living room = soul

IStock_000007572577Medium A living room = a room where we live.  Or is it = a room that's alive.  A living room is not a storage closet or a garage.  It's not a garbage bin or a attic.  But my living room should be where we reside, not where all this clutter and mess lives.  If it's a wreck, a living room is not inviting.  If it's a pig sty, a living room does not make it easy for a guest to feel at home.  If it keeps filling up with odds and ends that are left off from some other place, or crumbles carelessly dropped, or dirt brought in from the outside, a living room is not a room easily lived in.  A living room that's where we can't easily reside is a room that's not really living.

Here is Romans 8:9-11 from the MESSAGE:

You, however, are
controlled not by the sinful nature but by the Spirit, if the Spirit of
God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he
does not belong to Christ. But if Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, yet your spirit is alive because of righteousness. And
if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you,
he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal
bodies through his Spirit, who lives in you.

My soul is a living room = a room where I live and where God lives.  My soul is not a storage closet or a garage.  It's not a garbage bin or a attic.  My soul is where I reside and I invite God to be my guest… and where I invite God to make himself at home. 

Imagine, if Jesus walked in and I forced him to sit among had all the clutter scattered about, in the midst of stains and old food and dirt and filth and dust and sexual crap and hate and all the garbage I'd been putting in my soul.  Imagine, however, that Jesus asks the host, would you mind if I tidied up a bit?  Uh sure, I say.  And Jesus puts a towel around his waist and gets the vacuum out, and the carpet cleaner, and the dust rag and the window cleaner and he repairs the rip in the couch and he throws the trash in the bin and puts his Word out on the coffee table.  And then, after he's done, he sits down on the sofa and puts his feet up with a smile.  Ahhh.  There. 

That's when I'm supposed to ask my guest, "Can I get you anything God?  Tea?  (Would you like a beer?)  A glass of cold water, perhaps.  Put your feet up, Jesus.  My home is your home.  How's it going?  What have you been up to lately?  Tell me about yourself."  And that's when Jesus tells me all about his life, his comings and goings, his relationships around the world, his past, his present and his future.  And that's also when Jesus asks me about my life, and we share a laugh, and we share a cry, and we invite others to come in genuinely and honestly, and we revel in songs of joy… and we play the Wii. 

Now that sounds more like a room that's living.

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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