Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Yuri, One Who Could Not Change (no photo available)

Imagine you are 14 (Prohor, the natural son) and realize that your parents are good godly people who want to give another young person, not as blessed by God as yourself, a chance for a good home and a successful life. You have accepted this fact and even enjoy having a brother (Sergey) to spend time with. Now they have decided to do it again! When will it be enough, for heaven’s sake?

Yuri was not a blessed child. He was born of a mother who had six children by several different fathers. Obviously, she did not provide Yuri with the type of family and upbringing that would give him a stable home life. As a result, Yuri would leave home from time to time and live on the streets. At the age of 9, his mother, at age 56, took him to the local orphanage and told them that she could not discipline him. This is a common story in Ukraine and they willingly took him. He never knew his father. Yuri eventually found his way back to the streets.

But he wasn’t as lucky or as smart as Sergey and was picked up by the police and placed in an Isolator. The Isolator is used to temporarily “house” street children to determine if they have any infectious diseases or if they have extreme behavior problems. Life in the Isolator is very difficult. The kids are treated for lice and other organisms, given very little to do and are angry and frustrated due to their imprisonment. Fights break out, discipline is tough and the staff is harsh, out of necessity. After two weeks in the Isolator, the children are placed in various local orphanages based upon age and other special needs.

The Borblicks were not planning on taking any additional children at this point in time because it had not yet been a year and they were still adjusting to Sergey and his extensive needs. But the orphanage director had a different plan. It was the end of the year and the staff of the government orphanage wanted its end-of-year reports to look good. They had one problem child left and it was Yuri. Yuri had been brought into the Isolator because he had been caught stealing, so it was a matter of getting his documents in order for the court and then on to prison. But the staff, in the Isolator, was unusually concerned for Yuri because he was a handsome boy and they were certain he would be subjected to sexual abuse if he was placed in a prison facility. So, in the interest of having their reports look good, getting Yuri off their hands and not sending him directly to prison, they concocted guardianship documents for Lena and Sergey Borblick. They then called Lena to congratulate her on her new addition to her family and asked when she would like to come and pick him up.

Lena actually did not have a problem taking Yuri, but she explained to the orphanage director that her husband did not have a permanent job and the law would not allow them to have another child. The director said, “Oh, don’t worry about that.” And thus Yuri became their next foster child. This was an important lesson for Lena. She learned from this experience that even government rules can be changed, if it is in the best interest of the people who have the power to change them.

From the beginning, Lena felt a huge evil presence in Yuri. She prayed to God for love and acceptance towards this boy, regardless of these feelings. God gave her the love and care for Yuri. But Yuri was not sincere or honest with her and began to steal food from the kitchen just because he wanted to take something, not because he was hungry. As they did with Sergey, they took him to church and he began to learn from the Bible that such behavior was not acceptable to God and others. Unfortunately, this behavior did not change. Lena could tell when Yuri was responding rightly to her love and care for him. When he was honest and not hiding anything from her, he would stop wetting the bed at night. But as soon as there was some sin or secret behavior, the bed would once again be wet. Lena’s understanding of God’s spiritual law of authority, for her as a parent, is this: once she has legal authority over the child, God gives her the spiritual authority to bind, break and prohibit the sin that binds him or her. But there is also one condition: the child must want this change and must be sincere and honest in dealing with her and with God.

With the help of the family, Yuri got a good education and graduated from technical school. He got a good job at the local steel mill with Lena’s help. When he was 18, with a profession and a good paying job, Lena and Sergey asked him to leave their home and move into the dormitory provided by his employer. Lena probably never would have selected this boy from the orphanage because of the negative, evil feelings she felt when near him. Lena had a premonition that he would do something terrible, like commit murder. Yet, even with this fear, she allowed him to live with her family for 3 years and prayed continually for him.

For these reasons, Lena and Sergey had finally asked him to leave. When he left, he did not take all of the things he had packed in one trip. Two duffel bags remained. The other children, being curious, got into these bags and found items belonging to the family. Lena saw that even though she loved Yuri and tried giving him what he would need to change his evil behavior, it was not enough. Yuri would not make the choice to change his life. Eventually, he did kill a woman and is now serving time in prison. Yuri had a dark side that was unable to be changed even with the love of a family and the presence of God. Lena and Sergey continue to pray for Yuri and hope that one day he will make a choice for God and his life will be changed forever. Lena has one other understanding of her spiritual authority from God: as soon as a child says I am big enough and I can live my own life, her spiritual authority over that child is over.

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