February 28

Written by Bill Grandi on February 28th, 2022

People often come into our lives who shape us, affect us, influence us, even change the course of our lives. Well over 10 years ago, a young lady whom I have never met in person came into my life and still profoundly affects me. I can say the same about a man, a pastor and missionary.  They both cause me to be grateful for those unseen people who God brings into my life.

I have never physically met Zee and Caleb. I met them through my blog. I could not even pinpoint when our paths crossed. But cross they have. Zee and I have exchanged comments on our blogs until we went dark for awhile. We exchanged books and I sent her a CD or two of music.  Her companions were the furry kind until she met Sam. They loved each other, married, and then shortly afterward decided to share their love by adopting Jenny and George, a brother and sister, who needed a home and lots of love. They got it. The 2 kids have grown (my how they have grown!). Zhenya (Jenny) and Zhora (George) are probably 6 years older than when I first saw them via pictures. I’ve never known what Sam does for a living; Zee works in some form of IT. They also love Jesus. Before I met her, Zee spent time in the states. A pastor of a church in Nashville, IN knew her from spending some time with her family. Oh yeah…did I tell you that Sam, Zee, Zhenya and Zhora live in Kiev?

Caleb is a missionary pastor. He married a Ukrainian girl and they have had 3 children. Caleb is pastoring a church in Odessa. Yeah, that Odessa. Ukraine. The church he pastors and the others he shepherds are ministering to the people in the city. They did not run.

I heard from Zee yesterday (Sunday) early morning after I sent her an email. Sam is one of the volunteers who patrol the city by taking up arms to defend their freedom. Zee and the kids are in the church basement steering clear of the missiles the ego maniac has ordered upon these freedom-loving people.

My heart aches for Zee’s family and friends. My heart aches for Pastor Caleb and his church and the pastors he shepherds. But I’m also encouraged by their resilience, their passion, their love for freedom, their country, their God, and for their friends and neighbors. Caleb pastors Odessa Baptist Church and Zee’s family (at my last word) attended a Nazarene church.

May they know God’s unlimited mercy and peace and grace. May they never forget there is a pastor and his church in Spencer, IN praying for them. May they know there is a nation that sees people who love freedom and are willing to pay the ultimate price to defend it.

My prayers-and hopefully yours-will be with people like Zee and Caleb and the Ukrainian nation. And may God bring an end to this ego maniac’s plan to destroy another country with his godless philosophy. 


6 Comments so far ↓

  1. Introducing us to Zee and Caleb here, Bill, has certainly put an up-close-and-personal face on this horrid conflict taking place. Yes, I’ve been praying, and will be praying all the more. God please bless the Ukrainian people!

  2. Ryan S says:

    My prayers are certainly with Zee, her family…Caleb and his family… as well as all those involved. I pray God will continue to intervene. To many lives have already been lost and too much has already been taken, yet I trust that God has an ultimate plan. I pray for the families and friends who have lost loved ones already… I pray for those that continue to patrol and defend against the tyrannical actions that continue to move in. I pray for the freedom that the people of Ukraine have been allowed to taste for over 20 years that is now being stolen from them. I pray for their peace. I pray that the bombing and invasion stop and the people of Ukraine are able to continue to live their lives in peace and freedom as an independent nation. On a global level I pray for leaders of the world to be open to the leading of God and that they not act with their own thoughts, minds, or experiences, but with the wisdom of our Father in Heaven and intervene by HIS power and direction and not their own.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      I will join you wholeheartedly in that prayer Ryan. I would rejoice to see an end to this war with the Ukrainian people realizing freedom is a wonderful, God-given gift.

  3. Ed says:

    I pray this senseless war is over before it begins. I pray God has his hands on the innocent people of the country.