Things Only Servants KnowDaily Reflection / Produced by The High Calling
Jesus said to them, "Fill the jars with water." And they filled them up to the brim. He said to them, "Now draw some out, and take it to the chief steward." So they took it. When the steward tasted the water that had become wine, [he] did not know where it came from (though the servants knew).
Frances and John Canning had reserved a portion of the Manchester Town Hall for their wedding ceremony. At the last minute they were told Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip would be attending an event in the same building. With tongue in cheek they sent the queen an invite and received the predictable letter of regret. So, imagine their surprise when the royal couple showed up to congratulate them. "Hello, John. Hello, Frances," the queen and the prince greeted them personally. As the Cannings put it, the royal visit "put the frosting on the cake."
John reports that Jesus' first public act was to attend a wedding. His mother appears to have had some hospitality responsibilities, and when Jesus arrived she reported the embarrassing news that they had run out of wine. These wedding celebrations typically lasted a week, and the hosts were expected to provide food and wine. While Jesus' response to his mother that his hour had not yet come seems disrespectful, it was really his way of declaring his independence from her. It was important for the world to know that the only authority in Jesus' life was his heavenly Father.
So, according to his own timing, Jesus commanded that the water jars be filled with water and their contents taken to the wine steward. The wine steward, of course, was curious as to where all this fine wine had come from. John offers the provocative observation that only the servants knew that it had come from Jesus. This was far more than an offhand observation. This was a deep and profound teaching. Servants of Jesus know things that no one else can know.
These servants knew:
- that Jesus provides
- that Jesus acts quietly, without fanfare, and according to his own timetable
- that Jesus' resources are extravagantly greater than we need or imagine
Serving in Jesus' name will routinely stretch us beyond the limits of our strength and resources. But when we do, Jesus, the King of Kings, will visit us, supply our needs, and be the frosting on the cake.
FOR FURTHER REFLECTION:
What insights into the Kingdom has the Spirit of God revealed to you?
Lord God, it is not in my nature to serve others, but rather to attend to my own needs. Serving others stretches me beyond my comfort. Prod me when occasions for service find their way to my doorstep and help me to respond with faith that only servants of Jesus know. Amen.
READ THE PASSAGE IN CONTEXT:
On the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there. Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding. When the wine gave out, the mother of Jesus said to him, "They have no wine." And Jesus said to her, "Woman, what concern is that to you and to me? My hour has not yet come." His mother said to the servants, "Do whatever he tells you." Now standing there were six stone water-jars for the Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty gallons. Jesus said to them, "Fill the jars with water." And they filled them up to the brim. He said to them, "Now draw some out, and take it to the chief steward." So they took it. When the steward tasted the water that had become wine, and did not know where it came from (though the servants who had drawn the water knew), the steward called the bridegroom and said to him, "Everyone serves the good wine first, and then the inferior wine after the guests have become drunk. But you have kept the good wine until now." Jesus did this, the first of his signs, in Cana of Galilee, and revealed his glory; and his disciples believed in him.