Through the years, I served as a pastor of a small mission church in an eastern Kentucky coal camp, a community church in the middle of the Hatfield-McCoy feud area, a county-seat church south of Cincinnati, and a regional church near Louisville. In all of these churches, the four groups identified by Dr. Gary L. McIntosh in his book There’s Hope for Your Church existed. All of these groups demand attention from the pastor, but a wise pastor will use his relational time strategically. A pastor only has a certain amount of time and energy to invest–often church revitalization hinges on which group gains his focus.
. . . church revitalization hinges on which group gains his focus!
4 GROUPS IN YOUR CHURCH
1. VIP’s – Very Important People: Of course, everyone is important to the Lord, but this group is made up of church leaders who already share the vision of the pastor and will help bring about revitalization in the church ministry. If they are not already in key ministry positions in the church, the pastor seeking to bring about church renewal should work to place them in those positions as quickly as possible.
2. VTP’s – Very Trainable People: Some people are not ready for leadership, but they show potential. They are the people the pastor should mentor each week and the people with whom he should share his vision.
3. VNP’s – Very Nice People: The people in the third group are not current leaders in the church and will likely never be leaders in the future. They are loyal to the pastor and share the vision the Lord has given him for the church. They do not cause trouble and are generally supportive of all of the ministries of the church.
4. VDP’s – Very Draining People: The last designation by McIntosh is a group of people who will be a barrier to church revitalization. They will often cause great pain to those who want to improve the vitality of the church.
If we desire to be a revitalization-minded pastor, we must decide where to invest our time. The natural tendency is to spend the majority of our time with the VDP’s because they want to be heard, but that is rarely productive. Instead, we should invest our time with the VIP’s and the VTP’s which will produce the most fruit towards church revitalization.
For more information about Church Revitalization, see the following posts: