Does Jesus Care?


Mark 4:35-41

Said the Robin to the Sparrow: “I should really like to know, why these anxious human beings, rush about and worry so.” Said the Sparrow to the Robin: Friend, I think that it must be that they have no heavenly Father, such as cares for you and me!” Jesus has been teaching by the Sea of Galilee and now decides to cross over the sea. That day when evening came, he said to his disciples, “Let us go over to the other side.” Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. Mark doesn’t record the Sermon on the Mount as does Matthew. This boat ride probably takes place right after the giving of the sermon. Why go to the other side – it is desert. A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?” He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?” They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!”

A couple had not had a date night for at least two months. Their mutual birthday time had arrived and the wife had planned a surprise party for him — a small group of friends was to meet them at a familiar oriental restaurant. With the babysitter armed with instructions and snacks, they headed for the car. Behind the wheel, her husband suggested, “Let’s go for Mexican food!” That would have been a delightful idea — except that their friends would be waiting at the other restaurant. She tried to remain unruffled and said sweetly, “I think Chinese sounds better tonight.” The retort came swiftly, “No. I want a big enchilada!” After some haggling, it became apparent that he had chosen tonight to be demanding, unreasonable, and interested only in his own food cravings. Dark thunderheads formed inside the car. Finally, she screamed in frustration, “You dope! I have a surprise party planned at the Chinese restaurant. We have to go there.” He laughed — and that made her even angrier. He laughed so hard it took him five minutes to tell her that he had planned a surprise party for her, too — at the Mexican restaurant. It was the one fact she didn’t know.

When we are tempted to be impatient with someone we should try to observe the “one fact rule”: We have to learn to look for at least one hidden fact that might offer a logical explanation. Faith is filled with many hiddens!

To laugh is to risk appearing the fool. To weep is to risk appearing sentimental. To reach out for another is to risk involvement. To expose feelings is to risk exposing our true self. To place your ideas, your dreams before the crowd is to risk loss. To love is to risk not being loved in return.
To live is to risk dying. To hope is to risk despair. To try at all is to risk failure. But to risk we must, because the greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing. The man, the woman, who risks nothing, does nothing, has nothing, is nothing.

The challenge for the Christian is how to live each moment with faith. We believe that God has the power. We believe that God can and even does perform miracles. The challenge is how to live believing that God cares enough to take care of this moment in our lives.

Fred Craddock tells the story of one of his students in seminary. The young pastor was visiting an old, very sick woman in the hospital. He asked her upon leaving, “What would you like me to pray for today?” With her last ounce of energy she replied, “That God will make me well.” He sighed, then prayed, “Lord, if it be thy will, we pray that this sick sister might be healed. On the other hand, if it is not thy will, we pray that she might be given a positive attitude, a willingness to accept her situation.” As soon as he finished his prayer, her eyes opened. She sat up in bed, threw her feet over the side, stood up and said, “I’m well. I’m really well.” The young pastor stumbled out of the room, headed out of the hospital into the parking lot. Before he pulled out his key to unlock his car, he looked up and said, “Don’t you ever do that to me again!”

“Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?” Sure, He cares, and He calms the storm.
A man with leprosy came to him and begged him on his knees, “If you are willing, you can make me clean.” Filled with compassion, Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man. “I am willing,” he said. “Be clean!” Immediately the leprosy left him and he was cured. (Mark 1:40) “There was a man who had two sons. The younger one said to his father, `Father, give me my share of the estate.’
So he divided his property between them. “Not long after that, the younger son got together all he had, set off for a distant country and there squandered his wealth in wild living. After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in the whole country, and he began to be in need. So he went and hired himself out to a citizen of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed pigs. He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one gave him anything. “When he came to his senses, he said, `How many of my father’s hired men have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired men.’ So he got up and went to his father.
“But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.

Said the Robin to the Sparrow: “I should really like to know, why these anxious human beings, Rush about and worry so.” Said the Sparrow to the Robin: “Friend, I think that it must be that they have no heavenly Father,
Such as cares for you and me!”

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