"I see my work as a ministry"

- a MWB family sponsorship coordinator in Bulgaria shares his powerful testimony and how he now shines a light for the Lord, drawing people to Christ.

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"God has been guiding me all this time to get to where I am now."

Ventsislav Bozhikov, 43, is from Gotse Delchev, Bulgaria, and has worked as a family sponsorship coordinator for Mission Without Borders (MWB) in Dabnitsa since 2013.

“Many circumstances led me to the Lord Jesus Christ. When I was 14 years old, my mother was sick in bed, there was a financial crisis in Bulgaria, and we went through a really difficult time. 

“In my town, Christians from the local church regularly visited people in their homes to share the gospel and be with them. One day they came to my home to visit my unwell mother and bring us food. But they also left me spiritual food, because they gave me a small New Testament which I started reading.

“When I came to the Gospel of Luke, chapter 11 verses 9-10, I had to stop reading because the words, ‘Ask and it will be given to you, seek and you will find, knock and it will be opened to you’ kept repeating in my mind, over and over again. 

“I didn’t really understand much of what I was reading, but a few days later, other Christianscame to my house. They were talking about Jesus, about the cross, and I asked them about the words that had penetrated my heart and wouldn’t give me peace. They sat next to me and explained Jesus's sacrifice for my sins. We began to pray together for my repentance. 

Despite my young age, I knew what I had done and how I had lived during those 14 years, so I asked Jesus to forgive my sins. That was the moment when my walk with God began. 

“I started attending church regularly and reading the Bible and Christian literature, which in 1992 was extremely scarce.”

Ventsislav went on to marry Yliana, a woman he met at church, and they have three children who are serving in the church and taking part in MWB activities. In the meantime, he went to Bible college and graduated with a degree in theology, preparing himself for his future ministry at MWB.

“I see my work as a ministry,” Ventsislav said. “Sometimes it’s hard, but it is blessed. During my already nine years as a family coordinator, it has been a great privilege for me to serve God and help people. Many of the people we work with have no hope, no vision for their future, and no peace. Their lives are hard, and they live in the reality of this day by day. That is why it’s so important that they receive emotional and spiritual support and love. This builds a good relationship and leads us to share our problems together, to pray together. My aim is to feed them, and also to share the good news.

“In Dabnitsa we work with children, young people, and parents, but this couldn’t happen without the work of volunteers from the church. Many of the children of sponsored families grew up before my eyes and they’re now young adults. Over the years I’ve witnessed many of them repent and accept Christ as their Saviour during the summer camp organised by Mission Without Borders, get baptised and today love and serve God. When a person accepts Christ as their Saviour, I rejoice with the angels in heaven. I continue to stay close to them, discipling them and I have so much joy seeing God's work in their lives.

“In my profession, I meet many different people, that is the reason I put some verses on the walls."

And not only children come to God, but also many parents who made the important decision to be baptised and follow Christ. My prayer is that God will give me strength and wisdom in my work and that each person I care for will be born again. Please pray for the spiritual growth of all those we work with. My faith grows when I see the fruit of our work with families. I want to express my gratitude to God for the pastors and ministers at the local partnering churches, such as Rasim Ahmed and Sevda Markucheva, who work together with us to reach people for Christ. 

Ventsislav added, “In the beginning, I thought that after preaching the word of God, people would immediately accept Jesus, but God showed me that the times are his and I must believe and trust him. That not I, but he is the reason! I want to encourage everyone who gives their money to support the work of Mission Without Borders with the words of 1 Corinthians 15:58, ‘Your labour in the Lord is not in vain.’

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