Maxime at church today
Earlier this week, we met with Maxime's grandmother over at Olya's place to discuss our involvement with Maxime. She admitted that she was embarrassed that people at church knew that we were having to take care of Maxime. She insisted that she would take care of him and that he was not to come over to our apartment or go to church with us. We tried to explain that we were only looking out for his welfare and that we had no other intentions besides teaching him about Jesus Christ. Olya also spoke in our defense and told Maxime's grandmother that she had personally seen how we cared for Maxime day after day and the genuine love that we'd showed him. His grandmother finally agreed that Maxime could play with Dominic and Joshua, but only outside. She then left for a dentist appointment.
It wasn't long before Maxime showed up at our door and explained that he had asked his grandmother if he could stay here in Bila Tserkva. He told us that she had agreed to let him stay until Saturday before returning to the village. Then he told us he was hungry and asked if he could eat with us. We were torn with trying to honor his grandmother's wishes and wanting to see his physical needs met. We knocked on Olya's door and asked her opinion. Maxime told her that his mother said it was OK to eat with us so she told him to go eat with us, but just not to tell his grandmother.
Maxime enjoying a meal with Joshua after he came back from the village
We have been very careful to always ask his parents before having Maxime over or doing anything for him. His parents don't seem to feel the same way about us as his grandmother does, so we were happy today when Maxime's mother told Edna that it was OK for Maxime to go to church with us. (Apparently Maxime's grandmother didn't come to take him back to the village on Saturday like she had said.) We are so thankful to God that despite the problems with his grandmother, Maxime is once again being able to learn about God's Word and experience the Love of Christ in his life. We've noticed that Maxime's parents have begun to take better care of him and we pray that this continues. We were also told that Maxime's mother has stopped drinking since she recently had a stroke. We know that God has a purpose and a plan in Maxime's life and we are blessed to be a part of it.
"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." - Jeremiah 29:11
Maxime and Zhenia at church today