Jesus Cares

Jesus Cares June 20, 2024

We can all feel like the disciples in the boat who cross the sea with Jesus to face the storm. Everything pointed to shipwreck. They seem upset about the boat sinking. Incredibly, they are even more concerned about whether or not Jesus cares about them. This Gospel gives witness to the tenderness of Christ’s heart. Jesus does indeed care about each one of us.

Rise of Anxiety and Depression

I imagine we are all aware that anxiety and depression are growing realities in our world. They present a special type of problem to our society.

Anxiety and depression [are] becoming increasingly prevalent among young adults in the US, with both disorders increasing by 63% from 2005 to 2017.

The expansion of media multitasking and high levels of academic and economic stress have led to increasing rates of anxiety and depression among American young adults (Ballard Brief, “The Rise of Anxiety and Depression among Young Adults in the United States”).

Jesus carrying a sheep
Jesus is the True Good Shepherd | Public Domain

Suffering in Silence or Simplicity

So many people suffer in silence. A few weeks ago, a priest friend of mine, Fr. Antonio, passed away. He was in a community and they had actually just celebrated his birthday. He went to his room to make a phone call, and never even made the phone call before Jesus called him home. Here was a man who had always been a testimony to the greatness of God’s action in our lives. The fact that he spent his last hours celebrated and embraced by people who cared about him stand in contrast to so many people who suffer in silence and alone.

Focus on God’s Will

Fr. Antonio had a saying:

“God’s will. Nothing more. Nothing less. Nothing else.”

It led him to be one of the simplest people I ever had the pleasure of knowing. I remember going to his office to ask for advice and seeing this sign featuring prominently among his few earthly possessions. There is such a difference in our lives and our happiness when we are able to put our trust solely in God.

Celtic Champion

In this Gospel passage, the apostles trust God completely. They accompany him in the boat crossing to the other side (cf. Mk. 4:35). They head right into the storm. What are things in our life that feel that a deep storm. Recently, we witnessed the victory of the Celtics in the NBA finals. There are several stories of people who overcame adversity to make it to that final game and bring home the trophy triumphantly. It begins with the leadership of their coach, Joe Mazzulla.

Mazzulla — whose only head coaching experience before taking over the Boston Celtics in the fall of 2022 was at the NCAA Division II level — guided the team to a record 18th NBA championship after defeating the Dallas Mavericks in five games (Clemente Lisi, “Head Coach Joe Mazzulla’s Catholic Faith Helped Guide The Boston Celtics To An NBA Championship”).

Gratitude to God

It caught my attention how each one of the players who spoke after the championship game shared some reflection on faith and expressed their thanksgiving to God, their teammates, and their fans. In the midst of triumph, they took the time to show their humility. They took the lead from their undisputed leader, Joe Mazzulla.

“If we win the championship this year, we’re flying to Jerusalem and we’re walking from Jericho to Jerusalem,” Mazzulla told NBC Sports Boston last month. “And it will be kind of like just our reconnect. But we went last year and we stopped right along this mountain side of the Kidron Valley and you could see a path in between the mountains … the only way that [Jesus] could have gotten from Jericho to Jerusalem was through this valley. And right there I was like, ‘We have to walk that.’” He added: “Most people go to Disney World or whatever but … I think [the Holy Land is] the most important place to go back and recenter yourself” (Clemente Lisi, “Head Coach Joe Mazzulla’s Catholic Faith Helped Guide The Boston Celtics To An NBA Championship”).

Jesus Cares

Jesus calms the sea. This comes from his great love and concern for each one of the disciples. Just like them, can get so caught up in our own problems and this is why it is good to think of men and women who live the faith and find a source of peace and calm. This is how Fr. Antonio lived. We see that several of the Celtics player live the same way. We can learn from them to re-center ourselves on Christ.

Perhaps we do not all have the opportunity to make it to the Kidron Valley but we can all come to Jesus in the Eucharist. We can make a spiritual pilgrimage, walking through the problems that each one of us has. We can feel confident that Jesus will intervene in our greatest problems, because we know from the Gospel and from our personal experience that Jesus cares.

Subscribe to the newsletter to never miss an article.

About Fr. Nicholas Sheehy, LC
Fr. Nicholas Sheehy was ordained a Catholic priest in 2013 for the Legionaries of Christ. He has been involved in youth work including missions, retreats and apostolic outreach in Germany, Italy, the United States and Central America. He is passionate about the New Evangelization and formation for young adults and married couples. He is a spiritual director and retreat director, offering marriage preparation and marriage counseling through the Divine Mercy Clinic and Family Center. He is currently Executive Director and Chaplain of the Newman Center at St. Philip the Apostle Parish in Pasadena, California. You can read more about the author here.
"Thank you for a very accurate description of human nature. But the Devil did not ..."

The Devil, Division, and Us
"Common sense should lead you to conclude that the gospels were made up."

Secularism and the Death of Dialogue
"Why I Believe in the EucharistMay 12, 2024When I was a child, I believed in ..."

Did Jesus Mean What He Said ..."
"Human language is literally composed of metaphor and poetry. One thing is “like” another thing—always. ..."

Did Jesus Mean What He Said ..."

Browse Our Archives