Thursday, March 29, 2012

The Wedding at Cana

After Mary approaches Jesus at the wedding where the wine had run out, Jesus tells her that his time is not yet come. Mary looks toward the servants and instructs them to do what he says. Mary knew Jesus—she knew who he really was. After all, the angel had told her, and she knew she had been a virgin, even if no one else in the world believed her. Since she knew him to be God, she expected a God action from him.
So, instead of responding to his comment, she simply spoke to the servants and then seemingly walked away. There is no indication she stuck around.
Now, if Jesus hadn’t wanted to perform the miracle, he could have made himself scarce. After all, he knew what she wanted, but he and his disciples just happened to be located near six stone water jugs, along with the household servants. (It was an opportune place for Mary to find him.)
I heard a speaker at a senior retreat once say: “Belief is based on intellect; and faith is acting on that belief.” Maybe I have so little faith in Jesus because I see him more like a man loitering around the water pots than God. Maybe I need to focus more like his mother—a woman who knew him for what he really is—God, very God.
I pray to God, but often I act like I pray to a man—a man in Heaven. I wonder how he’d respond if I would expect God actions from him—not that I should have the audacity to tell God what to do, but that I’d simply believe that he would act on my behalf instead of just that he could. If there was doubt in Mary’s mind, it’s not revealed here.
I believe Mary knew Jesus would do something. I’m not sure she knew what that would be, but she believed enough to instruct the servants to do whatever he said. So often we expect so little that our prayers go up as just so much smoke. Yet, even when we’re desperate, during the times of our greatest need, we cry out to God and only hope that in some way he’ll help us—perhaps because we’re in such a habit of expecting so little.
God is always at work, even when we don’t see him. Yet—I wonder—if Mary hadn’t expected Jesus to do something about the situation, would there have been wine for the banquet?
“Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.” Col. 4:6

1 comment:

  1. This year I've also wondered how much more effective my prayers would be if I did pray more expectantly. So often we are amazed when a miracle happens, but really, shouldn't we respond more like, "ahh, I'm not surprised at all"?