This week’s tool of the week is Peyton Jones!
Peyton has written some amazing works, including Church Zero: Raising 1st Century Churches out of the Ashes of the 21st Century Church, which has greatly inspired me over the past few years!
But, that’s only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the remarkable things Peyton has done throughout his life for Jesus. The guy has baptized members of the Arian Brotherhood and the Mexican Mafia… at the same church! He started another church out of a gay coffeehouse. And now, he continues to train leaders how to seek after people for God with his latest book, Reaching the Unreached: Becoming Raiders of the Lost Art.
Yet, when he first started developing his aspirations for serving God, what he really wanted was to read and learn theology, drink coffee, and be left alone… including by God! But, God wouldn’t leave him alone.
Instead, God led him step by step, through ups and downs along Peyton’s journey in ministry. As he puts it, Peyton’s life has been a continual process of the Holy Spirit invading his life, wrecking his fancy plans and humbling his aspirations to the point that all Peyton wants to do now is truly and honestly glorify God.
God has gifted him with the ability to successfully plant churches, but it’s never about Peyton… always about God. Which is why they’ve been so successful. In fact, if he were to go back to the church in Long Beach that he planted just two years ago, the people there would have no idea who he even is.
And that’s so cool!
What really excites Peyton today isn’t the accolades that comes with selling books or speaking to leaders or guest preaching at churches around the world, but simply seeing other people who are released in their gifts that God has given them. Like Paul, who constantly poured himself into other people, Peyton simply loves discipling others and making a difference in other people’s lives.
In his latest book, Peyton discusses the key to reaching unreached people with God’s Word – many of which are living right next door! That key is discovering and flourishing in the ways that God has created you as individuals, with the Spiritual Gifts that He so badly wants to use within you! Instead, too many Christians today have substituted “church chores” for Spiritual Giftings.
Peyton looks at Scriptures like Acts 2:42-47 and instead of seeing something that is merely “subscriptive” (subscribing what happened at that specific time and place), he sees an “prescriptive” example of the church when everyone is activated!
They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. 43 Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. 44 All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45 They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. 46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, 47 praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.
Church should be a participatory sport for everyone!
And to maximize this, Peyton encourages all of us to do things that scare us… do things that require the strength of the Holy Spirit… and watch Him show up!
There’s just nothing like stepping off a figurative ledge and seeing God catch you and lift you up!
You can learn more from Peyton at his site: PeytonJones.ninja. There, you’ll find links to his podcasts, blogs, books and so much more!