Project Hope     home >> heal a hurting heart >>lesson 1>> and puppy story book
Heal a Hurting Heart - 'And Puppy' Story Book

DOWNLOAD Front cover (English)


War Warning


The BIG War


Day 1 as a Refugee




Life in the Home


Good  and  bad secrets


Life in a Refugee School


Giving my life to Christ


I'm a new creature


I'm sorry




Peace like a river


He watches over us

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Full Book (Ukrainian)

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Full Book (English)

CHAPTER 1 - War Warning

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #1 (Ukrainian)

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #1 (English)

" Aleksandr , you know ever since the war broke out, you have still been going to school if only to hide in the school basement but the shooting is ongoing and the bombing is getting worse I think you will have to stay home."

Mum informed me that the President had made an announcement that the enemy soldiers were moving in closer and closer. Life was just not the same anymore, outside the streets were eerily quiet, the empty supermarket shelves, the air raid sirens in the capital have become as normal as going out to buy a Kysil before the invasion began. "It's a totally new life Aleksandr" Mum said.

That was an understatement, every night for weeks we had heard the screaming air raid sirens and ran to the shelter for safety, clutching a blanket and Puppy hidden in my jacket. There were families lying all over the floor, some people crying others just staring with a glazed look on their faces in shock.

Mum was busy gather supplies, she said it was in case we had to leave immediately, or if services are cut off. She had to remember Granny's specific needs, including medication. I told her not to forget Puppies special needs, like dog food, a bone and drinking water. Mum seemed more interested in drinking water for the family.

Uncle Yvan had obtained extra batteries and everyone was busy charging their cell phones. Someone from America had once sent us a solar charger for phones and Uncle Yvan was clutching it like his life depended upon it!

Granny was busy putting all our important documents in a waterproof container, it was taking a long time because every time she came across a birth certificate, it always seemed to have a long story behind it. And the marriage certificate had stories about the great day, even the Passports had to pondered over, page by page remembering all those trips to far off lands.

Aunty Maryia was busy putting items into bags include things like blankets, towels and clothing. Boxes contained all the extra tinned foods that Uncle Yvan had got from the market. " Things are selling out the shelves are bare " he told mum. " This is a crisis, don't forget the first aid kit."

Mum said we should make up a 'Family Disaster Plan', in which each person has a role and knows in advance exactly what to do and how to work together in case of emergency.

All of a sudden I felt very lonely and ignored, all the adults were busy doing important things and I was told to just 'go away,' I felt very rejected and alone. Even Dad has brushed me off and told me to go and play indoors. He had arrived back with a large gun and he and Uncle Yvan were polishing it and looking it over. "I am prepared to lay my life down for my country" I overheard Dad telling his brother. What could he mean, my dad can't die!

Granny kept comparing this to 'The Revolution of Dignity', she told me it was also known as the Maidan Revolution and took place in  Ukraine in February 2014, before I was born.  She told me deadly clashes between protesters and the security forces in our beautiful capital  Kyiv  resulted in the ousting of elected President Viktor Yanukovych  and the overthrow of the  Ukrainian government ! She told me when war broke out between armed rebels and Ukrainian forces in April 2014, three quarters of the school's pupils fled. Oh no, I thought, that's like all my friends!

I couldn't stand it any longer, I couldn't handle the news blaring from the TV and the 'pings' from all the cell phones bringing in all the horrible scenes right into our home. I went outside to find Puppy, she had heard the gunfire and was terrified thinking it was fireworks which she had always hated. I picked her up and cuddled her "You are a specially puppy, don't be afraid I won't let anything happen to you" Mum must have overheard because she came over and put her arm around my shoulder and said "Aleksandr you are a special boy"

I remembered she always told me God knew me and would quote the Bible " I knew you before I formed you in your mother's womb. Before you were born I set you apart " She always reminded me " Aleksandr God had a plan for me, and it was a good plan that would cause me no harm but give me hope"

That always made me feel special and I tried to remember this now as everyone was rushing around preparing for the BIG war.



DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #2 (Ukrainian)

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #2 (English)

None of us will ever forget that dreadful night. The sirens blared and people were scattering in all directions trying to get to the closest underground shelter or basement. It was a particularly cold freezing night and snow was thick on the ground. " We must make our move now!" Dad signaled. "Grab the bags, get the supplies" That was my cue to grab Puppy, she was my priority. As we headed across the yard we heard a massive explosion, as I looked back to my horror our home had been hit and Uncle Yvan and Granny were still in doors. Auntie Maryia screamed and tried to go back, but Dad held her hand " He has gone, we must get out of here!" I was numbed by the sight of our home in ashes knowing my beloved Granny was crushed within.

"It's gone too far now" as the reality of the death of his mother and brother sunk in, "I have to get you all out of this country" Dad insisted. I had heard on the news that the Ukrainian refugee crisis caused by the invasion of Ukraine had resulted in more than 2.5 million refugees who had already left Ukraine. But I never imagined that I would be a part of that mighty movement of women and children. Hour by hour, minute by minute, more people were fleeing the terrifying reality of violence. Countless had been displaced inside the country, but Dad wanted us out.

I overheard Dad talking to mum "I have got to get you all to the train station, trains are leaving for Przemysl. It is emerged as a principal focus of the ongoing exodus because it is the first major city to the west of Medyka, the busiest crossing point along the 300-mile Polish-Ukrainian border."

I remember Granny telling me that during World War II, Nazi forces occupied Przemysl and carried out mass killings in the city's once-thriving Jewish community. I hope there are no more Nazi's there now!

Despite the crowds and all the bags we were carrying and Puppy wanting to get out of my jacket we eventually got to the station. But what a shock, it looked like nothing I remember the train station looking like, last summer when we had gone on holiday from Kiev  to Odessa . There were thousands and thousands of people all trying to get on the same train!

And then the unthinkable happened, Dad lifted me up in his arms, looked me in my eyes and for the first time in my life I realized Dad was crying. " Son, I have to leave you now, I must go back and fight for our country, you must be a brave boy, because you will now be the man in your mother's life. Be strong and of good courage, know that God is with you and that I will always love you, one day we will meet again, until that time always remember that I love you"

I broke down in tears, how can I bear such a burden, at the tender age of 7!

But I am a proud Ukrainian and I stuck my chest out and lifted my head high and said "You can depend on me dad".

With that the whistle blew and there was a massive surge towards the train, that was the moment that I lost the grip of my mums hand and before I knew it I was being swept along with a wave of people, all I could hear was my mother screaming " Aleks Aleks get on the train" As she was being swept along by the crowd further and further away from me.

Someone held their hand out of the train window and I grabbed it and Puppy and I were dragged through the window, I fell into the train and banged my head on something. Puppy  put her foot in my mouth, that's all I remember!


CHAPTER 3 - Day 1 as a Refugee

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #3 (Ukrainian)

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #3 (English)

Thanks to a quick train connection I arrived within a few hours, with a sore head and a heavy heart and nothing to my name but Puppy. I hoped that mum and Auntie Maryia were amongst the hundreds fleeing Ukraine that had arrived on this same packed train at the station in Poland's Przemysl.

A volunteer with a big red cross on her jacket handed me a Kyivska Perepichka and a cold drinks it tasted so good that I began to think that maybe life was worth living, even Puppy enjoyed a little snack . Another lady came up to me and gave me a bag of Wawel Mieszanka Krakowska, I was amazed at their kindness and it really lifted my spirits and mood.

Mothers were crying as kind Polish mothers handed over strollers so that their baby that they had been carrying for days could now sit comfortable and be pushed along. Tears of joy that their children were safe at last and tears of sadness that their husbands were left behind to fight to the end.

Queues formed - stretching back dozens of kilometres in some instances - as  people wait to get processed and pass through the station's border control and customs. Everyone was pulling something, or carrying something it turned out their entire life was packed into those cases, all else was left behind forever. All I had was Puppy!

I wondered around aimlessly for a few hours until a nice policeman came up and asked me a few questions. It became obvious that I was lost and mum was nowhere to be found. He kindly took me into a side room, which turned out to be the Mobile Police station and let me sit down. A female Police officer came over to talk to me. I so wanted and needed to talk about what I had seen, she wanted to know what I could remember, and how I was feeling right now.

The bump on my head was hurting and it had me a bit confused, I wouldn't remember the name of my home town in Ukraine.

I couldn't remember my last name, I started to wimper quietly, Puppy licked my face.

She started to talk to a Guidance Councilor that had come along they both agreed that I needed professional help to navigate through my emotions and trauma.

But first I needed to get to the hospital to get my head looked at. The Police lady volunteered to take me once I had gone through Immigration, she was there the entire time to help me. Maybe she was an angel!


CHAPTER 4 - The Hospital

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #4 (Ukrainian)

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #4 (English)

A young police woman gave me a string to tie round Puppy's neck so I did not have to carry her all the time. She told me that there was a hospital train currently located in Przemysl, it has five carriages adapted to transport the wounded and four stocked with humanitarian aid for Ukraine's Lviv district. I was very grateful for all that was being done to help our people.

"The main hospital is full" I was told, but sometimes when there seems to be no way God will make a way. As tanks roll across Ukraine, many Americans have looked for ways to contribute assistance to the Ukrainians. Five American medics, including some from Massachusetts, went beyond donations: they traveled to the region and created a pop-up medical station for refugees in a former mall near the Polish-Ukrainian border. They are part of the Global Disaster Relief Team  

So that's where we headed but when we got to the hospit al I was told that Puppy  could not come inside Casualty! I was tired  and  sad. I wanted to see my Mummy  and  my Aunty. I said I did not want to stay there. The Policeman said it was OK and that he would hold  Puppy  for me whilst I went in with the Nurse. I thought I was going to see my family, I looked in the room but there was just a little girl crying, an old man who was very still  and  a very pregnant lady moaning. There was a young boy like me with blood running down his leg into the water on the floor making a horrible mess. The nurse took my temperature,  and  put a tight thing round my arm  and  then put a clothes pin thing on my finger. She said I had to see a doctor. 

The doctor looked very tired. She said she had been there for 24 hours and no one had come to relieve her. She said that I had "con cushion" or at least that is what it sounded like. She said I should go home  and  rest. I told her our home was gone  and  I did not know where my family members were. She called the policeman in  and   Puppy  peed on the floor. You can imagine the nurse was not happy! 

Whilst the nurse was shouting  and  getting a lady to come with a mop the police whispered in the Doctors ear. Then the Doctor told me to go  and  sit outside on the chairs with  Puppy .

After a long time the Policeman came back with a bottle of Fanta Orange and a freshly baked Zapiekanka. He told me that I was going on a big adventure. He also told me that they were looking for my Mum  and  Aunty Maryia in the Immigration department. He told me that I had to go to a nice Big House  and  wait to see what would happen. I was worried in case the people at the Big House would not like dogs. I began to cry I thought I might lose Puppy and I would be so lonely.

The Policeman told me that he would tell them at the Big House that Puppy  had to come as well.  I felt lost and lonely, totally abandoned, all I really had to call my own was Puppy. I felt I just had to cheer Puppy up so I told her a story my Granny once told me.

It was about a Rottweiller dog called Andriy, and as him name implies he was very strong, he was a warrior. He had been officially recognized for his role in rescuing people during another tragedy years ago this time it was a Big Flood. A mudslide forced Andriy and his owner to leave their home and go to a safer place. They came across a young girl trapped by turbulent water. Andriy guided the girl to shore by swimming at her side, then jumped back in to pull a second girl out of the water. He then helped eight children climb to high place and over time he saving 37 people from drowning, ranging from a girl of 8 years old to an elderly man of 80 years old.  He was awarded the Medal "Honor The Value" and a certificate for the role he played. He also received plaques and medals from private institutions and governments, international tributes.

I told Puppy she deserved one of those Medals and one day I would give her one for sticking with me!


CHAPTER 5 - Life in the Big House

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #5 (Ukrainian)

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #5 (English)

I was waiting at the hospital and suddenly, things happened in a rush.  Some strange soldiers came  and  the Policeman told me to go with them. I was pleased when I heard him tell them "the  Puppy  goes with Him - it's all he has left".   We went to the grass area in front of the hospital  and  there was a helicopter already there.   The blades of the rotor were spinning  and  it was very loud. The policeman did me high five  and  gave me to a big soldier who made me do up my coat  and  put a helmet on me. He put ear plugs in my ears  and  a sort of life jacket on me.

Two soldiers pushed me up some big steps into the helicopter. I looked back  and  waved to the Policeman. Then they strapped me into a seat  and  they told me to hold  Puppy  tight. A lady soldier told me this was a Wild Cat Helicopter. She was funny  and  blocked  Puppy 's ears when she said "Wild cat" as she said dogs like to chase cats! She had a red cross on her shoulder  and  she said she was a nurse as well as a soldier. She said they were just giving me a ride to the Children's Home I asked if my Mum would be there but it was too noisy I could not understand her answer.

When the helicopter landed, they undid all the straps  and  took off the lifejacket  and  I got out still clutching  Puppy . It was further than I thought  and  I fell down. I felt stupid as there were loads of children watching from the steps of the big house. They seemed disappointed that it was just me  and  Puppy, until behind me the soldiers brought out bottles of water  and  boxes of biscuits. "Come on Boy" said a Lady in an orange T shirt, "come away from that helicopter."

She took me into the kitchen with Puppy and I heard the helicopter flying away. I never got to say goodbye to the nice Nurse Soldier Lady. 

The Home was huge. There were lots of bedrooms for boys downstairs  and  upstairs there were lots more for girls.

The Lady in the orange T Shirt was called Miss Valentyna, she said  Puppy  had to live in the dog house under the building but that I could see her when I wanted. She gave me to a man called Mr. Antonalso in an orange T Shirt  and  he showed me where  Puppy  would stay. He even had dog food for her. No one seemed knew about my Mum  and  Aunty Maryia .

I was beginning to feel frustrated, trapped and hurt. Pain started to take over my feelings, I had to find someone to blame. I started getting angry it seemed a way of releasing energy, it was my little protest to the loss of my family, it just didn't make sense, it simple wasn't fair and I wanted to lash out and hurt someone.

Nurse came to talk to me she wanted to know how I was f eeling physically, I told her I felt drained and empty. I seem to be having difficulty making decisions or staying focused. I was becoming easily frustrated and ended up arguing more with people, I was feeling tired, sad, numb, lonely and worried. This was hard, I needed help, I really wanted to go home, but I no longer had a home, it had been bombed and poor Granny was probably still buried beneath it!


CHAPTER 6 - Good  and  bad secrets

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #6 (Ukrainian)

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #6 (English)

Another problem was Mr. Anton. He always looked at me as if I was in the way  and  said I should not hug  Puppy  as I would get 'Leap To Spring Osis'!  And  he told Daryna, my only friend, to stay away from me. I began to avoid him. Then one Monday he just did not come to work any longer! I was glad he was gone.

One day Daryna, who as her name implies was 'God's gift' to me, told me she had a secret to tell me. We sat under the house with  Puppy   and  she told me........she told me Mr. Anton  had left because of her. He had been trying to get her to do bad things.  He told her that he would get her ready to have a boyfriend. He had been trying to touch her under her panties. He told her if she did not do what he said he would kill  Puppy . She said she ran straight away  and  told Miss Valentyna what he tried to do  and  the police came  and  took him away. She said Mr. Anton was in the prison waiting for the court to decide on his punishment. I was so mad! How could he say he would hurt  Puppy !  I was pleased he had left as I felt like doing him some harm, like punching him on the nose. His name means 'flowers' but he turned out to be a weed!

Daryna  said she knew what to do about Mr. Anton's bad intentions towards her as it was not the first time. She said her mother's boyfriend had done something wrong to her before  and  she had told her Sunday School Teacher. She said that is why she was in the Home. As her mother did not believe her but the Sunday School teacher did. She said the Sunday school teacher told her to "tell the truth  and  truth would set her free"   and  that she had prayed with her, then she got brave  and  when the Police came with the Welfare officer she told them all about it  and  they were sorting it all out. 

Daryna said she knew that you should always run from people with bad intentions  and  tell someone. She said she knew now that some bad secrets should not be kept. She explained that "Good secrets" were like not telling about a surprise party or what was in a present. But "Bad secrets" were those where the person threatens you if you tell what they did and where they touch you. No one except your mum or the nurse should touch you where your underwear goes  and  then tell you not to tell anyone that is a bad secret to keep.  

Daryna said that after that experience with her mother's boyfriend she had been different. She said her Sunday School Teacher had told her that God loved her  and  that it was not her fault. She said she had decided to serve Christ. I did not know what she meant, because I did not know this Jesus Christ she was serving but I did know I was pleased Mr. Anton was gone!


CHAPTER 7 - Life in the Refugee School

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #7 (Ukrainian)

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #7 (English)

After about two weeks in the Big House, which turned out to be a Children's Home, with more new children coming each day from Ukraine, the staff said that we would have to go to school.  School was weird, no uniforms, no books,  and because the this was a refugee emergency school we were in a tent. Our tent had UNICEF written on it which meant that nice people from overseas sent it. But it was still very cold and we shivered at our desks.

In the afternoon foreign workers came in blue T shirts they said they were our friends  and  they set up something called a Child Friendly Space where we played games. Their names were funny  and  if you did learn them then they left for good! So in the end we just called them "Miss"   and   "Sir"

I did not have any friends in the Home except for Daryna. She was 12  and  was already at Secondary School so she did not come with me to the Tent School. She had lived in that Home for months before I arrived. She would sit with me under the house  and  pet  Puppy   and  talk to me. I told her that I did not believe that my Mum  and  Aunt could be dead. Granny was old so I could believe that she had not made it but not the others. I had dreams that Mummy was calling me,  I saw her jumping on the train and coming to the Home to rescue me. Sometimes I dreamt of Dad and saw him with his new shiny gun running at the enemy guns blazing, shooting airplanes out of the sky! I didn't know how to pray but I did anyway and asked God to keep him safe and help him to find me.

The other children all seemed to know each other  and  the three in my room were all from the same town.  They called me 'Helicopter Boy'  and  would make helicopter noises every time I came in. One big boy said that he hated people from my town and  that he would poison my dog as he wasn't a fierce breed like a Jackal. He loved Jackals and  so, after a while, that is what we called him, even the staff eventually called him "Jackal" it became his name.

Everyone would have a job in the Home, Jackal's job was to take out the garbage to the bins. He always made me do it, in return he promised he would not hurt  Puppy . He said if not he would tie a block round her neck  and  throw her in the sea. Sometimes I hated him, I was very sad and lonely I would hide and cry quietly hugging Puppy - my only comfort.

I didn't do too well in the Tent School, my mind was easily distracted and I got muddled up at times and couldn't concentrate. I wish I could remember where I use to live, I guess it was that bump to my head!

Some nights I would dream about my old home, Puppy and I were playing outside the house with Dad, it was such a good dream. I was told that sometimes God can talk to you through a dream. I wondered when my Dad would come and rescue me. Soon I hope!


CHAPTER 8 - Giving my life to Christ

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #8 (Ukrainian)

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #8 (English)

I could not sleep properly in a nice bed as the bombing and shootings kept troubling me in my dreams  and  I kept crying for my mother. She told us that Jesus had a special power not to be afraid  and  not to hate people who hurt him. She told us that because Jesus loved us he died on the cross  and  wanted to help us to be friends with God  and  have power not to be afraid  and  not to hate people. She said we had to decide whether to follow Jesus or go our own way.  She said the way to become a Christian was to Repent  and  Believe.

I thought this sounded interesting I have always wanted special powers!!! Also I was very troubled about how much I hated Jackal and  Mr. Anton too!

I knew God had saved my life during the war and  I really needed to be able to sleep in the storm of life. I decided to give my life to Christ  and  to be a Christian. I am not a great reader but the Bible Books had loads of pictures  and  the Sunday School Teacher said that God loved everyone whether they were top or bottom of the class, good or bad, pretty or ugly, that Jesus still died for them so they could "tell the truth  and  the truth would set them free" She taught us about Noah who had survived a flood and how God had put the rainbow in the sky to give us all hope that He would never destroy the earth by flood again. I liked that story because I needed some hope right now.

Jackal somehow heard that I had put my hand up when the Sunday School Teacher prayed. He straight away said I was a Bible bashing Christian. He said Christians were selfish, only helped their own church people  and  taking people's money. He said he would kill  Puppy  then I could pray for him to be raised from the dead. I felt myself getting red I just wanted to punch Jackal on the nose! That night I remember the boys in my room were especially tormenting with their helicopter noises  and  saying that nobody wanted to be friends with Helicopter Boy.

I pulled the sheet over my head  and  asked God to switch on those magic powers as right now all I could think about was all the bad things I wanted to do to those guys.

It started to rain, the wind was howling but I went sound asleep I dreamt about Noah in the Ark and God sending the rainbow giving me hope.

All of a sudden I felt so lost and lonely all I really had to call my own was Puppy, she made me smile, but then I remembered I could call on my new friend Jesus.


CHAPTER 9 - I'm a new creature

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #9 (Ukrainian)

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #9 (English)

Next week Daryna and I were the first in Sunday School, I could hardly wait to learn more. She had told us this week we would learn about a butterfly that really started out as a fuzzy little caterpillar. I didn't like caterpillars, my dad had always warned me that they ate lots of his vegetables in the kitchen garden, I knew I didn't like them they were ugly, no one would say that caterpillars are beautiful. A caterpillar is a worm -- and worms are not beautiful! In fact the only good thing about worms was that you could put them on a hook and go fishing. Daryna squirmed when I told her my fishing stories, with wriggling worms! I remember Dad and I had gone fishing last summer when we were on holiday. another lifetime ago!

But then I learnt in Sunday School that one day the caterpillar spun a cocoon about himself and stays there for several weeks. Just hanging upside down, occasionally twitching, who would imagine that anything good was happening. But it was like the caterpillar was being born again and when it comes out, it is no longer a caterpillar, it has been miraculously changed into a beautiful butterfly, it was a new creation.

But it took time, it was like the caterpillar died in the chrysalis or cocoon and eventually the butterfly emerged but it was a struggle.

One day Puppy and I were in the field next to the Children's Home and we saw a chrysalis hanging from a twig, it started twitching and cracking open. We watched as the butterfly struggled to get out. It made me think of all the struggling I had to do over the time since the 'BIG War'. I later learnt that a butterfly must struggle out of its chrysalis to start the blood to flow into its wings to make it strong and able to fly. It must do this to complete its life cycle into a butterfly. I felt I wanted to help the struggling butterfly but by assisting the butterfly and helping it to free itself, I would never let it fully develop and fulfill its destiny. I would actually be hindering it and prevented it from becoming who it was meant to be. What God showed me was that what He does, sometimes in our lives, is to allow the struggle, the hurt, the process because we must fight to become fully who we are meant to be.

If He stepped in to help during the most crucial part in our lives, we would never become who we were made to be. As I pondered this thought out came the butterfly, flying away . with Puppy in the chase, she chased that butterfly all around the field until she eventually fell into the ditch which was filled with muddy water, you should have seen her.

She changed from a white puppy to a brown dog! " That's it Puppy you are going to have a bath even you will become a new creation!"

The Bible says, " if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!" When we invite Jesus to come into our heart, we become a new creation. God doesn't just clean us up, He makes us into a new person.

So now when I find myself in a huge struggle or fight I can have hope. I now understand that this could be in the most important part of my life that will make me into who I am destined to be. I know that Jesus is with me and what I am to become is so great that all I have been through and am going though will pave the way for what I am to become. Strong, free, and soaring high with beautiful, colorful butterfly wings to carry me onto the next adventure of life with Puppy.

Then I remember my mum use to always tell me that " God had a plan for me, and it was a good plan that would cause me no harm but give me hope " And so it was that a sudden sadness swept over me as I tried to imagine mum and I being together again some day. With that it started to drizzle with rain, and as I looked up there was a beautiful rainbow, " new hope!"


CHAPTER 10- I'm sorry

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #10 (Ukrainian)

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #10 (English)

I just have to learn how to say 'I'm sorry' it just doesn't seem to come naturally, Jackal has made my life a misery and I have been mean to him as well. How do I say I'm sorry? These were the questions I was asking myself, Daryna and our Sunday School Teacher. She told me that sincere apologies can lead to forgiveness, which takes the sting out of hurts. I knew this was necessary in a happy, healthy life. But I had to learn how to say I'm sorry, how to apologies and really mean it even to someone like Jackal, because up until now I was glad I had punched him and made his nose bleed! Then at Sunday School I learnt how to successful apology :

1) Remorse: Feeling sorry for the action.

2) Repentance: Expressing what's in your heart.

3) Recompense: This is when you try to make amends, which is not always possible, but always worth a try.

I knew "I'm sorry" means nothing unless it comes from a repentant heart. So I first had to ask God to forgive me for being so nasty to Jackal .

I had read in Ephesians 4:32 " Be kind to each other, sympathetic, forgiving each other as God has forgiven you through Christ." That was a tall order, Jesus was going to help me with this one!

So I had no choice but to go and find Jackal and tell him how sorry I was for punching him in the nose. " I'm sorry Jackal. I blew it. I was wrong, please forgive me Jackal ." Guess what Jackal put his hand out and we shook hands, it was the beginning of the healing that was so needed

I felt better after unpacking all those super powers but I was still lonely...... That night I dreamed of my Dad. He was looking for me in the railway station, and all the nightmares and fears of that terrible day came flooding back, but then, in my dream Jesus came walking into my room and turned on the light and I wasn't afraid anymore and Jesus took my hand and led me outside. There was dad and he and I and Puppy started playing on a lovely green lawn outside of a beautiful new house, it was a good dream and I woke up feeling good inside.


CHAPTER 11- Daddy

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #11 (Ukrainian)

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #11 (English)

Miss Valentyna and the other adults in orange T shirts were always asking me what I remembered about where I came from. I told them my name and my town and my Mum's name Anna Dyna but I could not remember Granny's real name or Aunty Maryia 's surname. I told them my Dad was Aleksei . That is why I am Aleksandr. ALEKS-ANDR.

They told me that the Police said that they did not find my Mum in immigration which must mean she is still in Ukraine, my heart sank, that was not a good place to be right now it was hell.

Then one day Miss Valentyna came into school and said I had to come right now! I was worried that maybe something had happened to Puppy or that he had escaped and chewed up someone's shoes. It would not be the first time. She said no, I had a visitor. I went into the office and there was a very dirty tired looking man with a beard in army uniform. It was Dad! He held his arms out and we just hugged and hugged. He said he was sorry, that he had only just found out where I was as he had been told I was lost with my Mum and Maryia. He had walked for days to get to the train station and then over the border. He said that people said that the whole family was lost. Then he met that Policeman from the first day and he told him I was alive and in the Home. As I listened, I realised that it was true maybe my Mum was actually gone, I cried and cried and cried and then Miss Valentyna suggested I take my Dad to meet Puppy.

When we sat under the house my Dad gave me a special present, all wrapped up, a Teddy Bear toy, soft and cuddly, little did I know how precious 'Teddy' would become to me.

Dad told me that he had been so sad when he thought that I was dead and that seeing me today was the best thing that had ever happened to him. He told me that he was so sorry that he had not come before. He asked me to forgive him for not being there. Dad said our lives may have taken some strange twists and turns but the One who holds our tomorrows is still in control.

It kind of reminded me of the story of Joseph in the Bible. Dad said that he had asked God to help him find me and now that he had, we would serve God together for the rest of our lives. " And Puppy" I said.

You see it all worked out for my good just like my Sunday School teacher said, because I loved God.


CHAPTER 12- Peace like a river

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #12 (Ukrainian)

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #12 (English)

Dad and I along with Puppy moved back into the country side, it was where we were from, it's where 'we belong' Dad told me. And it's safer here.

Dad started planting vegetables and keeping fish, goats and even rabbits to eat and distribute among the community. He taught me about Moringa and we planted it in a greenhouse dad had made and all the animals ate it and were very healthy. We even drank the tea and began to feel stronger and healthier, dad showed me how you can purify water using Moringa.

Sometimes we would all go down to the river to play. Those times I felt most at peace, Puppy would splash around at the edge and try to pick up rocks from the river bed, when she did bubbles would come out of her nose! It looked so funny I would laugh at her. She met a new friend one of the many stray dogs that had been abandoned following the war. I sometimes took scraps down to the river for him and he started to get health, he loved Puppy and she was happy.

Dad taught me how to swim in the river, I loved those times with Dad, he made me feel special and it almost made up for not having mum around.

I continued to go to Sunday School and I learnt more about peace. This was a whole new experience for me. I learnt that Jesus said "I am leaving you with a gift-peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don't be troubled or afraid."

But sometimes at the end of the day, when it was time to turn out the light or lantern, we still did not always have electricity, and go to bed, I wanted to know that I was not alone in the darkness. That is where my 'Teddy Bear' came to the rescue.

Dad gave me Teddy the day we were united at the Big House and at night Teddy was never very far away. Somehow, the darkness was not so frightening with "Teddy" in the bed with me, and Puppy sleeping at the foot of the bed in her special bed that Dad had built for her.

Our Sunday School teacher told us if we want to know peace, we can only know that peace when we know Jesus, the Prince of Peace. If we don't know Jesus, we can have no peace.

That is how I was at the Big House before Jesus became my best friend and gave me that super power to forgive Jackal and even that nasty man that threatened to kill Puppy and did nasty things to my friend Daryna . I had no peace only fear and anger and loneliness but those days are now way behind me. In another life it seems.

I have moved on, now I have my Daddy and my Heavenly Daddy and Puppy, what more could a boy ask for!


CHAPTER 13- He watches over us

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #13 (Ukrainian)

DOWNLOAD 'And Puppy' Chapter #13 (English)

As time went by the crops started to grow again, the fruit were bearing and there was more to eat. The trees were green again with leaves and fruit. There was a new sense of hope. Dad said that I was growing up, I was very pleased, I pushed my chest out and stuck my chin up in the air and went on tip toe to make myself a little taller. Dad said I was now his big boy, he had my back, he was watching over me.

One day I noticed that Puppy was growing up as well in fact she was getting very fat!

I didn't understand why until she started to pull leaves together and she found some rags in the shed and it seemed she was making a bed for herself under the house. Then she lay down and I sat down and watched over her as she gave birth to three beautiful little puppies. They were perfect except their eyes were shut, but Dad explained they were born that way and very soon he was right they opened their eyes and saw me for the first time.

What fabulous days we had. Puppy and I playing with her new puppies, I just knew I could never be happier than I was those days. Puppy always watched over her puppies, she would pick them up and bring back into the shelter if they wondered off and that is when I began to think that my Heavenly 'Daddy' knows everything that I go through. There is nothing that happens to me that He doesn't know about. Just like Puppy He is watching over me. When I felt lonely and totally abandoned at the Big House, when everything seems hopeless, I began to realize that even then God knows and God cares.

And if I wonder off track a bit, He comes after me just like Puppy rounds up her puppies so my Heavenly 'Daddy' comes after me, gives me a big hug and brings me back into the pack.

I was happy the sun was shining and the birds were singing and a little sparrow came hopping up to look at Puppy's puppies.

Then it all came flooding back, the smell of the round "Kolach" bread baking in Granny's kitchen. She always baked it if we were expecting visitors, she told me it was a symbol of eternity and represented hospitality. I remember when Uncle Yvan would come and Granny would give him salt. She told me it was offered as a humble greeting to visitors.

Uncle Yvan, as the head of his household, would break off a small piece of "Kolach" bread and dip it into the salt and bows his head slightly in thanks before eating the bread.  Mum always reminded me that salt is reflected in Christ's words, "You are the salt of the earth".

And now I can hear Granny singing at the top of her old crackly voice, a song some Missionaries from England taught her years ago.

"Why should I feel discouraged?

Why should the shadows come?

Why should my heart feel lonely, and long for heaven and home?

When Jesus is my portion, a constant friend is He.

His eye is on the sparrow and I know He watches over me.

His eye is on the sparrow; and I know He watches me."

And I wept with joy, I knew my hurting heart was healed and for the first time since that dreadful night of the evacuation and our house being bombed, I sang that same old song I had heard Granny sing so often with me sat on her lap.

"I sing because I'm happy. I sing because I'm free!

His eye is on the sparrow; and I know He watches me.

His eye is on the sparrow; and I know He watches me."

Not just sparrows, He watches over Dad and I and Puppy

and even her puppies!



English - Heal a Hurting Heart Curriculum










New Life French Child Evangelism Curriculum
New Life Swahili Child Evangelism Curriculum
New Life Yoruba Child Evangelism Curriculum
New Life Chichewa Child Evangelism Curriculum
New Life Persian Child Evangelism Curriculum


Grow and Go English children's Curriculum
Grow and Go Swahili children's curriculum
Grow and Go French children's curriculum

Copyright ©  2024 All rights reserved. Disclaimer Click to Contact us CONTACT (246) 425 1917 MAKE A DONATION