Many years ago the Lord imprinted 2 Timothy 2:2 on Andrew’s heart. In this scripture Paul was writing to Timothy, directing him to take the things that he had learned, and commit them to faithful men who would be able to go on to teach others. In 1993 the Lord showed Andrew a way to conduct a Bible college that would change the body of Christ’s perception of God. This school would equip men and women to be sent out to do the work of the ministry by teaching them spiritual truths and biblical knowledge that would ground students in the Gospel message of God’s unconditional love and grace, all the while providing hands-on ministry training. What began seventeen years ago with one school in Colorado has expanded into a sixteen campus network world-wide.
As each school continues to share the truth and prepare students, new ministers continue to step out and share what they have learned, fulfilling the verse in 2 Timothy. A prime example of this growth can be seen in Russia, where Mike and Carrie Pickett have begun to see the fruit of the duplication process. The Picketts are the directors of Equip Ministries International, AWM-Russia and Charis Bible Training Center in St. Petersburg. One of their recent graduates, Natasha Starikova has taken what she learned and experienced through CBTC, and launched a new school in her hometown of Nizhny Chelny, Tatarstan, in central Russia.
After graduating from CBTC in 2006, Natasha returned to Tatarstan to share what she had learned. As part of her ministry efforts in 2009, she opened an unofficial Bible school in her home, and began teaching CBTC's first year curriculum to a class of sixteen students. The teaching has been well received, even by the pastor of her church. As Natasha has shared lessons such as: The Integrity of God's Word; Spirit, Soul and Body; True Nature of God; and The Personality of Christ, she has witnessed each of her students come to understand the importance of knowing God's true nature. Natasha said of her students, "They want to communicate with Him, follow Him, [and] want to know His will for their lives."
Natasha and her students have been ministering to a group of seven men from a rehabilitation center in nearby Naberezhnye Chelny. They have witnessed noticeable changes in these men as they have turned from their lives as drug addicts into new creations in Christ. Natasha's team spends three hours every Saturday with these men. "The boys are very interested, ask questions and talk sensibly [about] the many truths from God's Word," said Natasha. This ministry is near and dear to Natasha's heart—she was an addict and a dealer herself, before receiving Jesus as her Lord and Savior.
In July, Natasha led her students on their first missionary effort to Kyrgyzstan. The student team was eager to put into practice what the Holy Spirit had revealed to them, and to share what they had learned. The students set up a mini Bible school for the local residents, and held classes every night for three weeks. Over the course of those few short weeks, lives were touched by God's Word. Natasha said, "Some people expressed that it [was] like an explosion in their mind when they started hearing—things started to change in their relationship with God and people." She went on to say that it was amazing for her to watch the Holy Spirit lead her students, and to see all they received through this trip. As a result of the missionary journey, several of Natasha's students now have a desire to go back to Kyrgyzstan as full-time missionaries to continue the work that they started.
The fruit of Natasha's ministry has become evident to the Picketts, and as the 2010 academic school year begins they have given Natasha their endorsement to open an official CBTC sister school. Natasha is now the Director of Charis Bible Training Center-Tatarstan. They will be assisting her with oversight, training and providing additional teaching staff. The Picketts are excited to watch the ministers they have been entrusted to train, rise up to become fine teachers, willing and able to disciple others. The 2 Timothy 2:2 duplication process continues.
"God is so good! I am very grateful to my Lord and those who taught me in the Bible School [CBTC] in St. Petersburg. Thank you for everything! And thank the Lord for His ministry through Andrew Wommack!" Natasha said.