More than grapes

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On the third day a wedding took place at Cana in Galilee. Jesus’ mother was there, and Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding.  When the wine was gone, Jesus’ mother said to him, “They have no more wine.” “Woman, why do you involve me?” Jesus replied. “My hour has not yet come.” His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.” Nearby stood six stone water jars, the kind used by the Jews for ceremonial washing, each holding from twenty to thirty gallons. Jesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water”; so they filled them to the brim. Then he told them, “Now draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet.” They did so, and the master of the banquet tasted the water that had been turned into wine. He did not realize where it had come from, though the servants who had drawn the water knew. Then he called the bridegroom aside and said, “Everyone brings out the choice wine first and then the cheaper wine after the guests have had too much to drink; but you have saved the best till now.” John 2:1-10

When I was a child, my church produced a children’s musical every Christmas. It was the highlight of my year. I loved the singing, the story telling, the costumes. The church would be packed. Our families and many members of the community came to see what we had all worked so hard to create. At the end of the night, every child received a simple paper bag. Inside were treats, one of which was a piece of Bubblicious gum. The gum was usually rock hard by the time we tried to chomp on it and the piece was big enough to fill even the largest of childsize mouths. But the flavour those first few minutes was perfect.

Jesus went to a wedding. A great party. He was simply a guest. His family had been invited and they were all enjoying the experience together. Like any wedding there was a moment of panic, a malfunction, something happened that no one had anticipated and no one had a fix for.

Jesus’ mother had a solution. She already knew and understood her boy had power and ability that defied human understanding. She knew he was able to take care of it all. Jesus reluctance to step in always strikes me. Why didn’t he respond with eagerness? Jesus did not perform miracles for a show. This was not meant to be a command performance. All of Jesus’ miracles proved that He is the Son of God. His mother knew her son and asked the servants to simply obey Jesus and do what He said.

The servants fulfilled a simple request. The jars were filled with water. Some was drawn out and taken to the master of the banquet. It was sampled and declared to be the best wine of the wedding.

Jesus is constantly in the business of using the ordinary. Jars for ceremonial washing, water, a wedding – these were all ordinary things and experiences that any family would have had. Jesus participates in the ordinary. I know there are times when I am looking for Him to be involved in some extra-ordinary experience for me to believe that He is with me. But that’s not like Jesus. Instead, He’s asking me to notice Him and pay attention to Him in the simple and regular things that occur on any given day. It’s in the face of a child, the interaction with a colleague, the hug of a family member, the moment of joy, the moment of sadness – He’s in all of these things if I will notice Him.

This Advent, I choose to be reminded that Jesus is able to use the simple and the ordinary to work a miracle. May He work miracles in my heart as I see His fingerprints everywhere.

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