Reference Points

Message:  In John 18 Judas led the soldiers to the garden to arrest Jesus. Jesus already knew what they were there for, but he asked them who they were looking for. When they told him they were looking for Jesus the Nazarene he said “I am he”. As he spoke those words the men stepped back and fell to the ground. Then he asked them again who they were looking for so they told him again “Jesus the Nazarene” He said “I told you I am he so if you’re looking for me, let these men go.” This was all to fulfill the things he had spoken earlier in prayer. It also seemed like an opportunity for these men to see for themselves who Jesus really was. This passage doesn’t tell us what they thought about when they were knocked to the ground by his power. It appears they just carried on with their business and arrested Jesus. These were soldiers so they had commands to follow and they did. After reading this I thought about all of the things I saw before I believed and how I carried on with my life in spite of it. Those moments were seeds planted and they didn’t change my direction at the time but they were reference points that I looked back on later as I began to recount many others. Jesus created reference points all over the place to be reflected on and remembered later. Many of them were things he intentionally said or did to fulfill prophecies that they all studied and knew. When people accumulate enough reference points they begin to connect the dots and see the picture that he has been drawing for them. Sometimes it’s hard to watch people collect reference points with seemingly no change of or response but one day they connect enough of those dots to see the picture. The reference points look very different for everyone but they all reveal an image of himself. What he uses is very personal because God is very relational. He knows our back story and he knows the thoughts we are thinking, the insecurities we wrestle with and the deep questions of our souls and he knows how to relate to us all on a very intimate level. When we try to explain some of our own reference points to other people they may not understand the miracle because it’s our miracle.  Today I pray for all of the people still collecting reference points. I pray that they would begin to connect the dots and see the picture of Jesus he is revealing to each heart in his own way.

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