Greetings, Summit Church! I trust this blog finds you well and that you are enjoying your summer. I have some good news that I am eager to share with you. You probably guessed that Zach Van Dyke, who led us in our last sermon series, Known, was a candidate for the Teaching Team. In fact, as we concluded the series, many of you emphatically let me know you thought he should be considered. If you guessed that, you were indeed correct and should immediately pause reading this blog to congratulate yourself for your astuteness. (Recommended means of self-congratulation include patting oneself on the back, extra bacon at breakfast, or words of affirmation in front of a mirror.)
[Pause...] OK. Welcome back!
Over the last two months we have been going through a meaningful and thorough process of getting to know Zach and giving him a chance to get to know Summit better. We have spent time with him and his family, given him access to our staff, asked all the right questions, etc. Over these two months, I have developed a deep respect for Zach’s heart for ministry and his love of Jesus. In the end, his teaching served as confirmation of what we had learned from spending time with him—that Zach is the real deal and will be a great fit at Summit.
Zach will be officially starting as a member of the Teaching Team on staff full-time at the end of this month.
Now that we have a Teaching Team of more than one, here are some fun facts about the team and Zach (with a few totally made-up “facts” thrown in for fun).
• Teaching Team purpose statement: The Teaching Team will call people to take their next right steps by communicating one vision through diverse voices characterized by relatable authenticity, oratory excellence, sound doctrine, and a depth of biblical, historical, and cultural understanding.
• Jim and Zach will pair up, by series, to cover most of the teaching responsibilities for the next year. In the future there will likely be another addition to the team, but we are very glad about the way God has provided in the team we have now.
• For those reading this who really like numbers, we have a general range (number of weeks teaching) in mind for each member of the Teaching Team. Currently, Jim is in the 16-20 week/year range and Zach will build up to a 20-30 week/year range. Those ranges are always subject to the series priorities and what will best serve Summit, so don’t get too thrown if they change a bit over time.
• Jim and Zach live near each other and are thinking of going in on a tandem bike to ride to work. (First part true, second part not true, but I wish it were.)
• Zach’s main responsibility will be teaching, though that will not take all of his time. For now, the margin in his schedule will be used in becoming a student of Summit’s vision and deeply familiar with all of the ministry environments. Eventually there may be other areas where he assumes leadership, but his main long-term leadership role will be in teaching.
• Zach’s favorite movie is Joe Versus the Volcano. (Made up, but probably true.)
• We have started a weekly Teaching Team meeting that will serve as an environment to preview upcoming teaching and to cultivate teaching giftedness with Teaching Team members and other ministry staff. I get to sit in on these meetings and am thrilled about how this environment will serve Summit in the years ahead.
• Zach was an extra on the first season of The O.C. (Actually true. Also, I am pretending to know what The O.C. is.)
If you are interested in getting to know more about Zach—like how he is married to Kelly, and declared he would marry her when he first met her in the 5th grade (also true), or about their three amazing kids—you can read his bio or just grab him for a couple of minutes in the lobby in one of these weeks.
Good days are ahead!