See One, Do One, Teach One

Alumni Spotlight

Jason Peters (DMin, 07)

How do we love well when we have been directly attacked? What truths will we cling to when our world turns upside down? These are the types of questions we wrestle with when we encounter persecution. By God’s grace, the DTS faculty prepared me to remind people of the eternal hope believers have in the midst of trauma.

I am honored to oversee Global Partnerships for The Voice of the Martyrs. In this role, I travel frequently to meet face-to-face with our persecuted sisters and brothers. I have ministered in 35 countries, including  Cuba, India, Nepal, Saudi Arabia, Burma, Sri Lanka, Colombia, Kyrgyzstan, Bangladesh, Thailand, Indonesia, and Nigeria. I speak at conferences internationally and domestically, and have been able to provide direct care to widows, orphans, amputees, and prisoners who have experienced Christian persecution. Kimberly and I have been married for over 20 years, and God has given us five energetic children to steward! I invite you to read more about some of our recent ministry experiences.

Many of my fondest memories from DTS revolve around meaningful interactions with world-class, yet astonishingly approachable, faculty members. The professors with whom I studied took a unique interest in me and were willing to patiently listen as I grappled with complex questions about life and ministry.

One of my most memorable discussions with a faculty member occurred at Stonebriar Community Church. I was there as part of an “Effective Church Leadership” class that was led by Dr. Swindoll. As Dr. Swindoll and I were washing our hands during a break, he initiated a conversation. He was genuinely interested in my ministry as an Air Force chaplain. I’ll never forget how he turned around, leaned against the sink with a paper towel in his hands and asked me probing questions as though I were the most interesting person he had chatted with in months. I recall several similar interactions with inspirational leaders like John Reed, Reg Grant, “Prof” Hendricks, Kenn Gangel, Bill Lawrence, and others.

The most treasured lessons I learned at DTS were related to investing in character more than competency—focusing on “who we are” as opposed to “what we do.” The academic standards at DTS are definitely high, but the overarching emphasis in most of my classes was on developing godly character. I was frequently reminded that ministers must strive to discover what authentic ministry is, to personally experience it in their own journeys, and then to promote it. In Ezra chapter seven, we learn that the prophet “set his heart to study the law of the Lord and to practice it, and to teach His statutes and ordinances in Israel” (Ezra 7:10). Before he tried to teach the law, Ezra dedicated himself to studying it and living it! This reminds me of the way many medical students learn about procedures. They are taught using a “See One, Do One, Teach One” model. First, they observe. Then they apply. Then (and only then) they teach. This is a powerful foundation for teaching truth and loving well and I am grateful that God led me to DTS where the faculty consistently modeled this type of authentic ministry!