At The Village, our Discipleship Pathway uses seven markers that we call Milestones. These Milestones are like signs along the highway, marking the defining points along the journey as we follow Jesus.
The Milestones help families to identify and prepare for the decisive moments and discipleship opportunities along the journey. The milestones are not just for children or parents with children. The milestones are for everyone in the church young and old, single and married. The seventh milestone, “Life in Christ,” is the target for everyone in our church.
Life in Christ is encompassed by Jesus’s words in John 15:5, “I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.”
The Life in Christ milestone focuses on seven core aspects of the Christian life. Jesus repeatedly taught and modeled the significance of these seven aspects of the Christian life:
Definition: The first step along the milestone path is Parent-Child Dedication. We have a required seminar for parents who have children in the infant/toddler/preschool age who desire to dedicate their child to the ways and teachings of the Lord. The seminar teaches parents the necessity of becoming the primary faith influencer in their child’s life and we also provide a resource list for further instruction. Following the seminar, we schedule the parent-child dedication ceremony where the parents publicly dedicate their child and agree to accept the responsibility. The church body will also commit to partner with the parents along the faith development of their child.
Staff Contact Person: Robyn Nolette
Core Competency: The parent as the primary faith influencer.
Parent Seminar: The Journey Begins (2 hour required training) This seminar will deal with topics such as what it means to dedicate your child, what the Biblical history of dedication is, and the differing roles of moms and dads.
Church Event: Parent-Child Dedication
The Wins: Parents grasp the meaning of dedicating their child, accepting the responsibility of being the primary faith influencer, and living it out.
Definition: A goal for every Christian parent is that their child accept Jesus Christ as their Savior. How do you talk to your kids about salvation and baptism? Between ages 7 and 11, a child growing up in a Christian home and in the local church will have questions about faith and baptism. In Milestone #2, parents are given resources and equipped to lead their children through family devotions in their home and to teach their children about faith in Jesus Christ. Milestone #2 should be memorable and celebrated as a family. Celebrate with a Spiritual Birthday as your child accepts Christ into their life. Plan a family celebration on the day your child follows through on their commitment and is baptized. Milestone #2 is not just for parents, it is for anyone who spiritually influences your child.
Staff Contact: Allen Burnette
Core Competency: Jesus, Faith/Belief, Biblical Truth, Personal Sin, Repentance, Salvation, Baptism
Church Event: Faith Talks Seminar:
Family Celebration: Spiritual Birthday Party
Campus Event Baptism
The Wins: Child becomes a follower of Christ; Celebrated by baptism. Parent continues to lead family as the spiritual leader of home and helps child grow in their faith.
Definition: The teenage years are quickly approaching! In this milestone, parents will learn how to prepare their child spiritually, emotionally, and physically as the teenage years approach. Parents are encouraged to attend this milestone seminar: Preparing for Adolescence: Parent Edition. This seminar teaches parents how to talk with their children about relevant issues of the day including physical changes, their identity in Christ, and sex. In this milestone, parents will be equipped to lead their children well and be able to discuss these topics in the course of a road trip just for you and your maturing child.
Staff Contact: Allen Burnette
Milestone Seminar: Preparing for Adolescence
Family Celebration: Mother or Father takes student away on a trip or some other outing together to bond.
The Wins: Family has 1 on 1 time with student; Good talks about challenges teens face. Having an identity in Christ and having a faith that wins out over the world.
Definition: The Pathway to Purity is more than just about sexuality. Purity is closely related to holiness throughout the Bible (Matthew 5:8; Philippians 1:10, 4:8). So, a commitment to physical purity is a part of Milestone 4 but there is far more to it. God created the human heart, soul, mind, and strength to work cohesively to bring Him glory by following His path for life. Pathway to Purity helps students understand the necessity of accountability in living a pure lifestyle and assists parents in guiding their children along the path that God has laid for them, a pure, holy life dedicated to Christ, glorifying His name, and making Him known.
Staff Contact: Tyler Mock
Milestone Seminar: The Pathway to Purity
Family Celebration: Giving a symbol or sign of purity
The Wins: Understanding what a biblically pure life looks like; Understanding their identity is in Christ; How to have healthy relationships
Definition: Becoming an adult is an exciting yet daunting time for most teenagers. Freedom that comes with adulthood is embraced and comes with excitement but the responsibility aspect of this newfound freedom is typically met with unpreparedness. Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood delineates the responsibilities of becoming a man or woman of God. In this Milestone, parents are equipped to lead their children to become men and women of God, and all that it entails, before leaving the home.
Staff Contact: Tyler Mock
Milestone Seminar: Preparing Your Child For Adulthood
Family Celebration: Passage to Adulthood Celebration
The Wins: What it means to be a man/woman of God; intellectual ownership of the basic tenets of faith.
Definition: Preparing to Launch is pivotal in both the life of the parents and the child. Students are beginning to make major life decisions and a myriad of other small ones to determine their life’s direction. Parents are also undergoing a tremendous amount of change, chief among them the transition to mentor and advisor. Preparing for Launch is the final preparation for parents to launch their child out into the world where they will truly begin their own life in Christ.
Staff Contact: Tyler Mock
Church Event: Graduation Sunday meal and celebration
Family Celebration: Bestowing of Blessing
The Wins: Being able to defend their faith, begin to grasp and understand God’s plan for their lives, prepared for their next step (college, military, workforce), prepared for dating/marriage, basic life skills (budgeting, car maintenance, etc.)
Definition: Life in Christ is a journey. It is about relationship. With seven core competencies, the tendency is to see Milestone 7 as a checklist of skills to master. Actually, Milestone 7 is about a relationship with Jesus. Growing in each of these competencies is a means for growing closer to Christ.
Staff Contact: Matthew Bryant
Core Competencies: Prayer, Scripture, Authentic Faith, Obedient Follower, Disciple Maker, Generous Living, Community
Equipping: Three supporting lines of effort help facilitate our goal of making followers of Jesus and living a healthy life in Christ. These lines of effort are illustrated with a home, gym, and hospital. Most of the daily activities required for a healthy life takes place in the home—brushing teeth, eating, sleeping, etc.—the same is true for living a healthy life in Christ. The home is the primary place for learning, developing, and implementing the seven core competencies. Our Life Groups and smaller discipleship groups are where we learn to grow through obeying Christ’s command to love Christ and to love one another. But just like you need a gym to grow in strength and fitness, we see our preaching ministry, seminars and classes as essential for equipping the Village for spiritual strength and fitness. The hospital is where we seek intensive and sometimes on-going care for physical health needs. Similarly, we have several classes and ministries aimed to provide that intensive spiritual care and a place for recovery. But the end goal is to get you back home.
The Wins: Parents, Grandparents, and single adults help teach the next generation about following Jesus as they learn to follow Jesus. So…
...As you learn to Pray – Teach others to Pray
...As you learn Scripture – Teach others Scripture
...As you live Authentic Faith – Teach others to live Authentic Faith
...As you Obediently Follow– Teach others to walk as Obedient Followers
...As you Make Disciples – Teach others to Make Disciples
...As you Live Generously – Teach others to Live Generously
...As you live in Community – Teach others to live in Community