Jesus and His disciples were guests at a wedding in “Cana of Galilee” at which His mother, Mary, was also present (John 2:1-11), an event with celebrations that often lasted a week. For some people, the thought of Jesus at a wedding and having fun doesn’t align with who they perceive Him to be, but as Bible scholar Joseph Benson observes, Jesus “freely accepted of the invitation. For He did not come to take away human society but to sanctify it.” At some point during the festivities, the unthinkable happened; the hosts ran out of wine. In a time when hospitality was so lavish, this would have caused great humiliation. Mary, undoubtedly recognizing the seriousness of the situation, said unto Jesus, “They have no more wine” (John 2:3, AMP). Up to that time she had not seen Him perform a miracle, but from what she knew of Him, she knew He could help.
Jesus was not amused for He said unto her, “[Dear] woman, what is that to you and to Me? My time [to act and to be revealed] has not yet come” (v 4). Ignoring His gentle rebuke and still expecting Him to do something, she said to the servants, “Whatever He says to you, do it” (v. 5). To summarize the rest of the story, Jesus gave instructions, the servants obeyed, and those at the feast drank of the “good wine” (vv. 6-10). Jesus had turned water into wine. John tells us, “This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth His glory; and His disciples believed on Him (v. 11, KJV).
As I reflected on the recorded events, three main things stood out for me. First, it was after the wine had ran out that Jesus was pressed into action. When He did act, the result was superior to what was there before (v. 10). In that first public miracle, we get a glimpse of how He would often operate in our lives. As free moral agents, we often operate in our own resources – our plans, our ideas, our visions, our desires, our wants, and our needs. Just as He was an invited guest at the wedding, so He is for some of us an invited guest in our lives. As long as He doesn’t interfere in or interrupt our plans and what we are doing, He can stay. It wasn’t until they ran out of wine that we even knew He was there. Isn’t that so much like us? Until we run out of ideas, plans, and whatever else, and don’t know what else to do, Jesus is simply our guest.
The second was how Jesus engaged the servants to be a part of what He was going to do. Did He need their help? Not really. However, often when He is about to do something in our lives, He solicits our cooperation. Mary told the servants to do whatever He told them to do because she knew the key to any miracle that day was their trust in, and obedience to, the words of Jesus. With us, the same thing applies. The third was Jesus’ ability to do exceedingly abundantly above all that they (and us) could ask or think (Ephesians 3:20). The wine He gave them on that day was better than what they had before (John 2:10). As He did for them, He can do for us. If we think our plans and ideas are good, His plans for you and me are much better (Jeremiah 29:11). At the wedding, He was more than a guest. He was also the Son of God. We do not have to wait until we run out of ideas to discover who Jesus is. In our lives, He is more than a guest. He is the Way Maker, Miracle Worker, Promise Keeper, our Light in the darkness, and so much more. Engage Him now.