Written by cycleguy on November 11th, 2014

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DTR. “Define the Relationship.”

The past eleven weeks (except for last week) starting here, I have been taking Wednesday to discuss Matt Chandler’s book, Creature of the Word. My study has taken us through seeing the creature (the church) through various “eyes.” Worship. Community. Church culture. Preaching. To name a few. If you have been in on the discussions, I hope they made you think. 🙂

This last post hits home. “Define the relationship” is used to describe a heart-level conversation a couple might have for the good of their relationship. The good and the bad. The strong and the weak points.

I think every church needs to have “DTR” moments as well. Church leadership needs to have them. Just this past weekend the church leadership did some defining. We are in the process of growing (a good thing) and need to make sure we are on the same page. Even a side thing like going from two services to one during the winter needs to be analyzed for the good of the people involved. Personal feelings and agendas must be set aside sometimes for the good of all.

While a church needs to “DTR,” there is no more important relationship to define than the leader’s relationship with the Father. Be it a pastor, a worship leader, an elder, a teacher, or anyone else, a close relationship with the Father is a must. Prayer is essential. Spending time in the Bible on a daily basis is a must. Interacting with each other. All are important.

What is important to me as a pastor is I need to be the same person in private as I am in public. That is a convicting statement for me. Not always are my private thoughts or feelings ones to be proud of. Each time I stand in the pulpit I need to be aware of my heart and where it has been and where it is. Are my motives for being up here pure? Are my thoughts His thoughts? I go back to that Scripture I used several weeks ago: “May I never boast except in the cross of Christ.”

So I bring this series to a close. It has been good for me to read the book then go back over it and “flesh out” some of my thoughts. My question for you is have you DTR?


15 Comments so far ↓

  1. Daniel says:

    Humbleness is such a key attribute of a leader. This does not mean that a leader cannot be confident or forceful. It is often hard to write down exactly what defines a great leader, but it is often clear when you meet one and get a chance to know them.

  2. the Old Adam says:

    Our pastor regularly convicts himself (with God’s law)…as we are convicted.

    We know, and he knows, that he is a full blown sinner…not up to the task…as we are not up to it, either.

    But he…or we are not the point. The point is that Jesus forgives all our sin.

    And in the end…that is what we need to hear.

    Thanks, Bill.

  3. jeff says:

    Yes. I have “Defined The Relationship”

  4. Caleb Suko says:

    Bill I think you just defined the scariest aspect of preaching. It’s that knowledge that I don’t always live up to everything I preach. Preaching keeps me humble!

  5. Ceil says:

    Hi Bill! I think defining my relationship with Christ is like trying to nail Jello to a wall. It’s ever-changing day to day, even hour to hour. Becoming more steady and invested is a great goal of mine.

    I am the definition of worldly. I doubt, mess up, feel like I’m in God’s pocket, and then in Siberia. Sigh. He has a lot of work to do with me I’m afraid. I do resonate with your goal of being the same person no matter where you are. That’s what Jesus was like, so it’s what we should all strive to be.
    I have enjoyed your challenging posts, and I’m sure your church will benefit from it’s own DTR.

    • cycleguy says:

      The relationship is fluid for sure but it should be defined as most important (least in my book). I’m glad I’m also not alone in the shiftiness of my relationship but grateful He is steady. Glad you enjoyed the posts.

  6. Dan Erickson says:

    Our pastor has special meetings and events several times per year to accomplish this. Great idea!

  7. Deb Wolf says:

    I like that you challenged us as individuals and also church families as a group. Neither will get it “right.” Just like couple relationships. But evaluating and doing all we can to move in a positive direction is huge.

    I like Ceil answer. It’s always like nailing jello to a wall. No matter how hard I try I will mess up. But my heart’s desire is to keep trying. Rev calls it a “healthy tension.”

  8. God can work any way he chooses, but it’s amazing how often he chooses to work through organizations which have leaders who are chasing after him.