Zach Neese is a Worship Pastor at Gateway Church where he oversees all areas of worship education including discipleship and worship training classes. Zach believes there is a difference between "leading worship"
and pastoring people in the presence of God, and his leadership reflects his passion for helping people develop vibrant, transformational relationships with Jesus.
Zach is a gifted teacher and writes much of the church worship curriculum. He also trains and advises worship leaders and churches around the world. Before coming to Gateway, Zach taught, worked with emotionally disabled young people, served as a youth and worship pastor in several congregations, and directed the Christ For the Nations Institute School of Worship and Technical Arts where he trained worship ministers from over 50 countries. He is a seasoned songwriter of many popular songs including "The More I Seek You," "Alabaster Jar," "Love Has Done it,"and "Faithful God".
Zach lives in Keller, Texas with his wife Jen and their six children; Simeon, Judah, Charis, Maggie, Nora, and Sam. They are his first church and the prize of his heart.
On Salvation: “I feel like I spent half my life willfully rejecting the grace of God. Fortunately, God has an even stronger will than I do. He just refused to give up on me. I know what “lostness” feels like. I understand loneliness and I can relate to the sense of feeling unclean in your own skin. How can you love anyone else if you don’t even like yourself? Before I was saved I had also been deeply hurt by Christians, and I understand the sense of betrayal and outrage that the world feels towards the Church’s hypocrisies. For years I misjudged Jesus based on the behavior of His “Bride”.
But I couldn’t hide behind other people’s misconduct forever. Eventually I had to deal with a fact: though I was chief among sinners, Christ died for me. Before I deserved it, before I asked for it, and while I railed in His face – He shouldered the weight of the cross for me because He loves me. I deserved death and hell, but He went through hell for me so that I could live with Him. The day He told me that was the day I first believed. And I could not spit in the face of that kind of love any longer. I told Him I would do anything He asked me to for the rest of my life.
Now I love the Church, and I love Jesus. May I daily love Him more.”
Previous Lines of Work: God sets our journeys before us so intentionally. I have been a pot-washer in a cafeteria, a warehouse man for a chemical company, a salesman in a jewelry store, a resource counselor for emotionally disabled (and often violent) inner city kids, an ESL teacher for international students, an Autism Therapist. You know, each of those has been invaluable and irreplaceable training for ministry (I’m smiling as I write it, but it’s the truth). Those jobs cover a huge swath of human experience. And I’m thankful for the perspective that God has shown me through each.
One of the Things I Find Most Fascinating: The cross never ceases to amaze me.
Most People Don’t Know: I LOVE words. I love the musicality of words; I love the blunt force of words; I love their surgical precision; I love that they put skin and bones on abstractions and bring them to life. With a word God created life and with a word Jesus killed a fig tree. They are potent, full of promise and possibility. Even an untrained child can wield a word with devastating effect, or say something so heart-warming and wise that it changes you forever. Maybe that is why writing appeals to me. There are few tools with such transformative beauty and innate power. A word from the heart of God through the mouth of man can change the world.