Collaborating (kind of): Brian Vander Ark

19 Apr

Brian VanderArk


Brian Vander Ark: Putting the Pieces Together

First Things First

Brian Vander Ark (no… not THAT Brian Vander Ark) is the Senior Pastor of Family Ministries at one of the few churches on my “places I need to visit” list.  Ada Bible Church continues to rock my world – the more I read and hear about the stuff they have going on, the more excited I am about the future of the church-at-large.  Brian has a TON to say in the few pages given to him in Collaborate and he doesn’t waste any time in laying out exactly how they minister to families at Ada.  What I appreciate most about Brian is his obvious humility.  He finishes his entry by recognizing that his church doesn’t have it all figured out and that their “4-E’s” (see below) are a strategy in progress.  That’s leadership.

Quick Take-Away

Can you look at the volunteers who serve at your church in children and student ministries and tell me their one-word job description?  Brian can – they wear them on their shirts.  That’s right, friends, Ada Bible Church has blown me away yet again… they can break each of their ministry team members’ primary role down to one work.  To top it all off – they all start with an “E”.

Here they are:

  • EMBRACE: Nursery/Preschool – “Embraced by God’s Love.”
  • EXPECT: Elementary – “Expecting God can be trusted.”
  • EXPERIENCE: Jr. High – “Experiencing connection with God and people.”
  • EXPRESS: Sr. High – “Expressing Faith and relationship throughout God’s world.”

I want to be able to do this in our ministries.  At this point, I would rather visit Ada, Michigan than Hawaii… just to see this strategy in action.  I’m sold.

This post is 1 of many in a series.  I’m assuming that the contributing authors of Collaborate want to have a conversation with me.  You can read my open letter to them here.


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