Eugene is the pastor of a church in southern Siberia. He is a part of the fellowship of pastors HeartCry started supporting at the beginning of 2012 in this region.
Testimony of Conversion
I started praying to God at the end of the 1980s, becoming more and more convinced that He existed. There were no believers where I lived nor was spiritual literature available and I was walking blindly. Yet God was beginning to work in my heart, even though I continued to lead a sinful way of life. By the age of 30 I was an alcoholic. After a fit of drunkenness in November of 1992, I was on the edge of suicide. But the Lord intervened at that moment, bringing me to my knees. I prayed that He would change my life and bring me out of my deplorable state. At that time I was thinking of physical transformation and I didn’t know that Jesus Christ was the Savior and Lord who died for my sins.
However my life began to change externally. The Lord took away my dependency on alcohol, and I wasn’t fired from my job nor did I lose my driver’s license. If it weren’t for the Lord I would have lost those things and my family too. I had an increasing desire to seek God and to know about Him. I traveled to Irkutsk and went to an Orthodox church. I wanted to be baptized there, but God prevented me from doing that. When I returned home I discovered that some Baptist believers had visited our town. The next time they came I attended the service and stayed afterward. I received a copy of the New Testament and began to study the Gospel. I was baptized on July 7, 1993 and became active in the life of the church. I started to help pastor the church in 1995. This went on for many years. However, in spite of all my activities I didn’t have true repentance or a broken heart. I remained unregenerate. And when all my efforts resulted in nothing I started falling hard and came to the point of drinking again and eventually hit rock bottom.
The Lord was gracious and showed Himself in a way that I understood my utter unworthiness and I was brought to the point of complete surrender to Jesus Christ. In September 2007, I was given a new life because the Lord came and changed me. After much time and training, I was made the pastor of the church again – this time it was for real.