Jesus therefore, knowing all things that would come upon Him, went forward and said to them, “Whom are you seeking?” They answered Him, “Jesus of Nazareth.” Jesus said to them, “I am He.” And Judas, who betrayed Him, also stood with them. Now when He said to them, “I am He,” they drew back and fell to the ground. John 18:4-6
Last night I had a great time having dinner with a buddy, talking about life, the Lord and his business. It was very late as I drove home via 95, traffic was not terrible, but about halfway through my trip, my car’s engine began to sputter and then stall. As I am coasting down 95 in neutral, I put my hazards on, and started it up again, this time going only a little further before it stalled out again. So, I am driving down the highway with cars flying past me, repeating this process, looking for an exit. The problem was they were doing construction on 95 late last night so all of the right lanes were getting squeezed by flares and cones into two lanes so now there were a lot more cars coming up on me very quickly. Obviously, I am praying without ceasing, and as I get to the next exit, I find that its blocked off by construction and police! Great! So, I keep repeating the stall, startup and praying, making my way down the highway slowly. I finally make it to an exit and pull off to the side of the road, put my hazards on, call my insurance company and await a tow truck. As I am sitting waiting, I am thinking ‘why am I in this spot Lord, with this problem, at this late hour?’. I had a peace at that moment knowing that God works all things together for good, that He has a plan in all of this and He must want the tow truck driver to hear something about Him. Jesus knew all things would come upon Him in the garden and He also knows all things that will come upon us on a daily basis. The part about this verse that I love is that when these soldiers that are about to arrest Him, and take Him to be beaten and crucified, all fall backward to the ground when Jesus declares to them ‘I am He‘. You probably noticed that the ‘He’ is italicized because it was added by the translators. Jesus is proclaiming His diety, the divine name of God, I AM. If you ever doubted Jesus could have jumped down off the cross at any moment, just look at the powerful effect He had on the soldiers who were arresting Him by His declaration. That should remind us today that we are big time loved. He stayed on that cross for us when He had the power to jump down and say no more. These men who fell backward were not expecting this. I wonder what they told their wives when they got home? ‘Hey babe, we arrested that Jesus guy tonight and the strangest thing happened….’ I dont think they would have ever forgotten that moment. God interrupted their life to allow them to sense the power of who God is. We can never forget that telling others about who Jesus is to us can have a powerful effect on their lives. They wont fall backward, but they may just get a glimpse of Jesus that they will never forget. Our day today will be full of opportunities that we don’t want to miss. You may be in a jam, a trial, a difficulty today, but there is always a reason. It may be that God interrupts your day, because He wants to interrupt someone else’s day by having you share Him with them. My night was going great and then it got interrupted last night, but there was a reason, because my tow truck driver’s life was being interrupted too and he did eventually arrive. He was all tatted up on both arms, and cursing was a regular part of his vocabulary, so I thought..this is perfect! This is who Jesus wants to reach, this who Jesus wants give life to. We got to talk on the drive home about his life, his time in prison, his new baby, his girlfriend and how much God cares for Him. He lives too far south to attend the Cross, but I was able to recommend to him an awesome church of a friend of mine in his area. He said he wanted to and would check it out. He didn’t fall backward when I shared with him, but imagine if that late night breakdown of my car was so his life could be interrupted with the power of Jesus. Be ready for those God opportunities today. You never know how God will use your love for Jesus to impact someone else’s life.