Don Waybright

This is a Movement of God


This movement of God behind bars is one of the case studies in The Rise and Fall of Movements. An update just came in from Don Waybright.

He walks into the room, handcuffed, escorted by the guard that brought him from his 5’x9’ cell on L line of solitary confinement at Darrington Maximum Security Prison. From head to toe his body is covered with prison tattoos. The teardrop tattoos around his eyes symbolize murder – taking the life of another man.

The guard hands him off to our team and we allow him to say a few words of thanks to the prisoners celebrating behind the cage – the ones who have shared the Gospel and demonstrated to him the love of Jesus, but aren’t allowed to have physical contact with him. Now his eyes swell with real tears – symbolizing the suffering Lamb of God who died for the forgiveness of his sins and has transformed him from the inside out. We guide him into the portable baptismal, and soon he rises from the water to the sounds of cheers filling the room – his face glowing with the full awareness of the radical lifechange his baptism represents.

Today we baptized 13 men just like this…in the past year Sugar Creek has baptized 77 men in solitary confinement at Darrington. Next month, the new Warden, embracing the movement of God breaking out, will allow the inmates who discipled the men to conduct the baptisms for the first time. 

At Coffield Prison in Palestine TX, the largest prison in the state, over 225 disciple making groups meet weekly in every living area of the prison. They average 30-40 baptisms each month.

One of the inmate leaders of this movement, in for life with no parole, was recently transferred to Darrington. Last week he began a 12-week high intensity, high accountability group disciple-making training at Darrington…the 40 participants are already starting groups throughout the general population.

There are over 100 men on the wait list to attend this training…a genuine movement of God is taking place – no man can control it, nor take credit for it since this is the unstoppable, unshakable Kingdom of God! The fruit of surrender to the Spirit – obedience to the Word of God – and pursuit of the mission of No Place Left where the Gospel has penetrated every person in the prison and beyond! 

Find out more about this movement of God: 182-NoPlaceLeft Behind Bars.

Read the case study and others in The Rise and Fall of Movements.

When God Shows Up During an Interview

Don Waybright, Michelle Addison

Don Waybright, Michelle Addison

Sometimes I am unraveled by my own interviews. I sit there amazed at the goodness of God. How he works through ordinary people to extraordinary things. I’m stunned.

I can’t stop thinking about my interview with Don Waybright. I was riveted by the story of Iesus (Jesus), eighteen years in maximum security, solitary confinement, freed by the gospel and learning to follow Jesus. The Mexican gang members turning and believing, risking retaliation for leaving their gang and being baptized. The women in Mumbai, freed from prostitution and walking with Christ.

If you listened to the podcast, but didn't watch the video, fast forward it to the last few minutes and watch Don as he baptizes Iesus who is shackled hand and foot.

Isn’t this what we signed up for?

This discipleship movement is spreading behind bars, it’s spreading among prostitutes in Mumbai, is spreading in some of the darkest places in Houston.

Don Waybright won’t mind me saying he’s just an ordinary guy. He’s been on this journey for almost twenty years. He has an extraordinary ability to take other people with him. His church is on board, they’ve trained 1,600 of their people in the basics of connecting, sharing and discipling. A few years ago Don brought a team from his church for a week of mission on the streets and in the neighborhoods of Mosside, Manchester in the north of England. Mosside is a tough neighborhood. Michelle and I were there. That’s Don and Michelle in the photo above.

Don is the missions pastor of a church of over four thousand. You wouldn’t expect the senior pastor, Mark Hartman, to have time for a week of mission in Mosside. He’d send Don and the team and cheer from back home. But Mark was there, out on the streets sharing the gospel, living what he teaches. Sugar Creek is a “both/and church”. They love being a church of thousands and they love multiplying disciples and churches anywhere they can.

I get tired of having “missional conversations”. It’s all too abstract for me. I want to hear stories of people set free by the gospel and the life of Christ in them. This a work of God. It’s the fruit of surrendering to his living Word, depending on his Holy Spirit and focusing on the core missionary task of making disciples.

That’s what I signed up for.

If this story has moved you, what will you do next? I’m if we asked Don he’d say,

  1. Get some training

  2. Get started

  3. Don’t go alone

Interview with Don Waybright: NoPlaceLeft Behind Bars

182-NoPlaceLeft Behind Bars

Don Waybright describes how a Texas megachurch is fueling disciple making movements in prisons and around the world.

A previous interview with Don Waybright, missions pastor at Sugar Creek Baptist Church.

Don recommends Steve Smith’s book Spirit Walk:


Don Waybright baptises Jesus in prison

Don is the brother without the handcuffs

Don is the brother without the handcuffs

This just came in from Don Waybright,

At Darrington Maximum Security prison we are witnessing a powerful movement of God. We just baptized 17 prisoners on AD-Seg (Solitary Confinement).

I had the joy to baptise Jesus [the prisoner's name] who has been on AD-Seg (Solitary Confinement) for 18 years...23 hours a day in this darkness inside of darkness...Jesus might still be in chains, and living in this dark 12' x4' cell, but the Light has set him free..."

The Spirit of the Lord is on Me, because He has anointed Me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent Me to proclaim freedom to the captives..." 

Jesus remained in handcuffs the whole time.

Don is another one of my "experts" on movements. If you want to learn about movements, keep gravitating towards people with fresh stories to tell.

Then bother them until they agree to train you.

NoPlaceLeft Documentary

NoPlaceLeft has a documentary courtesy of the amazing Don Waybright and Sugar Creek Baptist Church.

The story of a mega church igniting multiplication movements locally, nationally and globally.

If you follow this blog, a few familiar faces appear.

Here’s my interview with Don Waybright: From mini-mega church to movement.

072-Church to movement: Don Waybright

Don Waybright

Don Waybright

In this episode, Don Waybright shares how Sugar Creek Baptist (Houston) has become a catalyst for multiplying disciples and churches. Their reach extends from their backyard to to the ends of the earth.

Visit noplaceleft to access the resources and training Don refers to.

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