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NIKOLAI PANKRATZ

NINA ESTER MIKHAILOVA

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I was born in Moscow in a time when the people of Russia still believed in communism. I received a master’s degree in acting from GITIS, The Russian University of Theater & Arts in Moscow, and performed in movies and theaters all over Russia and Europe. From childhood I believed in the revolution, the country, and the great future that we would build. I was taught to be strong, enduring, brave and ready to defend my motherland at all costs and at any time. Americans were considered enemies of the State, eager to enslave us.
  • In high school I was asked to attend military classes and learn how to handle military equipment such as a machine gun, a rifle, and even a gas mask in the event of a chemical attack.

  • Since God and communism did not co-exist together, little was mentioned about God in schools. Religion was considered a “leftover” from a “decayed capitalist system,” the teaching of Lenin. But even though I did not believe in God, I felt an emptiness inside, a feeling that something was missing. Sometimes I would turn around to see if someone was watching me, but no one was there. I couldn’t help but feel the existence of a higher power and knew that I was not alone. When sharing my thoughts about the supernatural with my friends, they would giggle and tell me I was strange.

  • One day, while on vacation with my friends at the Caspian Sea, I dreamt that I and others were in a secluded place, surrounded by a fence, from which there was no escape.  I was very scared but, unlike the others, I was able to leave the horrible place because somehow I was able to fly. The next day, while sitting on the floor under a large window and holding a cup of coffee, I was telling my friends about the dream. Just as one of my friends spoke, “This ought to mean something”, a huge draft from an approaching storm burst the window above, it crashing down and breaking into pieces. I heard screams and saw horror on my friend’s faces when something warm yet strong and powerful lifted me from the ground and moved me over to the side. In a split second I was sitting several feet away from the window, on a bed and in the same pose as earlier with my cup in my hands. To my amazement, not one drop of my coffee was spilled. For what seemed hours everyone sat mesmerized in total silence.  Only later did I completely realize what had happened and what could have happened.

  • After this, my search for the truth intensified.   Many things happened on the way, but God’s mercy prevailed every time.  With the collapse of communism, the doors of our country swung open and all sorts of religions, ungodly teachings, and occults streamed into the country. The enemy succeeded in derailing me many times. I did not know any Christians, nor did I have a Bible at that time, so instead of Jesus I would meet witches, gurus, and all kinds of people leading me even further away from the truth. Soon I found myself tangled in a web of confusion and became more and more desperate. With each passing day I was drawn deeper and deeper into mysticism and false teachings.

  • One day after a desperate and persistent prayer to the “absolute being,” as I called God at that time, I met my future husband, Nikolai. He and my old friend Evgeny, who became a believer a year earlier, began sharing with me what God had done in their lives. Evgeny’s testimony and his radical and miraculous transformation especially impressed me and served as strong evidence to the existence of God. I had personally known him for many years as a talented musician, but I knew he was an alcoholic. For the first time in my life the puzzle started to come together and I began to understand the redemptive powers of God, offered to me personally. I realized that I needed Him and that without Him life had no meaning. That is when I gave my heart and my life to Jesus Christ, and I have never looked back since.
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Nina EMA
Nina and Matt Newton performing at the EMA Music Awards in Moscow Russia. Click picture to view video.

 

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