Jason E. Fort
Just a little more to the left...
Take a look at the picture of this guy and the oncoming train. How many close calls like this could there be? Why do some people survive, and some people, not? Is there such a thing as coincidence? To explore this a little closer, first let's look at two real life stories from history. The following really happened, though there is some open interpretation on this author's part based on the words from the Bible provided.
It was around 33 A.D., and the man named Judas had come to tell Malchus' master, the high Priest Caiaphas, that the man they called Jesus was with his disciples in the Garden of Gethsemone. Caiaphas sent Malchus and a detachment of Roman soldiers to the garden with this man Judas, and they found Jesus and some of his followers.
When the crowd of officials and soldiers confronted Jesus, he immediately asked them who it was they sought. Several of them, including Malchus himself, replied at once, "Jesus of Nazareth."
Jesus answered abruptly, "I am He," and the answer alone for some mysterious reason staggered the men. The group was persistent, and confirmed his identity again. Malchus knew how badly his High Priest Caiaphas wanted this man named Jesus. He moved in to arrest the man that answered.
Suddenly, the one they called Simon Peter jumped to Jesus's aid, and swung a sword wildly at Malchus, slicing off his right ear in the process. Malchus didn't know what hit him; all he knew was that a little more to the left, and his head would have been split in the middle by the large sword. But that wasn't the wildest part.
The man they called Jesus rebuked his follower with the sword. He stopped him from attacking further, and did not resist when the soldiers and other officials took him into custody. But before they arrested him, Jesus picked up the severed ear of Malchus, and placed his hand back over the side of Malchus's head. Malchus was miraculously healed, and yet Jesus was still taken away.
And THAT, is just another part of a greater story that is not yet finished.
It was around 2019. The police officer got report of something that just seemed to be getting a little too common in the 21st century; someone was in the vicinity that wasn't supposed to have a gun - but they did. It was up to this officer; we'll call him Officer M. Officer M. did his due diligence, and responded to the location of the suspected individual. He asked to see the guy's hands.
Without warning, the suspect lunged at Officer M. and shot at him. Before the officer knew it, he was ducking for cover as the suspect was getting away, now an even greater danger to others. The officer didn't even know he'd just been shot in his right shoulder. Only aware of the loud gunshot that had just blasted near his right side, he took off after the suspect.
When confronting him once again, the suspect shot some more, but missed. He turned to leave the scene, but the officer returned fire and took the suspect down. Somehow, despite the chaos of the scene, nobody else was hurt. And Officer M. and the suspect, lived to see another day.
But THAT, is just another part of a greater story that is not yet finished.
So when you hear stories like this, and first of all admit to yourself that they really happened - one can only imagine what must go through someone's head when they have a brush with death.
Think about it.
Just a little more to the left, and perhaps Malchus's head would've been cleaved in two.
Just a little more to the left, and the officer's aorta could've been severed, and he would bleed out.
And... because Jesus took the time to heal Malchus, one more miracle occurred in the Bible before Jesus went on to die on the cross. Because Jesus stopped Peter from further resistance and combat, Jesus went on to carry out His mission to SAVE the world.
Because the officer was fortunate enough for the bullet to be a little too wide-right, he was able to go on and take down a dangerous man. Not only that, but he will be able to help protect other people in the future, while the suspect he took down will get to serve his punishment for his evil actions.
But they were just close calls, right - purely coincidence? Right?
I don't think so. I think everything happens for a reason. And the great Author in Heaven, though He gives us free will, might very well know the true destiny of the so-called butterfly effect.
The key is that we always pray that we are serving God and His designs.
Who knows - I could be assassinated tomorrow for the words I write today. But ask yourself this:
What are the possibilities once a tragic event like that happens, for the readers of the hopeful words I merely type in this blog? I'd venture a guess that many would take notice. Not saying I want that to happen, but it's enough food for thought to make one's head spin.
As usual, this is just my two cents - but just a little more to the left, and we could ALL be goners.
Well played, God...well played.
Here's to all the ones who risk their lives-