As the disciples rowed Jesus on the lake, an enormous storm erupted around them, threatening to capsize the boat. Jesus, having spent every ounce of energy he had, was sleeping despite the chaos. He is awakened to the frightened cries: “Don’t you even care that we’re about to die?”
The day of the storm, Jesus had just spent hours and hours teaching huge crowds of people. This was not necessarily a receptive crowd. There were a lot of argumentative and hostile people among them. Ever have a day like that?
And he spent more time explaining things to his disciples. Patience. That’s what’s needed when the folks who live with you, who should be the ones to understand you best, still need tons of explanations. He cared enough to take the time.
This went on all day. It was evening before Jesus asked them to row him across the lake. Sleep probably felt like a mere moment before the accusatory cries came. Don’t you even care?
Our answer to that question makes all the difference. We’re dying down here. Does God care, or not? If you find you’re often overwhelmed, perhaps you know how you’re answering that question, even if you would never let the words escape your lips. So, let us take a moment to strengthen ourselves, and remember the character of our God.
Compassionate – Psalm 103:13-14
As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him; for he knows how we are formed. He remembers that we are dust.
He’s never going to ask more from us than we can give. He isn’t asking us to save ourselves, or even almost save ourselves. In His compassion, He has taken care of our every need through Jesus, the Christ.
Gracious – John 1:16
Indeed, we have all received grace upon grace from his fullness.
We’re not saved by works, but He gives us plenty to do. The abilities and opportunities we have to work, serve, help, play – all of it – comes from our gracious God. Eyes that can read, ears that can hear, minds that understand, other people to share it with. God’s graciousness is in evidence everywhere because He cares for us.
Patient – 2 Peter 3:8-9
But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.
Patience is an ironic thing. Sometimes, people get yelled at for being patient. God has that happen to Him a lot. But often, maybe even always, the thing we’re yelling at Him about is more evidence of His love for us.
Love – Ephesians 2:4-5
Because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved.
We are His absolute treasure. He always planned to draw us near to Him, into His family through Jesus. It was His pleasure to do that on our behalf.
He loves you. He has sacrificed deeply to prove it. Storms will come, and they will be scary. But one thing you can rest your mind about: God does, indeed care.