My husband and I live in Ashkelon, Israel. We serve the homeless, the drug addicts and prostitutes in the streets of Tel Aviv. These young men and women don’t know God when they first come in. They don’t know that God can change lives. My own relationship with Jesus started when I was in a car accident back in Ukraine in 1993. I heard the doctors say I would be crippled for the rest of my life and, in my despair, I prayed for the first time, “God, if you exist, help me recover so I do not have to be physically dependent on other people.” Immediately, I felt someone in that hospital room with me. I sensed His presence. Once I had gotten better, I started attending a church in Ukraine. The first time I came, they had a Christian music group visiting that was called by the same name as my first name—I knew it was a sign that was where God wanted me to grow. Eventually, God led me to immigrate to New York City. I was there on September 11th, helping people who had run out of the burning towers, praying with them as they tried to make sense of this senseless tragedy. I met my husband on a trip to Israel. He was once a prisoner of drug addiction and had even been in jail, but God transformed his life. The two of us received a word from God. It’s from Matthew 10:6-8: “Go rather to the lost sheep of Israel. As you go, proclaim this message: ‘The kingdom of heaven has come near.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons.” So we moved to Israel. We go to the daytime shelter to serve the homeless on Fridays. We work with people who are ill and dying, we feed them, we pray for them, we provide first aid care, we give them clothing. We provide for these young people, develop relationships with them, watch them accept Christ and see their lives change. There is nothing better in this life than letting God use you to touch people’s lives and watch them change.
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