Friday, January 20, 2012
What a Bunch of Losers!
Can you imagine the reaction of much of the Christian world today if they were faced with the kind of decision Jesus made regarding his first public miracle, turning water into wine at a wedding? You know in your heart of hearts that many (and I include myself) would be thinking, "Well, the wedding party has already consumed all the wine way sooner than expected. It's too bad there is no wine left, but it is just as well. They've really had enough!" The fact that Jesus did not have that reaction is fascinating. It means he wasn't standing in their midst, arms folded, with a scowl on his face judging the merriment. It actually indicates he just might have been enjoying himself.
Weddings in first century Judea were a huge deal. Running out of wine was not an option. The reputation of the family was as stake. Jesus saved the day for the young bride and spared the family from embarrassment. He responded to the request of his mom, even though he initially told her not to involve him because the time had not yet come for him to be made known through his miracles. But she had a feeling he would do something anyway. So she told the servants to follow his instructions. She knew her son. He was, after all, love personified. Does that mean a supplication from his dear mom and a desire to save the day for a tender young bride influenced Jesus to change his mind? That's what it looks like. Wow! Who would have thought he would do such a thing?
This event in Jesus' life shows me I can lighten up a little bit, not be so rigid or inflexible. Jesus didn't self-righteously turn his back on the wedding party and say, "Tough! It's not my problem they ran out of wine. They should have had a more efficient wedding planner. What a bunch of losers!" and watch the celebration fall to pieces. Why did Jesus fix the situation? He wanted the party to be a success. He wanted everyone to be happy and the rejoicing to continue.
And I was touched the first time I realized Jesus might have had a soft spot regarding his mother. Even though he initially told her no, he did reconsider, did he not? And ended up turning water into wine--an unusual miracle that delighted his mom and the bridal party even though it resulted in launching his public ministry earlier than he planned. When you think about it, Jesus life on this earth was filled with surprising happenings, unexpected stops and detours along the way enabling him to compassionately meet the needs of people, even "losers."
Note: Read the story of this wedding as told by the bride--click onto The Bride's Story under Recent Posts.