People you want to get in good with when you are new on a job:
(a) they have secret eyes and ears everywhere,
(b) they have keys and access to everything,
(c) they can fix anything, including “red tape”.
I suspect this very sagacious advice has not changed much over the millennia, as I see in this continuing story about Jesus and the wedding at Cana, (see yesterday’s post.)
As the celebration continues, Mary has just informed Jesus that the unfortunate, but as yet unsuspecting and soon-to-be-horribly-and-forever-embarrassed parents of the bride, are out of the customary wine for the many guests attending the party. At first, Jesus seems to indicate that He can do nothing about it since the time to reveal His true identity (by performing a miracle) has not yet arrived.
Unflustered by this remark, Mary paves the way by going to the (guess who) servants, “just in case” Jesus changes His mind.
Which He does—
“Standing nearby were six stone water jars, used for Jewish ceremonial washing. Each could hold twenty to thirty gallons. Jesus told the servants, ‘Fill the jars with water.’”
Okay, so far no big deal. I remember being told, however, that these jars were used for some serious washing, like including dirty feet. Dare we even imagine what was on the inside of these pots?
So hold that thought.
“When the jars had been filled, he said, ‘Now dip some out, and take it to the master of ceremonies.’ So the servants followed his instructions.”
Oh, how I would love to see a replay of their faces when Jesus said this!! The one servant whose eyes got as big as saucers, and another afraid he was going to be busted back to peeling potatoes (or worse), and especially the one with the slow, sly, revengeful smile starting to slide across his grizzled face. (As in, “here, hand me the cup…”)
“When the master of ceremonies tasted the water that was now wine, not knowing where it had come from (though, of course, the servants knew), he called the bridegroom over. ‘A host always serves the best wine first,’ he said. ‘Then, when everyone has had a lot to drink, he brings out the less expensive wine. But you have kept the best until now!’”
I find it interesting that the wine Jesus provided in the emergency, when all else was exhausted, was in fact better than the wine that had been prepared beforehand. Not that we shouldn’t prepare beforehand; God calls us to be responsible as a way of honoring Him.
But then there are times when God has to step in to do beyond what my responsibility cannot provide. It’s humbling, but it’s better than anything I can do. Way better. And He can do it with ordinary things I would not expect, even things I would have at first thought (or second and third thought, even) distain or turned up my nose at!
However, when God does His thing, the results tend to be more than temporal:
“This miraculous sign at Cana in Galilee was the first time Jesus revealed his glory. And his disciples believed in him.”
Something tells me the servants might have believed in Him also.
To that, I tip my glass! Cheers.
John 2:6-11 Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.