VBC Shepherding Goals
Our commitment to the people of VBC is that they and their families will be shepherded by the elders and their wives.
- We will embrace you as a part of our family. (I John 4:7-8)
- We will equip you to mature spiritually. (Ephesians 4:11-16)
- We will encourage you to stay on course in your relationship with God and care for you when you encounter trials and uncertainties. (Hebrews 10:23-25; Acts 2:42-47)
- We will enrich your life by keeping you on a mission that has value and significance and invites God's presence into your life on a daily basis. (John 10:10; I Corinthians 1:4-9)
We believe and teach that the Scriptures are clear on the definition of shepherding the flock. We use words such as lead, feed, heed, guide, discipline, support and protect as we summarize passages such as Acts 20, I Timothy 3, Titus 1, Ephesians 4, and I Peter 5. But we have to ask ourselves, "What does this mean for us at VBC?" The following statements are criteria we use for measuring whether we have been faithful to scripture when it comes to "shepherding" the flock.
(Due to the differing commitments of those who simply attend VBC and those who have committed to membership, we differentiate between “attenders” and “members.”)
An attender of VBC is considered "shepherded" when:
- You have an opportunity to hear a clear presentation of the Gospel, profess Christ as Savior, and Lord, and be baptized publicly.
- You have an opportunity to attend a membership class where our doctrine and philosophy of ministry are explained clearly, your questions are answered openly and with sensitivity, and you have had the opportunity to join the church.
- You have the opportunity to engage in corporate worship with the Body at least weekly.
- You are receiving a steady diet of Biblical teaching, both on Sunday morning and at other studies during the week.
- You have access to personal discipleship, whether one-on-one or in a small or large group.
- You have access to counsel and equipping concerning your spiritual gifts and callings, with opportunity for training in practical ministry skills.
- You have the opportunity, once equipped, to engage in meaningful ministry.
- You are prayed for regularly and have the opportunity to be involved in corporate prayer on a regular basis for others.
- You have opportunity to have regular supportive fellowship in a small group context and are held accountable for it.
In addition to the above, one who has committed to membership is considered "shepherded" when:
- You have regular access to information concerning the direction of the church, leadership decisions, and specific information concerning various church ministries, as appropriate, and to vote on items that are brought before the membership.
- You have access to the church leadership team for the purpose of registering questions, complaints, concerns, and suggestions.
- You have access to counsel and guidance concerning the major areas of your life: your walk with God, your marriage, family, job, finances, and other major decisions.
- You have access to the leadership in times of need such as funerals, weddings, etc.
- You are checked on regularly for information regarding needs and concerns and are able to regularly share them with a member of the leadership team.
- You are protected from defection from the faith by regular exposure of false doctrine through teaching and by being held accountable for your daily walk with Christ.
- You are held accountable, admonished, confronted, and even disciplined, if necessary, for your sake and for the sake of the Body.
(For more information on membership: www.villagebible.org/whymembership)