In Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, our time was spent with a former School of Christ graduate whom I call Pastor Andrey. He is now a Russian missionary to Kyrgyzstan from the Vladivostok region. He had attended the School of Christ with Brother Clendennen in the 90’s and moved his family to Uzbekistan, where he ministered and planted four churches. Later he moved to Bishkek and has been instrumental in planting another three churches.
He asked us to come to encourage the churches in his region. We had forty-five participants in the School of Christ coming from four churches and three different countries. We were blessed to have a representative from Kazakhstan and Crimea. We had a mixed group of people. Some had been active in ministry for many years, while others were just newly saved off the streets of Bishkek. Therefore, God baptized many in the Holy Spirit while taking others deep into the Word.
We broke through in prayer during the series on Faith. Our prayer times had been good up to that point, but everyone was moved to believe God for the miraculous while hearing about Faith. The atmosphere at the School was affected by the Russia-Ukraine conflict. There were many Russians present in the School, so there was a genuine concern for the conflict that was going on.
The war raised the intensity of our prayer times throughout the School. No one knew what was going to happen, so they called on the Lord for help, peace, and for the future. The School came to the attention of many of the other churches in Kyrgyzstan. Some of those leaders from these churches came and attended for a day.
Then they invited us to go to their region of Kyrgyzstan and conduct a School. We hope to be able to return in the fall for a School in the southern part of Kyrgyzstan. One of our participants had a wonderful testimony. His name is Dennis. He is now in his mid-forties, but he spent most of his life drunk. He was homeless for many years but was eventually taken prisoner by a rancher in the mountains outside of Bishkek. His captor gave him just enough food to survive and enough alcohol to keep him drunk. If he tried to escape, they would beat him. During one of these beatings his eyes were damaged, and he lost most of his sight. One time when Pastor Andrey was in the mountains praying, he met Dennis, and he helped him to escape by bringing him to a ministry that specialized in helping people like Dennis.
Pastor Andrey thought everything was going well, but Dennis went back to the streets. Now nearly blind, he drank daily to drown his sorrows in alcohol. Eventually, the rancher found him again and brought him back to his ranch. But instead of giving him food or alcohol, the rancher gave him some money. Dennis thought about his life and decided to buy a bus ticket to Bishkek and find Pastor Andrey. He did just that. God saved him and provided for him to have his eyes checked, where they found a torn retina. God supplied money for surgery and some new glasses. He is now in church, and he attended the School of Christ.
Dennis testified that God had restored his sight completely. One year ago, he was nearly blind. Today his vision is perfect. He was greatly blessed by the School of Christ and has dedicated his life to the One who saved him from a wretched, sinful life. Praise the Lord!