Founder and Director, Chronological Bible Teaching Ministries
Iva May served alongside her husband, Stan, with the International Mission Board in Zimbabwe, Africa in the late 1980s - mid 1990s. After their return to the U.S. Iva took a seminary class, Chronological Bible Storying (teaching oral learners the Bible), and saw the value of modifying this concept of teaching to rapidly increase Bible literacy with women in the States.
She has since developed numerous Bible literacy resources to assist others on their journey. God has used these resources to increase both men's and women’s understanding of the big story of the Bible and the Author of the Bible as He interacts with His people. Unpacking the rich theology from the stories by learning to ask discovery questions (detail, inferential, connection, application) enables His people to understand the ways of God with His people, to address competing worldview issues, and to possess a reproducible tool with which to equip others.
Iva May is the founder and director of the Chronological Bible Teaching Ministries, a nonprofit established to develop Bible literacy resources and to train others to use those resources.
Director, Chronological Bible Teaching Ministries
Stan May has been in the ministry for more than 40 years. He and Iva served with the International Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention in Zimbabwe, Africa. During their years in Zimbabwe, Stan learned about the Chronological Bible Storying evangelistic method under one of its pioneers, Dr. Jim Slack, and translated several of the stories of that early material into the iSiNdbele language. In 1995, the Lord brought them back to the U.S.
Stan earned his PhD at Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary in 1997 and taught missions there for the next 16 years. Since 2000, Stan has also served as the pastor of Immanuel Baptist Church in Olive Branch, Mississippi. He has assisted Iva in the writing and development of the Chronological Bible Teaching materials and created M3, a companion piece for men. CBT unpacks God’s big story for men in a participatory setting, allowing each disciple to increase his understanding of the big story of the Bible and to get to know the Author of the Bible as He interacts with His people. The question and answer approach enables men to understand the ways of God with His people, to address worldview issues, and to possess a reproducible tool with which to equip others.
Stan May participates on every level, serving on the CBT board of directors, discipling men through the CBT method, writing resources, and training others to understand and tell the story the Bible tells.
Jennifer May is a recovering globetrotter who is trying to understand her primary identity as a daughter of God. She has seen God work firsthand through Chronological Bible Teaching in three different countries, using it evangelistically and for discipleship and church planting.
CBT Board Member
Kristy lives in Memphis, is married to Paul and together they have two teenage children. Kristy was first exposed to reading through the Bible chronologically in 2007, when she was introduced to Iva May through her mom. Kristy commented to Iva during that first lunch, “I struggle with feeling forgotten by God.” Iva confidently replied, “That, girlfriend, is a Bible literacy issue and you do not have to live the rest of your life feeling that way!”
After that first meeting, Kristy quickly entered into a discipleship group that Iva was leading and she has been using the CBT method ever since. Her heart is for the church to come back to the Scriptures — not theologians, devotional material or Christian books as supplements — but to read the Bible as the primary text to understand who God is, how He acts and the nature of His character. She actively leads CBT discipleship groups and serves on the Chronological Bible Teaching board of directors.
Joel Strahan has served in ministry for 20 years. He and his wife, Heather, served in Moscow, Russia, for three years as IMB missionaries. Currently, Joel is senior pastor of Slayden Baptist Church in Slayden, Mississippi.
Joel encountered Chronological Bible Teaching as he was preparing to plant churches cross-culturally in Russia. He and Heather effectively used the CBT method of discipleship in two countries as a powerful method of evangelism, church planting and church discipleship.
Joel believes that the CBT discipleship method provides the best available resource for the church in our day: “No other resource so quickly dispenses a correct hermeneutical approach to Bible study, allows the believer to learn and communicate the grand story of the Bible, and enables followers of Christ to appropriate faith in their daily life. I have never seen a resource that not only strengthens believers personally, but also empowers them to begin new discipleship groups in their ministry context, therefore producing revival in their church and kingdom growth in their community.”
Joel serves on the CBT board of directors, training men and women who will then train others.