, engaging in illegal activity and in prison.
Victor first decided to seek treatment in 2008. However, when he tested positive in a HIV test, he lost his motivation. He concluded that the only course of action to take was to continue doing drug injections until he died.
When he once again found himself in prison and did an HIV test, his immunity level was so low that he understood he would soon die. But it was upon this realisation that he also discovered he actually wanted to live. So he stopped taking drugs and started anti-HIV therapy.
Recently Victor’s parents died, his father soon after his mother. This changed Victor and made him want to give up his addiction. But Victor was stuck. He couldn’t go to the Poltava rehab centre for treatment as he was blacklisted. The last time he had been at the rehab centre, he poured tea on one of the nurses. Because he was blacklisted, he could not be admitted for treatment.
He feels as if something heavy is leaving his heart
However, a group of church members came to his aid and personally stood bond for him. After his parents died, there was nobody who could pay for his treatment, food and lodging. However, the church members did not abandon him. He needed a three-month treatment course. His friends paid for his food and lodging and the church members, together with a GNU pastor, paid for his treatment.
They made an agreement with Victor that they would have one personal meeting a week to talk about spiritual things. Victor also regularly attends the Bible study group held at the rehab centre that is led by the GNU pastor. Before this Victor did not have any experience with God, but at the Bible meetings he feels as if something heavy is leaving his heart. He feels a need for being led in life.
Victor has only thirty days of drug temperance. After 25 years of drug addiction, each day without drugs is a miracle for Victor. He admits that at least three times God has rescued him from death, and he believes that God’s purpose will completely come true in his life.
The GNU pastor believes that they will tell about his conversion to Jesus later. But right now this is just the beginning of his journey. He says, “Pray for Victor, and we will let you know about the victory!”
– Ella Rodionoff