Jesus Makes His Debut
In the Gospel of John, Jesus makes his public debut at a wedding in Cana of Galilee. He travels with his mother and his newly minted disciples to a wedding celebration. John reports a big party, one that hits the skids: the wine gives out. Jesus’ Mom turns to him and states plainly, “They have no wine.” Something has to be done. Following a conversation with his mother, Jesus directs the stewards to fill some jars with water and then to dip into them again. They find a wonderful wine. This is Jesus’ “first miracle,” as it says in the traditional wedding service, “that he wrought in Cana of Galilee.”
In Bible Study this week, someone said, “That’s a good story, but what does it have to do with my life?” Good question. And as it is Martin Luther King, Jr. Sunday we might also ask, “What does this have to do with our struggle towards a just world?” That is another good question.
Life is a celebration! There is loving and feasting and blessing and joy and laughter. What a party! We find companions for life’s journey — their hopes become our hopes, their joys our own. That it might always be like this. But, one day we wake up and we find that the wine has run out, the celebration has hit a snag. This is where Christ makes his debut, against our expectations we find that in the midst of our difficulty a new sweetness rises to meet us, as we dip our cups into the depths of our less than satisfactory experience we discover a new vintage, better than the last, a vintage rich and enduring. Our lives are transformed beyond imagining, apart from our planning.