all that matters

Cristo-redentor-22

"All that matters."  I am always gripped by this last line of Colossians 3:11. I can't read this phrase without either soaring with joy and life… or waking up from a spiritual stupor.

Well, yesterday this phrase threw a bucket of ice-cold water on my sleeping soul. I've been busy… really busy. Haven't even had time to update this website- which at one time was the daily disciplined outpouring of my soul. I haven't even been able to think about writing lately. My devotional time has recently been reduced largely to a schedule 10-15 minutes a day- just to make sure I do it. Devotion has not spawned from my heart… but from knowing I need to keep at it. I have not been resting enough, eating well enough, or spending uninterrupted time with those I most care about.

Strangely, the busy-ness all stems from two very good things. My thesis research is good and useful stuff… but it is demanding a significant portion of my energy and time right now. My role as a pastor is continuously filled with known and unknown demands.
The busy-ness impacts the most important aspects of my life though. My wife is unbelievably incredible… and right now I am hardly able to even find time to sit down with her and hold her hands and gaze into her eyes. My children are amazing… and they have a dad who wants to spend all his free time with them and assist their soccer team and get down on the floor and build lego… but I can hardly find time to "squeeze" this in right now. And, most significantly yet, my God is indescribably awesome… and yet I have not been sitting with him and chatting with him nearly enough.

The busy-ness of this thesis-season thankfully has an end point which is coming soon. But the coming end does not negate that this season is having an affect on the activity of my faith and life. I have been running so hard that I may have outrun my passion…

So yesterday I paused so that my passion could catch up.

The last part of Colossians 3:17 says "Christ is all that matters, and he lives in us." Lately, Christ has not been all that matters to me. With a deep breath I admitted that I have recently compartmentalized Jesus into an agenda item. I had forgotten the first driving force that made my thesis work and my pastoral work important in the first place… The fact that Jesus has changed my life.
Jesus is why I am and why I do. The day that I live with other things mattering more than Jesus is a wasted day. Jesus is all that matters… and he must be living in me. Living. Free to roam, free to breathe, free to play, free to work, free to laugh, free to cry, free to fight, free to be Jesus in me.

PRAYER: Come in, Lord, and live. Live in me so that I will be driven to live for my wife and for my kids. Live in me so that I can pursue what you want me to pursue in the ways you want me to strive. Live in me so that this thesis work is most meaningful to you. Live in me so that my pastoring is a blessing to your heart. Live in me and be all that matters… so that everything that matters to you will be my constant driving passion. Live in me so that I will stop living an itemized agenda or a busy schedule. Live in me so that you can make me live full and free for you and for others.

Ken Castor

Ken Castor is a husband, dad, pastor, writer and teacher. He serves as a professor at Crown College, Minnesota, where he equips students to pursue Jesus-Centered Faith and Next Generation Ministry. For 20+ years he's focused on equipping the next generations in places like the U.S., Canada, and Northern Ireland. He's the author of Grow Down (Simply Youth Ministry, 2014), Make a Difference (Broadstreet, 2016), the Blue-Letters Editor of the Jesus-Centered Bible (Group, 2015) and numerous other articles and Bible Study guides. But, whenever possible, he gets down on the floor and builds Lego with his kids. Connect with him @kencastor.

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