Photo by Monica Grabkowska on Unsplash
Jesus’ first miracle took place at a wedding and the story is recorded in John 2:1-11. Have you ever wondered why this was His first place to display His glory through miracles? There was a need and miracles flourish where there is a need. When the wine ran out, Jesus’ mother said to Him “they have no wine”. The desire or a need for something will sometimes cause unscheduled miracles to take place. In response, Jesus said to His mother “Woman what does that have to do with us? My time has not yet come”. Sometimes, all it takes is an intercessor – someone who notices and intercedes for you before God.
Two years ago, I attended a wonderful weekend retreat for Christian working mums. It was a chance to reconnect with old friendships and form new ones. One of the mum’s who attended the retreat had a baby several months old. She was still breastfeeding although she was there without her baby. At one of our mealtimes, she sat next to me and I noticed she had started to get uncomfortable because of the interruption to her expressing routine. I knew that cabbage leaves worked in easing breastfeeding discomfort – don’t ask me how. I only know from experience that they do. I figured the kitchen would have some cabbage leaves.
So, I went to the kitchen side door and asked for some cabbage leaves. I tried as best as I could, to give the reason for my request without sounding weird. I got the cabbage leaves and gave them to her. On my way back to my room after the lunch, I heard the Holy Spirit’s whisper in my heart “That’s what it means to intercede. The cabbage leaves were not for you. You risked looking ridiculous as you asked the kitchen staff for some. You explained what you wanted until you got an answer! You didn’t take no for an answer!”
After Mary interceded on behalf of the newly married by bringing their situation to Jesus, she said to the servants “Whatever He says to you, do it “. The servants obeyed, and a miracle occurred (John 2: 6-10). They had faith to obey even though they had never seen “Jesus in action”. Blessed are they who did not see, and yet believe (John 20:29). Whatever He says to you, do it. It wasn’t just about what He said, it was the fact that He was the one saying it. Whatever (anything, whatsoever, each and everything etc.) What has He said to you? Whatever He says to you, do it. Forgive that person and let go of your right to be avenged. Repent and come back to Me. Be kind to that person though they have been unkind to you. Step out in faith and follow the dream, I have placed in your heart. Be willing to appear ridiculous in my service even if that is not the way you usually do things. Whatever He says to you, do it!
At the Mount of Transfiguration there was another call to heed Jesus, Matthew 17: 5 records a heavenly voice “This is my beloved Son with whom I am well pleased; listen to Him.” This was the Father speaking to another set of servants (the disciples- Peter, James and John). Listen to Jesus – and by implication do what He says, because it is not just about being hearers of the Word but being doers of the Word.
Unscheduled miracles take place where there is a need and where there is faith. Cue the woman with the issue of blood. Jesus was on His way to heal a man’s dead daughter. Healing of the issue of blood did not appear to be on the agenda that day. But Jesus felt virtue (power) go out of Him, because of the faith of that woman – a risky, willing-to-look-ridiculous-kind of faith! Are you willing to look ridiculous in your faith walk? Or must dry land appear before you step out of the boat to walk? That woman’s healing may not have been on the day’s schedule but Praise God, by reason of the death of Jesus Christ upon the cross, His blood is available to deal with all kinds of issues you may be facing today.
Jesus told the servants …….. Fill the water pots with water……….. and draw some out and give it to the headwaiter ……. God has filled you with certain things that need to be drawn out. Things which are for the nourishment of many. You may not think those things are special. After all, water is water, no big deal. Wine however, takes a process. The process of being filled with those things may not be pleasant. It may be an arduous and drawn out procedure, but, hang in there. God is at work in your life. He is committed to bring sweet things out of you. Like Samson, and the lion he killed, out of the eater comes forth sweetness. Those circumstances which were meant to consume you now produces sweet things. At the end of the process, what has been deposited into you like water comes out in the sweetness of wine.
After the headwaiter tasted the wine, he exclaimed at the quality of the wine. He took the bridegroom to task. He did not know where the wine had come from, but the servants knew. In similar fashion, people may comment that you are an overnight success. One minute no one knew you, the next minute they do. How come you have so much to say? How come you are doing all these amazing things? The trolling may be relentless. You don’t need to worry or respond to such critics. It was a process. It took some time between then and now. Jesus knew the process it took. You knew the process it took. You know where you started from. I was blind now I see. I was used, abused and broken, now I am alive and set free. Like Paul, once a terrorist, now an apostle of the One whose servants I sought to kill.
It is a process! The fact that people didn’t know how long it took or how you arrived where you did, doesn’t matter. You may not be able to explain how you moved from then to now. After all, water was poured into the pots and wine was taken out. Could the servants really say how Jesus did it? All they knew, is that Jesus did it. And that, is all that you need to know and proclaim!
Thanks for reading.