From Tragedy to Triumph

Addiction and abuse brought tragedy after tragedy into Jelena’s life. Many times, she didn’t know where her help would come from.

As a child, Jelena in Serbia had no one to help her. Her father was addicted to alcohol and abused his wife and children. Her mother was overwhelmed by his behavior. She often had no money to care for her children. Eventually, circumstances forced her to take Jelena and her siblings to an orphanage.

Growing up without her parents was difficult for Jelena. She had nothing to believe in, and her sense of self-worth disappeared. As an adult, she was beset by problems and often lost her way. There was no one to help her.

As often happens for abused children, Jelena married a man who abused her. He began threatening her safety. Sometimes he locked her up in their house to keep her from having friends.

Jelena knew she needed help. They needed to find a better way to live. One day when she was outside in her yard, a Reach A Village ministry partner stopped to talk to her. “I was hungry to hear what this woman named Kaca wanted to tell me,” Jelena says. “As she talked, I realized my husband and I needed Jesus.”

God began working miracles in Jelena’s life from that day forward. Her husband’s hold on her eased, and she found the faith that was missing from their lives. Today, she gathers with other local believers to study the Bible, pray and worship God. “I have accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior,” she says. “I was baptized, too. Now, I share the message of the Gospel with everyone I meet. Please join me in praying that my husband will soon believe in Jesus.”

“But you, God, see the trouble of the afflicted; you consider their grief and take it in hand. The victims commit themselves to you; you are the helper of the fatherless” (Psalm 10:14).

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