From Hurt to Healing: Nadya’s Story

Shared by Lena Voznyuk

For Nadya’s privacy, please don’t share this story on social media.

When Nadyezhda was just a tiny girl, her mother tried to choke her, and broke her daughter’s nose with a pillow. Her mother later died from alcoholism. Nadya grew up first in a “baby orphanage,” then an orphanage for older kids.

When Nadya was older, she wanted to prove to the whole world that she was beautiful and worthy of love.

I first met Nadya when she enrolled in a trade school where we held life skills lessons. Since then, we’ve taken small steps to build a personal relationship. Nadya’s like a hedgehog that, when defending itself, pricks all the people around. She does have a kind heart, but revealing it took a lot of time and effort. Nadya could be rude and angry – breaking off a telephone call, slamming a door. She was testing us to see when we’d quit loving her. And God was giving us patience and strength.

Lena and Nadya

Nadya started attending the Day Center. At first she sat in a corner. She watched us and saw that we loved anyone who came to us under any circumstance. We always served a good lunch and hot tea, we always asked how people were doing. Her heart began to soften.

Now, Nadya is a faithful helper at the Day Center. When other orphanage graduates come to visit, Nadya invites them to the table, heats up food, and serves them. Every leader asks her for hot tea. This feeling of being needed and wanted inspires her. She even started attending church and Bible study group with me. I see God’s work in her heart every day. Love heals!

Nadya at the Day Center

When she decides to follow Jesus, the heavens will rejoice, and I will too. I love this girl! Please support us in prayer for Nadya.

Below are some photos of Nadya’s inherited home in a village, which is not currently livable. We hope to help her restore it.