I Need to Know You Care
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Recently, I felt anger rise within me when my husband, Larry, had promised several times to help me with a computer problem. Although the problem didn’t really affect my work much, it still seemed like I needed help right then!
“Larry, I really need you to help me.”
“Okay, Kath. No problem. I can’t right now but I’ll help later.”
Later came and went along with several other “laters.” Each time, my anger increased. But then as I prayed asking the Lord why it bothered me so much, I realized I wasn’t so much bothered by the delay as feeling like Larry didn’t really care about me and my needs. I remembered what happened when the disciples felt like Jesus didn’t care for them. Here’s the story.
On that day, when evening had come, he [Jesus] said to them, “Let us go across to the other side.” And leaving the crowd, they took him with them in the boat, just as he was. And other boats were with him. And a great windstorm arose, and the waves were breaking into the boat, so that the boat was already filling. But he was in the stern, asleep on the cushion. And they woke him and said to him, “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?” And he awoke and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Peace! Be still!” And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. He said to them, “Why are you so afraid? Have you still no faith?” And they were filled with great fear and said to one another, “Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?”(ESV)
I can certainly understand the disciples’ terror. Even though most of them were seasoned fishermen, this storm was obviously way beyond their comfort zone and they knew the danger. The Sea of Galilee was famous for sudden windstorms and many of their friends had most likely perished. Plus, the boat was not just taking on water — it was “already filling.” As they looked around for help, what did they see? Jesus asleep on a cushion. The man who should have been the first to take care of them was completely oblivious to their need and fear.
After waking him, they asked, “Teacher, don’t you care we are perishing?”
Their question is often what our heart is crying out to know: do you care? We can be tempted to express it through emotional outbursts because we’re afraid we’ll hear, “No, I don’t care because you don’t deserve it.” As my anger showed the other day, my heart was actually crying out, “Show me you care about me! Maybe my anger, distress, or craziness will get your attention!”
After Jesus calms the storm and the danger is past, the disciples are filled with wonder and awe. They rightly ask, who is this who can calm the wind and sea? If they had asked that question at the beginning, they wouldn’t have become distressed. Because the answer is: “This is no surprise to Jesus. Even though he seems to be asleep on a cushion, he hasn’t stopped loving us or caring for us because he is the powerful and omniscient God. We can trust whatever reason he is allowing this.”
When you feel like you’ve asked Jesus, “Do you care?” he isn’t upset about your question but he does want you to hear, “Child, I do care! Trust me. I know exactly what I’m doing and it’s for your good and my glory.”
Copyright, 2017, Kathy Collard Miller, used with permission.
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