Summary: Sometimes it may seem as if God doesn't care. The storms come and we wonder where he is. We are overwhelmed with life's duties and wonder where our help is. A loved one dies unexpectedly and we wonder why God didn't stop it. Does God really care? Yes!
INTRODUCTION: Have you ever felt alone or abandoned? Felt like no one cared? “In December 2000 a German woman living in the city of Marburg, died while at home in her flat. Ten months later her landlord forced open the door to the flat, concerned that she hadn’t paid rent for a long time. It was only then that her body was discovered. It seems the woman had lost contact with her relatives and had no friends, and not even one concerned neighbor. But this is not an isolated instance. Germany regularly has cases where a body is not discovered until weeks, months or even years after the person has died. In one case, a Hamburg man sat dead on his sofa in front of his television for five years before he was found.” Ever felt like God doesn’t care either? We have certain things that happen in life and we wonder-does God care? The simple answer is-‘yes’!
1) Sometimes it may seem as if God doesn’t care.
• Mark 4:35-41 “Don’t you care if we drown?!” It seemed to the disciples that Jesus didn’t care because he wasn’t reacting to the situation the way they were. We can be like that; even with each other. I’ve been accused of that. Generally I’m pretty laid back; I don’t get intense very often. So when something happens and I don’t show the same emotions as others I can be accused of not caring even though I do. The disciples had the same misconception about Jesus. Part of their fear and frustration was because Jesus hadn’t intervened sooner. We are like that. We wonder why Jesus doesn’t come to the rescue at the first sign of trouble. Interestingly Jesus didn’t intervene until they came to him. The disciples tried to handle the storm on their own and at some point wondered why Jesus hadn’t come out to help them so they went to find him. Often times Jesus is this way with us. We think he doesn’t care because he’s not automatically coming to our rescue. Jesus does care-he’s just waiting for us to come to him; waiting for us to initiate; he’s waiting for us to ask, seek and knock.
• Luke 10:38-42 “Don’t you care that Mary has left me to do all the work?!” Initially, Jesus’ actions seemed to indicate that he didn’t care. Here he was sitting there, talking to Mary while Martha did all the work. Chances are Martha was going about wondering while Jesus wasn’t speaking up on her behalf. She got to the point where she couldn’t take it anymore and spoke to Jesus about it. Maybe we’ve been like that. Running around, busy with a million things that need doing, not catching a break, wondering why Jesus doesn’t send us some help. Does he not care that we’re all stressed? Doesn’t he care that I’m overwhelmed by everything I need to do? Did Jesus care about what Martha was dealing with here? Yes, he did care about what Martha was going through. But he cared more about what Martha was missing out on so he wanted to show her what was more important. Sometimes we think Jesus doesn’t care but in reality it’s that Jesus has different priorities than we do. When it seems like Jesus doesn’t care we need to evaluate whether or not we’ve got our priorities straight. We need to care about what Jesus cares about. Jesus cares about our spiritual growth. Jesus cares about lost souls; he cares about the advancement of his kingdom. If we don’t care about these things he will do what he needs to do to get us to care. Therefore, Jesus doesn’t care about our agenda when it’s not his agenda.
• John 11:17-27, 32-44. Jesus’ friend Lazarus was sick. John 11:6, “Yet when he heard that Lazarus was sick he stayed where he was two more days.” On the surface this would look like someone who doesn’t care. But when you get to the end of the story you can see why Jesus didn’t go right away. We can be like that. Like the boat story, we think Jesus doesn’t care because he doesn’t act as quick as we think he should. Vs. 17-21. Now, Martha didn’t come right out and accuse Jesus of not caring but basically she’s saying, “you could’ve been here; you should’ve been here. You really let us down. Don’t you care?” Jesus did care. But again, he did things according to his Father’s will, not according to people’s expectations of how he should do things. Jesus uses this opportunity as a teaching moment for Martha (23-27). Then Martha goes to get Mary and Mary comes to Jesus and repeats what her sister had said to him earlier (32). Jesus’ response? Vs. 33-38. Three times in these verses you see evidence of Jesus caring (deeply moved, wept, once more deeply moved). Jesus cares when our loved ones are sick or in pain. He cares when someone we care about dies. We think he doesn’t care because he didn’t heal them or spare them from the pain and suffering. I believe Mary and Martha were wondering whether or not Jesus really cared. They were reminded how much he did. Then everyone got to witness the miracle (39-44). Mary and Martha came to understand why Jesus had not shown up while Lazarus was sick. It was God’s will to perform a more substantial miracle than healing the sick-he wanted to show everyone that he could raise the dead. God wanted to show the people that Jesus was the resurrection and the life. When we think Jesus doesn’t care we need to remember that we don’t have a full understanding of what’s going on. We need to trust that God does have a full understanding and that there’s a divine purpose and timing behind it all.